Category Archives: The Weekly Shop

Reducing the spending… week 9

Shopping day has come around fast – by the time I got to the supermarket tonight I had spent the best part of the day in Leeds trekking up to St James hospital for blood tests then getting the train back to Huddersfield and going to work.  I worked until 6 o’clock then walked around to Sainsbury’s in the downpour and stood dripping at the counter waiting for a very welcome hot chocolate!

I wasn’t in the best frame of mind for shopping but managed to grab a few bargains.  My total spend has taken me over my £50 by £7.05 but I took advantage of some of the offers still on this week.

Groceries

Groceries

Fruit and veg

Fruit and veg

The offers 

  • 2 more packets of Oatiflake cereal still on offer for £2 a box,
  • 2 packets of Birds Eye frozen petite pois peas at £1 bag,
  • 3 x Soya milk – 3 for £3,
  • 2 organic Cheddar cheese – 2 for £4.50,
  • 2 x organic semi skimmed milk for £3,
  • 2 x organic Braeburn apples for £4,
  • 2 bars Green and Black organic chocolate 2 for £3.00,
  • 2 boxes mushrooms for £1.50
  • 2 organic granary loaves reduced to £0.59 each

Because the mushrooms were such a bargain I will be amending my original menu plan to incorporate two mushroom meals one of them a Stroganoff.

The cheese I will grate into a container and freeze.

The chocolate is also a bargain and I have bought this ready to make chocolates for Easter.

The bread I had sliced and this will go in the freezer.

Total spend £63.34 less savings £6.29 = £57.05

Reward points 122

Total rewards 885 worth £4.42

I am building up a nice stock of some items that have been on offer for a few weeks – cereal, cheese, soya milk so that when the offer finishes they should last me a while hopefully until they are on offer again!

We still have a lot of food in the cupboards but until the threat of snow disappears I am not going to run my cupboard stores down just in case.

Menu plan for this week

We never got to make the curry last week and I had to adjust the menu plan to fit in with the fact we came home late on the Wednesday and Saturday.  Wednesday we had Pizza as I bought  2 Marguerita Pizzas for £1.59 with salad and Saturday good old Egg and Chips.

I made the curry on Monday evening and we ate the rest tonight.  Lovely hubby made a big pan of soup on Sunday for lunch and so I have been able to take this to work for 2 days.  I also bought a crustless Quiche in Sainsbury’s which I will take for the next 2 days and have with salad – this will save me £8.20 on my lunches.

This isn’t the most exciting menu but it will use the cheap mushrooms and the left over courgettes from last week.  I haven’t planned to try out a new recipe this week as I know I will be a bit short of time.

Monday

Lunch – homemade veg soup leftover from Sunday

Evening meal – Veg and Lentil Curry with brown rice

Tuesday

Lunch – last of homemade veg soup

Evening meal – Veg and Lentil Curry with Taco shells

Wednesday

Lunch – salad and 1/2 Sainsbury’s crustless Quiche

Evening meal – Mushroom Stroganoff with green beans

Thursday

Lunch – salad and 1/2 Sainsbury’s crustless Quiche

Evening meal – Ratatouille (using mushrooms) and Baked potatoes

Friday

Lunch – sandwich and salad

Evening meal – Lasagne with ratatouille as a base and Broccoli

Saturday

Lunch – homemade soup / something on toast with salad

Evening meal – Shepherds pie with brown lentils and frozen broad beans

Sunday

Lunch – homemade soup / sandwich

Evening meal – Shepherds pie and frozen broccoli

Hopefully I will be able to keep to the plan this week but I can recommend making a plan to anyone who wants to save money and reduce waste as even a very loose plan is better than none.  It helps to focus on making the best use of the food already in the cupboards and fridge and reduces the amount of fresh food that is wasted if it doesn’t get eaten in time.  I find with careful planning I buy fewer veg – but what I do buy we eat at its best and I am not ‘guess’ buying only to find I have over bought.

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Reducing the spending week #8

Groceries Wk 8

This week I spent a hefty  £57.95 on groceries and a further £13 on Britta water filters, (half price for a box of 6).  As I thought I didn’t need very much shopping this week I was a little surprised at the amount.

However, quite a few of the items were expensive buys this week as I was running out of a few things or come to the end of a roll.  Some of the dearer things were –

  • Cling Film (biodegradable)  £1.95
  • Foil  £1.65
  • Flaxseed  £2.40
  • Coffee Espresso x 2  £7.18
  • 1 doz organic eggs – mixed sizes  £3.70
  • Rubber gloves  £2.15

I saved on the offers on Ecover washing up liquid, cheese, bread and Kitchen towels.

My lunches at work were dearer this week than last.  I only managed one lunch taken from home and the rest I bought at a cost of £9.04.

I also bought two bottles of supplements – Vitamin D £8.79 and Acidophilus £7.55.  I haven’t been taking these for a week or two and my plan is to take them every other day as a compromise to try and save money on these over the year as this is definitely and expensive category in my budget.

I spent a massive £34.72 in the stationery shops – Staples and Rymans.  I am working on simplifying our home office at the moment and I am changing one or two of my systems for keeping track of all the paperwork.  So as well as decluttering I am also spending some money here to try and improve the set up.

I needed to renew my 3 lever arch files which have worn and split due to continuous use.  I managed to get some new ones at half price and they are sturdier than the old ones so should last longer.  I use one for filing my papers that relate to my bill account, one for my bank, credit card and savings statements and a third for my mum in laws paperwork.

However, I decided this week that I would begin a separate fourth file for my savings statements and remove them from my bank statements file as it is an expanding section which is overloading the file.

What I bought this week

Stationery

Four white lever arch files £3.34 x 4 = £13.36

8 narrow plastic wallets (I have a purpose for these wait and see!) £10.13 with 15% off

1 slimline purple pen for my notebook £2.99

1 Martha Stewart stick up pocket £5.49

Filofax Expenses

1 pack of Filofax expense forms – did I really need these – probably not! £ 2.75

Spring Flowers

Various Spring flowering plants for the garden £15.95

    • 1 Hellebore Niger
    • 2 pots Dwarf Narcissus
    • 2 pink Cyclamens

1 box of 6 primulas

Cyclamens

Polyfilla

Decorating items – £12.98

  • Hairline crack filler £5.99
  • Filler tools  £3.00
  • Tester pot  £3.99 (not shown)

I will be doing a post soon about Simplifying our home office and all will be revealed.  Meanwhile this coming week has to be a no spend /low spend to compensate for last week.  There are only 5 days left in February and although I have overspent in Stationery and Supplements I am still within the whole housekeeping budget because my food spending is only £115.95 so far for the month.

Tomorrow I will post my coming weeks menu plan and review last weeks.

Reducing the spending…a whole new year

I haven’t been here for a while but it is good to be back and yes I know I need to update my header for 2014 but that will be coming soon.

Last year I did make a big effort to cut the grocery budget and even though it wasn’t as much as I wanted (£10 a week over my budget of £50) it did make a big difference over the year against my previuos £70-80 week.  The weeks that I managed to write a menu plan in reasonable detail and stick to it helped to lower the costs substantially as did buying items only on offer,  unless we were absolutely desperate.

I work four full days a week so I can’t put heaps of time into this exercise but the new habits I did put in place have continued.  So this year I will be building on last years success.  Of course it will get harder as I am starting from a different place where the many obvious and easy savings have already been tried and tested.  Finding new ways to save money can depend on a number issues and for me eating organic is not negotiable even to save the pennies, whereas trying a different supermarket or method of shopping might be.

For anybody reading this who thinks that being frugal or thrifty is about a choice rather than absolute necessity they are quite correct in my case, it is a conscious choice.    Even though we had a 25% wage cut for the last 3 years we are not surviving on the bread line like some households – however, I would say that there is no room for frivolous spending or throwing money away needlessly, especially as retirement is looming on the horizon and we want to make sure we have enough put by not to be a burden on anyone else, including the state.  We also want to be able to enjoy our older years when they arrive.

Another reason for the mindful thrifting is I hate waste or buying for the sake of  – it seems like an insult to all the starving people in the world to be throwing any food stuff away.  My main and only reason for throwing food away would be for the safety aspect and by this I mean if I wasn’t sure if a food could still be eaten beyond the stated use by date without undue harm.

I will often stretch some foods beyond the use by unless it has mayonnaise in it like the deli pots of coleslaw then I take extra care.  Fruit and veg dates I completely ignore and I just use the visual test – if it is shrivelled and bearing mould it becomes compost.  This is not often though as I tend to make soup with any remains from the week.

Planning menus wisely does overcome this tendency to end up with a pile of items in the fridge at the end of a week that have only had a spoonful removed and have since exceeded their use by and beyond.

So of all the ways of saving on the grocery spending I am going to concentrate on the menu planning as I believe this is the one thing that promotes  both a balanced meal and big savings on food waste and food cost.

Having said all that I ended up in Sainsburys tonight without a list or a plan, the shopping expedition was a feat in itself, battling not with snow today but with the strong winds and lashing rain.  Sainsburys had to close off their automatic doors at one point.  I had no choice but to do a bit of a trolley dash so I could get on my way home.

I decided tonight was not the night to be exceptionally frugal with the groceries and although I was by no means stockpiling I made sure that we have a good stock of items to tide us over should the snow return.  Bare cupboards are fine if you don’t get marooned.

So here is the grocery spend £62.01 to be precise less £13.50 reward points – I found a few items on offer – to the right of the photo.

Food shopping

The Bargains

  • The Soya milk was a good buy 3 for £3,
  • Oatibix flakes £2 a box,
  • 2 x Spelt rolls reduced to £0.69,
  • Vivaldi potatoes reduced to £1,
  • 2 loaves  for £1.50,
  • cheese 2 for £4.50,
  • Milk 2 for £3.

So now I must set to and plan the menus around the shopping for this week – in fact I hope I can stretch this amount of food to a fortnight or maybe longer.

How is your food shopping / meal planning going so far this year?

Reducing the spending… week 41

Week 41 already and I have started the week with a new months allowance so I must not let this go to my head and overspend in the first week.  But you may ask how did I do in September – I have just been totting up the figures and this is what they look like:-

  • Groceries, which for me includes cleaning products – £190.03
  • Lunches at work – £25.66
  • Supplements and food from Health store – £21.58
  • Toiletries – £65.21 (this is the stock of No7 face creams I got on offer)

And just in case you were wondering – I confess to spending a total of £19.53 on magazines – my target spend in this area should be zero.

Overall I am quite pleased with the results – the toiletries were a bit of an outlay but I won’t need to buy face cream for a long time.

October Challenge

Areas for improvement – definitely magazines, closely followed by those lunches at work, however it should be noted that my grocery spend would go up slightly if I took lunches to work from home, so I wouldn’t be saving the whole of the £25.66 I spent.  An easy adjustment to make will be to take my own bread – which I did do this week saving me £2.68 a week.

As I did very well the week before last by only shopping for what we needed during the week and not doing a big shop I am going to try this again.  So I will do a bigger shop once a fortnight and then buy as I need on the alternate weeks.

I had 3 birthdays this month for special friends and on Sunday I made a card for each of them – (pictures of these will be over on my other blog where the journey takes me soon) saving me about £6-£7.

In November I have 4 birthdays and an Anniversary so my aim is to make these in October as well as beginning to think about making for Christmas.

I will continue with my store cupboard use up and making sure that nothing goes in my bin.  I congratulated myself last week as I used up every last morsel…

…so this over ripe banana

Ripe Banana

added to these ingredients –  the last 2 eggs, the end of a chocolate bar and some left over walnuts…

Chocolate Loaf ingredients

became these…Mini Chocolate, Walnut and Banana Loaves

Chocolate Banana Loaf

They didn’t even get as far as having the chocolate topping!

The end of the Ciabbatta loaf…

Stale end of loaf

became breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs

and eventually the topping on the Macaroni Cheesbake on Thursday…

Macaroni Bake

and remember I froze the ends of tomato paste and some Barts Mediterranean Herbs in the ice cube trays which I have now transferred into my storage tubs ready to use.

Flavour cubes

Menu Plan Week 41

  • Monday – Lasagne with Peas
  • Tuesday – Lasagne with Broccoli
  • Wednesday – Baked Potato with cheese, homemade coleslaw and salad
  • Thursday – Macaroni Cheese Bake and Peas
  • Friday – Cheese and Leek ramekins and salad
  • Saturday – Meal out
  • Sunday – Cheese and Leek Ramekins with salad

Spending so far this week – cash

  • Monday – Lunch at work -Soup –  £2.55
  • Tuesday – Lunch at work Soup –  £2.55
  • Wednesday – Lunch at work Soup £2.55, Hot choc in Sainsbury’s £1.80
  • Thursday – Lunch at work Soup £2.55, extra groceries £2.80

Spending this week by Card

  Sainsbury’s – Groceries

  • Lactose free milk    £1.48
  • Lettuce and watercress  £1.50
  • Bertolli margarine  £1.50
  • Organic  mushrooms  £1.28
  • Blueberries  £2.25
  • Courgette  £0.42

Total spend £8.43

Health Foods

  • Blackcurrant Spread  £2.49
  • Rude Health Spelt Flakes  £2.99
  • Viridian Acidphilus  £7.80
  • Viridian Vit B comples £6.50

Total spend £19.78

On Wednesday I had to go to the out of town Sainsbury’s for Petrol and I called in to get a few items – but not to do a big grocery shop.   Luckily I did the shopping before I bought the petrol so I was able to get £0.8p per litre off the total with the voucher I got for spending more than £20 on their clothing range.

Wool Jumpers

This is what I got for hubby dear – 2 wool jumpers @ £20 each which I didn’t think was bad and I brought a pair of leather boots home to try (not pictured) price £40, however all these come out of our clothing budget.

Groceries

I spent £22.27 on groceries and veg for my planned meals and items we had run out of.  The Oatmeal is ready for making some Parkin.

Fruit and Veg

I also took advantage of one or two bargains – I know the weather is only just starting to turn but I do not possess a heated blanket or have a microwave to heat up a wheat bag so I treated myself to a brand new Hot Water Bottle £5.99 (every girls dream eh!).  Actually I put two in my mum’s bed when she visits and one of my old ones sprung a leak on me recently so this new one is just what I needed.Bargains

The Atrogel – Arnica Gel had a third off only £6.85 so couldn’t walk on past that  and the dispenser £3.00 is for…you will have to wait and see…

Then it happened…unexpected item in the bagging area!!!

Christmas

Well I never said no magazines meant no Christmas Specials  – Prima Xmas Makes £3.99…and the red raffia – just what I need for my Christmas parcels £1.00.

My total spend at Sainsbury’s was £119. 41 with £80 of that from my clothing budget.

Reward points earned 481

New total 12050 worth £60.25

So that is the week so far – I have still to get through Friday, Saturday and Sunday but I should not need to spend any money on food shopping.  I am now going to snuggle down in bed and browse through my Prima Xmas magazine looking for Christmas ideas.

 

Have a lovely frugal weekend.

Reducing the spending…week 40 days 1-5

Firstly a quick update on my September Challenge

If you have been following along you will know that my challenge for September was to use up the food in my store cupboard, spend a lot less on groceries and reach the end of the month without using any of my pay that was deposited into our bank account on the 20th September.

Well it is good news – my bank statement shows that I did manage to get to the end of the month with my pay intact and £30 to spare this is largely due to my efforts to plan our meals around the items in our store cupboard and freezer and only buy in necessities.

So far this week it has been very boring on the meal front though luckily everything up to today has been very quick and simple as time was a bit in short supply.

I planned the meals around all the ‘need to use up items’ lurking in the freezer – you know all those odds and ends that are often not a complete meal by themselves and by Thursday we sat down to a rather strange combination, which I decided was even too odd to photograph.  Hopefully from today the freezer is almost empty of the ‘bits’ and we can return to preparing something a little more exciting.

Cauldron Sausage

Menu Plan

  • Monday – Cauldron Lincolnshire Soya Sausages from freezer and served with little potatoes, sweet   potatoes,  a carrot and the remaining button mushrooms with gravy. (pictured above)
  • Tuesday – Higgedy Spinach and Feta pie from the freezer served with little potatoes the last of the packet frozen broad beans and the 2 remaining carrots.
  • Wednesday – Pizza base from the freezer, topped with last of the open jar of stir through tomato sauce that hubby had on his pasta last Friday evening, mushrooms, grated cheese from freezer, served with peas.
  • Thursday – Sainsbury’s frozen veg pie and a Pea and Mint rice cake –  both had half each as neither could decide which one to have!  – served with little potatoes and fresh French beans.
  • Friday – Mushroom Stroganof served with savoury frozen rice ( a free trial pack from Ocado months ago)
  • Saturday – Halloumi and salad
  • Sunday – Lasagne with green salad

The Weekly Shopping #40

It was decision time all the way around the supermarket and I was exhausted by the time I hit the tills because although I had planned to only buy exactly what we needed for the week and no more I hadn’t bargained for the bargains so to speak!

First of all I needed a pack of butter, however it was on offer so it seemed more cost-effective in the long run to buy the 2 for £5 saving £1.

This was repeated on the milk, the bread and the cheese.

Then I had to buy one or two items we had almost run out of that are expensive like the organic, cold pressed unfiltered virgin Olive Oil £3, a jar of organic Mayonnaise £2.50, a packet ground Flax seed £2.40 and a dozen organic mixed size eggs £3.60.

I also needed some items like frozen peas that we were completely out of but  I could not find an offer on these so had to pay full price.

 Grocery items

Groceries

Fruit and Veg

Fresh Fruit and Veg

Bread

Bread

I spent £59.86 on the groceries  £14.64 of this was for those extra 2 for so much offers so you might say this week was £45.22 for the items we really needed.  My target is now £26.96 for the remaining weeks of this year so I am £18.26 over budget.

Sainsbury's non grocery items

The Extras

Yep this is where I fell down – mooching round the clothes (not a good idea) I saw they do the soft cord leggings I bought in Maroon a while ago in a Navy (not pictured) – so in the trolley they went – cost £14 (but out of my clothes account).  Then walking through the Housewares department (another bad idea) I noticed that plain white Egyptian pillowcases with a high thread count were on offer £6.66 for 2 cases – a bargain and much cheaper than the John Lewis ones sold singularly, maybe not quite the same quality but I only want them as a pillow protector under the proper ones.

Snack bags

The sandwich bags were on offer and don’t you just love these little patterned snack bags – obviously not a good seller as they are being discontinued for the knock down price of 75p.  I thought I might use them for my craft bits and bobs and freezing small amounts of herbs.

And did I mention the magazines?  They kind of leaped off the shelf and into my trolley.  The card making one had a free offer of clear rubber Christmas stamps, which I know I will use for cards etc even though I am not keen on the actual magazine – £4.99.  The other magazine ‘What doctors don’t tell you’ cost £3.95 and is my way of keeping up on any healthy foods and new research that might be of interest to keep us healthy into our old age!

Yes it was all going well until the extras – total spend £31.35

Did my cash spending for the week go any better?

I went to draw out my £10 for the week at Sainsbury’s cash point and like last week found that they no longer appear to be dispensing £10 notes – they start at £20.  Shame on you Sainsbury’s encouraging me to overspend!

  • Because we ate ready prepared foods this week there was no leftovers to take for lunch at work so I had soup and a breadcake from the local bakery, however I did think ahead to take my own buttered bread one day saving 55p.  Cost – £8.99
  • Extra groceries – Lactose Free Milk £3.11,  Mini Potatoes £1, semi skimmed milk £0.89
  • Birthday card for a colleague £1.99
  • Hot choc and custard treat before shopping at Sainsburys £2.65

Total cash spend £18.63 – cash allowance for the week £10 (major £8.63 overspend!)

 

Despite the overspends I am pleased to have used up some of the foods in the cupboard and freezer and will continue to do this.  Not doing a weekly shop last week certainly saved a lot of money and I might consider doing my bigger shop once a fortnight. I will keep you posted on this.

 

Join me in my next post when I will outline my October Challenge

Reducing the spending…week 39

Meal Day 1 – from the store cupboard / fridge and freezer only

Mushroom and Leek Pancakes

Main Course – Mushroom and Leek Pancakes baked in a cheese sauce with steamed Broccoli

To make the pancake batter I used some Buckwheat flour which is gluten free, lactose free milk and 2 of my remaining 10 eggs.   For the filling I used up the remaining 4 chestnut mushrooms and a further 8 button mushrooms – so I have half a pack of mushrooms left for another meal.  I used 1 generous leek and I will use the other 2 in soup.  I had fresh parsley for the filling and grated cheese for the sauce in the freezer.

Plum and Apple Crumble

Dessert – Apple and Plum Crumble with ice cream

The apples came from our Beach cottage garden and I already had the plums which I left to ripen from last week.  The crumble topping was the end of some ready made in the freezer and I used up the end of a tub of ice-cream.

I will post the recipes in my recipe pages.

The weekly shopping #39

A slight change to my shopping this week as I will not be doing a ‘big’ shop but rather buying as I need.  Today’s purchases.

Groceries

  • Yoghurt 2 for £2.50 a saving of £0.68
  • Creme Frais £0.77
  • Salad Cress £0.25
  • Bag Lettuce £1.00
  • 4 Kitchen rolls – £1 a pack of 2 saving £1.16
  • Kleenex Compact Tissue offer 2 packs of 4 for £5.00 saving £2.36 although not on my list I took advantage of this offer while it was still available (they are the flat handy little boxes that fit neatly into my glove compartment and dressing table drawer).

Total Spend £11.77 less a Brand Match coupon for £2.66 = £9.11

Although the Tissues at £5 will take me over my budget for the week it was too good an offer to miss.

My new points balance is now 11338 worth £56.69 – I think I have just discovered a good source of extra income!

In Boots I bought a pot of basic No 7 Night Cream with my £5 off coupon – cost £4.95.

I also purchased a card and bunch of flowers for a colleagues birthday – cost £5.99

And…I will say this quietly as I am trying not to draw attention to the fact that I bought my lunch – soup and a bread-cake – cost £3.22

These small birthday gifts and cards do add up over the year and it would be good if I could turn my attentions to making some cards.

Well that is a full account of today’s spending. Tomorrow I have another Boots coupon to use and I will be making another store cupboard meal.

September Challenge

Reducing the Spending – ideas to cut the grocery bill to get to the end of the month

Although I have just received this months pay on the 20th I am trying not to spend any of it until until I can combine it with my hubby’s pay at the end of the month.  It is so much easier to do a budget for a combined income starting on the same day rather than be part way through one wage when the other arrives.  Ideally my aim is to be one months pay ahead so we are spending the previous months pay when the current one is received.

For the remaining days of September I am looking to use up food that I have already bought and create menus to fit the items I have.  So far this year I have spent £2,222.56 on groceries over 38 weeks which is an average of £58.50.   This is just for groceries and does not include face creams, shampoo and conditioner or supplements, remedies and occasional whole food items from my local health / wholefood shop.

If I were to stick to my target of £50 a week then I will only have £377.44 to last me until the end of the year, which works out at £26.96 per week.

Something tells me that £26.96 a week is going to be a tough target and, if I am both realistic and honest, one that I will not succeed in meeting no matter how creative I am!  So what are my choices?

  • Find free food – I do not grow our own food yet, it is on the cards for next year so free food this year would have to be foraged foods and I don’t think hedgerow berries or wild mushrooms would give us a good meal every day and I doubt very much that I would come across some road kill Lentils!
  • Perhaps I could sell some of the ‘stuff’ I am getting rid of and use the income to add to my grocery allowance.
  • I could try buying my food daily as it is needed, although I am not convinced this would work out cheaper although it might stop me buying items just in case.
  • I could go back to being non-organic and also buy the very cheap basic economy foods.
  • I could make savings in another area of my budget and add this to my food allowance.

Instead of any one of the above list I will put all of them into place except the non-organic.  I think staying organic is well worth it on taste alone.

Foods I already have in stock

Fresh Fruit and Veg

  • Carrots
  • 4 Leeks
  • Bunch Celery
  • A head Broccoli
  • Pack Beetroot
  • Courgettes x 2
  • Pack button mushrooms
  • 4 sweet poataoes
  • Bunch spring onions
  • 5 onions
  • Handful potatoes
  • 3 Braeburn apples
  • 4 lemons
  • 1 Avocado
  • 1 Kiwi

Also

  • Frozen Broad Beans
  • Frozen Peas
  • Frozen Spinach

There is plenty of frozen fruit in freezer which will be fine to go on my Yoghurt and I have fresh apples for my snack at work.

As a standby there are two pies in the freezer should I not get to cook the intended meal for some reason.

Groceries / fridge

There are a selection of herb teas and a unopened box of decaff tea, 2 packets of ground coffee, a new tin cocoa and a large drinking chocolate.

In the fridge I have an unopened fresh orange and apple juice and 1 carton Almond Milk.  We have just opened a Lurpack tub butter 9should last the week) and I have 2 tubs Bertolli spread.

In my cupboard I have an unopened box of wheat free Museli and some linseeds to use up for breakfast and a few Spelt flakes.  I also have a whole tub full of Porridge Oats – this might become Flapjack, Melting Moments or even just porridge.

I have bread in the freezer so I will take the Pitta breads to work for my lunch and buy some fresh salad to put inside and add chopped boiled egg or Feta Cheese from the fridge.

The plain Indian Chapattis will be fine with some curry and rice. I have a bag of rice and I can use the courgettes, onions, celery, potato and carrot in the curry plus 1/2 tin coconut milk from the freezer.

Breads

I bought Halloumi to try a couple of weeks back so I must find a recipe for this.

The eggs will provide another meal – probably pancakes with the buckwheat flour and I have leeks and a pack of mushrooms for the filling.

Dairy

Below are a few more of the items I have in stock.  The Butter Beans will go in a soup or Tuscan Casserole,  the Bulgar and Quinoa with roasted vegetables.  I have already mentioned the curry and I will find a recipe for the sun dried tomatoes.  Not in the picture are a selection of mixed nuts which I bought on offer earlier in the year.

Store Cupboard

So putting that altogether the weeks menu plan is looking like this-

Menu Plan

  • Monday – Pancakes with Mushroom and Leek filling with Broccoli florets and peas
  • Tuesday – Curry and Rice
  • Wednesday – Tuscan Casserole – Butter Beans, Leeks, Courgette and Tomatoes
  • Thursday – Left over Curry with Baked potato.  Hubby away this meal
  • Friday – Halloumi – recipe to find for this – will probably serve with Salad
  • Saturday – Frittata using left over veg, some Parmesan in the freezer and served with Salad
  • Sunday – Nut loaf with Broad Beans and roast Sweet Potatoes

With any other leftover veg I will add beans / lentils and make some soup for the weekend and lunches at work the following week.

The additional groceries I will need to buy to complete the meals above and for general use:-

Shopping List

  • 1 Baking Potato
  • 1 bag fresh salad leaves with watercress
  • 1 bunch radishes
  • 1 cucumber
  • 4pts 1% milk
  • 1 Lactose free carton milk
  • 1 tub Lurpack butter

A quick add up and I estimate that the foods I have in stock for the menus above together with breakfasts and packed lunches will save me about £80.  My only costs for the few items required in the shopping list will be about £10 less the £2.66 brand match coupon.

Now going back to my saving money ideas can any of my readers tell me how you sell on ebay – is there a good article somewhere on how to do it?