Sunday, 4 January 2015

More (Virtually) Free Meals

I finally got around to making that celery soup today. I used celery and potatoes that DS1 had brought home from an Xmas dinner at his friend's place. The friend was going away for Xmas and wouldn't be using them up so gave them to DS. As usual I used my soup maker. I added an onion, chicken stock cubes and seasoning. The recipe called for the addition of cream, which I substituted with a couple of tablespoons of low fat soft cheese (to lower the calories). The soup wasn't completely free but the main ingredients were. DH, DS1 and I had it for lunch and it was absolutely delicious. 

I also used some of those free raspberries combined with one of the yellow-stickered Activia vanilla yogurts and a little semi-skimmed milk to make my breakfast smoothie.Once again, mostly free food and completely yummy.

Dinner tonight wasn't free, but still reasonably priced. Slow cooker beef curry, Thai spiced rice and homemade onion bhajis. The beef was £2.50 for 450g from Farm Foods (4 beef products for £10). I added a chopped onion (10p), half a tub of chopped green pepper (13p) that I got a while ago for 25p from Morrisons, plus various spices (20p). The rice was 50p for 2 packets from Approved Foods (4 packs for £1), and the onion bhajis were a mix also from AF (5 for £1) with one sliced onion added (20p for the mix and 10p for the onion) and a drop of oil for cooking (5p). Total for 4 generous servings of curry, rice and bhajis was £3.88 or approx 97p a portion. Not bad for a main meal for 4. 

All 3 of today's meals were made with food I already had in stock; the only thing I bought today was 4 x 2 litre bottles of milk for the freezer at 2 for £1.50 from Farm Foods.

DH is back at work tomorrow. It is great now that he's got a fulltime, permanent teaching position that we don't have to worry about not being paid over the holiday periods and wondering whether he'll have work when the new term starts, but I shall miss him. Although I do enjoy some alone time, and I am looking forward to pottering around, crafting and maybe relaxing in the afternoon to watch a couple of my favourite programmes, it's been lovely having him to myself for 2 whole weeks. His snoring aside, after 35 years together, (30 of them married) I still love him to bits and count him as my best friend.

And on that mushy note I'll sign off for another day. I hope you've all had a great weekend and are ready for another frugal week. Love, Helen x


  1. Dinner sounds lush! I'm thinking of investing in a soup maker, we do get through a lot of soup in this house so I think it would be a good investment.

  2. Dinner was lush. I love my soup maker and use it at least twice a week. It's a Morphy Richards jug style one and makes about a litre and a half at a time. DD2 bought it for me, a reconditioned one from Ebay. I never really made smooth soups before because of the faff of having to cook it in one container and then transfer it to another to blend it. I made a vegetable soup today using one of those reduced priced veg packs I got for about 35p from Morrisons plus a couple of stock cubes and some black pepper, so it only cost about 40p for great big jug full. The only issue I've had is that occasionally starchy ingredients such as lentils, pearl barley and potatos do stick to the bottom, but generally if I brush a little oil over the inside base before adding the ingredients it helps a lot.