L's Journal

Where are you and where are you going?
jacob
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Re: L's Journal

Post by jacob »

Instead of a haybox, I just put the pressure cooker in bed with a couple of blankets around it. It helps that it's sealed tight. Otherwise, I wouldn't do it. It saves building a haybox. BTW, there are many equivalent solutions. Also see "wonderbag" or "sleeping bag" :-D

BookLoverL
Posts: 168
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Re: L's Journal

Post by BookLoverL »

Thanks, I'll try googling those! I don't have a pressure cooker unfortunately, only a steamer saucepan. But I'm sure I can figure out something that's relatively easy to set up.

BookLoverL
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Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Re: L's Journal

Post by BookLoverL »

I've decided to keep a log of what I'm buying at the supermarket for a bit, so I can find a good balance between cost and my disability-related lack of energy for cooking properly every day. I went to the supermarket today and I already seem to have saved money due to my realisation that I can still persuade myself to cook with my steamer as long as the veg is all canned and not fresh, which meant I reduced the number of pizzas. I realise that all of the carbs in this list are either pizza, oats for porridge, or biscuits, but the last 3 times I bought bread it went mouldy when I was less than half way through the loaf because it seems that on some level my brain is resistant to eating shop bought bread. Normally I shop at the supermarket once every 10 or 11 days. I always go to ALDI, which is very good for budget prices.

Here is today's shop (food items for myself only because anything else is a different spending category):

4 pints whole milk £1.09
1 can (400g total, 240g once drained) kidney beans £0.30
1 can chopped tomatoes (400g) £0.28
1 can baked beans (420g) £0.22
1 can sweetcorn (340g, 285g once drained) £0.37
1 can pear halves (410g, 240g once drained) £0.69
1 can peach slices (411g, 250g once drained) £0.33
1kg porridge oats £0.75
4 packs custard cream biscuits (300g per pack) £1.12 total
15 frozen fish fingers £1.39
2 ham and pineapple pizzas £2.58 total
1 bbq chicken pizza £1.49
16 medium size sausage rolls £1.98 total
350g fresh celery £0.39
350g fresh cherry tomatoes £0.70

Total: £13.68

This is an excellent number, since previously before having these realisations about canned food I had been at more like £17-£20 on food for myself for the same period. There were a couple of things that I didn't buy because I already have them in stock, but that is why I'm calculating the average. I expect not to need to shop for another 10 days roughly, so if we go for 10 days this gives me a food spend of £1.36 per day or £9.52 per week. If I can keep an average of below £10 I will be very happy indeed, so we'll see how it goes once I factor in the next few shops.

Frita
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Re: L's Journal

Post by Frita »

Kudos on breaking out of your pizza routine! Wow, your Aldi prices are really reasonable. I am a bit envious. ;) It will be interesting in how the eating changes will affect you.

We also can have the moldy bread issue. I usually bag it and freeze. Then I take out just what we need. This works well if baking or buying store bought products. My son really likes bakery croissants, which sometimes go on sale in multiples of six. I wrap them up the same way to add variety in his breakfast options. If I think we’ll eat up sooner but still want to avoid surprise mold, I put in the refrigerator.

BookLoverL
Posts: 168
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Re: L's Journal

Post by BookLoverL »

Thanks! I'm going to try and keep tracking it, so I can get the cost more streamlined and the nutrition more balanced. I already have some more ideas for what to do next time - one of my friends said it might be possible to put some pasta in the water in the bottom of the steamer to have with the beans and veg.

The frozen bread is in theory a good idea, but in practice I've found that freezing changes the taste of bread in a way I don't like. But thanks for the suggestion.

ThriftyRob
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Re: L's Journal

Post by ThriftyRob »

Thanks L for an entertaining read. Your experiments with washing your hair in the sink take me back to my childhood when showers weren't fitted in homes. I used to wash my hair in the sink and use a plastic beaker to rinse it (no risk of breakage or damage to the sink). Any piece of Tupperware or an old ice cream tub would do. I'm tempted to change to bucket washing in the shower for the water savings.

You're doing really well in keeping your food costs so low. Have you looked at the option of buying frozen veg instead of tinned? You have more flexibility around portion size and variety and you would avoid all the nasties that are added to tinned food to increase storage time. Also, you could make your own pizza substitutes using sliced baguette or ciabatta or any flat bread topped with chopped tomatoes plus your choice of toppings. Again, you'd probably reduce your E-number intake. Little Gem lettuces are two for less than a pound and are a great way of getting some fresh leafy greens into your diet and they also make a great substitute for bread/wraps when filled with meat/cheese/eggs/tomatoes/etc.

BookLoverL
Posts: 168
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Re: L's Journal

Post by BookLoverL »

Thanks! Glad you're enjoying reading.

I do already have some frozen veg that I'd had for a while but hadn't got round to using - I have diced onions, peas, and spinach. I am considering getting more in the future, though.

The thing with fresh vegetables is that due to forgetting to eat them I kept having to throw some of the fresh vegetables away unless I just buy a little at once, which feels very wasteful. So that's one reason why I'm trying to switch to mostly canned and frozen except for one or two things each week. I'm currently expecting to have to throw half a fresh cucumber from the previous shop (11 days before this one) because I ate some of it a couple of days ago and it was already tasting a bit past its best, and I don't love cucumber enough to make myself eat it all at once...

It just goes to show really - even though I theoretically understand the basis of a nutritionally balanced diet, since I did a fair amount of reading on it as a teen, in practice the "ideal" diet of everything freshly prepared is not always achievable. So it's interesting to try and work out a balance that works with my general level of functioning while *also* being balanced in terms of food groups.

I already have an idea that next time I can buy some dried pasta which I can put in the bottom of the steamer pan in the boiling water and it should cook and give me some slightly higher quality carbs. And pasta keeps for years, I've been told.

BookLoverL
Posts: 168
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Re: L's Journal

Post by BookLoverL »

I visited my mum this morning to use her printer and mentioned my idea with the pasta, and since I only just went to the supermarket, she gave me 500g pasta for free! So now I can try out my pasta idea much sooner than I thought I was going to be able to. Hopefully I'll be able to get back onto proper long lasting carbs that way instead of eating so many biscuits.

She also gave me half a loaf of rather dense sourdough bread, which she and my dad have rejected for being too dense, but I just ate some and it's perfectly edible. She's been experimenting with making sourdough, and she apparently used 80% spelt flour to 20% regular flour in this one, and she thinks she needs more to make it less flat. Me, I don't care what the bread looks like, I just care if I can eat it.

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