What are we eating?

It’s Budget Day next week here in the UK and I wonder what our dear chancellor has up his sleeve to screw us for even more money we haven’t got.
I read that there is a possibility of a Takeaway Tax with the excuse of reducing the amount of polystyrene and plastic containers. That’s ‘brilliant’ as it goes in line with the Pasty Tax (ie extra if you have a hot savoury) and paying 20% in VAT should you use a seat in a cafe.
Take it away now and they sting you again.
Bring back Fish and Chips in newspaper, that’s what I say, not that we have it anyway.
Here we are halfway through the month though and I am looking in our cupboards making my list for the monthly shop come payday in a couple of weeks.
The plan is to go to the new Aldi store 20 miles away as we are familiar with their products and can stock up.

Hubby looked in the cupboard and said ‘Oh my god!’
After 18 days, it is still practically full as we have only used 1 tin of baked beans, 1 tin of kidney beans, 1 tin of tomatoes, 1 tin of spam, 1 tin of pineapples, 1 of peaches, 1 packet of instant custard (2 days), 1 packet of spaghetti, 1½ packs of rice, 3 boxes of cereal, 13 cartons of UHT milk, 2 packets of biscuits, and a mixture of stock cubes, dried coconut, and sultanas.
From the freezer, we have had chicken, chops, bacon, minced beef, 6 jacket potatoes, frozen veg, 2 loaves of bread and a dozen ice creams (now all gone and will not be replaced), plus an 800g block of cheese and a tray of eggs (Maggie’s scrambled eggs for breakfast taking the bulk).

My spreadsheet shows us to be £48 less than November last year so far, the highest value sheet being Dog Food as we stocked up with Maggie’s dried mix buying 4 bags usually £7 a time but 2 of were on special at £5.
We’ve had a 2 day stew every week, this week making it stretch to 3 days, a two day chilli, a McCheese, chop dinner with potatoes and veg, and two chicken curries.
I have not been buying so much fresh fruit or salad stuff as the quality isn’t that good in either of the supermarkets now, plus prices of what I had been buying are ridiculous and I refuse to pay it. I bought the last stew veg from the market, and boy, could you tell the difference. I think next week I’ll buy carrots, cauliflower and broccoli to freeze down as well as the stew ingredients.

Our tastes are changing again, and this month it’ll be porridge oats (helps the good cholesterol according to the nurse) for our breakfast instead of granola cereal.
Food prices are going up by at least double what the inflation rate is, and although there are cheaper alternatives to a lot of what we have, we can make what we’re used to stretch to an extra meal or simply go without.

We will certainly not starve, especially as we don’t eat that much meat now, and have plenty of the basics so I can make things like a sweet ginger sauce with pineapple to go with rice, or a tomato and onion pasta with a dash of herbs.
I’ll take advantage of any 3 for £10 meat offers though as I count the number of meals I can get rather than the weight per pack. By dividing it all up before freezing it, I can also  control our portion size.

With the axe falling on our income at the end of the month, it looks like we will not have that high a food bill for the monthly replenishment which in all honesty is a relief.
It also means I can treat us to that Christmas pud when we go down to MOH.

About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! We have an elderly dog called Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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8 Responses to What are we eating?

  1. Jane Fritz says:

    A retired number-cruncher indeed! Great post. Thanks, Pensitivity.

  2. Our eating habits have changed considerably as we have gotten older. I used to make 3 pork chops. Now one will do us both. I too look at the number of meals I can get rather than the price per pound. Overall we are eating less but specifically we are eating less meat.

    • Likewise. I can get a curry or sweet and sour out of 1 chop or chicken breast, and get three portions out of a tray of 400g minced beef, one of which will do us 2 days in a chilli as I add kidney beans, tomatoes and onions. Our plates are quite small too, so it looks more.

  3. I’m a great Aldi fan myself as I think they are both cheap and really good on quality. I’ve already bought my Christmas pud as well. Yum Yum 🙂

  4. I discovered long ago that the best way to economize on meals is to cook them yourself. Also better for nutrition. It was once said that if you look in your freezer/frig, and there are too many colorful packages, you probably could do better. (processed foods always come in colorful boxes).I’m sure you realize that eating well can be done without a lot of cost, if you approach it the right way, and have the time to cook “from scratch”.

    • Exactly. I cook from scratch on most things having discovered that ingredients in the packet variety (or jar in the case of sauces) were cheaper to buy separately anyway, and I got more for my money!

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