Sense mentioned she was keen for some new cheap recipes.
Not sure how much I can help with that, but I thought I’d post up some dinner ideas.
- Lemon basil pasta (sooo tasty! Simple, versatile and good)
- Trusty old bolognese (with or without meat)
- Mexican Rice
- Burrito bake
- Chicken fiesta salad
- Chili (or try a white chili version – it’s on my list of recipes to get to)
- Corn fritters
- Kebab or pita wraps
- Fried rice
- Basic stews with a bit of meat, onions, potatoes, carrots, leeks, kumara, whatever takes your fancy
- Stirfrys (think we are finally giving up on store bought sauces – satays are runny, sweet and sour don’t have the intense flavour, lemon chicken too sweet, Chinese BBQ just…wrong) But we have had luck with curries (Pataks are good but pricey) and Thai curries (spice paste from the ethnic aisle, add a tin of coconut milk, meat, udon noodles and complementary veg – you can’t go wrong!)
- Burgers! Easy to healthy up with loads of veggies. (And chicken nuggets – I may be outta my teens but I love me a good half dozen chicken nuggets. I blame it on hardly ever getting Happy Meals as a child).
- And we keep our eye out for interesting things at the butchers – like recently we found chicken pieces stuffed with cranberry and rosemary. It was delicious after a half hour in the oven.
- If there’s a good sale on, a hearty roast or silverside with roast veg.
- And of course the trusty sausages/steak with mashed potatoes/oven chips/vegetables.
Sorry it isn’t a very exciting or varied menu, but like I said, at $120 a week “destitute gourmet” is pushing the definition 🙂
I find it really difficult to gauge if our grocery spending is reasonable. One of my friends said a while ago her family of four spends about what we do (or a bit more). WHAT?? But they are Indian and her mother stays home, I think, and they cook a lot from scratch.
It’s all well and good for Hillbilly Housewife to go on about baking your own breads and stuff, but I am just too busy and want cheap and filling with less work. If I was a SAHP, I would totally adopt her ideas, though.
We seem to spend more than the few friends we have who don’t still live at home. But we both have fast metabolisms and eat a lot. And we don’t eat out at all anymore, so our shopping accounts for ALL our food. That, and I hate baked beans with a passion and rarely eat noodles – except for the Yum Yum shrimp flavoured packs, which are 50c compared to about 10c for the really cheap, nasty noodles. Seriously. Yum Yum noodles are the shiz.