can turn into a meal? Get out a pen and paper and do a stocktake of what you
have. Get out that bit of meat at the back of the freezer (provided it’s not
been in there more than 12 months). Sad looking carrots in the bottom of the
fridge? Whack them in a casserole. Apples all bruised – make an apple charlotte.
Stretch your food further. You have to design a menu around what you have to
minimise wastage. Making your food go further is just plain good sense.
Tip 2: Plan your meals for the fortnight before you go shopping. Even better
plan for the month. I only do a big shop once a month and then just pick up
fruit, vege, bread and milk when I run out. Don’t discount the corner shops – my
corner shop has milk and bread cheaper than any of the local supermarkets – and
they carry it to the car for me.
Tip 3: Shop at Aldi. You get more bang for your buck. $100 spent at
Woolworths will buy you $180 worth of food at Aldi. If you’ve never been, check
out their website first and accustom yourself to a new shopping experience. Make
sure you take your own shopping bags and a $2 coin for the shopping trolleys.
Also they charge you a fee if you use your credit card – so don’t!!!
Tip 4: Do you really NEED that? After all – we are trying to save money. I
like to shop how my Great Grandmother might of shopped – basics – use up
everything – no waste. Think tea, flour, sugar, butter etc. No processed items –
you can cook it yourself. Know what’s in your food, it is healthier for your
family and much tastier. ‘But I don’t have time’ you cry! Make time – make
baking enjoyable, get the kids involved. Many muffins, biscuits and cakes can be
frozen so everything will stay fresh. I have an awesome biscuit recipe that
makes 120 biscuits in one go for really basic ingredients – lasts me all month!
I found an awesome cookbook from the 1950’s – it’s brilliant and has simple
recipes for simple cooking.
Tip 5: Buy in bulk! But first make sure it is a bargain. I buy a side of beef
once every 6 – 8 months from a local supplier. It works out just under $10/kg.
Check out the cheap shops for things like toilet paper – I recently picked up 48
rolls for $5! My local chemist quite often has toothpaste for $1.
Tip 6: Buy basics. Tins of tomatoes, pasta noodles, rice, mince, flour,
sugar, butter. There’s a thousand things you can make from such ingredients.
Mince is so versatile. I make up a big batch of savoury mince (great on toast),
add a tin of tomato soup – it’s a bolognaise sauce. Add a pinch of curry powder
and you have something different again. I love gravy beef too – it makes taste
pies and casseroles. Every ingredient must be able to be used in many ways.
Tip 7: Cook in bulk quantities. Have enough left over for hubby to take for
lunch the next day. Make enough so you can have a night off and just grab
something out of the freezer.