So this is week one of my newest ‘test’ on myself.
I’ve decided not to go food shopping for the next month!
Why? Well I’m one of these people that buy things like bulk meat and vegetables on sale…. I now have a freezer full of ‘stuff’ – and quite frankly I’m sick of looking at it. I counted 27 bags of frozen vegetables in my freezer. 27!!!!!!! That is just totes ridic!!!!
I open the fridge, freezer and pantry, and sometimes only see ingredients – not food. I find myself sometimes being lazy and thinking that making something is just too hard.
BUT, wastage really bothers me. And that’s the whole point of this exercise. To try and teach myself to minimise that wastage – and maximise bang for my buck with my grocery funds. I also want to make sure what I’m packing for school lunches is less processed and am trying to teach my boys to eat better. And this forces me to do so!
So first things first – I didn’t have any bread! No bread and the boys only like white bread. Yes bread is cheap, but remember, I’m not going shopping for a month! Luckily I did have a few bread mixes in the pantry – and I do have a bread maker which I picked up for $20 at a garage sale and I never use. So I popped the mix in – and voila – bread! I forgot how wonderful the smell of fresh bread was! The boys whinged about having ‘seed bread’ in their lunches – but I figure if they are hungry enough – they will eat it!
Once I’m out of bread mix (I think I have four – so that won’t last long) – I’m going to the old fashioned method of using flour, yeast, salt and water. Let’s just see how this goes anyway! The bread maker makes it so easy!
I made two loaves of bread in the bread-maker. One for use today – the other I’ve cut up and frozen as an ’emergency’ loaf. They certainly don’t go as far as normal bread – and yes normal bread from the shop is cheap – but not only do I have a few bread mixes near their used-by date in the pantry – I also have flour and yeast – so why not make my own!!! Smells so good.
This is my seed bread – it was delicious!
Every few days I’ll write about what I’ve been cooking and share piccies of the recipes!
So Saturday was Day One – and I cleaned out the pantry:
The Pantry Story:
I walked into my pantry and saw the amount of stuff that was out of date – what a fricken waste of money! I was so mad at myself. So I’ve thrown all that out (because I’m not chancing food poisoning – yes I’m one of THOSE people). Everything that is CLOSE to being out of date as been bought out of the cupboard and is on my bench top in the kitchen…. so I see it all the time…. so it bugs the hell out of me… and the only way that stuff is going away is if I use it up! Sauces were the main thing – organisation of my pantry is a big thing too – so I’m going to reorganise it so what needs to be used first is at the front. But that won’t be today!
Another thing – we have moths and mice – and they have been getting through the plastic in bags of rice and cereals. Grrrrr. Plus there was lots of cereal that just had about 1/2 cup left in the bottom – so I’ve got to use all that up!
I hate pests. One of the bad things about living in the country. So I’ve set traps for the mice and I’m looking into better ways to seal flours and cereals so they can’t get in and ruin my food!
Next was the freezer…..
I have so many chicken legs it’s not funny. See hubby isn’t a big fan of them. But I am – because they are cheap to buy (only about $3/kilo) – and the kids love them. I also have loads of whole chickens that I buy on sale (just the homebrand ones) for like $5 – so they are only small. So I’m grabbing one of them out every few days and chucking it in the slowcooker. That’s meat for lunches and stir-fries. I’m also going to cook a few chicken legs in the Multi-fry every day and leave them in the fridge for the boys to munch on after school or to include in their lunch boxes.
This is just my fridge freezer – not the big upright freezer!
The vegetables (all 27 bags) are going to be an issue. I can see loads of stir-fries and pot-pies in the next month. I also have a vegetable patch (I’ll talk about later on in here) – so I’m good for fresh stuff.
My Vegetable Patch:
I live on a couple of acres. I’ve killed veggie patches in the past – but this year – I’m sick of buying tomatoes that just taste horrible and go off after a few days. So I’ve planted:
- Zucchini and Squash
- Brown Onions
- Lemon, Lime and Mandarin Trees
Everything that we eat! All the excess will be frozen for future use. I’ve grown everything (except the citrus) from seeds to keep costs down. My zucchinis are already producing and they are just beautiful! I love them because I can grate them and add them into everything!
My Veggie Patch – it isn’t pretty – but functional!
So my Mother in Law bought me a huge blue pumpkin – I’m going to roast that baby and turn it into pumpkin soup and freeze it. No one else in my family like pumpkin soup – but I love it – and with winter coming up – it will be the perfect hot lunch. So going to pack it all into individual size portions.
Eggs are the other problem. I don’t have chickens (ohhh but I would love them so much!!!!!). My good friend Kate next door has them though – and I’m going to swap eggs for some fresh veggies from my patch! That’s that problem over.
So wish me luck – I don’t know how I’ll go – but I’m going to give it a red hot go!
Recipes I Made:
I needed some things for the boys school lunches. So I made some muesli bars – with all the cereal that was nearly run out! I was surprised at how much it made! I based my recipe on the ‘Left Over Cereal Muesli Bar Recipe‘ on our site.
I also used two cake packet mixes I had to make some mini-cupcakes and froze them all iced and ready.
- Frugal Living