Cook once, eat twice….or more!

 Like all working people, I have a busy life. I need, we need…………I forget, I’m not talking to myself, to keep things simple. This morning, I popped some casserole steak into the slow cooker, with water, salt and pepper. I didn’t have time to do any more. I came home, peeled two meals worth of potatoes, enough veg for two days and then added gravy mix to the beef and called that supper. Meat eating is expensive, but we make do with around 100g of meat each per meal. Neither of us feel deprived. (Food costs today – 83p worth of beef each and the veg came to 16p, plus gravy, just takes the meal to £1)

 We’ve all eaten too much for too long and now the economy measures are not only needed financially, but health wise too. We should all be aiming to eat less meat and 100g of protein a day is more than enough. We’re also used to a huge variety of food and we seldom eat the same thing twice in a month. Not in Frugal Towers I’m afraid. Even though I saved money by cooking all the veggies in a tower steamer, I shall save more money, time and energy and simply pop a replay of tonight’s supper in the microwave tomorrow and for an encore, we’ll eat the same again. Plus! There will be only two plates and two lids to wash up

I hope we’ll all settle down tomorrow night to watch Superscrimpers: Waste not, want not. The TV show is going to visit a family who spend £24K a year more than they earn. Did Channel 4 come knocking on my door? Well researchers, you should have read my blog by now so come on over, but I warn you, come in the summer or you’ll need a coat! If anyone local to me, wants me to be their personal money saving expert, you know where to come and find me.

Again, thanks to everyone who dropped by, for those who commented and those who became followers. If you’re still lurking and we haven’t had a chat yet, then just let me know you are there. It would be lovely to hear from you. It’s always lovely to see who’s reading so, if you haven’t already, then it would be even lovelier if you became a followers. Thanks again for dropping by,

Until tomorrow,

Froogs
xx

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49 thoughts on “Cook once, eat twice….or more!

  1. We've been firmly cutting down on meat for a long time now. When I think back, everyone had far smaller meat portions when we were young – when did it start to be the norm to have such generous portions of meat, I wonder? I am sure it is better for health, as well as more economical. My husband fought back a bit at first, having been used to lots of meat, but he now agrees it makes good sense!

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  2. I love your posts about bulk cooking and each time I read one I swear to myself that the following Saturday shall be spent cooking and freezing meals. I have now found myself preparing meals for my partners elderly mother and although I am quite a foodie I'm wondering if there are any meals you find freeze particularly well. I've found on occasion that some foods lose flavour and texture when prepared ahead of time.
    Really enjoying the fact that you've decided not to let the bullies win and still loving my daily fix of Frugality:)

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  3. I've taken a leaf out of your book. Yesterday I cooked a chilli (for tea with jacket potatoes) shepards pie (for tomorrows tea) jerk pork and rice (this evenings tea) and enough rice/ pork to cook for sweet and sour (tea Thursday).

    I has made I a very stress free week so far.

    X x

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  4. My goodness that looks tasty. I wish I could be as organised as you in the mornings – hence toast for dinner again tonight 😦 I really must use my slow cooker more. Thanks for the tip off about the TV progamme, will look out for it tomorrow night. Sue x x

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  5. i especially like the fact that tomorrow you only have a small amount of dishes to do, purely of course from a water saving point of view L O L (i should change my blog to frugal lazy)

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  6. Years ago I would make a spag bol with 1kg of mince for me & hubby. Nowadays I spilt the 1kg into 3 portions, and 1 portion does spag bol for 3 of us. Sneakily the supermarkets rarely sell 1kg of mince now, same sized box but when you look its 770g !

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  7. Thanks for the heads up re: the superscrimpers programme! 🙂

    Bulk cooking is great, I always make extra of bolognaise, chilli, stews etc, it is a lifesaver sometimes, asd, as you say, less dishes is always a bonus! 😉

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  8. the meals look great!

    I read an article in the daily mirror the other day after the budget…
    a 69 year old woman with a disabled husband and disabled son who with various benefits, pensions etc had an income of £503 a week! She had a budget of £100 a week for food and said she could only afford to buy oven chips and burgers from Lidl ! and a single parent who lives on £425 a week and just manages to get by…

    don't think I'm getting at the disabled or single parents, I was just amazed at the amount they get a week and can't manage!

    Josie x

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  9. I'm also looking forward to watching the programme tomorrow but I suspect they won't be telling you anything you don't already know!!

    You should have been the programme consultant!

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  10. We find 100g of meat to be enough, too. When I make a curry or casserole (with stewing beef or lamb, chicken thigh or turkey thigh) it doesn't look much meat, so I find cutting the cubes a bit smaller helps you get more mouthfuls containing meat. Also, I often add a tin of chickpeas, which we like especially with poultry. How do you find costs compare on fresh veg vs frozen? I like frozen veg; it's ready prepared and usually cheaper, and if I don't use it right away, it stays “fresh”. But I have limited freezer space and so always buy carrots, cabbage and peppers fresh and sweetcorn in tins.

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  11. Hi Froogs
    I always cook enough for 2 days on a Sunday – we have our Sunday lunch and then the vegs and meat go in the fridge and come out, for Mondays main meal, the vegs go in the microwave and the meat we have cold.
    Also I go shopping after work on a Thursday and by the time I get home and have put all the shopping away – it's too late then to start cooking so most weeks we'll just have cheese on toast – we find that we enjoy something simple like that as much as having a dinner
    Many thanks Sandra x

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  12. I curse the day I disposed of the slow cooker the first ex mother in law (god rest her soul- she was lovely) bought for me and ex. I never used it and threw it away on spitting up!!! Silly silly behaviour – wasteful and a lack of forsight! I am scanning freecycle eargerly but alas to no avail…. yet 100g meat a day – I really should cut down too. I bulk cooked today and have squirreled away three more meals of sweet and sour pork. Who needs take aways!!
    Happy frugal munching!

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  13. I love your blog so much and am so glad its back. On the topic of things that you could write about and going along with your eating less meat kick, do you have any frugal vegetarian recipes for us veggies out there?

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  14. Hi Froogs. That meal looked absolutely scrubblyumptious! In my house there are 2 vegetarians (or actually pescatarians) 1 carnivorous coeliac and 1 who doesn't eat anything unless it's rubbish. When I repeat the same meals I get told it's boring. When I try to vary the meals I get told to stop experimenting on them! I get really frustrated. I'm trying my absolute hardest to be frugal, etc, but I have to confess sometimes I feel like I'm banging my head against a wall. I'm not going to give up though. I'm into this frugal lifestyle for the long term.

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  15. Eeek, put a post on Freegle for a slow cooker, I did and someone emailed me saying they had one, so I collected it yesterday.

    Yes, frugal veggie meals would be good. I really do get mad when I see people buying prepared veggies. That's one of my Rants.

    FQ, do you use a steamer on your cooker or is it an electrical one? I really don't have room for any more electrical gadgets.

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  16. Loving your blog…
    I'm always cooking once, eating twice – saves so much time when I get home from work. Tomorrow I plan to make a cottage pie. I will use 500g mince and bulk this out with baked beans, tinned tomatoes, onions and a couple of grated carrots. This will then do 3 of us for two meals. Less than 100g per person per meal and no one complains about the lack of meat!

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  17. I'm with you all the way with the bulk cooking, we often have the same meal 2 days running especially if its a gravy dinner. We have been cutting back on meat lately and trying not to have too much red meat. Tonight we had a Pasta bolognaise made with turkey mince which was frozen in portions last week. Tomorrow we are having what the kids called “joined up meat” Pork Steaks!
    Thankyou for the reminder for the Super Scrimpers programme. I agree with the other poster that you could have been the advisor with Illona as your assistant 🙂

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  18. OK..jumping up and down with excitement here. Hubby's company give “bonus” points (for extra effort) which can be exchanged for store gift cards. Hubby saved them up and…..we just returned home with a toaster/convection countertop oven…FOR FREE!!!
    I'm so happy!!! Now I can reheat my 'mass produced' ie homemade in bulk meals cheaply
    Jane x

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  19. As much as I love cooking, there are other things I enjoy even more. So when I cook, I am like you, I cook up a storm. In one day I can have our dinners and lunches organised for the next 4 or 5 days. Minimal, if any, meat, plenty of pulses and vegetables.

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  20. Thanks for the tip off about Superscrimpers.

    I agree with cooking for several meals at once – if my oven goes on it's always full.

    The only thing I don't like warmed up for the next meal is mashed potatoes. I've tried freezing shepherds pie but the potatoes are never quite as nice second time around – do you have any frugal tips for them please?

    Julie (Froogs blog follower)

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  21. Thanks again, froogs, for staying with us. I endorse everything you say about eating less meat, I use our local butcher (the meat he has is reared less than 5 miles from where I live and he can virtually name the cow)he would rather people bought less meat, but good quality meat. It is utterly delicous and cheaper than supermarket meat. I also use the slow cooker a lot, and due to hubby and I working different ends of the day, I make my own ready meals to make sure he has a decent meal before he goes to work. My struggle at the moment is a small freezer, but I am getting round this one…

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  22. Yum!! That looks fab! I made today a 'no spend day'. I roasted a huge tray of veggies and used minty lamb chops/peas and sweetcorn from the freezer, plus some mash. More than enough and there lots of roasted veg left to blitz up as a soup for tomorrow's lunch. 🙂 My bro gets married tomorrow so that's dinner sorted! 😉 Shall miss super scrimpers but shall hopefully catch it on iplayer or something similar at a later date.

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  23. if it's sitting there, hubby'll go ahead and eat as much of it as he wants 'til full. Lifetime habit…hard to challenge. Maybe if I get creative in presentation, he'll not notice I've stolen most of the chicken/pork? I just don't know the answer to this one. (exception: his wild caught game/deer/fish/turkey, he can eat all he wants of that–didn't cost us anything but his time!)

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  24. Hi darl, I haven't commented on any of your recent posts but I must say I certainly hope you don't disappear! I've mentioned you on my blog today (hope thats okay with you) and used one of your recipes too, it was lovely thanks. I'd be most pleased if you pop over and have have a look and maybe comment if you feel so inclined.

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  25. I just read a piece in next week's Radio Times about “Superscrimpers” and I wondered whether it had popped up on your radar.

    It remains to be seen whether the program will deliver a truly frugal message, but here's hoping…

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  26. Great to read your blog every day – don't know if you got my e-mail [Eileen in France] but keep trucking. Weekend coming up, fingers crossed on the weather front as it too saves money, washing on the line and, makes one feel good and then Easter so lots to look forward to. When I make bolognaise I blitz two or three carrots and they not only taste great [grate – oh dear] but pad out the meat. Eileen

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  27. Hello FG – 1st time commenter here.
    Just wanted to say hello & that I've become a follower (once I figured out how!)
    Love your blog, find it so inspiring. I cook mainly from scratch but need to be more frugal. Am more frugal than most people I know in the 'real' world but a beginner by your standards, lol.

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  28. I have found a meat wholesalers in Launceston, it's a farm shop that is primarily a wholesalers but are now selling bulk amounts direct. I think I shall have to take a visit and report back!

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  29. I do this but we don't eat the extra as a family meal they are plated and frozen so DS2 can have one when the rest of us have a curry or chilli which he doesn't like.
    Dh also in the winter takes plated dinners to work so gets hot food instead of cold sandwiches.

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  30. Cooking once to eat twice is our normal way of doing things : ) I agree with Sharon that the meal often tastes better the second day as the flavours have had a chance to mingle. Often find that a portion will be left over after the second meal and this will either get frozen or form the basis of a soup/stew/something over pasta meal with a bit of stretching. A sprinkle of grated cheese will up the protein if it is lacking. We all probably eat too much protein and I've read that adults need around 50g per day. The website gave this info:
    •1 cup of milk has 8 grams of protein
    •An 80g piece of meat has about 21 grams of protein
    •1 cup of dry beans has about 16 grams of protein
    •A 125g container of yogurt has about 5 grams of protein

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  31. I keep reading your tips on bulk cooking but so far I have not done it but this weekend when I do my shop I am going to be organised and start. Thanks for the inspiration and making me pull my socks up and respond to the challenge xx

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  32. Another slow cooker fan here! I cook a lot of meals which are mainly veg – the meat is just a token amount. If I do a full slow cooker, I under season and jazz it up when I reheat. It means we have 'different' meals each time a pack comes out of the freezer, often dictated by what veg I have (or don't).

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  33. Ooh that looks gorgeous..cutting back on meat for us is a big thing,so when we have it it tends to be treated like royalty and enjoyed..we certainly feel much healthier since we cut down on it..our meal portions have decreased slightly too..i love batch cooking ..saves time and energy..
    love to you and yours
    sara

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  34. This looks lovely. I think I am a yo yo bulk cooker, sometimes I am really good and the freezer starts to look really good, and other times I nearly run out. Seem to be better during the winter months, which for us in Australia is just around the corner. Love following your blog.

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  35. Hi there Froogs, another one here who has small meat portions (4oz white meat; 3oz red meat). I'm also getting much better at cooking double and freezing ready for a later date. On the subject of what to blog about – what about resilience or “tips for keeping going” when you are out of money, energy and enthusiasm. Like Foster Mummy, I also suffer from the black dog and last week had a very bleak couple of days – I kept going but boy-oh-boy was it hard. I'd like to be able to push through the tough or down times with a more positive attitude – any thoughts on this subject would be brill 🙂

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  36. we try to cut right back on meat in our family of 5. I am a vegetarian but the rest of the family does love their meat. They now have 2 vegetarian meals a week and I'm looking at cutting their intake back even more. Wish me luck!!!!

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  37. Hello, I found your blog a few weeks ago so I thought I would say hello. What you are doing is amazing and I (currently being jobless) have garnered countless tips and huge amounts of inspiration from you and your blog. I, along with probably everyone here, really REALLY hope that you don't disappear in the near future as I now thoroughly look forward to logging on and reading your posts every couple of days.
    xxx

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  38. I will most defintely be watching Superscrimpers tonight! I've been looking forward to it since it started to be advertised. Hopefully I'll pick up some tips. I noted they show something about homebrew or home made wine and as I currently have a batch of black cherry wine nearly ready to be bottled I'm particularly interested in this.

    I really to get to grips with my slow cooker. I used it sporadically throughout winter, with only two or three real sucesses.

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  39. Tho I am retired, I often fix meals the same way. Usually, tho, we will have something different the second night and the repeat on the third night. It is nice to know that one night's meal is already to reheat and eat. We are also eating a lot less meat…the freezer is full of it but it lasts much longer..

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