Batch cooking 

Hello Dear Reader,

I shall be cooking on quite a tight budget for the rest of the month. Where do I start? First of all, new glasses! I have varifocals and have three prescriptions in one lens for reading, using a computer and distance and they came to £350! That includes an outdoor pair with tinted lens. Next, the pantry was bare! We’ve stocked up for the month and oh my, food is getting ever more expensive. I’ve notice price hikes of, on average, 20% on a lot of products. I’m going to have to rethink some menus and dig up some frugal ideas to stretch the budget.

Now the pantry is full and after today, so is the fridge and freezer for the rest of the week. A couple of cheese, bacon and tomato quiches,

Cottage pie, cauliflower cheese, hunters chicken with homemade BBQ sauce and sausage casserole.

I had some smoked mackerel lurking in the fridge and that’s the recipe I’m going to share today.

2 smoked mackerel fillets with the skin removed and flaked. 

200g soft cheese, I used Lidl’s version of Philadelphia 

Squirt of lemon juice – I always keep a bottle in the fridge.

Heaped dessert spoon of horseradish sauce.

Place in the blender or processor and mix until smooth. You could just keep working with a fork until you get a smooth consistency. 

I ate mine with rice crackers and as you can see, I took a bite and then remembered to take a photo. It works well as a dip with crudités. 

Anyone else get some batch cooking done this week? I’ve got a busy busy week ahead and I need to cut myself some slack. If you batch cook, what’s your ‘go to’? Also, those food price hikes, anyone else noticed a jump? 

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxx

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27 thoughts on “Batch cooking 

  1. i’ve noticed it trying hard to stick to my budget and everything slowly getting more expensive, took husband and kids shopping yesterday and even they noticed it

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      • Thank you. I am currently doing a pantry and freezer challenge, with a very limited budget for essentials. I did spend about $67 US this week as I needed some staples as well as to take advantage of a screaming sale on corned beef for the upcoming St Pat’s dinner. $1.88/lb is awesome, even cheaper than Aldi’s. I also grabbed 2 super cheap heads of cabbage as they are always cheapest this time of year with St Pat’s. Trying to use a lot up within the next 2 months, to save $ for an upcoming, and unexpectedly soon move (trying to finalize a contract on a home this week). Eat it down so as not to have to move it.

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      • I was making some cottage pie in the slow cooker and my OH remarked that it was a bit “low down” in the pot. I checked the packet and yes, 100g less (don’t know how I didn’t initially notice, but some days are too busy. Shall be resorting a lot more to lentils to bulk things out.

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  2. Smoked Mackerel Pate is one of my favourites – apart from the fish I have all the other ingredients in, so guess what I’ll be buying this week – thanks for the prompt, it’s such a cost effective and easy lunch 😊

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  3. Tesco value range dark chocolate, I use it to make lunch box snacks was 30p last week… this week it’s 45p. In my area Tesco are no longer stocking value range tin foil or washing up liquid. They have just vanished !

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  4. I’ve noticed the value flour has suddenly jumped up 20p a bag. I do a lot of baking, so I’ve noticed it. Similarly butter is £1.09 in my local Tesco, up from 89p in Dec.

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  5. I’m in Indiana, US, and the price of everything is up. Aldi is my mainstay market, but they don’t have everything I want, so once a month I head to our version of Tesco. Prices there are much higher, making me wonder how those who don’t count pennies can feed their families. I can get household items like cat food, cleaners, washer soap, heavy items, etc… Delivered from Amazon to my door for less than the purchase price at Walmart. My health issues makes this a big deal.

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  6. Yes this last night and this am as baby was asleep. Almost Vegetarian moussaka (w bacon), carbonara (stretched with peas), spaghetti bolognase (250g mince), morrocan mince (250g mince). Have the following vegetarian: potato and eggplant curry (kenyan)[soon to make], pumpkin potato and lentil curry, and morrocan pumpkin with lentils. Serve all curries with rice or lebanese bread.

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  7. One day, I cooked apples and took them out with a slotted spoon, leaving the juice. I put a whole frozen hen in the crockpot. Several hours later when the hen was thawed but not done, I added carrots, potatoes, onions, celery, and garlic. Friend and I ate this and I sent some home with him. I left the crockpot on low. The next day when all was out, I put in 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts. After that was out, I put in three pounds of carrots and a few more potatoes. Then, I put cabbage in the broth. I think the crockpot was on continuously for four days. I like to keep chicken breast cooked and in refrigerator and freezer for use later. The potatoes were free, chicken on sale, and carrots were 2 lb. bags for $.49. I got two bags. I had previously dehydrated the garlic, celery, and onions. I had meat for two weeks, sent some home with a friend, and we had one meal together.

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  8. When i batch cook i poach a chicken so after stripping it of flesh i can get a variety of meals out of it plus stock for the week or I will freeze it (chicken curry, chicken pie, chicken salad, chicken and leek pancakes,) l will freeze pies,Curry’s ,pancakes ect.. so i build up a freezer stock so they become my “convenience meals ” Lidles do packs of cooking bacon at £1:15sh for pack it’s not just bits sometimes you can get some little joints and gammony bits out for a cheep tea, from this i can make bacon roll, bacon burgers, bacon loaf, quiche.Over the years i have found my greatest ali is fruit, veg and pulses bulk up with theses and food seems to go further.

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  9. I seem to batch cook every day as there are 7 of us, so never seem to get round to having anything in the freezer done ready. I must say your quiches always look delicious , do you cook them in metal tins? Have started getting a lot of my shopping at home bargains. Aldi is other side of town so don’t tend to bother with it. I have a store cupboard in spare room I keep full of stuff I buy on offer and shop from that lol.

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  10. I love mackerel pate too and so easy to make (I generally just mash with a fork) so thanks for reminding me to make it Froogs – a great addition is some broken up walnut pieces – might sound strange but try it – adds a great crunch to the smooth texture.

    In our old house we used to have a walnut tree and if we were lucky enough to get the walnuts before the squirrels did they were the best walnuts ever. So fresh tasting compared to what I can buy. Sadly no walnut tree in new garden.

    My freezer is full at the moment but I have some super quick-to-make staple recipes – my favourite is pasta arrabiata (my cheats version):
    Tin of chopped tomatoes
    1 tsp red pesto
    1 tsp green pesto
    few drops of tabasco
    salt and pepper
    Stir into cooked pasta and top with grated cheese (any kind)

    Takes as long as it takes for the pasta to cook + a couple of minutes

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  11. I have noticed that food prices here in New Zealand have gone up. Butter is horrendous price around $5.00 for 500g. It is made here in New Zealand.

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  12. Hi. Thanks for your blog I love it. Yes I,’ve noticed food prices and on the up in both Aldi and Lidl. I am trying to utilize the special buys to make my money go further. I am on a limited budget( like most) as my income has halved due to redundancy from a good paid job a couple of years ago. As you say, home made good food all the way. Also, there is a great sense of personal satisfaction in creating a good meal out of next to nothing.

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  13. Asda Varifocals for £40 – they’re great. I’d tried expensive ones and couldn’t get on with them at all – the technology has changed since I last bought new varifocal glasses. After a year of trying about 6 different (and increasingly expensive) lenses all of which went back, I saw the Asda ad and was reminded of advice that my friend’s optician gave her which was, if you can’t afford the most expensive then go for the cheapest as anything in the middle is a waste of money. Might choose a more expensive frame next time but only if I don’t find one I like in the £40 range. Might also add transitions.

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