I spiralize 


Hello Dear Reader,

I’ve been on the hunt for a spiralizer for a while and found one in B and M for £9.99. I made a ragu sauce with low fat pork and then just stirred in the raw courgette ribbons.

Really cheap and we had two courgette each. My sauce is watery as I don’t add any thickening. I’m trying to be good although I have the breaking strain of a kit kat and did think this would have been better with grated cheese. I didn’t give in (today).

It was much tastier than it looked.

Do you spiralize? Any veggi-getti recipe ideas are welcome.

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxx 

Meat free Monday 

Hello Dear Reader,

This tastes a whole lot better than it looks. We often have meat free meals and like this, they’re nothing fancy and certainly not expensive.

Our supper was wilted spinach, roasted red opinion, mushrooms and butternut squash with homemade fat free hummus.

I can’t take the credit for the hummus, like a lot of my recipes, is from the BBC. Here it is

1 tin of chick peas as well as the liquid in the tin.

Add to a jug and add,

1 teaspoon of tahini

2 cloves garlic, crushed,

1 heaped teaspoon of cumin,

2 heaped tablespoons of Greek yogurt,

Good squeeze of lemon juice

Salt and pepper

Blitz with a hand blender.

Poured the middle, we had half each. I finished this off with a sprinkle of paprika.

Just lovely. In my opinion, anything is good with spinach. All my veggies were on offer in Aldi so nothing more than 59p per pack so good for me and my wallet.

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxxx

Menu plan for the week ahead 


Hello Dear Reader,

Quick pop in and out today as I’m spending time with family. 

A quick stock check and a rifle through my cookery books and a quick plan. Some can be cooked in advance and added to on the day. Some additions to meals can be prepared in the morning before work and then added to later in the day. Some recipes can be prepared in the slow cooker and finished in the oven.

My menu plan isn’t rigid. I might change it as the mood takes me. I might make double portions and freeze some for another day. I’ve already decided to change Stilton scones to cheddar scones as I have cheddar. All our meals usually have the addition of salad or veggies. There’s always the option of toast for breakfast. Lunch can be leftovers that we can reheat at work.

In case you can’t read my writing.

Roast pork – again, pork is still half the price of beef or lamb.

Pulled pork wraps with barbeque sauce.

Coq au vin, mashed potatoes with leeks and veggies.

Honey and mustard sausages with colcannon

Braised beef topped with cheese scones and veggies

Spicy squash, chickpea and spinach stew with brown rice

Fish pie with veggies

Carbonara 

Breakfast – muesli and yogurt/toast

Lunch – sandwich/banana – leftovers 

I’ll pop recipe up as I cook over the weekend or through the week.

Until tomorrow or later,

Love Froogs xxxx

Keep it thrifty 

Hello Dear Reader,

Sometimes, it’s the most boring tasks that save us the most money. We do all the big things to save money. We lift share, budget and stick to it, buy second hand, keep all our household bills and personal spending to a minimum, look after what we own so we don’t need to replace, reduce our water consumption and we shop around and get the best deal on anything we buy. 

I still maintain that the best way to save money is just by not carrying any on a day to day basis but that takes planning. It means you have to have all your meals planned, all the ingredients, sides and everything for all the other meals. It’s too easy to pick up bits and pieces if you pop to the shops. It also means I need to take food and drink for work, the car needs enough fuel to last the week and I have the strength to say no if asked to anything that requires me spending any money. 

My shopping always starts with a stock take and I menu plan from what we already have and then I write my shopping list. This week, we had a huge shop as we’d run down supplies before we went to France and our shop came to over fifty pounds! It’ll normally be around half that but we do have three fluffies to feed and I cook everything we eat from scratch.

My little kitchen friend stayed with me today as I cooked for the rest of the week. Having a freezer full of homemade ready meals means we can come home from work and I won’t have much to do and no matter how tired I might feel, I’ll never reach for a takeout or call into the supermarket for a ready meal. There’s no last minute discussion wondering what we’ve got for supper, I’ve got it all planned.

I shop once a week and then shut my purse up until next Saturday, sounds simple enough to me, save money by leaving my purse at home. 

Here’s my ready meals: falafels, carrot and kidney bean burgers, lasagne and cottage pie. We had a chippy tea tonight of homemade chicken pie and chips, affectionately known as ‘fat Friday’ where we eat a fake away instead of a take away.

It’s, as they say, not rocket science, but with a bit of planning, you can just leave your wallet at home. Tough? What do you think?

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxxxx

Buddha bowl for autumn? 


Hello Dear Reader,

I love the concept of a Buddha bowl of delicious good grub. There might be a few lentil recipes ahead as I’ve got a kilo bag to get through. Feel free to leave some lentil ideas.

I just made dal, or a mild version of it.

1 cup of red lentils – add to a small pan with water to cover about 2 inches deep, they absorb all the water. Bring to the boil and simmer, scooping off any scum. 

1 chopped and fried onion, when it’s softened in some oil, add two cloves of crushed garlic, I chopped chilli, add the seeds if you want heat, I added a teaspoon of cumin powder too. 

When the lentil are completely  cooked, add the cooked onions, garlic and spices. Stir in a knob of butter too.

I chopped a courgettes, two cooked beetroot and a tomato, sprayed them fry lite and roasted them for fifteen minutes.

I also steamed some finely shredded spring green, after I cooked them, I tossed them in a splash of olive oil, lemon juice and black pepper.

I also cooked some brown rice.

There it is a bulging bowl of cheap and delicious healthy grub. Well under a pound a portion with plenty of protein in the lentils with a slight kick of spice.

Over to you, a kilo of lentils to use up and your ideas are welcome. Also, any ideas for hot Buddha bowls for the autumn? I know it’s still summer here but it’ll cool down soon enough.

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxxxx 

Peppers stuffed with leftovers 

Hello Dear Reader,

I’ve always got something in the freezer that I can add something to. I had a portion of bolognaise sauce. I cut two peppers in half, added my mince and tomatoes which I spiced up with some ketchup, Worcestershire sauce and topped it with slices of cheese. 

I cooked them at 180 for thirty minutes and had them with more cheapy Aldi salad. 


You could stuff peppers with anything. They are great with chilli, spicy rice and vegetables, mushrooms in a cheese sauce or spicy minced beef. 

I’m going to cut my shopping expenses so there might be some cobbling together, lots of cheap seasonal salad. Even the blandest of 39p iceberg lettuce tastes fine with some homemade dressing. You could add some crusty bread or serve with rice. The cheese was slices from a pack of 99p sliced Gouda, again from Aldi. 

I’ll now go and have a dig around in the cupboards and put together a cheap plan for the next week.

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxxxx

Cheap cooking bacon


Hello Dear Reader,

I buy packs of cooking bacon from our local butcher for £1.99 a kilo. I turn the pack over and check to see if there’s big chunks of back bacon. I cook it in a very hot dry frying pan, without any oil and I cut off any fat although there often isn’t much.

Tonight we had big chunks of bacon, more like gammon than bacon, with mashed potato, loads of steamed broccoli and carrots, gluten free gravy to finish it off. Mine is weighed to check portion control. 

As I’ve weighed it, I’ve got 23p of bacon, 10p of potato, 20p of broccoli, 10p of carrots and 20p of gravy – supper for 83p and 590 calories and I’m totally stuffed.

Certainly not nutritionally perfect  but great for 83p.

See you tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxxxxx

70’s salad 

Hello Dear Reader,

Salads these days are ‘complex’, full of grains from far flung lands, with sprouting seeds and exotic embellishments. 1970’s salads had lettuce, tomato and cucumber, in season and  from our garden and with a sprinkle of cress grown on the window sill in the kitchen. Ham came out of a tin, and cheese was cut with a wire on a board in the pantry. 

And……..there was nothing wrong with that!

My salad today hasn’t changed! Salad, boiled eggs, beetroot, ham, a tiny lump of cheese and a measured amount of salad cream……..far more retro than mayo. I keep my portions small, I get enough  and watch the costs.

Dearly Beloved’s salad is the same but much bigger with more cheese, ham and a bowl of crusty bread. Does anyone else get the bread in Lidl? The small baguettes are 19p and great for a man mountain who likes nice bread with everything. 


A parting shot of DB’s supper in all its 1970’s glory…….if we had any pickled onions, he’d have had a sprinkle of them to. Now over to you, who else watches portion size to stretch the budget? Who else loves old style salads? Anyone else have 1970’s food memories?

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxxxxx

What a falafel! 


Hello Dear Reader,

It’s official! I love chick peas. I love them in stews, stir fries, hummus and falafels. Normally, I’d serve falafels with pitta bread but as I didn’t have any so I baked a mini-baguette…..you know the sort you buy in Aldi that you bake yourself. Once you open the packet, you can freeze the other one, which is what I did.

To make the falafels.

1 tin of drained chickpeas

1 tsp of each – chilli, coriander and cumin – all ground.

Black pepper and salt.

2 tbs of gluten free flour

1 egg

1 clove garlic – crushed.

Tbsp of dried parsley or fresh chopped parsley.

Add the lot to a food processor and pulse. 

Form into quenelles with two desert spoons and gently drop into shallow oil. Cook on each side until crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside.

I served it with home made salsa

6 finely chopped tomatoes

Small bunch of coriander – finely diced

1 onion finely diced.

2 green chillies- remove the seeds and white pithe and dice very finely

1 clove of garlic finely diced.

Juice of two limes. 

Salt and pepper.

Combine the lot.

Pile up on the open crusty baguettes.

Pile the falafels on top. I then have a mint yogurt trick, take a cup of natural yogurt and add a teaspoon of mint sauce. Add some salt and the last squeeze of lime. Pour on top of the falafels.


Here’s my gluten free version. 

It’s also lighter in calories without the bread. I just had a pile of salsa and falafels on top.


I had to have a dollop of mint yogurt on top.

It really was as delicious as it looked.

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxxxx

Saturday night fakeaway

Hello Dear Reader,

I found gluten free hot dogs in Poundland but try as I might, I couldn’t find any gluten free hot dog rolls. Fortunately, there were plenty of takers. I just had a hot dog with a piece of gluten free bread……it’s not the same but in my case, it’ll have to do.

I fried two sliced onions, heated the hot dogs and turned the oven up to a high heat. I filled the rolls with the fried onions, popped in the hot dogs and some sliced mature cheddar.

I stuck them in the oven for five minutes until the cheese melted and the rolls were slightly toasted.


Just as DB likes them with ketchup and mustard, with his feet up and watching a movie. I haven’t been to the cinema since Notting Hill was in the cinema and even then we wouldn’t buy a hot dog. They charge a stupid price!  This cost, 15p per slice of cheese, 12p of onion and 15p of hotdog per serving. 42p each, not including supermarket value mustard and ketchup. 

I’ll keep my eyes open for these hotdogs again in Poundland as being gluten free, I could add them to all sorts of dishes. Over to you, what suggestions do you have to use hot dogs? 

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxxxx