After the turkey pilaff disaster I was desperate for my penny pinching week to end on more of a high note…so I decided to make a change on my meal planner. Knowing how much my hubby doesn’t like duck, I decided that I would keep that in the freezer and instead of having it for tea on the Friday night, we’ d have the left over Cowboy Casserole with baked potatoes. At least it would be something that everyone would enjoy and eat!
My chicken paella plans for Saturday, however, went ahead!
The recipe I use has been adapted from a recipe I used to cook from a Weight Watchers cookery book. It uses chicken breast, bacon, onion, garlic, peas, red pepper, risotto rice and chicken stock plus paprika, turmeric, some herbs and seasoning!
Tonight was another test for the slow cooker. I had some turkey left from Christmas that I had frozen…and had decided to use a recipe I’d found for turkey pilaf using the slow cooker.
Basically the recipe called for about 300g cooked turkey, an onion, a red/yellow pepper, 200g rice, a carton of chopped tomatoes, 800 ml chicken stock and some seasoning (salt, pepper and herbs).
Well, all seems to be on track with my penny pinching meal planning week so far and days 3 and 4 have been a success too!
Day 3 (Tuesday) saw all the boys having pizza, garlic bread and ice-cream which they all enjoyed – and the hubby and I had the Piri Piri chicken from the freezer with a few frozen chips, some sugar snap peas and a couple of onion rings I found at the bottom of the freezer! I must admit the chicken wasn’t all that – I bought it reduced in Sainsbury’s and it was one of their ‘Ready to Cook’ meals in a foil tray. It smelt really vinegary when it was cooking, and ended up quite lemony…but it was a dinner and it filled our tummies!
So, for the last two days I’ve been putting my meal planning method to the test, trying to keep on track with my budget shopping week…and I suppose the question is how is it all going?
Well Sunday night was the first meal from my plan and I was actually really pleased at how much veg I had left over! I used 3 of my frozen chicken breasts with some carrots, celery, onion and swede to make a casserole which was really tasty due to the added smoked paprika! I served it with mashed potato and some broccoli – of which I have plenty left of both. We even had a scoop of ice-cream each for pudding (and the boys had a few mini marshmallows, that I found in the cupboard, on the top).
So this week we’re starting to feel the pinch a little in the pennies department.
I’m still on maternity leave but have just moved into the last 3 months which are sadly unpaid! I wish I could afford to stay at home and not go back to work…but I know these next 3 months until I do go back are going to be hard enough. I really don’t know how other people do it!
Feeling the pinch I’ve resorted to some good old meal planning and, I’ve got to say, if it all goes to plan then I feel like I’ve done pretty well this week! Continue reading