Leftovers with added seasoning - mustard, paprika and garlic, and cooked down chopped apple and onion.

Karen Wright: Budget food shopping tips and a leftovers pastry plait recipe

When the price of gas and electricity hit the roof last week there were lots of tips on the news and social media about how to save money in the household budget to help limit the damage to our finances.

By Jane Chippindale
Wednesday, 6th April 2022, 9:54 am
Updated Wednesday, 6th April 2022, 10:46 am

Karen Wright writes: I got my thinking cap on and came up with a few ideas of my own.

Not new ideas, I am not reinventing the wheel here but things I was taught by my mum and back at school in those domestic science lessons we used to have.

Common sense things. Small things that are easy to implement but can all add up to savings in our pockets.

The first thing is food shopping.

Before going off to do the weekly shop, make sure you check your cupboards, fridge and freezer.

Do a quick stock check of what you already have and figure out how and when to use them up.

I checked my freezer and found 20 main meals could be made from what was tucked away in there. That’s almost three weeks of dinners!

Plus, when you finally use them all, you can defrost the freezer, which almost never gets done normally!

After doing this I only spent £31 buying fruit and veg etcetera to top it up.

For me, casseroles will be cooked in the slow cooker from now on and I will be making more stir fries and salads which are cheaper on energy use.

My mum always used to fill the oven when she was using it, so batch baking and just trying not to keep heating up that oven from cold more than once a day will be top of my list.

Finally, leftovers once again.

This pastry plait only cost me one pound!

That was for the roll of puff pastry, everything else was leftovers or from my store cupboard.

The filling was all leftovers from a Sunday roast – gammon, mashed potato and cabbage.

I added seasoning from my store cupboard, mustard, paprika and garlic and I cooked down a chopped apple and an onion.

I mixed it all together, laid it down the middle of a pastry sheet and plaited the pastry over it.

A delicious main meal for just a pound and looks impressive too.

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