Sunday, January 29, 2012

Baby food in the slow cooker

Thought I'd share one aspect of my menu planning and prep this week - baby food!
This is the most satisfying part of the whole shebang. why? because my gorgeous 8 monther receives ALL of my nutritious - filled with love offerings - with enthusiasm. It makes this mumma happy to watch all that goodness disappear into her cute belly... 
So here is one of my many grocery trips this week...this one $22.68
Some of this was destined for baby's cute belly. I cook most of her meals in the slow cooker to freeze in small portions and use them when general dinner is unsuitable.
I cook two different meals in oven bags in the slow cooker at the same time. All the vegetables, meat, stock, herbs and spices in the bag - brilliant time saver! I learnt the hard way not to seal the bags with the ties they give you in the box, just leave them open to prevent them popping their seams.
8 hours later (8 hours I was doing other things) and baby has enough to keep her full - for a little while anyway:)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

{Project: Food Budget} Week 17

Another week of Project:FoodBudget means another go at getting it right:)
The more I work at such things, you know healthy eating, budgeting, family management...the more I learn that the decider - whether things work or fall in a heap - is the picking yourself up and getting on with it. Bad budget week? oh well...try again kinda thing. FYI, the Cannellini & bean burgers from last weeks menu were a stand out - really delicious, and baby approved:) Anyways a recap on the stats:

Monthly budget is $870.00 - $200 per week...
Family of 6 - 3 big ones / 3 smaller ones...
2 school lunches / 1 kindy lunch to pack and send -1 work away home lunch / 1 work at home lunch -healthy and complete baby mush also required!
I aim for 2 meat dishes for the week and the others, vegetarian.

This weeks menu:

Monday - Curried egg salad
Tuesday - Chicken breast nuggets & salad (the grown ups are eating out)
Wednesday - Refried beans without the fry burritos
Thursday - Beef and fennel sausage rolls with roast veg
Friday - Eggplant parmigiana
Saturday - Gozleme
Sunday - Home made pizza

Oh, and a win this week, the hub has agreed to be the pizza guy Sunday nights so a night off for me!
I haven't done my receipts yet so will update with shopping list and costings later.
Here are this weeks participating blogs:

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Life's a beach atc's

Remember the free vintage dictionary? Well here is it's first reincarnation as something else...
Life's a beach atc's for a swap over at the Stamp Shack.
That gorgeous paper is from Graphic 45 from their On the Boardwalk collection...and the Summer Time stamp is from Unity.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

{Project: Food Budget} Week 16

Monday - Harvest-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
Tuesday - Couscous and cannellini bean burgers
Wednesday - Pumpkin eggplant and chickpea curry
Thursday - Beef & sweet potato curry with yellow rice
Friday -  Apricot chicken
Saturday - Home made pizza
Sunday - leftovers:D

Food spend so far is $130. That's all dinners, cereal, milk, bread, spreads & fruit for 6 mouths:)
Will need top ups of milk, bread, fruit and maybe some baking supplies.
Hopefully on track for a good week!

Shopping List:

olive oil / garlic / breadcrumbs / basil / thyme / curry paste / coriander / cumin / brown sugar / fish sauce / turmeric / curry powder / cornflour / plain flour / dry yeast
500g steak
1.5kg chicken
1 cup cashews
1 can lentils
1 can cannellini beans
1 can chickpeas
1 can coconut milk
1 can tomatoes
850g can apricot halves in juice
600g pumpkin
1 eggplant
4 tomatoes
4 onions
1 red onion
1 sweet potato
1 lemon
leafy greens
4 Portobello mushrooms
fresh mint
natural yoghurt
3 cups chicken stock
2 cups vegetable stock
pizza toppings

The Week 14 Participating Blogs:

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

OpShop love.

Just have to share my few OpShop buys yesterday.
Total spent, less than $2...
The vintage dictionary - perfectly yellowed and ready for repurpose - was free...the lady was all like "oh gee, that one's falling apart, I can't charge you anything for that..." I squealed in my head - not out loud because that would make me crazy right?
...and that flanny sheet was $0.50 but it was half price day so $0.25

{Project: Food Budget} Week 15

Last week was a squeeze but made I it in on budget.
This week it is all about the kids...oh and cheap:D
Hoping for less than $200 in total for my hungry six, as the school year is just around the corner and that means a bunch of stuff needs to be paid for!

Tuesday - Bangers 'n Mash
Wednesday - Chicken Noodle Soup
Thursday - Spaghetti & Meatballs
Friday - Tomato Risotto with peas & carrot
Saturday - Creamy Avocado & White Bean Wrap
Sunday - Mexican Salad
Monday - leftovers

The Week 14 Participating Blogs:

    Thursday, January 5, 2012

    {Project: Food Budget} Week 14

    Last weeks food spend was $200.29! Just 29 cents over budget...
    and what's more, we ate better than ever. I think the reason for that is I happily purchased some more expensive ingredients knowing they were ok budget wise. Ordinarily I would have passed them over thinking they were too expensive. We even had bacon and eggs for breakfast New Years day:)
    ...and menu planning?
    I have come and go from it in the past, depending on available time / energy but it really is a must. It results in tastier and more nutritious meals every time.
    So to this weeks menu:

    Tuesday - Maple Chicken & Chickpea Salad
    Wednesday - Pan fried Mung beans with chicken
    Thursday - Tomato Risotto
    Friday - Roast vegetable & Couscous salad
    Saturday - Nasi Goreng
    Sunday - Quinoa patties & salad
    Monday - leftovers:D

    Budget is $200 - 6 people, 3 adult portions / 3 child portions
    So far (my shopping week runs Tuesday to Monday) the spend is $179.37. I did pick up two packs of premium mince reduced to clear (of course!) this week too, so that'll help out next week:)

    Shopping list:

    Fresh ingredients:

    500g sweet potato
    2 red onion
    2 brown onion
    5 spring onion
    3 tomatoes
    4 cups salad greens
    2 1/2 cups broccoli
    6 yellow squash or 3 zucchini
    100g mushrooms
    1 red capsicum
    1kg butternut pumpkin
    1 carrot
    2 lemon
    1 1/2 cups chopped coriander
    1/2 cup chopped parsley
    1kg chicken breast
    500g prawns
    1 cup Arborio rice
    2 cups Basmati rice
    1 cup couscous
    2 cups cooked Quinoa
    2 cans chickpeas
    1 can chopped tomatoes
    1 1/2 cups cooked mung beans
    5 eggs
    Greek yogurt
    3/4 cup grated Cheddar cheese
    60g Parmesan cheese
    1/2 cup low fat cottage cheese

    Pantry ingredients:

    1 1/2 cups chicken stock
    1 cup vegetable stock
    maple syrup / olive oil / vinegar (apple cider) / soy sauce / salt & pepper / sesame oil / vegetable oil / garlic / ginger / shrimp paste / sambal oelek / oyster sauce / sugar / cumin

    Here are the other Project: Food Budget participants: