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  How to eat well, spend less and stay healthy: week 2

Eat well, spend less, stay healthy:  Week 2

5 weekday meals and 2 treats from one shopping bag of ingredients. Careful shopping and meal planning is the key to making your money go further and eating well and staying healthy.

Here is a list for a one stop shop to create several meals and a couple of treats

  • 2 - 3 carrots
  • Small pack chestnut mushrooms
  • 2 red peppers
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 garlic
  • Portions of squash and sweet potato
  • 2 large baking potatoes
  • 2 - 3 onions (red and white)
  • 2-3 bananas
  • Frozen peas (or peas and beans)
  • 1 tin cherry tomatoes
  • From the chilled counter: 1 tub creme fraiche
  • 1 carton milk
  • 100g cheddar cheese
  • 2 chicken breasts  (or Quorn fillets) Frozen is fine
  • 150g streaky bacon
  • 1 Pkt Rissoto rice (Arborio)
  • Bread

Store Cupboard: porridge oats, pasta, caster sugar, soy sauce, stock cubes, cooking oil and salad dressing.

Fridge: eggs, margarine (or butter)




Day 1: Stir-fry with rice and peas (using a stir-fry pan on the hob)  Simmer 80 - 100g rissoto rice with water flavoured with stock cube. After 10 minutes add peas and continue cooking for a further 8 minutes or until rice is cooked.  Drain and put in bowl.  Use half tonight and store remainder in the refridgerator in a covered bowl.  Fry chopped onion, 2 rashers of streaky bacon until golden, add thinly sliced carrot strips, sliced mushrooms and seasoning.  Add rice and peas and stir until everything is steamning hot.  Serve with side salad of diced tomato and grated onion topped with créme frâiche.
Day 2: Oven roast chicken dinner (using the oven)  Cook the chicken breasts wrapped in streaky bacon, the two jacket potatoes and a tray of squash pieces and sweet potato, 1 carrot halved lengthwise, and circles of courgette drizzled with oil . Pre-heat the oven to 210ºC or Gas 7 and roast everything off. The veg takes around 40 mins or so, chicken portions similar and jackets bit longer, unless you can give them 6 mins in a microwave to get them cooking first. All this cooking can go on whilst you do something else. Return to the kitchen and turn off oven. Serve up your roast chicken dinner. Split open the jacket potato and fluff up the potato and sprinkle with black pepper. Slice the chicken breast wrapped in bacon and have half of all the roasted vegetables. Use créme frâiche as the sauce. Remember to store the remaining roasted veg in polythene tub with lid.
Day 3: Quick Mushroom Risotto (using a stir-fry pan on the hob)  Dice mushrooms thinly, dice red onion and a garlic clove. Fry off the garlic and onion in 20g butter in s stir fry pan, Stir in the mushrooms and cook until they soften. Mix in the previously cooked rice and peas. Grate up cheese really finely and add to the pan. Stir in créme frâiche to moisten the risotto, seasoning and a pinch of chilli flakes.  Side salad: a big handful of baby spinach dressed with soy sauce and some bread croutons fried in butter and garlic.
Day 4: Pasta meal (using pans on the hob)  Cook pasta on the hob in water and drain and drizzle with oil. Put on one side. Fry up diced cooked chicken (or Quorn) fillet with a sliced onion and a few mushrooms and all the left over roasted veg ( squash, sweet potato etc). Add tinned cherry tomatoes (worth the little extra money) and stir gently. Stir in the pasta and reheat until everything is hot. Add Side salad: Serve sliced red peppers with grated carrot and balsamic dressing.  Also serve Bruchetta made using thick slices of bread rubbed with a garlic clove and spread with the remains of the cherry tomatoes. Toast lightly under the grill until crispy and hot.
Treat 1 Cereal bars Everyone needs some comfort treats. A 'food hug' is likely to stave off bad day blues.  In a pan melt 75g margarine and stir in 2 spoonfuls of caster sugar and either 1 tablespoon honey, syrup or marmalade together with 3 heaped tablespoons porridge oats and 3 heaped tablespoons cornflakes or similar. Mix really well and spread into a Victoria sandwich style tin. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt or even chilli sea salt. Cook at 200ºC or Gas 6 for 12 - 15 minutes. Mark into 6 portions and allow to cool. You will have some to share and to take to work!

Treat 2: Banana cake   Banana aids the mineral balance in the body and helps health.

50g margarine, 50g sugar, 1 egg, 50g SR flour and 1 mashed banana. Beat it all up together until it is thoroughly mixed and put into a mini loaf tin or paper cases. (If you have a little chocolate grate it up and sprinkle it over the cakes or add a handful of chocolate chips) Cook at 190ºC or Gas 5 for 20 minutes until risen and springy to touch. Can be eaten hot or cold, so serves as a pudding and a snack.






























































































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