Frugal Friday | Nostalgia
You might have to double click this picture to see the two guys fishing. This is the ‘Sanna’ in Moorcroft Wood; so called because there used to be a sanatorium nearby; it was used as an isolation hospital mainly for smallpox. That horrible disease seems to be gone for ever, but the ‘Sanna’ remains. Behind those trees is the canal but over the years the arms off the canal have been filled in and many pools too. This photograph was taken last April, which explains the winter colours.
I remember as a child going fishing with my dad and we brought home a pike that was cooked and we ate it! I doubt if anyone still cooks and eats their catch these days. I also remember eating vegetables and salad from the garden; there are lots of things that are easy to grow like runner beans. I had four brothers and two sisters; I was a baby boomer! We had to eat a variety of cheap food and we grew our own. I remember a pet rabbit that had something wrong with it’s leg; yes, we ate the poor little white bunny rabbit too!
I read a article about how to feed a family on £55 this morning. That guy never ate his pet bunny rabbit. Muesli for breakfast followed by bread and honey? Or is it muesli or bread and honey? I’m not sure, but I don’t like the look of his shopping list; 15 free range eggs for £2.89? I buy 15 for £1.25; no they ain’t free range or organic! Think, I’m made of money? My eggs and chips costs about 50p and I have 2 eggs, oven chips and veggies. The free range version would cost about 70p. 20p a meal extra would mount up to an extra £4 per person each week.
You must understand foods groups to cook frugally. Protein is in meat, poultry and fish. Poultry is cheapest and some meat like pork; then fish is expensive except for some like Basa (from Lidl). Cheap protein is also in milk and eggs (free range doesn’t mean more protein). You also get protein in pulses, peas and beans. Not all pulses produce gas in the digestive system but many cheap ones do! The problem is that they contain indigestible sugars that ferment in the gut; these are also in soft drinks, onions, etc. You need carbohydrates, preferably starch rather than sugar. You also need lots of vitamins. The vitamins are in fruit and vegetables, as is fibre and some vitamins are in meat and vegetable oils.
The guy trying to feed his family on £55 also said “In addition, we have no herbs, sugar or any of the other ingredients that you’ll need to buy from time to time.” So his £55 didn’t include everything.
I would put on my shopping list, staple foods, like bread and potatoes that contain starch and some protein. Vegetables would be whatever is in season, now it would be carrots, cabbage, onion, swede, parsnip, cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli. I think broccoli is a little expensive and cabbage is cheaper and more versatile. The root vegetables are great for soups, stews and casseroles. Then you need meat and chicken is the cheapest. 1 Kg of chicken drumsticks is £2 at Lidl today and you can get chicken legs for around the same price. Pork isn’t too bad either. I would also buy rice as a staple food, you can get huge bags cheap in Lidl. The Asian supermarkets also have huge bags of rice discounted and I have seen big bags of onions for as little as 10p a kilo, potatoes for 25p a kilo at Asian supermarkets; but you have to buy in bulk. Then you need to store the potatoes and onions in a frost free cool place like a shed. Make good use of your freezer too; I’ll be filling mine with meat this weekend. Mostly chicken and some pork. I was buying some frozen vegetables but prefer fresh or even canned, they take no space up in my freezer.
The writer of that article mentioned the things that Asda now have on offer for 50p and they are all processed food like cans of soup. What is really on offer? Half of the products like cream of chicken soup and rice pudding contain milk. Milk is relatively cheap and so they cut down the need for meat protein in the soups by substituting milk. There is also Yoghurt, milk shakes, and coleslaw. You could make your own soup and cut the cost by adding cheap milk. I follow a dairy free diet but I would prefer to add pulses like split peas to soups and stews rather than milk anyway. I think garden peas are useful, they are rich in protein and can be added to soups, stews, casseroles and stir fry and are available frozen all year around.
When I was child I would wash potatoes and fill a shelf in the oven with them and then we would have them with sausages. Cut the baked potato open and put a sausage in the middle like a hot dog. The only problem is, sausages aren’t like the locally produced ones we got when I was a child. Good sausages are quite expensive now. I have a potato cooking in the microwave; now what can I have with it? My friend has cheese and beans, that’s reasonably frugal. I’ll think of something…
There are more amazing blogs on my Home Page.
My mate said, “You’re looking a bit pale.” I said, “I know, the doctor said I’m a bit nostalgic.”
This article was written last week; I forgot to publish it last Friday… whoops… It worked out well though, I’m short of time this week. I will be posting blogs over the weekend as usual …