Mushroom and Pearl Barley Risotto

Risotto is such a comforting and warming meal but using arborio rice is completely unnecessary as it is quite expensive. I use pearl barley because it is such a cheap grain. In this recipe I used the dried mushrooms I received with my mushroom growing kit from GroCycle.

I have made this before with fresh mushrooms which also tastes just as delicious. This is a great recipe to make in your slow cooker.

Serves 4        Costs 27p per serving


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Baba Ganoush

For those of you who don’t know what baba ganoush is, it is a delicious smokey dip made from aubergines.

In our house, we have it with flat breads, naan bread and a selection of vegtable sticks to dip in it. You can also turn it into a meal by adding some meat, chickpeas or extra vegtables.

The traditional recipe for baba ganoush contains tahini but at £3 a jar…no thank you!

So, I hope you enjoy my budget version.

Serves 4-6

Costs 15p per serving

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Foolproof Apple Crumble

I have lost count of the number of apple crumble recipes I have tried that have been a complete disaster! This is my simple and cheap recipe that has been a hit with all the family. You can add different types of fruit if you wish, my favourite is frozen mixed berries.

The most important question is, do you have it with custard or ice cream?!

Serves 6-8

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Meal Plan Week 8

This weeks meal plan includes chicken so once again I brought a whole chicken to bring the price down. The breasts were used for hunters chicken, the leg meat for fajitas and the carcass for homemade chicken stock which was used in chorizo chowder.

All meals under £1 a serving and are fussy toddler approved!

Monday

Hunters Chicken

Tuesday

Chicken Fajitas with Quick Salsa

Wednesday

Chorizo Chowder

Thursday

Broccoli and Bacon Pasta Bake

Friday

Tuna melt in Flat Breads

Saturday

Chorizo and Paprika Potatoes 

Sunday

Sausages and mash

Quick Refried Baked Beans

We love Mexican food in our house! Most dishes are quick and easy to prepare with so many different options. These refried beans are great as a side dish, dip with chips, in a burrito or my personal favourite, chimichangas.

They are typically made with pinto beans but I have used a can of baked beans as they are cheap and something that is always in my kitchen cupboard.

Cost 45p

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Store Cupboard Potato Curry

Your store cupboard contains some of the most important ingredients when it comes to cooking on a budget. You don’t have to have fresh or expensive ingredients to make a tasty home cooked meal and this potato curry proves it!

Tinned potatoes are a great thing to keep in your cupboard, not only are they cheap (12p), but you can either use them as the main element of a meal, like this curry or you could use them in a side dish such as potato salad or roasted.

My recipe for Homemade Naan Bread is a perfect side for this curry, all the ingredients can be found in your cupboard and fridge.

Serves 4       Costs 57p a serving

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Homemade Chicken Stock

Chicken is quite an expensive meat to have in meals, it is probably one of our second most consumed meats in our house (pork being the first). To keep the price down I buy a whole chicken and use the different cuts to make up to four different meals. This week we have had the chicken breasts for Hunters Chicken, the legs for homemade chicken nuggets, any leftover meat was used in a vegtable and rice soup. Often, the carass gets wasted but I turn it into stock which is one of the best tasting stocks I have ever tasted!

If you are unsure of how to seperate the chicken joints, you can find out here.

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Vegan Watermelon Ice Lollies

Summer is just around the corner! There is nothing better than a nice refreshing ice cream on a hot summers day unless, like my son, you can’t have cows milk. These watermelon ice lollies are a great alternative, they are also free of additives and artificial sugar.

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Monster Lunch Box

For this lunch I have used eye food picks and small kebab stick for the caterpillar/snake. The chocolate stars are actually cupcake sprinkles! It look under 10 minutes to prepare.

  • Monster ham and cheese bagel.
  • Strawberry yogurt with chocolate stars.
  • Green grape caterpillar/snake (she couldn’t decide on what to call it!).
  • Blueberries.
  • Mini cheese biscuits.

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Simple Cheese Straws

This is a great recipe to make with kids, plus my two love eating them as a snack! You can add extras such as herbs, sesame seeds or even different types of cheese. With the leftover dough I used a small cutter to make biscuits.

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