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Sunday, 20 April 2014

Sorting out the things you use regularly Part One

Lets face it all of us have things that we use regularly either on a day by day or month by month basis; and it is also a given that each household is different and has different requirements. Take for instance my family unit which consists of the two of usI like to keep in food that is good and solid and with the addition of a few other items can make simple substantial meals that you do not pay through the nose for. 


Potatoes

 I like to keep a sack of potatoes in the house.  Normally at this time of year it is a little late to get a sack of spuds but today I fell lucky acquiring a 25kg bag of Nadine Potatoes, which will keep the two of us going for at least six weeks probably more and cost me £7.  Work out how much you are paying for the bags you pick up from the supermarket and see just how much more you are paying for a larger sack; having the larger sack also means that potatoes are sorted for the time being so it is one less thing to remember to put on the shopping list until you run out again  then I go buy another sack. My veg shop is just over the road and one of the owners  actually delivers the sack to  my door.  I appreciate that I am lucky but perhaps you could get together with some friends(preferably one who can drive and either buy a sack between you or a sack each - perhaps best to go to a farmer or a farm shop or a greengrocer who sells sacks of spuds like the one I go to.

Potatoes keep well and are often kept in clamps until they are needed and are often many months old before the consumer gets to take them home and eat them so they do keep very well.  I keep the potatoes under the stairs which is nice and cold and I make sure that the bag of potatoes is kept sealed and no light can get into the bag otherwise the potatoes start sprouting and we do not want that as we want as many meals as we can out of that sack of spuds and you do not have to just stick with mash or boiled potatoes you can  ring the changes by making home made chips, scallops, champ. colcannon, rosti, roasties, baked potatoes, potatoes boulangere, to name just a few ways of eating the humble spud.  If you have not experimented with different recipes for using the potatoes experiment find out what you like and do not like and create your own core recipes in the process.  Everyone's palate is different so it stands to reason that each family has different likes to another.

Most of us like crisps; however in each pack of crisps is less than one medium sized potatoe.  Would you pay over 70p for just one potato.  Make your own crisps at home.  I have a gadget that I use in the microwave for making my own crisps which is literally a plastic rack to separate the potato slices so that they dry properly with the aid of a microwave.

Onions and Garlic

I use a lot of onions and garlic for flavouring and I get a net of onions for about £1.50 a bag which again will last a good six weeks or more.  The Coop for 3 same sized onions are charging about £1.05 for 3 onions.  .I shop around for the best price on the garlic.  Both are natural anticeptics and both get quite a bit of hammer as they help perk up bland food into something that is very tasty.  I fry onions until golden brown, serve them with steak, beefburgers, hot dogs, Toad in the hole,onion gravy, make relish from the end of a net for the pantry so I do not waste a thing.  I also use leeks in the same way when I have a freezer I freeze them and add them to stir fries and roast them to go into sarnies.  During their season though I buy them as I need them.

Two to four Simple ingredients that can give so much variation and so much flavour, both staples of my Pantry and ones I would not be without.  By keeping them in bulk store where you can you also have the comfort of knowing that you have ingredients in the pantry to cook to make a splendid meal.  Take some nice sausages, mash some potatoes and serve with onion gravy fills you up and is comfort food of the highest order one that fills you up and keeps the hunger gremlins at bay.  You do not have to serve lots of veggies as a matter of course you need veggies but be sensible you do not have to blow them all on one meal but use them throughout the day.  To me at the end of the day its the flavour that is important.

Catch up soon

Pattypan

x

4 comments:

  1. It is so good to have a decent stock of the basics, all you need is a few tasty extras and you can pull a good meal out of "nowhere" at the drop of a hat.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Pam

      Thanks for popping by. I think everyone should have a basic shopping list that they buy in month in month out. These are the ingredients goods that you need on a month by month basis to live off decently without any of the fancy bits.Its about choosing wisely ingredients that your family will eat without paying through the nose. I know you and others who read the blog know that but there are those that do not and having simple food at your fingertips is often overlooked because people want exotic or fancy meals instead of making the most of the ingredients to hand and how much is available in the purse. If you are sensible you can live well and frugally.

      Take care

      Pattypan

      x

      Delete
  2. We used to do this too before we started growing our own, still do if stocks from the veg patch run out before the next as we have the cool workshop to keep them in. Always a good idea to have the basics in, if at all possible.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Hearthwife

      I do this because I do not have access to growing a lot of veg certainly not potatoes but its what I am aiming for. One day I will have the facilities to do this - its what we grew up with. Its only when you lose something you realise how important it was. Hope you are keeping well and thanks for popping by.

      Take care

      Pattypan

      x

      Delete

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