We can breathe easier in the kitchen! Back to easy and quick cooking of meals that are fun, frugal, and delicious.
Having completed the filming for the last episode of the third series of Shop Smart Save Money, we will be home a lot more, rather than on trains and taxis travelling to different locations across the UK.
Don’t get us wrong, we have absolutely loved it but there’s nothing like being home and having the time to try and indulge in some of the foods our family actually love. We will be trying out new recipes too, so watch this space.
We will continue to shop mostly at Aldi as we find it so convenient (it’s within walking distance from home) and also, their prices and range combination are the best.
Here are the easy and quick dishes we have in mind for next week:
Bear in mind that the day when each meal is prepared may need to be shuffled around a bit. IT is mostly what we feel for on the day, but also the weather. I hear it will be a bit rainy for a part of the week but we are hoping to be able to enjoy some sunshine.
- Sunday: Slow cooker lamb and vegetables. A few minutes at the start to season the lamb and prepare the veggies. Then a few minutes at the end to make the gravy and plate up. Couldn’t be made simpler. Follow the recipe we used on the show.
- Monday: Jacket potatoes with cheese, beans and coleslaw. The time needed is how long it will take the spuds to bake in the microwave. On a side note, hen we first came here from Jamaica and learned that people actually do potatoes in the microwave, we actually laughed. Back home, potatoes are only either boiled or fries (chips). But now, this is easy and quick cooking for us. Fast dinner is sometimes a must.
- Tuesday: Corned beef and rice with salad. Again, this reminds us so much of Jamaica. When it’s the hurricane season (starting about June), people buy up canned goods so that they will still have food even when the power goes off. As kids we loved this dish a lot. Once you put the basmatti rice to cook, use the time to saute some finely chopped onions in a little oil, then add the corned beef, black pepper and a little ketchup. Serve with hot rice and salad. Talk about easy and quick cooking that is also delicious? This is it!
- Wednesday: BBQ Chicken skewers and Moroccan Lamb burgers. If you bash the boneless chicken pieces with a mallet or rolling pin, you will find that it cooks much quicker on the grill. (We are still hopeful for good weather). This meal will most likely be done outside to celebrate our kids finishing the University, A Levels, and GCSE papers. We will use the recipe from Shop Smart Save Money and for the burgers we will use Katy Kicker’s recipe. She is the boss of meal planning and you should check her out. Here’s what the burger looked like when I tried it. The Ras El Hanout has a mild flavour that is hard to describe but it works oh so well with the lamb mince.
- Thursday: Quick egg fried rice using leftover rice from the corned beef dinner. To this, we will also add onions, sweetcorn and green peas.
- Friday: Pizzas designed and made by each person. We will use bases such as tortilla wraps(perfect for a thin crust pizza), baguettes, or naan breads. Toppings include cheese, chicken sausages, any suitable vegetables like peppers and sweetcorn. We also like to make the sauce unusual for a pizza: like Sweet and sour sauce, sweet chilli sauce, and BBQ sauce.
- Saturday: Pasta salad with cheese and vegetables. We might make it salad in a jar. We will see how it turns out.
Not having to spend too long in the kitchen gives us more time for work or relaxation. Particularly if the weather is bad (too hot or too rainy), no one wants to spend too long in the kitchen.
We have found meal planning so useful for saving money. Here are 8 other ways that you will find meal planning beneficial. It only takes a few minutes to check your fridge and cupboards to see what you have and to plan your meals around that.
Get everyone’s ideas too. Even the kids. There’s no use in planning meals that no one wants to eat.
Variety is important too, or else you get tired of eating the same meals over and over again.
Try a new recipe every now and again just to mix things up a bit for the family and to widen your repertoire of go to dishes and recipes. That is bound to keep things interesting.
Talking about interesting: we would like you to challenge us to cook a favourite recipe of yours. We will select one each week and add it to the following week’s meal plan. We do love a challenge. If you have a link to the recipe, just put it in the comment box below. It doesn’t have to be easy and quick cooking by the way.
We can’t wait for next week when we will try out our brand new set of pots courtesy of Prestige. We have been after heavy bottomed saucepans for some time as certain recipes really need it. We were gifted the items and will let you know what we think.
They are currently in the pop up shop at Grand Central in Birmingham. There’s an amazing range and there is currently a 20% sale on.