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Our Family Meal Plan, Another Super Frugal Edition 27/01/14 - £40

Sunday, 26 January 2014
We're still in super frugal mode this week.  It's also a largely Vegetarian meal plan this week as I've not been feeling well and have gone off meat, amongst other things.  It's also a low faff meal plan as I'm not feeling much like cooking either, a shocking state of affairs for a food blogger. Hopefully I shall be back on form soon.

Breakfasts will be porridge with dried fruit for a little sweetness and extra flavour.  On the weekend we will have pancakes and homemade crumpets.

Lunches this week for my daughters will be calzone with a piece of fruit and a baked treat for afters, my husband and I will have leftovers from dinner for our lunches.  Weekend lunches will be homemade pizza and twice baked potatoes.

Mince and Vegetable Calzone

250g beef mince
1 onion, finely chopped
2 peppers, diced (any colour will do)
200g frozen mixed vegetables
4 Tblsp tomato paste
125ml boiling water
1 tsp dried oregano
2 Tblsp fresh chives, finely chopped
1 cup grated cheddar cheese

1  x 7g packet instant yeast
1 Tblsp sugar
150ml - 200ml lukewarm water
450g bread or plain flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp mixed herbs

Make the dough first so it has time to rise whilst you make the filling. Mix the yeast, sugar and water together then add the flour, salt, a couple of hearty grinds of pepper and mixed herbs.  Mix the ingredients together well, and add more warm water or flour if necessary, until the dough mixture forms a large ball.

Knead the dough gently until it is elastic and smooth.  Grease a bowl with a little oil, put the dough into the bowl and turn it n the oil.  Cover the bowl with cling film and set aside in a warm place to rise for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 190C/170 Fan.

Now make the filling.  In a frying pan over a moderate heat, saute the onion and peppers until they start to soften then add the minced beef.  Brown the mince well, breaking it up as it cooks.  Add the frozen mixed vegetables, tomato paste, water and chives then simmer gently for 10–15 minutes. Remove the filling fron the heat.

To make the calzone, take a small piece of dough and roll it out into a small circle shape. Put a large spoonful of mince mixture on one side of circle, leaving a 1cm clear edge. Top with a tablespoon of grated cheddar cheese.  Fold the empty side over the filling to make a crescent shape then pinch the edges together to seal the calzone.  Repeat until all the dough and filling has been used.  I can usually get about 18 - 20 small calzone from this recipe. 

Put the calzone onto lined baking trays. Brush with a little oil and bake for 10 - 15 minutes or until they are golden and crispy.


Monday Night Frittata

1 pepper, diced
2 potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
10 eggs
300g frozen mixed vegetables
500g pumpkin or butternut squash, peeled and cut into chunks

Preheat the oven to 200°C/ fan 180°C/ gas 6.

Simmer the potatoes and pumpkin in a pan of boiling water for 10 minutes, then drain and leave to cool slightly before slicing thinly.

Meanwhile, put a 25cm non-stick ovenproof frying pan on the hob over a moderate heat. Saute the  onion, pepper and garlic in a little oil for about 5 minutes until the onion and pepper has softened.

Lightly beat the eggs in a bowl and the softened onion, pepper and garlic. Carefully fold in the potatoes, pumpkin and frozen mixed vegetables. Pour the frittata mixture back into the frying pan and cook over a low-medium heat for 8-10 minutes. Transfer to the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until it has cooked through and is set.

Family Sized Vegetable and Kidney Bean Pastry Roll

1 Tblsp olive oil
300g mushrooms, sliced
120g spinach, frozen is fine
1 finely chopped fresh pepper
2 x 400g cans of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 tsp mild curry powder
2 Tblsp mango chutney, plus extra to serve
375g block puff pastry, defrosted if frozen
60g (1/2 cup) finely grated cheddar
1 free range egg, beaten

Heat oil in a pan over a medium heat. Cook mushrooms and fresh pepper if you are using it, for a couple of minutes until they soften slightly. Add the spinach, drained and rinsed lentils, curry powder and mango chutney. Season everything to taste and then cook for 2-3 minutes until everything is well combined and the spinach has started to wilt. Allow this mixture to cool completely.

Whilst the mixture is cooling, preheat your oven to 180°C. Line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to form a 40cm x 30cm (12 inch x 16 inch) rectangle. Spread half the lentil mixture down the centre of the pastry, top with the grated cheese, then put the remaining lentil mix on top. Brush the pastry edges with water, and then fold it over to enclose filling. Press it well to seal it and put it on the baking tray seam-side down. Brush the with beaten egg and sprinkle with a little extra cheese if you like.

Bake the pastry roll for about 30 minutes or until its golden brown. Slice the pastry roll and serve it with some plain yoghurt, salad greens and extra mango chutney.

Vegetable Pie

I love making this for dinner, it's quick, easy and filling. Just what you need for a stormy weekday evening. You can use whatever vegetables that you have available, even leftovers work well. The cheese sauce is quick to make and you cover everything with tasty mash.

Creamy Sauce:
50g butter
2 tsp mustard powder
50g flour
600ml milk
200g grated mature cheddar

Vegetables, use what you have available:
1 head of broccoli, cut into fairly small florets
400g frozen mixed vegetables
small bunch of chives, finely chopped
3 or 4 large potatoes or sweet potatoes, cooked and mashed

Melt the butter in a saucepan, then stir in the flour and mustard powder and cook for 1 min. Gradually stir in the milk until smooth with no lumps, then keep stirring until the mixture begins to bubble and thickens to a creamy sauce. Remove from the heat, then stir in the grated cheese, leaving some aside to sprinkle on the top.

Heat your oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7 and bring a large pan of water to the boil. Cook the broccoli for 5 minutes then add mixed vegetables and cook for a further 3 - 5 minutes. Drain all the vegetables well. Add the cooked vegetables to the creamy sauce with the chives. Cook and mash the sweet potatoes or potatoes and season to taste as this will cover the top of the finished pie.

Tip the mixed vegetables and sauce into a deep ovenproof dish, carefully cover with the mash and then sprinkle with the remaining cheese.  Bake for 20-25 mins until the topping is golden and the cheese is bubbling, then serve.

Macaroni Cheese

Vegetable and Lentil Soup

I love this soup, so warming and tasty on cold winter nights.  It is really filling and a great low cost dinner.  It also freezes well and  is fab for lunches too.

1 onion, finely diced
2 celery sticks, finely sliced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 swede, peeled and diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 Tblsp ground cumin
115g red lentils
2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
1.25 Litres vegetable stock

Put a large saucepan on the hob over a medium heat. Sauté the vegetables and garlic in a little oil until they begin to soften. Add the cumin and cook for a minute until fragrant. Add all the rest of the ingredients to the saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until all the vegetables are tender.  If I can be bothered I whizz up the soup a little with a stick blender. I serve this with cheese on toast or crusty bread rolls.

Shopping List

31 items: £40.60

Packets and Cereals
1x Mornflake Superfast Oats (2Kg)                                £2.18
1x ASDA Smartprice Spaghetti (500g)                            20p
1x ASDA Smartprice Plain White Flour (1.5Kg)               45p
1x Jus Rol Puff Pastry Block (500g)                               £1.10
1x ASDA Smartprice Pasta Shapes (500g)                     29p
1x Great Scot Pearl Barley (500g)                                  64p
1x Great Scot Red Split Lentils (500g)                            £1.28
1x ASDA Home Baking Easy Bake Yeast (6 pack - 42g)  65p

3x ASDA Smartprice Mixed Vegetables (1Kg)                £2.25
1x ASDA Whole Leaf Spinach (1Kg)                              £1.39

Tins, Jars and Cooking
3x ASDA Smartprice Chopped Tomatoes (400g)            £1.02
2x ASDA Smartprice Red Kidney Beans in Water (400g) 54p

Dairy and Eggs
4x ASDA British Semi Skimmed Milk 4 Pints (2.27L)        £4.00
1x ASDA Smartprice Salted Butter (250g)                       98p
1x ASDA Free Range Mixed Weight Eggs (15)               £2.00
1x ASDA English Medium White Cheddar (450g)            £2.50
1x ASDA English White Mature Cheddar (450g)              £2.50

Fruit and Vegetables
1x ASDA Smartprice Sultanas (500g)                             84p
2kg ASDA Bananas                                                       £1.39
1 ASDA Swede (Approx 760g)                                       76p
2x ASDA White Potatoes (2.5Kg)                                   £3.00
1 ASDA Butternut Squash (Approx 850g)                       80.8p
1x ASDA Celery                                                            80p
1x ASDA Garlic Loose                                                  25p
1x ASDA Smartprice Peppers (700g)                             £1.56
1x ASDA Smartprice Brown Onions (2Kg)                      98p
2x Natural Selection Chopped Apricots (200g)                £1.00
1x ASDA Carrots (1.2Kg)                                               £1.00
1x ASDA Broccoli (335g)                                               50p
2x ASDA British Apples (650g)                                      £2.00

Meat, Fish and Poultry
1x ASDA Butcher's Selection British Beef Mince (250g)  £1.75

Prices and special offers reflect those of the online grocery website My Supermarket, and are correct as of 26 January 2014.  Prices may vary in different in-store locations.

As usual I compared the cost of our shopping which cost £40.60 from Asda on 26/01/14.  Had I shopped at Tesco my shopping would've cost £47.82 and had I shopped at Sainsbury's I would've spent £50.03.

Don't forget to check out all the other Meal Plans on the Meal Planning Monday Linky over on At Home With Mrs M.


  1. I'm always amazed at the filling, nutritious and varied meals you produce on such a tight budget. You are an inspiration!

  2. I love getting ideas from your meal plans and now I'm thinking of making a calzone. Although I make my own pizza bases I've never made a rolled up pizza before.

    1. Calzone are great for using up leftovers too, if you give them a go let me know how you get on :)

  3. Inspired by your calzone recipe!

    1. Thanks so much :) Let me know if you try them.

  4. I wish I could be as organised as you. I can never get my head around it and don't seem to have a free minute. Mind you this doesn't always work. I ended up having cheese, oatcakes, picked onions and slices of apple for dinner last night. Cooper wasn't there, so I settled for that. Luckily my hubby is easy pleased.

  5. I wish I could get my shopping down that low....I like my treats too much though...hehehe x

  6. OOh i am going to try your veg pie

  7. I need to try out Calzone on the boys, they adore pizza so this would be a fab way to mix things up a bit!


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