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[_] Advisor for home budgeting?

Damian Webber damian.webber at
Tue Feb 5 13:16:48 GMT 2013

That looks very interesting. I'll read their methodology

It's interesting that so many people advocate cooking from scratch. We
hardly ever buy prepared food - unless it's cheaper than making it yourself
(see below)

My tips for cooking (our family are big food fans and we do eat very well
even on £115 p/w all in for 4 of us)

One thing my analysis did bring up was £350 of spending in Co-op which we
can cut out immediately. We use Co-op only for evening munchies (chocolate
biscuit addicts) and while I'm there I'll pick up a few things on offer.
There's an argument on whether the food on offer is a sensible purchase
(due to it being unplanned) as it does get eaten.

Here are my tips for eating well on a budget.
» Aldi chickens - the tastiest chickens plus, get a large one and make a
curry from the leftovers the following day
» Chicken Curry - Delia Smith's curry for leftover chicken is brilliant. We
use Creme Fraiche and a bit more curry powder
» Veg curry - just as tasty but no cost for meat
» Stir fries - use less meat for some reason.
» Bangers, mash and beans (bangers in bulk from CostCo)
» Chicken thighs for a cheap roast dinner
» Bisto gravy granules made with water from the veg + some meat juices and
a slog of wine reduced on the hob for a few minutes is delicious (not
really a savings tip but makes much much better gravy than pouring boiling
water over the granules before serving)

Here's also my list of Aldi must have purchases for good food (not
necessarily listed for price but more taste oriented)
» All the breakfast cereals (half the price of other supermarket own brands)
» All the veg (I think it's not far off local greengrocer prices - which we
also use) - Especially good are the posh vine tomatoes - always worth
paying more for the best toms
 » Scotch Eggs (v.good)
» Conserves (especially Strawberry)
» Frozen King Prawns (good price)
» Waffles/White Chocolate/Frozen fruit (makes totally awesome pudding with
more creme fraiche - look it up)
» Salmon Wellington (£3.99 - the only prepared food we buy for family meal
and I couldn't make it for less)
» Parmesan (about quarter the price of Waitrose!)
» Cat Food Pouches - I know tins are cheaper but our stupid cats won't eat
tinned food...
» Coleslaw
» Smoked Salmon (not the best quality but worth it for the reduced price
» Beans (perfectly good - and the ones with sausages in are a favourite of
the kids for an easy meal)
» Bread - all the bread is really good and the bread is sourced locally
» The Specially Selected pizza with rocket is the best pizza I've had from
a supermarket (£2!!!)
» There are some really excellent frozen curries for £1.50ish - and are
perfect for the wife when I'm away. Actually they have a good range of
frozen indian and chinese food which we often have instead of getting a
take away.
 » All the condiments are brilliant. The BBQ sauce is fabulous for summer
» We don't drink much so we tend to buy good wine that's on offer in Tesco.
There are good wines in Aldi but only a few crackers

There's loads more - if you don't shop in Aldi, you should really give it a
go. There's some really good quality food there on the whole. I'm just
running through a standard shopping trip in my head. Christmas this year
was all from Aldi and everyone who came thought the food was super

Also, here's a good tip - Pork Belly. A massive slab of it is about £9 in
CostCo and it makes three good meals for us all. If you cook Pork Belly
properly it's pretty much heaven on piggy earth.

Learn to cook omelettes properly. Cheese and Chilli are scrummy, as is a
good old fashioned mushroom omelette (all cheap)

Also, if you get your petrol in Tesco (I do that a lot...) you can convert
your club card points to restaurant vouchers at 1:3 or 1:4 ratio #burp

Thanks to all for the tips. I think we all live beyond our means regardless
how fortunate we are. My parents are what I call wealthy and they too plead
poverty - I guess it's been handed down to me

Kind regards,

*Damian Webber*
Knowledge Management Consultant
@damianwebber <> | 07590 807 252

On 5 February 2013 12:34, Tim Beadle <tim.beadle at> wrote:

> (Late addition to this thread).
> Have you seen ?
> I started reading the PDF book, which you can get for free and use
> their method likewise. If you want to invest a bit, they sell an app
> ($60 = £38) which may make things easier. It will probably pay for
> itself quite quickly.
> Apart from that, +1 on making your own food as much as possible. We
> buy bread flour in bulk on an Amazon subscription, get bulk stuff from
> Goodness Direct etc. (my wife is slightly gluten-intolerant).
> We recently switched both our mobiles to Three's £6.90/month sim-only
> plan. 200 mins, 5000 texts, 500MB data.
> Also: we've been car-free for about 18 months now (we didn't plan it:
> the car died and we decided not to replace it). We walk, cycle, use
> buses & trains and hire/borrow a car (friends or family, or City Car
> Club) on the few occasions we need one.
> Living in a city like Bath which has, despite the moaners, pretty good
> public transport (and a car club!) certainly helps. Some of these
> things may not work so well in more rural or sprawl-suburb locations.
> Best of luck in balancing the books.
> Cheers, Tim
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