Roast Potatoes (13 p for 2 people)

As much as people are sometimes against tinned food, I find the new potatoes cheap and as they are already prepared very easy and quick to use. The ones I used were 13 p for 550 g (from Asda, price checked on 24/08/13), so I don't think you can argue about them being good value for money.

I fancied trying to roast these potatoes to see how they would turn out and I think they turned out pretty well! They were nice and crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.

I also find that the frozen roast potatoes you cook in the oven tend to be covered in flour so have gluten on them, not good for those of us following a gluten free diet.

Serves 2:


1 tin of new potatoes
A good glug of oil


  • Pre-heat the oven to 200 C (fan) and put in a roasting tray with the oil.
  • Drain a tin of new potatoes and put onto the pre-heated tray.
  • Season with plenty of salt.
  • Cook for approx 45 minutes or until crispy.
The 13 p for 2 portion is excluding the cost of oil and salt.


Broad Bean, Bacon and Spinach Risotto

We've had this risotto a few times and it's a bit of safe option. The boyfriend didn't fancy any of the planned options, so we ended up having this instead. It's something we both enjoy and an idea Friday night dinner for us.

Serves 4

  • 300 g of risotto rice
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 3 large garlic cloves
  • Knob of butter 
  • Approx 1 - 1.1 l of vegetable stock or mix of chicken (be sure to check it's gluten free)
  • 200 g bacon, chopped
  • Grated hard cheese
  • 2 handfuls broad beans ( I used frozen)
  • 4 balls of frozen spinach
  • 1 tsp of dried oregano
  • Glug of oil (optional)
  1. Melt the butter on a medium heat in a sauce pan, cook the onions until they start to go soft. Turn the heat up and  cook the bacon until the liquid has evaporated.
  2. If the pan is a little dry then add a little oil to the pan. Add the rice  and coat with the oil / butter, fry for a couple of minutes.
  3. Microwave the spinach and broad beans for about 3 minutes or until cooked through. Add to the pan with the onions and bacon.
  4. Start to add the vegetable stock to the pan a ladle by ladle, until the stock has completely evaporated.  Add the oregano and keep on adding the stock until the rice is cooked through. 
  5.  I sprinkled some of the grated hard cheese onto the risotto and stirred through. I then sprinkled a little bit more on the top.


Courgette Carbonara

I really enjoyed this dinner tonight, it was really simple to make and felt like the courgettes added an extra little something to the dish.

It was just creamy enough, without being too much.

I made some slight changes to the original Jamie Oliver recipe here:

  • I halved the original recipe as I was only making this for 2 people.
  • I added 1 large courgette and this gave plenty for this recipe.
  • I used light single cream to make it a little lighter.
  • I used gluten free spaghetti instead of penne.
  • I used mixed herbs instead of thyme, as these are what I had in
  • I added a pinch of garlic salt
If you like carbonara, then I suggest you try this easy recipe. You can always go easy on the cheese if you're looking to shave off a few extra calories.


Menu 18/08/13 - 24/08/13

I've tried to look at what we've already got available before buying too much food this week. I hope to have some of the frozen vegetables and tinned goods left for next week. I'm also continuing to eat fruit and yoghurt for breakfast, but I do also have organic (gluten free) cornflakes in case I do want something different. I'm trying to balance out the amount we spend on food along with eating a varied diet and trying new things. I am still working on bringing the costs of our food down, so hopefully this will continue to decline as I get better with the food budgeting!

We've had guests this weekend and we were given some home grown tomatoes and courgettes, so I've tried to incorporate these into the meal planning. 

Breakfast: This will be fruit and yoghurt, cereal, toast or eggs, bacon
Lunches: Ham and/or egg salad, leftovers
Leftovers in Fridge / Cupboard: potatoes, Hard Cheese, Cereal (both GF and non GF), Bacon, Chopped Tomatoes, Kidney Beans, Yoghurt, Quinoa, Courgette, Tomatoes, GF Spaghetti, Frozen Sliced Peppers, GF Sausages, GF Bread

Courgette and Pepper Frittata
Chicken with Quinoa, Tomatoes & Feta
Lasagne (Leftovers from the freezer)
Tuna, Tomatoes and Feta Spaghetti (with basil and spring onions)
Kidney Bean and Coriander Burgers, Roast New Potatoes, Mixed Veg
Courgette Carbonara
Sausage and mixed bean Casserole

Asda Blue Berries  - 125 g £1.00
Smart Price Pineapple - 565 g  x 2 £0.54
Mandarin Segments x 2 £0.48
Tinned Apples x 2 £1.10
Peaches x 2 £0.82
Bananas (1.52 kg) £1.04
Smart Price Rice Pudding £0.30
Coarse Grain French Mustard £0.58
Semi Skimmed Milk £1.00
Sweetcorn £1.00
Spring Onions £0.50
Cucumber £0.50
3 Mixed Peppers £1.00
Lettuce £1.00
Ham £4.00
Soup £0.89
New Potatoes - 550 g £0.24
3 x carrots (approx 0.55 kg) £0.50
Smart Price Kidney Beans £0.27
Feta Cheese 200 g £1.27
15 Smart Price Eggs £1.35
Elmlea Light Single Cream -284 ml £0.65
Mature cheddar cheese (350 g) £2.00
Frozen Mixed Vegetables £0.75
Frozen Spinach £1.39
Mackerel x 2 £1.60
Chopped Tomatoes £0.31
Mixed Beans in Tomato Sauce £0.62
Total £26.70