You know you’re on Live Below the Line when you swap an apple for more milk to put in your tea, and the chance to buy value tea bags to make it.
So, finally, here’s a pic of my Live Below the Line shopping
for 2014, after much planning, head scratching and staring at a spreadsheet.
|Food for the next five days. Apart from one of the apples, swapped for extra milk.|
The shopping list in full:
£1.50 1.1kg whole chicken, reduced at Iceland
£1.00 12 eggs, Iceland
35p 400g can East End chickpeas, Iceland
45p 125g Great Scott Scotch Broth Mix, ASDA
9p 540g tin of potatoes, reduced
40p 1kg rice, ASDA Smartprice
45p 800g loaf brown bread, ASDA Smartprice
45p 1.5kg plain flour, ASDA Smartprice
24p 400g peeled tomatoes, reduced Sainsbury’s
29p 70g tin De Rica tomato puree, local
£1.00 900g frozen mixed veg, Iceland
19p 1 lemon, local supermarket
11p 1 bulb of garlic, local supermarket
42p 5 onions, Iceland (9 for 75p)
20p 4 carrots (300g), Iceland (1.5kg for
28p 2 bananas, Iceland (5 for 68p)
17p 1 apple, ASDA (6 for £1)
14p 40 tea bags, ASDA Smartprice (80 for
15p Half a jar of strawberry jam, ASDA
Smartprice (29p for 454g)
66p 1.5 litres semi skimmed milk, Iceland
(2.272 litre bottle for £1)
25p 10 cheese singles, ASDA (half a 400g
pack for 50p)
50p 125g butter, Iceland (£1 for 250g)
12p 75g lard, Sainsbury’s Basics (40p for
10p 80g porridge oats, Sainsbury’s (65p for 500g)
34p 2 x 7g sachets Hovis fast action yeast,
Sainsburys (6 sachets for £1)
7p 5g dried mixed herbs, ASDA Smartprice
(18g tub for 25p)
3p 5g TKS garam masala, 100g for 60p
1p teaspoon sugar, Sainsbury’s (1kg for
I was keen to try some different recipes this year, but when
your budget is restricted to £10 to feed 2 people for 5 days, I discovered I
still had to rely on many of the same cheap staples.
The biggest changes were buying the chicken, the flour and a
bit of butter.
The other new elements are a lemon, a couple of bananas, a
couple of sachets of yeast, a bit of lard and a tiny tin of tomato puree for
pizza topping, along with some Scotch Broth Mix for soup purposes.
Otherwise frozen mixed vegetables, carrots, onions, tinned
potatoes, tinned tomatoes and apples remain some of the cheapest fruit and
vegetables at this time of year.
Eggs and chickpeas return as sources of protein, plus cheese
Wholemeal bread, cheap white rice and a few oats again
provide staple carbohydrates, while tea bags and jam were regarded as essential
for morale and made the cut.
I was still keen to insert some flavour to the blandness, which
accounts including a few pence of dried mixed herbs along with the garlic and a
couple of teaspoons of garam masala, plus a teaspoon of sugar for breadmaking.
The few remaining pence in the budget also mean I can
justify adding some salt and pepper, which were sadly missed before.
To make room, I ditched mushrooms, kidney beans, Red
Leicester cheese, tinned pineapple, stock cubes and (reluctantly) cooking
Next steps: the meal plan and the recipes!
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