Saturday, 31 January 2015

Eat well for less programme...

I knew this programme was going to irritate me - and not just because of Gregg Wallace who is like an exuberant school boy!  Shopping seems to be the latest must have accessory for many people who, if this first programme is anything to go by, have their own money printing machines at home. No matter how much they print (spend) it is never enough and out they go again.

The amount of food wastage in this country is abominable, not just households but shops, restaurants, café's as well. Meal proportions have increased and often, when we do have a meal out on our walk, we are hard pushed to finish it, and that is only a sandwich most of the time! Most weeks we really don't have to put out our weekly food bin but do it when it contains either bones or onion/citrus bits which we don't put on our compost heap. Our compost heap gets everything else (raw peelings etc) which probably amounts to one of those food bins a week. We don't have anything off to throw away and any food leftover from one meal, gets used in another but that also rarely happens unless planned.

It was great that the family finally saw the light and managed to save £70 for the week but am sure they could save far more if they really try investigating their whole concept of shopping. It isn't just about swapping food brands and menu planning, it is also about changing the way you think and questioning yourself as to why you keep going shopping. Don't even get me started on non-food shopping!

The husband kept adding items in the trolley just because they sound/look interesting but hadn't a clue how to use them. If that applies to you, why don't you make a note of it, look it up and find a recipe, then buy what you need not just buy it and shove it into the nightmare of your cupboards.
Cooking from scratch saves even more money. If you don't know how to cook, learn. Yes you will make some horrendous mistakes but will eventually get the hang of it. Never be afraid to try:)

There were a few eye openers in the programme for those who were not aware of such practices. We already knew about mass produced food and what is classified as 'meat'. It was quite telling about the differences in the sausages when they were grilled as to how much fatty liquid came out of the cheaper brand and that was just one sausage. If you were being good and actually grilling a load for a meal you would at least be rid of it. If however you like to fry and then use the gunk to make your gravy, gosh, how much stuff are you putting into your body!

The tea trial was also interesting and we are doing that ourselves at the moment. We normally use Yorkshire loose leaf tea (hate tea bags) but loose leaf tea is not in fashion at the moment and substitutes are very difficult to find. We are currently drinking Sainsburys Red Label and don't like it at all, but will finish the pack. Next we are going to use PG Tips. My MinL used to buy big square packets of those, now we could only find a rather small oblong one. The differences in price in the trial were also interesting. Maybe they will do a coffee one later in the series.

I found the bread talk with the nutritionist very interesting. Bread is not the big bad wolf that it is purported to be but we shall stick with making our own. Using the cheaper brand flour and yeast, our two loaves that we bake each week (not including electricity) work out at 54p for both. We have had Aldi own cheap wholemeal brand (45p per loaf I believe) whilst visiting and it was fine.

DB didn't want to watch mainly because he knew I would be chuntering all the way through, so he put on his head-phones and listened to some music!


25 comments:

  1. Programs like that would get my goat, too. I don`t usually watch them as they don`t truly reflect what normal folk go through from day to day to produce healthy and filling meals on low budgets.

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    1. I lived in hope that it would be aimed more at hard up people but guess that would make boring tv!

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  2. I recorded this out of sheer nosiness, I am also not a fan of Greg Wallace. I will have a quick look at some point. If anyone wants/needs to live better on less perhaps they should start checking out Blogs. Between you, Jack Monroe, Thrifty Lesley and Frugal Queen there is every recipe that could possibly be needed.

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    1. Thank you and be prepared to be a little annoyed.

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  3. I watched it too and got quite anoyed, i hope the family do take on board the changes but to be honest I think they will slip back into their own ways, apart from brocolli mushy peas and orange juice I didnt see much evidence of fresh fruit and veg.

    I was even more wound up after watching the Benefits programme, a couple with 7 kids on £33,000 a year!! With most of the kids being born since claiming benefits!

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    1. I don't watch that as I know the old blood pressure won't take it!

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    2. Yes, £33,000 a year, I saw a similar programme, might be the same one, a single mother with numerous off-spring, complaining she couldn't eat healthy because she didn't get enough in benefits, it's all the governments fault!

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  4. I completely agree with you. Their weekly spending was outrageous and on what? Caviar, champagne? No just very ordinary everyday food. The sheer waste annoyed me more than anything else. Apart from the nutritional info on the orange juice and bread the rest of the program was predictable.

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    1. Must have money to burn, so wasteful.

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  5. I agree with everybody, they didn't really seem to have a grip of the concept about shopping and cooking for less, although I'm sure they are a very nice family, they could have at least chosen a family who cooked from scratch most days. I watched it thinking we might show something really interesting. Woo xx

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    1. Well, I did learn about the bread and juice so that was helpful. I was pleased to see though that they were all eating decent food most of the time.

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  6. I didn't watch because I knew it would just annoy me. These kinds of programmes generally choose families who are way over the top with their spending so of course its possible for them to save lots of money simply by cutting back on a few items or changing brands. I would much rather they helped a family that's really struggling to make ends meet.

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    1. Me too but I assume that it wouldn't be good tv.

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  7. SAVE £70 a WEEK ?? There's whole months when I don't SPEND £70 on food shopping. And before you start thinking we live on bread and beans, we eat very well.

    Try Tesco for basic tea-bags, seemingly they came out tops in a blind tasting.

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    1. So has Sainsbury tea but it is week as a kitten! As I said, we don't use tea bags except in an emergency, might try them then. We like extra strong tea which Yorkshire is.

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    2. I buy those, and they have changed very recently. Not only are they now 20p for 40, instead of 30p for 80, but they need an extra bit of brew-time.

      My absolute faves, when I can get there, are Aldi's fair trade at £1.99 for 80.

      I'm afraid PG tips are a bit heavy on the bitter leaf for me. I prefer more Ceylon in the mix.

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  8. I watched 5 minutes but when the man was chucking random things in his trolley and then whizzing along on it like a 10 year old I decided that was enough!

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    1. All so predictable, such a shame.

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  9. I just couldn't bring myself to watch it and from what you're all saying I'm glad I didn't. I am ultra careful how much I spend on grocery shopping. I would feel I had failed miserably if I SPENT £70 a week on food. Tonight for tea we will be having the remainder of the rice salad I made earlier with a warming baked potato. Lovely. Sue in Norfolk.

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    1. Me too. Need warm food in this weather.

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  10. I just wanted someone to show them a meal plan for a month and how to vary things a bit

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  11. So many opportunities wasted and all in the name of tv which is such a powerful tool.

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  12. Yes, I was disappointed in this prog too. I hoped to pick up a few tips but I could have taught THEM a whole lot more :( The family filmed were, in my view, irresponsible with money in the extreme and I just wonder if they were chosen for the first prog to try to increase viewing figures by being controversial? The sausage comparison was interesting but our village butcher charges much more than the one in the prog so it doesn't help us at all. Wasn't it something like £13,000 per year the family spent on food? There are only 2 of us but our total INCOME is no more than that!

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  13. Good sausages here are only cheaper when on offer.

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  14. mmm.. this page even smells good..!

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