Month: May 2013

Reader Recipes: Lesley's Thick Onion Tart

Lesley sent me this Thick Onion Tart recipe recently… Serves 4, make in a 20cm tin Pastry 100g flour 3p Pinch salt 2 tsps mustard 40ml oil 4p Up to 40ml water 40g cheese (Asda Smartprice Cheddar £4.82/kg) 20p Filling 700g onions, chopped 32p (Asda Smartprice 49p/kg) 50g butter 24p 2 eggs 20p 110ml milk 6p 60g cheese 30p Mix all the pastry ingredients together, adding the water bit by bit until you get a soft ball of dough. Melt the butter in a frying pan, add the onions and sauté them slowly, uncovered, over a low heat for 30-45 minutes, until they have turned a deep brown. Stir them every now and then, particularly towards the end. Then let cool a little Line your dish with the pastry. Tip the remaining ingredients, except the cheese, into the onions (they can’t be too hot, or they will scramble the eggs) and stir well. Tip this mixture into the pastry case and top with the cheese. Bake in a moderate oven (180C) for 30 minutes. This is lovely hot with salady things, or cooked veg, and also makes a very nice lunch, cold, the next day Total £1.39, 35p per person Lesley. To see your favourite cheap or frugal recipes here, email them to...

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Reader Recipes: April's granny's banana bread

April said… “My nan used to make it for me and my sister every sunday and we looked forward to it every week. My nan was a frugal queen and would have loved your blog.” Banana Bread (Serves 4-6) 225g self-raising flour 3/4 level teaspoon ground mixed spice (or whatever combination you like of cinnamon, nutmeg, cardomem, gingerbread etc) 1/2 teaspoon salt 100g caster sugar 100g butter (cut into small pieces) 1 tablespoon honey 450g ripe bananas peeled and mashed with a fork 2 eggs Squeeze of lemon juice Optional – chocolate drops, sultana’s, nuts inc walnuts, almonds, dates – (you can add anything that you have lying around that takes your fancy really!) Sift the flour, mixed spice (if using), salt and sugar into a bowl. Add butter. Beat in all the remaining ingridients, then pour the mixture into a greased 23cm loaf tin. Bake in a pre heated oven, 180 degrees, 350 F, Gas 4 for 1 hour, then for a further 30mins at 170 degrees, 330 F, Gas 3 1/2. Take out of the oven and leave to cool in the tin before turning out and tucking in! Tip – this is a store cupboard recipe so if you’re reasonable well stocked you should be fine. I have made it with half plain and half self raising flour before and also with all plain and a...

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Reader Recipes: Laura P's Chickpea Rice

Laura said… “Here’s another Chickpea recipe from my kitchen. I often joke of my 101 Ways With Chickpeas, so expect more! It’s a bit long-winded I know – I find it ever so difficult to be concise – but I think missing out any element of the instructions would mean a pot of burnt, stuck, useless rice. This is a delicious and well-worth-the-extra-faff recipe, as opposed to plain boiled rice, should you have the time or inclination to faff that is.” This serves 2 people generously as an accompaniment to a curry. Would be equally delicious with chilli, fajitas, an omelette – that sort of thing. Also, very nice cold for lunch the next day. It’s a nicely balanced meal on its own, but very very mmmmm with chopped cooked chicken or tinned tuna – if you had some. Use 100g value rice, well rinsed in advance. It is worth taking the time to rinse the rice until the water is as clear as you can get it. You will have the end result of far fluffier, nicely dry, non-soggy rice, and less sticking to the pan. Start with a dry pot and heat up a dessertspoon of oil – to a medium heat. To this, add a finely chopped onion and cook, stirring, until it is beginning to soften. At that stage add the following – miss out...

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Dear ATOS, my 3 year old can push a button, should I be sending him to work?

Dear Atos Healthcare, I’m writing to you with a concern about a person known to me who is not in work. I am a journalist for a local newspaper, and on doing some research for an article yesterday, came across a very long list of questions that are asked at Atos ‘Work Capability Assessment’ interviews up and down Britain. Questions such as: Can you spell the word ‘world?’ What is 97 minus six? Can you show me your left hand? Can you show me your right hand? Can you touch your nose with your left hand? Can you touch your nose with your right hand? Do you live with people or on your own? Can you wash yourself? Can you dress yourself? Can you feed yourself unaided? As I started to read the questions, a growing sense of doom began to build as I realised that I might know someone who is committing Benefit Fraud. You see, my son, frequently referred to throughout my blog as Small Boy, can spell the word ‘world’. I don’t want to seem like one of those show- off mothers, but he can also touch his nose with his right and left hand when asked, he can wash his face, he dresses himself in the morning, and he doesn’t live by himself. My son is three years old, and from my understanding based on...

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Reader Recipes: Lou's cheap n cheerful n very very tasty onion bhajis recipe

I’d like to share a ‘frugal recipe’ for onion bhajis. If you make a fairly big batch (as below) and freeze most of them, the ingredients total about £1.44 (4.5p each) which is not only bargainous but you have a ready supply of tasty bhajis. And at that price, they’re a cost effective addition to any meal. _ _ _ _ _ Onion + veggie bhajis recipe Much as I like onions, they don’t much like me so I like to throw in other veggies too: finely sliced sticks of carrots, potatoes, aubergines, and courgettes all work well. But you can try whatever you like. Ingredients: ~ 14 tablespoons plain flour ~ 1.5 tsp turmeric ~ 1.5 tsp cumin ~ 1.5 tsp garam masala ~ 1.5 tsp chilli powder ~ 1 tsp ground coriander ~ 1 tsp salt ~ 2 eggs ~ 4 tablespoons home-baking lemon juice (or the juice of a fresh lemon) ~ 6 tablespoons water ~ vegetables as desired eg: 1.5 onions, 3x carrots, 2 x potatoes, ½ an aubergine ~ vegetable oil Method : 1. Sift the flour into a bowl and add the salt, herbs, spices and turmeric (which – I learnt from James Martin’s Saturday Kitchen – is a natural antiseptic and classed as a condiment rather than a spice). 2. Beat 2 eggs in another bowl, whisk in 4 tablespoons of home-baking...

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