29 September 2016

Cath's Meal Plan 2 - 8 October 2016

This week we will be eating:

Sunday: Roast Lamb

Monday: Shepherd's Pie, veggies

Tuesday: Sausages & onion gravy, mash, veggies

Wednesday: Chicken pot pie, veggies

Thursday: MOO Pizza

Friday: Meatloaf, mash, gravy, veggies

Saturday: Grilled cheese sandwiches, soup

23 September 2016

Cath's Meal Plan 25th September - 1st October 2016

An easy week of meals coming up, most of them are already done and in the freezer. All that will be needed will be to cook the veggies and heat the savoury.

I usually prep the veggies as I buy them and then put them in green bags in the fridge. They'll keep for up to two weeks like this and it only takes a few minutes on shopping day to get them done.

And with daylight saving started my cooking will be even easier - Wayne gets to barbecue during daylight saving time, pure bliss for me!

This week we will be eating:

Sunday: Roast Chicken with baked potato, sweet potato, broccoli, zucchini, carrots and gravy

Monday: Rissoles, veggies, mash, onion gravy

Tuesday: Beef casserole, sweet potato mash, green veggies

Wednesday: Chicken Chilli, corn bread

Thursday: MOO Pizza

Friday: Soup, toasted cornbread

Saturday: Corn fritters, salad

06 September 2016

Double Choc Scones

Double Choc Scones

3/4 cup plain flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp butter, cold
1 tbsp coconut oil, cold/firm
1/3 cup milk
1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Prepare baking sheet with baking paper.

In a medium bowl combine the flour, cocoa powder, brown sugar, sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir to combine. The mixture will be uniform when ready.

Use a fork or pastry blender to cut in the butter and coconut oil. The mixture will resemble crumbly lumps with no large lumps remaining. This should be done as quickly as possible so the butter and oil don’t start to melt.

Add milk to the mixture and stir gently (I use a butter knife for this) just until combined. It will look dry and crumbly and that’s okay.  Move dough from bowl to baking sheet and form a rounded loaf. Be careful not to work the dough too much because the heat from your hands will melt the fats.

Divide the loaf into 8 wedges with a floured knife. Do not cut all the way through the bottom. Stop about 1cm from the liner. Top with all of the chocolate chips and press them gently into the mounded dough.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in preheated oven until golden brown.

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05 September 2016

Revamp Jewellery and Wear It

​Approximate $ Savings: $100

I have so much costume jewellery that does not match i.e. I have necklaces that don't match earrings and bracelets and some that don't match any outfit so don't get worn at all. Work out which pieces you don't wear and why. Then you can revamp them by changing the centre pendant, removing the pendant, re-beading, etc. Swap with your friends. If you have a favourite piece, keep it in mind next time you purchase a new garment. Combine with another tip - add the details of your accessories to a notebook so when shopping you can ensure you buy something that you can use!
Contributed by Leah

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02 September 2016

Meal Plan 4 - 10 September 2016

I'm looking forward to this week's meal plan, mainly because they're all things I like. They're all easy too and very simple and cheap meals that use basic pantry ingredients.

We're having roast lamb on Sunday (and I'll get another roast dinner from it) for Father's Day. It will be studded with garlic cloves and rosemary springs, drenched in lemon juice and then slow cooked on the barbecue. I serve this lamb with roasted vegetables: potato chunks, sweet potato chunks, carrot chunks, zucchini and onion and steamed greens (broccoli this week, it was only 79c a kilo last week).

This week we will be eating:

Sunday: Roast Lamb

Monday: Swedish Meatballs, mash, cream sauce, cranberry jelly

Tuesday:  Slowcooker stroganoff, noodles, veggies

Wednesday: Chicken pie, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots

Thursday: MOO Pizza

Friday: Meatball Sliders

Saturday: Soup and crumpets

Buying Produce Locally and in Season is Green and Saves You Money

To combine green living with frugal living, buy your fresh produce locally while it is in-season.
Buying locally involves buying your produce from local farmers' markets, produce stands and co-ops, rather than big box supermarkets. Buying in-season involves buying the fruits and vegetables that are ripening and being harvested right now. Both strategies save you money.

Grab these benefits by buying locally:
1.Eco-friendliness. Buying locally is more eco-friendly because the produce doesn't have to be shipped or transported into your local area by plane or truck. Grocery stores obtain their produce from all over the country and world, and the long-distance transportation translates into the use of more pesticides, gas, oil, and energy.

2.Local economy. You can also stimulate the local economy by buying locally, because you're supporting local farms and farmers rather than growers all over the world. When you buy locally-grown produce, every part of the process is local. You're supporting local growers, transportation, and merchants, which boosts the economy in your city and state.

Enjoy these benefits of buying in-season produce:
1.Taste benefits. When you buy your produce in season, you won't be disappointed with the taste. Fruits, especially, only ripen properly and taste their best during the seasons in which they thrive. When you buy produce off-season, the quality of the flavor will be compromised.

2.Cost benefits. Seasonal food tends to be significantly less expensive than out-of-season produce, primarily because far less effort is required to bring you in-season produce. In the proper season, fruit can grow on its own, requiring less time and labor. This translates into the most cost-friendly produce to stock your kitchen with.

3.More variety. If you follow along with the seasons rather than shopping for the same produce over and over, then you'll enjoy a much richer and more varied collection of different vegetables and fruit. From this variety of produce, you can find new ways to experiment and enjoy new recipes.

Buying in-season, local produce is one of the greatest things you can do when shopping for your family. You can provide your family with the best tasting, most nutritious food while also saving money.

01 September 2016

Old-Fashioned Household Products for your Spring Cleaning Project

Back before chemicals and factories were the norm, cleaning products were composed mostly of household items for a natural, pure and wholesome cleaning effect. Nowadays, with women so busy working and taking care of family, grabbing a bottle of something store bought may be easier; but women today also realise and recognise the importance of all natural cleaning products for their household as well as their families.

Although there are a host of cleaning products that are made from all natural household products that are just right for your spring cleaning project, here are a few of the cheapest and most common:

· Vinegar has many uses other than just dressing salads. For cleaning purposes, vinegar is one of the best known and best loved old-fashioned household products for cleaning and shining mirrors and glass. Measure 2 cups of water and ½ cup of white vinegar and mix in a large bucket. Grab some old newspaper, scrunch it up, and dunk the newspaper in the bucket full of mixture. Go at your windows and mirrors like there is no tomorrow. You will receive a streak-free shine every time and using newspaper offers the benefit of no leftover paper towel lint.

· Vinegar is also an old staple outside the home as well. It can be mixed with dishwashing liquid and placed in a clean, empty spray bottle so that you can spray the weeds in cracks and crevices around the outside of your house. The vinegar causes the weeds to die off and the soap assists the vinegar in adhering to the weeds.

· Pouring vinegar down the drain once a month will shine and sanitize your sink pipes.

· Bicarbonate soda has many uses and one of the most common is to deodorise your refrigerator. Place an open box of bicarb soda (small box will do) in the back of your refrigerator and this will absorb odours, giving your refrigerator a clean, fresh scent.

· Bicarb soda mixed with water and used with a scrubbing brush makes an excellent paste for scrubbing away soap scum from your tub and tiles.

· You can also add lavender sprigs or lemon oil as well as dishwashing liquid to bicarb soda to create a nice smelling, all-purpose cleaner. Always spot test an area before using anything, whether store bought or naturally made, on fabrics, carpets, clothing and painted surfaces.

· Placing bicarb soda in a burnt pot or pan with water and bringing to a boil can assist in dissolving burnt on food.

While vinegar, bicarb soda, lemons and sprigs of lavender are earth friendly and non-toxic, they also add the additional benefit of being cost effective.

Being able to save money while saving the planet by using these items is a win/win situation for your home, family, the environment, and your purse as well.

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