Wednesday 30 March 2022

Doing a few sums

A couple of weeks ago I bought a kilo pack of chicken thighs from Lidl for £1.65.  The thighs actually weighed 1080 grammes so seemed very good value.  But when I came to remove the skin and bones I wasn't very impressed.  Not only was there the thigh bone, there was also part of the backbone of the bird on each thigh.  My kilo pack yielded just 540 grammes flesh.  That means the meat was 3.05 per kilo.

This week I had a home delivery from Sainsbury and again bought a kilo pack of thighs and I got 1004 grammes thighs.  Not quite so good as Lidl.  Again I removed the skin and bones (no backbones this time) and this time got 720 grammes flesh so this time it was £2.57 a kilo.  The thighs were bigger than the Lidl ones (but fewer thighs in the pack) and the absence of the backbone made them easier to bone. 

Obviously my exercise was with just one pack from each shop, but it made me think.  

Monday 7 March 2022

Habits 3: inventories

The first rule of being an efficient grocery shopper is checking what you need before you leave the house and it's a rule which at one time, I rarely kept.  I would push my trolley around and seize on yellow sticker bargains with great glee.  BOGOF grabbed me every time and I honestly thought I was a savvy shopper.  It wasn't helped by having a huge kitchen and storeroom with two fridges and two freezers.  Things were bought because they were "bargains" and that was my idea of being canny!

I have to admit that I'm a tad obsessive with spreadsheets, but my food inventories certainly pay off.  I'm not good at crossing stuff off or adding items as I buy them, but every month or so I take everything out of my freezer, one drawer at a time, and list what I've got while making a note of anything which needs using very soon.    Regular cleaning and sorting of the fridge helps to keep en eye on food stocks and avoid waste.

I don't menu plan but I do meal plan.  What's the difference?  Well, I batch cook and I make a list of everything I need to make several portions of a particular dish but I don't plan when they will be on the menu.  I use both fresh and frozen vegetables but even when I buy fresh I often freeze some of the stuff I buy rather than risk it going to waste.