forum: Gardening / Growing

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#21 Thu 24 May 07 1:35am

Blade Hunter

Member
Occupation Manger of Digital operations @ SonyBMG
From Sydney, Australia
Member since Mon 07 May 07

Re: Tasty meals on a budget

OK, this one will surprise you all because it has prawns in it, how can that be on a budget??

You will need:

Some prawns (Now I say some because the amount you get is up to your budget) You need raw prawns, whole OR just prawn meat because you are going to dice this anyway.

A stack of Spinach. Now I like to basically farm all the spinach in my garden for this, I have 5 plants out there and get about 10 leaves off each so that should be an idea of how much.

Basmati Rice (Again, the amount depends on how much curry you make)

Turmeric

Chilli Powder

A smidgen of olive oil.

Now for this I will assume you are making currey for 6 people so lets go with 400 - 500 Grams of prawn meat and 30 - 40 Spinach leaves (and stems)

Slice the Spinach leaves into random sized slices and put to one side

Slice the stalks into tasty bite sized pieces (DO NOT THROW THESE OUT THEY TASTE GREAT)

Put the stems and leaves together and wash VERY well (get rid of that earthy tatse)

In a medium to large sized pan put 4 tablespoons of olive oil and heat it.

At this point the recipe does not include garlic but you can put a small amount in if you are a garlicaholic like me. 2 teaspoons should be more than enough.

Add the 4 tablespoons (yes Table) of turmeric and 1 teaspoon of chilli powder

Really fry those powders until the aroma is just amazing.

Add the diced prawn meat. You really only need the meat in chunks of 1 centimetre cubed.

Fry the prawn meat up until cooked, get it all coated in the spicey oil mixture.

OK, this is the truly amazing part. At no point do you add water and this is why it is so tasty. Simply fill the pan to the top with the spinach and stir the prawn and spice mix through so it doesn't burn.

Put the lid on and leave it.

Check it 5 mins later and give it a stir. All the water is now coming out of the spinach and making the basis of your gravy.

Load it up with spinach again and just keep doing this until you run out of spinach. Keep it bubbling away until it looks and tastes great. Once the spinach is broken down dont be afraid to give it a good stir, really get in there and work that flavour through the whole thing.

Cook up your basmati rice and serve the curry on top.

Its quick, its simple and its easy. If your budget is a little low, just reduce the amount of prawn meat. So long as you have your spinach in there you are guaranteed a flavour sensation every time. So tasty is it in fact that I could not believe it only had Turmeric and Chilli in it the first time I had it smile.

We have made this meal before for 6 people with only 10 prawns. you can just vary the amount and the size of the chunks accordingly smile.

Enjoy

Dan

Last edited by Blade Hunter (Thu 24 May 07 1:38am)

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#22 Thu 24 May 07 2:44am

GeoffP

Forum champ
Occupation Retired Clergy & Computer Consultant
From Bradford, West Yorks
Member since Mon 03 Jul 06

Re: Tasty meals on a budget

Ah - Prawn Sagwala! - delcious.

Prawns are surprisingly cheap if you know where to source them. 1 get mine frozen from my local halal supermarket.

In fact, just bought prawns and spinach (and many other things) there yesterday. Large (8/12) frozen raw headless prawn, 800gm for £3.95! (and the spinach was just 25P for a very large bunch.

The spinach was going to go into Saag Aloo (spinach/potato curry) as an accompaniment for Beef Quorma, but I may follow your example smile

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#23 Mon 28 May 07 12:36am

Blade Hunter

Member
Occupation Manger of Digital operations @ SonyBMG
From Sydney, Australia
Member since Mon 07 May 07

Re: Tasty meals on a budget

Hey GeoffP, did you use the recipe in the end?

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#24 Mon 28 May 07 1:32am

GeoffP

Forum champ
Occupation Retired Clergy & Computer Consultant
From Bradford, West Yorks
Member since Mon 03 Jul 06

Re: Tasty meals on a budget

Afraid not sad

In the end I did deep fried spiced fish balls, with mustard mash and garlicky spinach. (The fish balls were some I had in the freezer).

Sagwala I will be doing later.

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#25 Mon 28 May 07 1:44am

Blade Hunter

Member
Occupation Manger of Digital operations @ SonyBMG
From Sydney, Australia
Member since Mon 07 May 07

Re: Tasty meals on a budget

Mmmm Sounds nice smile

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#26 Mon 28 May 07 6:31am

frizz1974

Forum super champ
Occupation Mother of 2 working more than full time
From Wallerawang, Oz
Member since Wed 29 Jun 05

Re: Tasty meals on a budget

I have 4 to feed, plus the pets. All on a budget of $200.oo (thats Aussie $'s)

If there is a bday or a big bill it might be a lot less than this. So thanks for this thread Im always looking for $saving tips.

Im concerned about nutrition too, so I have found this to be a lifesaver. It doesnt cost anymore than the el cheapo supermarket stuff & has more vegies in it (who knows whats in those bottles anyway?)

Homemade tomato & vegie sauce

2-3 onions,peeled
2-3 carrots,peeled
2 sticks celery
1 capsicum,deseeded
1 bulb garlic, peeled

Chop it all roughly & sweat in oil with the lid on for at least 10 minutes.
Add any other veg you have on hand:
zucchini, eggplant, pumkin, squash, mushrooms, chillies, spinach etc

Then add 4-6 800gm tins of peeled tomatoes, 2 cups of water
(I rinse the cans with this, waste not, want not thumbsup )

Cook it all on a low heat for 1 hour, then blend it all up.
(I use a hand held stab mixer that goes straight into the pot)

Add S&P, 1x500gm jar tomato paste, 1tbls sugar, 1 tbls dried herbs & give it all a good stir. Simmer 5-10 minutes.

Now bottle into normal scre.wtop jars that have been washed in hot soapy water. Make sure you still have it simmering while you ladle it into the jars. Put the lids on strightaway & then put them in the fridge as soon as they are down to room temp.

I keep this always on hand, making it every 4-6 weeks. I usually get 6-8 jars per patch.

Now when Im in a hurry I just add it to plain boiled pasta & grate some cheese over each bowl to serve. Pasta is 50cents for 500gm. This means I can feed 4-6 of us for about $2.50.

But this can have anything added in, often I just add about 4 rashes of chopped bacon or if its on sale, 500gm of marinara mix (a splash of wine if I have any is good too)

Sometime I buy drumstix & then bake them with this sauce poured over the top.

Another thing its good for is a quick & convincing Minestrone. Just boil up some small chopped veg & a tin of mixed beans, some pasta in some water, add a jar of sauce. Serve with garlic bread & grated parmesan.

Of course add browned mince & simmer for a while & you have bolognaise. thumbsup

Last edited by frizz1974 (Mon 28 May 07 6:40am)

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#27 Mon 28 May 07 8:56am

stuvik

Member
Occupation IT - Programmer
From Newcastle, Australia
Member since Tue 22 May 07

Re: Tasty meals on a budget

Nice one frizz1974 smile

I made an interesting discovery at Woolworths the other week. I love prosciutto. Adding only a tiny amount can add so much flavour to a dish. The problem is, the 100g packets cost $5 each for a brand name prosciutto! Keeping this in mind I wandered over to the deli section where I saw an unsliced block for $37/kg. You can guess where I got it. An instant saving of $1.30 without sacrificing what I wanted! big_smile It might even be cheaper at a real deli (i.e. a standalone deli; not part of a supermarket).

Moral to the story, be a supermarket's worst nightmare - bargain hunt like crazy! Supermarkets rely on impulse shoppers. Products aren't placed on shelves at random. They are strategically placed for maximum profits. smile

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#28 Mon 28 May 07 9:38am

hybridarts

Member
From Australia
Member since Mon 07 May 07

Re: Tasty meals on a budget

Interesting reading and topic this one.  This is my tasty budget meal that'll get a good serving of vegies into ya too.  Take four or five vegies that you like and stir fry them with a little garlic and/or chili.  I make a simple sauce with oyster sauce, fish sauce, a little brown sugar and pepper to season.  Quantities are not impotant in this recipe, it's real throw together stuff but i suppose the sauce totals about 100-125ml.  Remove stir fry vegies from wok and stir fry any noodle you like(egg, chow mein, hokkien).  Add sauce and coat noodles and then return vegies to heat through.  It's not ground breaking stuff I know but it's good on the budget; once you've got the pantry items it'll cost about $5aud max a serve depending on how big your appetite(s) is(20bucks will do me two nights but i eat quite alot). mrgreen

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#29 Mon 28 May 07 1:13pm

frizz1974

Forum super champ
Occupation Mother of 2 working more than full time
From Wallerawang, Oz
Member since Wed 29 Jun 05

Re: Tasty meals on a budget

I just worked this out, I have never really thought about it before but Im feeding 4 people, a dog & a cat for less than $15.oo aussie a day.

Ok, I occasionally have big shopping blowout & spend an extra $100.oo, topping up on things like cleaning, bathroom & laundry products. Also things like buying asian sauces & other standard pantry items.

But I just realised that week by week that is an amazingly small amount of money to feed out family.

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#30 Mon 28 May 07 1:54pm

Anna

Forum champ
From Switzerland
Member since Fri 15 Apr 05

Re: Tasty meals on a budget

Within walking distance, we only have a Sainsbury's which is relatively expensive at the best of times.  However, our one apparently relies on a 90% pedestrian customer base, and given the fact it's 3 miles to the nearest Tesco, they can get away with jacking up the prices like crazy.  For two of us, I spend about £60 a week in the supermarket, plus we eat out about 3 or 4 times a week... gah!  Well done Frizz!

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