Ms Betterhome

Stocking the freezer
August 25, 2012, 3:12 am
Filed under: budgeting, Menu planning, vegan eating

I was lucky enough to get some ‘work from home’ days last week, and took advantage of the time saved by not commuting to get our freezer restocked with some of our staples. I had time to soak all my beans & legumes, so I made: a batch of slow cooker baked beans (with cannelini beans), a double batch of chickpea cutlets, and a huge batch of lentil walnut burgers.

I also made a batch of Terry Hope Romero’s red steamed seitan (from Viva Vegan), and used it in our fave Moosewood sweet potato roti, and some Millennium vegan paella. This week I stayed on a roll, and made a batch of slow-cooker spicy blackbeans for tacos.

Stocking the freezer up with all these goodies means we have the basics for a ‘fast food’ dinners on nights when we get home late from work. We ran out of our ‘processed’ alternative ingredient, Sanitarium veggie sausages, this week, and bought a couple of them at full price. Usually we stock up when they’re on sale, but we rarely go to Coles or Woolies anymore, and we keep missing the markdown. MrB remarked that they now cost $20 a kilo, so they’re not exactly a budget item (though we will still keep a pack or two on hand for times when we’re invited to friend’s BBQs).

The dried legumes I buy in bulk cost more like $3 a kilo, and I get at least 4 serves from 250 grams of dried beans. Even when we’re using tins, we get around 250 grams of drained cooked legumes for 89 cents, and we get 2 servings from that. I do like the odd bit of commercial fake meat or fake cheese, but I’m certainly very motivated to keep making my own. No mystery ingredients, no packaging to throw away, I know exactly how much fat and sugar I’ve added, and my fast food’s so much cheaper.


Menu for the week
February 3, 2012, 10:21 pm
Filed under: food, Menu planning

MrB gave me a hard time last week, because we wrote up a plan (on paper), and then I messed with it. But really, I do the planning as a guideline… It’s not ironclad. If we have the ingredients for an alternative meal in the pantry, I will cook it if I change my mind 🙂

But… having the menu plan helps me organise our shopping list, and it saves me having to be creative when I’m tired from work. So here’s this week’s version.

Saturday: Veggie shepherd’s pie ( with a couple of leftover helpings for my lunches)
Sunday: Roast veggie salad & fresh bread (baked in the bread maker for my toast during the week)
Monday: Chickpea cutlets, roast veg, salad, mushroom gravy
Tuesday: Veggie ‘quiche’ made with silken tofu ( with more leftovers)
Wednesday: Rice paper wraps
Thursday: Edited to acknowledge our new (second hand) barbecue. Mr B scored this on Gumtree for $100. It needed some bolts tightened ( and a bit of a cleanup), but it looks (and functions) just fine now. So Thursday is a veggie & soy sausage fest on the new beast.
Friday: We’re out on the town, dinners will be foraged as we go.

Plans for this week
January 22, 2012, 2:44 am
Filed under: Menu planning, vegan eating | Tags: , ,

We have a public holiday on Thursday, and my niece and nephew re sleeping over on Friday, so this week’s plan is a little different than usual.

Sunday- Choose your own adventure night
Monday- Roast veggie wraps ( our version of homemade falafel rolls with added veggies)
Tuesday- rice paper wraps
Wednesday- lentil patties with roast veg & salad
Thursday- Moosewood sweet potato & seitan ‘roti’ ( we use mountain bread & homemade seitan for this).
Friday- home-made pizza on Lebanese bread
Saturday – veggie curry, dal & rice

Smoothies, toast, hummus & tomato

Mon- Wed Moroccan spiced roast veg & tempeh salad for me, Chili con carne & rice for Mr B.

And also on the food front – I’ve downloaded a free app called myfitnesspal to track my food & exercise. It’s very easy to use, and I’ve been able to add my own food if whatever I’m eating isn’t in the database. It’s been very good motivation for keeping my booze consumption low (a glass of white wine is 175 cals!), and staying active.

Menu plans and progress
January 14, 2012, 2:58 am
Filed under: budgeting, food, Menu planning, vegan eating | Tags:

First week back at work was fine. We switched the actual dinners around a little, but it pretty much went as planned.

MrB and I have both installed an app called ‘Expenditure’ to help us with budget tracking. Rather than fiddling with receipts, we can put expenses in our phones, and export to a spreadsheet ( we can also email the tallies). This should give us an idea of how much we’re spending, and alert us to any potential slow leaks.

And to this week’s menu plan.
Sat: roast veg and lentil salad and fresh bread
Sun: roast veggie wraps with hummus & falafel
Mon: lentil burgers, potato salad & green salad
Tues: blackbean tacos
Wed: chickpea and pumpkin curry
Thur: rice paper wraps
Fri: mushroom & zucchini and walnut risotto.

Kale/tofu ‘frittata’, leftovers

Smoothies, toast and hummus, toast and peanut butter

Almonds, veggie sticks, homemade snack bars (from freezer)

Weekend Prep: Sat- bake bread, soak and cook chickpeas & lentils, make chutney, roast veggies.
Sun- make hummus & lentil burgers, make kale frittata, prep potato salad, put black beans in fridge to thaw.