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Save Money on Food

FIRSTLY, If you are struggling to afford food for your family PLEASE speak to us about the Caterham Food Bank, this initiative allows families to collect a food bag that will help you for three days, to find out more visit the Trussell Trust web site: www.trusselltrust.org -  alternatively you may find the following information useful:

 Cut food waste and save money

1 in 5 bags of food shopping gets thrown away, that’s not good for your pocket or the planet.

As food prices continue to rise around the world, it’s a sobering thought to know that many families waste up to £50 a month throwing away uneaten food.

However we also know that cutting down on food waste can be a challenge, especially when you’re pushed for time and your kids don’t always want to eat what you’ve cooked for them. So to help you waste less, Love Food Surrey chef Carmela Tomkins gives us her top tips

Taking just one small step to reduce food waste can have a big positive effect on the environment and save you money too. We hope our tips will inspire you to take that step.

It pays to plan:

  • Control your urges to stock up and spend madly by planning for the season. Remember most shops will be open apart from the one special day.
  • Choose the food your family is most likely to eat. It is pointless offering brussel sprouts and red cabbage if it will not be eaten. It makes more sense to choose popular vegetables and cook them in a slightly different way such as pan-fried with garlic and bacon.
  • Seasonal special offers can be good value as long as you plan to use the extra food. Check if you can freeze items and make sure you have the space in your freezer before buying offers, or why not share deals with friends and family such as mince pies or sausage rolls.

Perfect portions:

  • Remember portion size – if you are serving a starter, main course and dessert, portions should be smaller than your everyday one course meal.
  • Choosing what size joint of meat to cook can be tricky. Stick with 450g per person and you should have plenty to go round to please large appetites and leftovers for a stew, curry or cold cuts the next day.

Love your leftovers:

  • If you have any leftovers from dinner, chop up roast potatoes and vegetables, chuck into a pan to fry and add some Indian spice for a tasty bubble and squeak dish.
  • Make a stock from the carcass of the cooked meat by simmering for a few hours in water with any leftover veggies such as onions, carrots or celery. Stain and season the liquid, which you can freeze, and use to flavour soups and risottos.

Savvy storage:

  • A well-stocked store cupboard can be a real life-saver over the busy festive period. Keep a variety of goods on the shelves and you’ll always have the ingredients standing by to pull together a delicious meal for guests or to jazz up your leftovers.

Festive freezing:

  • Make space this season. Food can be kept safely in the freezer for years at -18°C, as long as you keep it frozen the whole time. However the texture and taste may change over time, so try to eat food within three months.

Try freezing:

  • Stuffings and sauces: All sauces (with the exception of hollandaise) can be frozen.
  • Casserole: Do you need to plan a casserole for supper when there will be precious little time for extra cooking? Cook when you have spare time and freeze until needed.

For more advice on planning your shopping, portion control, recipe ideas and more, visit  www.lovefoodsurrey.com