Friday, 22 November 2013

Savvy supermarket shopping

I did well on the yellow sticker dash last night. The fridge was looking a bit bare, and I didn't want to run out of fresh food over the weekend. I don't go to the supermarket on a Saturday or a Sunday, it's too chuffin busy, and will get even busier from now until December the 25th. Eight o clock on a weekday night suits me just fine. No crush, and no queuing at the checkouts.

I have a system when I go for the reductions. First check the chiller cabinet which is near the checkouts. Not much there last night, nothing for me in fact. Different from two weeks ago when there was stacks of yogurt. The bargains on offer are never the same, it's always pot luck.

So, moving swiftly on to the fruit and veg, I was in luck, the man with the ticket machine was just marking stuff down. This was the second sticker going on, not quite as cheap as pennies on the third sticker. But to hang on any longer would have meant I lost out, so I was happy to grab it while it was there. Three or four people were gathered around the trolley, we each had our eye on what we wanted to buy. It's best to pick the items out before the sticker goes on to make sure you get what you want. I always go for the veg first, most important to me. There was stacks of bananas, the green ones which you ripen at home. I had two bags for 10p each, original price £1 each. I wondered whether they had done away with the third sticker, as these were very cheap. Perhaps they have a new system.

I was quick to spot the whole cauliflower which I got for 20p, original price £2. And two bags of prepared cauliflower and broccoli for 12p each, were £1.15. I got two bags of prepared lettuce for 10p each, was £1 each. I was happy with that, I have some carrots and onions left from last week, and loads of potatoes out of the garden. So I'm ok for veg for a week. Then I spotted a treat, two packs of raspberries at 20p each, should have been £2 each.

After that was a dash to the bread counter. They are always a bit slow at marking down here. There was a lot of wholemeal bread which I like, I don't buy white bread, it's like cotton wool and has no taste, in my opinion. So I picked up four large Hovis loaves for 39p each, they are usually £1.50 each. I have had it cheaper before but this was still quite a good reduction, besides, I wasn't in the mood for hanging around any longer. I also got two smaller loaves for 19p each. All this has gone in the freezer, only just enough room for it.

Then I picked up a few other items around the store, but kept going back to see if any other reductions had appeared. I got a treat for the cats, three ready roasted chicken thighs from the rotisserie for 75p. They were all over me like a rash when I got home, they hung around the shopping bags on the floor waiting for me to unpack. Mayze doesn't meow like Bugsy does, she squeaks. I wasn't going to get any peace until I had picked the meat from one of the thighs.

Total shop was £16.89, less 75p for the chicken, total for my food £16.14. £5 of that was for a bottle of wine. I will put the full list up on the food diary page, link at the top.

Just going back to the 'selling gold' post, I was advised to hold on to any gold I had by one of my readers. Thank you for that, it was an interesting email. However curiosity has got the better of me, and I took my gold wedding ring for valuation, remember, I didn't actually get married so I wasn't fussed about keeping it. My little bonus for selling it was £23. I can buy a lot of veg for that, but maybe I will kick myself in ten years time when I could have bought a years worth of food for it. I don't know, it's all speculation and a gamble, and I am not a gambler.

Have a nice weekend, catch you tomorrow
Toodle pip   

20 comments:

  1. Hi Ilona,
    A good shop by you. I find that the only thing that I can save money on is my shopping bill. I am very cautious and think about what I need and the most economical way of buying it. I've cut back on everything else so supermarket shopping is my only opportunity to be more frugal.
    Best wishes
    Colin in Kent

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  2. Sounds like a good yellow sticker shop. I do love those little bargain and its amazing what you can cook with the selections you get.

    I can't blame you on your ring. I do know that it is low at the moment but if it means you have more food and money now then thats a positive too.

    X x

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  3. The speed at which food costs are rising! It's mad. I'm always shocked at the checkout...how come fruit and veg is expensive but cr^p food is cheap? People getting ill from eating all the cr^p food must be costing our health care systems the earth.
    Jane x

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    1. I've noticed this too. It's much cheaper to fill up on cheap stuff (which always seems to be on offer) than to buy fruit and veg. Aldi and Lidl are great for cheaper fruit and veg, especially Aldi's super 6. I also buy yellow stickered fruit and vegetables.

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  4. Well done Ilona. Perhaps I'm not the yellow sticker queen after all!! I always get yellow stickers in our local Coop and save a fortune. If there's a trolley of items waiting to be reduced, I ask a member of staff if they can reduce them for me and hang around while they do it. Last week, someone had thrown away a £4 off voucher. I picked it up off the wet ground and used it. I also had a £1.50 voucher of my own. Got a free bottle of wine!

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  5. Your yellow sticker reductions are just amazing. Here in the South we never see veggies reduced to just pennies. I actually don`t find much that has been reduced a decent amount now. We are lucky if we see a few pence taken off an item in the cheapo cabinet. Meat is real expensive now and you just never find a good bargain anymore. You seem to be doing very well with it up north. Maybe I should consider moving, lol.

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    1. Everything is cheaper up north, Sarina. I couldn't afford to live where you are.

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  6. Well done Ilona. I'm glad you managed to nab the cats a treat too! It's amazing what you can find when you have the time and persevere.

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  7. I bring turkey home every Monday from my Mum's. She is like clockwork with her food. However, every time I come home with a bag, Merlin goes and roots in it, expecting to find turkey from Mum's. She cuts off the little bits (she's very fussy) and also puts in a lions share. This is, I must say, for Merlin!

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  8. I know I have already posted but thought I'd write this while I remembered. I saw on the internet the idea of mashed cauliflower instead of spuds. I wonder what they would be like? Maybe with bit (not too much) grated cheese on the top and grilled.

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    1. I think it would be very nice, a bit more expensive than spuds though.

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    2. We have mashed cauliflower often, I cook it in a little milk and them mash it with some buttery stuff and some pepper, makes a change from spuds and it is a good way of using a RTC 20p cauli. I make a mixed veg mash as well add a handful of grated cheese and dinner is ready in a jiffy.

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  9. Bet the cats loved the chicken . I have a visitor cat .it taps my window to come in if its not open . It makes itself very comfortable on my sofa
    it belongs to someone up the road but not happy there since they got a dog .

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  10. sounds like you got some great buys!
    good for you!
    I like reading your blog!

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  11. Perhaps you could try using the cauliflower as a cous cous substitute. You did an amazing job with your shop. I used to be able to buy a large number of reductions. However there are quite a number chasing those bargains too and I cannot and will not join a maelstrom of fighting people for food. Are there others that find there can be wild behaviour over reduced foods?

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  12. Yes, there are stores which now stagger the times when they post reductions just because of that.
    My goodness Ilona, you did so well- I admit to utter jealousy when I read the deal you got on raspberries!

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  13. Wow, that is brilliant! Which supermarket was that? I generally go to Aldi straight from work and find it hard to get up and go shopping at 8pm, but maybe I should make the effort with those kind of bargains on offer.

    Impressed! Great blog BTW.

    Jane (http://shoestringcottage.wordpress.com)

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    1. Hello Jane. I shop at Tesco, it's the nearest one to me, 4.5 miles, and as well as the yellow stickers I buy a lot of the Value labels.

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  14. Excellent bargains! Our local stores are never very good for yellow stickered meat or veg, but we often manage to get lots of bread, so there's always a drawer full in the freezer :)

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  15. Hello Meanqueen,
    I have been reading your blog with great interest. I remember seeing you on tellie a couple of years ago and recently I thought 'I wonder what happened to that frugal lady who used to be a lorry driver'! One thing I'd like to ask is have you ever tried making your own wine? I note that you spent £5 on a bottle in your shopping. I make my own and it's not difficult. If you use stuff from the garden (such as lemonbalm) you only really pay for the sugar. A bottle costs about 20p to make. Best wishes, Austin.

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