I really like the flavour of satay: nutty, salty and with a hint of ginger and garlic. Quite a lot of the recipes I have tried involve marinating before cooking and frankly, on a weekday when I want dinner in a flash, mixing up a marinade is not what I want to be doing. My satay pork fried rice has all the flavours you’d want from satay, is super simple to make and contains three different vegetables. As it’s a versatile recipe I’ve popped a couple of variations to the original at the end of the post.
I’m not sure quite what’s happened but all of a sudden I find myself spending over £50 a week on food shopping. I know, it’s not a shocking amount and it’s certainly less than I know other people spend but it’s twice as much as I used to spend. I didn’t really notice it creeping up over time and I haven’t really changed what I eat (less meat if anything) but it irritates me nonetheless. There’s only so many beans and lentils one person can eat in a week so thrifty meals are essential to give plenty of variation. My sticky chilli pork is quick, tasty and feeds four people for less than £6.
You will need:
- Oil for cooking £0.02
- 2 pork chops £2.00
- Salt and pepper £0.02
- 3 tbsp sweet chilli sauce £0.25
- 4 noodle nests £1.00
- 2-3 spring onions, sliced £0.10
- 1 tbsp sesame seeds £0.07
- 1 small pepper, sliced £0.60
For the dressing:
- 2 tsp soy sauce £0.07
- Juice 1/2 lime £0.15
- 1 garlic clove, crushed £0.02
- 1 small piece ginger, peeled and grated £0.05
Total cost: £4.35
Cut any fat off the pork chops and slice into strips. Season with salt and pepper.
Heat a frying pan or wok and add a little oil. Add the pork strips and fry until golden.
While the pork is cooking cook the noodles according to packet instructions.
Mix the ingredients for the dressing together.
When the pork is cooked through, add the sweet chilli sauce and continue to cook until the pork is coated and glossy. The sauce will thicken a bit.
Drain the noodles and stir the dressing through to stop them sticking.
Serve the noodles with the pepper, spring onion and sesame seeds and top with the sticky chilli pork.
I think this is a pretty well balanced meal; veg, carbs, protein and a little bit of naughty sweet chilli sauce on the side. For something to enjoy in the week when I want something quick and simple this is the kind of thing I cook. It is also delicious with chicken and I’m yet to try it with tofu. I’ve got a few other budget meals to see here and I’m trying to grow these recipes more and more. If you’ve got anything you’d like to see thrifty, let me know!
I like to browse other people’s blogs and I particularly like the posts where there has been some sort of link or challenge and lots of bloggers take part. I like to think of them as online coffee mornings. I thought it was about time I got involved and had a go at one; enter Dom from Belleau Kitchen and his challenge called Random Recipes. I love the idea of opening a random cookery book and having to cook whatever is on the page that opens.
I know I’m guilty of flicking through all my recipe books and thinking how good the recipes sound but knowing full well it’s pretty unlikely I’ll ever give it a try because I’ll either forget or not have the time. This challenge suited me because I was forced not to turn the page to find something quicker, easier or less expensive. I stuck to the rules and ended up opening Rick Stein’s Spain to Canalons de ternera, cerdo, jamón y boletus or Veal, Pork, Serrano Ham and Porcini Cannelloni.
You will need (for 6-8):
For the béchamel:
Comfort food is wonderful. It’s always the things which are full of bread, cheese, pasta, pastry and the like. Sometimes I want the comfort without the guilt, and particularly for this, without the expense. Beef wellington is as magnificent a dinner as they come; it’s one of my all time favourites. However, pork fillet is about a third of the price of beef fillet and therefore makes a brilliantly cheaper alternative.
I had to ask my butcher to save me a pork fillet as they sell out like there’s no tomorrow. Possibly because the pigs are fed mostly on apples for the latter part of their life meaning the meat has an unrivalled flavour. So with marvellous meat and flavourful fillings I set about making my pork wellington. If anyone knows why it’s called wellington I’d be pleased to find out; let’s hope it’s not an unflattering term for the shape of the finished meal.