Asian, cheap, Chicken, Chinese, Fakeaway, Freezer challange

Sweet and Sticky Chilli Chinese Chicken Fakeaway Stir fry (89p per portion) – The Freezer Challenge

Freezer challenge 

As I mentioned in my post yesterday, I’m doing a bit of a freezer challenge, as we got way too much random stuff in the freezer that needs using up. I would like to get as much of it used before the baby arrives. However, I do think I have started way too late to achieve this, but never mind.

My husband was away yesterday for a business meeting, so only needed to cook for myself and Toddler “Blip”, however, I still ended up cooking for 4. At least I can freeze the portions and I got some ready meals for when the baby arrives.

Now, you may ask what is a Fakeaway? In my opinion, it is exactly the same as a takeaway, except that it is made at home and it resembles a takeaway. I always, like to cook from scratch, one, it is cheap, two, I know what goes into the food and three I know how fresh it is.

In the freezer, I had quite a bit of chicken, 2 drumsticks and 4 chicken thighs. In general, I like to use chicken thighs instead of chicken breast for stir-fries, it got more taste and it is much cheaper. I must have been lazy when I froze the thighs, (or just pregnant) as I froze them with skin on and bones in. But never mind, I defrosted it and removed bones from thighs and drumsticks and there was almost 450g of meat. Which is a perfect amount for 4. But you can use more/less as it fits with your family, don’t forget you can always bulk it out with more vegetables.

Now, with the skin and bones, don’t throw it away, instead debone them and remove the skin then put it in a separate freezer bag and keep in the freezer, until you got quite a large portion. Why you may ask? Because it makes a fantastic stock (almost for free). I will post the recipe for that another day.

I served the Fakeaway with rice which Toddler “Blip” loves. He tried the chicken and vegetables but wasn’t keen, but at least he tried it.

Also, because I cook it wanting my son to eat it, I don’t add the chilli, but use my special chilli oil instead.

Sweet and Sticky Chilli Chicken Stir-fry

Serves 4


450g chicken thighs (bones and skin removed) cut in chunks
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
3 Cloves of Garlic (finely sliced)
2 Cm Ginger finely cut (finely sliced)
2 Hot Dried Chillies (or 2 teaspoons hot chilli flakes or to taste)
1 Medium onion (cut into wedges)
2 Medium carrots (cut into slices)
1-1/2 bell peppers cut into bite size pieces (I used a combination of red, yellow and green, but you could choose just one colour)
3-4 Medium Mushrooms (quartered)
Handful Sugar Snap Peas
2 Spring onions (diagonally sliced)
1/2 tin pineapple pieces (reserve juice for Marinade)
Handful Salted Cashew nuts (optional)


All the juice from the Pineapple tin
3 tbsp ketchup
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp grated ginger
2 cloves garlic minced
2 tbsp Soy Sauce
½ tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tbsp Corn flour
Served with rice for four, approx. 240g


This dish is really best if you can let the chicken marinate for a few hours or overnight. I marinated it for 6 hours. However, even if you just marinated it for half an hour it would still taste amazing.

Start by mixing all the ingredients for the marinate, leaving the corn flour out, this needs to be added at the last minute when cooking. Then cut the chicken into bite size pieces and combine with the marinate. Leave covered in the fridge until needed.

Because this is a quick cook, you need to prepare all your vegetables before starting to cook. You won’t have time to do it as you go along.

Slice the garlic and ginger and place in a bowl with the chilli. Then cut the onion and carrot, and bell peppers and place together with the mushrooms and place in a different bowl. Then wash the sugar snap peas and place it in a bowl with the spring onions.

Have the pineapple pieces ready and the cashews if using them.

The cooking

Cook rice as per packet, or your preferred method (I use a rice cooker)

In a none stick wok, add the oil, and bring it up to high heat, then add the garlic, chilli and ginger and fry it for around 30seconds to 1 minutes. Now, with a slotted spoon remove the chicken from the marinate and place in the wok (reserve the marinate, we need this later). Now stir-fry the chicken for around 2-3 minutes until its coloured all over. If you find that a lot of marinate came into the wok, then pour it off back into the reserved marinade.

Now add the onion and the carrot to the wok and cook for a further 2 minutes. Then add the bell peppers and mushrooms cook for another minute. Then add the pineapple pieces and pour in the reserved marinade (except for 2 tbsp worth), give the mixture a good mix and cook for around another 2 minutes, until it starts slightly reducing. Then mix the corn flour into the last bit of marinade and pour it into the wok give it a good stir. At this point add the Mangetout and spring onions. Cook until it got a sticky consistency, shouldn’t take long.

Serve, with the cashews on top, with steamed rice on the side. Prawn crackers goes well with it.

Bon appetite – as my granddad would have said


These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (Correct as per July 2017)


Chicken thighs 99p
Vegetable oil 3p
Garlic 9p
Ginger 10p
Dried Chillies 5p (bought at Asian Grocer)
Medium onion 10p
Medium carrots 5p
Bell Peppers 46p
Mushrooms 20p
Sugar Snap Peas 35p
Spring onions 10p
Pineapple pieces 30
Cashew nuts 20p


Ketchup 5p
Tomato puree 5p
Brown sugar 5p
Ginger 10p
Garlic 6p
Soy Sauce 10p
½ tsp salt 1p
Pepper 1p
Corn flour 3p
Rice 11p

Total price: £3.59  (per portion 90p)  



Asian, Fakeaway, Prawns, Tofu

Firecracker Prawn, Tofu and Chinese Leaves Stir Fry with Rice (£3.17 per person)

I’m now 37 weeks pregnant with Baby “Flipper” and I can’t wait for him to be here, seriously, being pregnant is the hardest I have ever done in life. Yesterday I was sick quite a bit and the husband mainly cooked for me. This morning as well, he made me breakfast as I was not feeling well. I just about managed to have some bread with butter this lunch time, but was feeling so sick. Hyperemesis Gravidarum is awful, I wish no other woman should ever suffer from it.

However, this afternoon, I was feeling better again. In the fridge, we had Chinese Leaf that needed to be used. To be honest, I wasn’t inspired, but then I remembered that Wagamama does a gorgeous firecracker prawn dish, so I sat out to try and make that, price in restaurant is around £12.00 and you get 5 prawns each.

Looking around again in store cupboards, fridge freezer I found quite a few items that would go well together. At 15:00 I managed to do all my preparation for the dinner, I even put the rice in the rice cooker so when Toddler “Blip” came home from nursery all I needed to do was cook the food. And what a good idea, especially, as on my way to the nursery I started to get lots and lots of contractions. They have settled down now though, but made cooking much easier as all I had to do was put the food in the wok, in the right order and taste it… Amazingly, I also managed to keep the food down.

Now, I have had a warm bath and the contractions seems to have settled so Baby “Flipper” probably won’t appear today. But soon I got a feeling. Toddler “Blip” tried the prawns and rice, but he was quite tired so it didn’t really hit the spot for him. Luckily, that meant he was happy to go to bed around 19:30.

The Husband loved the dish, he didn’t have the rice though, as still doing low carb.

Firecracker Prawn, Tofu and Chinese Leaf Stir Fry with Rice

Serves 2


Rice, enough for 2 people (around 1 cup full)
3 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped
1 Tbsp Ginger, grated
3 Spring onions, finely chopped
½ Small Red Onion, finely sliced
2 Tbsp Coriander, chopped
1 Green or Red Chilli (optional)
½ Chinese leaf, cut into 1 cm slices
15g dried black fungus (optional)
150 g Firm Tofu (optional – you could just use a bit more prawns)
150 g Tiger Prawns
2 Tbsp Sesame Oil
1 tbsp Chilli Bean Paste (alternative Siracha sauce will work)
1 Tbsp Tomato Puree
1 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
1 Tbsp Soy Sauce
1 Tbsp Black Sesame Seeds


  1. Start by cooking the rice as per your preferred method. I use a rice cooker and it works for me.
  2. Then whilst the rice is cooking prepare all the vegetables.
  3. Peel the garlic and finely chop it, grate the ginger, finely chop the white part of the spring onions and quarter the chilli if using. Place it in a separate bowl.
  4. Finely chop the green part of the spring onions and coriander and add it to a separate bowl (this is going to be the garnish).
  5. If using the black fungus, make sure to add it to a bowl and soak it in boiling water (normal mushrooms could be used instead or you could just leave it out). – drain the black fungus and place in a bowl.
  6. Finely, slice the red onion and put it together with the black fungus.
  7. Cut the Chinese leaves into 1 cm slices. Keep it separately
  8. Cut the Tofu into pieces, try and use a firm but NOT silken tofu, as this will hold its shape much better.
  9. Clean the prawns, making sure the poo string has been removed (nothing worse than eating that part).
  10. Then make the chilli sauce by adding 1 tbsp sesame oil, Chilli Bean Paste, Tomato Puree, Rice Vinegar and Soy Sauce together in a bowl and mix well.
  11. Now if your rice is almost finished you are ready to cook the dish (it takes around 10 minutes to cook)
  12. Firstly, heat the sesame oil in a large wok on a high heat (non-stick is best if not non-stick you may need more oil). Once it’s hot add the bowl of garlic, ginger, spring onion and green chilli to the wok. Cook for around 30 seconds, then add the red onions and Black fungus if using and cook for another minute.
  13. Now add the prawns and tofu to the mixture, as soon as they start to turn pink you should add the marinate you have made. Stir everything together and cook for another minute or so.
  14. Toss in the Chinese leaves and cook for another minute and make sure everything is coated in the sauce.
  15. Now serve the stir-fry with your cooked rice and sprinkle over the coriander, green part of the spring onions and sesame seeds.

This dish is lovely served with a fresh minty cucumber pickle on the side, I’ll post the recipe for that another day.

Bon appetite – as my granddad would have said


These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (Correct as per July 2017). For this dish, I have also had to refer to the prices for some ingredients from other stores.. mentioned in the description

Rice, (basic Tesco) 5p
Garlic Cloves, 9p
Ginger 10p
Spring onions 15p
Red Onion 10p
Coriander 10p
Green Chilli 20p
Chinese leaf 63p
Dried black fungus 41p  – Chinese supermarket
Firm Tofu 76p
Tiger Prawns £3.00
Sesame Oil 20p
Chilli Bean Paste 15p
Tomato Puree 5p
Rice Vinegar 20p
Soy Sauce 5p
Sesame Seeds 10p 

Total price: £6.34  – which is £3.17 per person.


Chicken, Thai

Easy Satay Chicken skewers (21p per skewer)

As promised, I have added some more uses for the Satay paste/sauce I made. One of the things I love to use the paste for is my homemade Satay skewers. They are about 21p per skewer. You could stretch this and make them even cheaper if you added things like peppers and onions to the skewers.

I like to buy chicken thighs, but with bone and skin still in this is a much cheaper and tastier compared to chicken breasts. It’s certainly also cheaper than buying it all deboned already. It literally takes minutes to debone and skin the chicken. On top of that if you keep the bones and the skin, you can use this for making a delicious stock at a later point. I keep a freezer bag in the freezer and bang in all chicken bones etc. Then when full I cook a stock in my slow cooker.

As the Satay sauce, I make is rather thick, I like to let it down with coconut milk so it’s better as a marinade. This can either be done with normal coconut milk, or if you got it creamed coconut, which I prefer as you don’t need a huge portion and its cheaper than the coconut milk you buy tinned. Also, it’s a good standby in the kitchen.

I had two for dinner, Toddler Blip tried the chicken but wasn’t keen on the mushrooms though. There was two for the husband’s lunch, he didn’t take them though, therefore he will have them for dinner tonight. The rest I froze the rest for another day.

chicken skewers

Easy Satay Chicken and Mushrooms Skewers
Makes 8 skewers

4 Chicken thighs
5 Mushrooms
3 tbsp Satay sauce (see previous recipe)
50g creamed coconut
250 ml water

Wooden skewers


In a saucepan, add the water and bring to boil, then add the creamed coconut and simmer it down to the consistency of coconut milk. Now add the Satay Sauce to the mixture, and slowly let it simmer down to a nice consistency. It mustn’t be too solid and not too runny.

Heat up the griddle pan it needs to be very hot (don’t add any oil to the griddle pan as this will make it smoke). Whilst the griddle pan is heating up, cut the mushrooms into chunks, then slightly drizzle them with oil and add them to the warm griddle pan, don’t move them around before they got proper marks on them.

While grilling the mushrooms, debone and remove the skin from the chicken thighs, then cut into bite size pieces. When the mushrooms are finished take them off and add to a bowl.

Now add the chicken to the warm griddle pan, make sure they also get the griddle marks and cook through. When cooked through place it in the same bowl as the mushrooms and add half of the Satay marinate to the bowl and make sure mushrooms and chicken get evenly coated.

Then alternate the mushrooms with the chicken on wooden skewers. Now you can either finish off the skewers under a hot grill for a few moments, or if your griddle pan is big enough on the griddle pan or obviously on a bbq*.

This is nicely served either with a salad or/and rice and obviously the reserved Satay sauce for pouring over the skewers.

*If making the skewers on the bbq, start by soaking the skewers in water for at least 30 minutes.

Bon appetite – as my granddad would have said


These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (Correct as per July 2017).

Chicken thighs 85p
Mushrooms 23p
Satay sauce 34p
Creamed coconut 25p

Total: £1.67 for 8 skewers, that’s 21p each




Fakeaway, Thai, vegetarien

Easy lunch – Satay Vegetarian Noodles (£1.29)

Following op on my post from yesterday, I have been craving anything with peanuts. One of my standby dishes which I love to make is Satay Noodles.

It’s a super easy and cheap standby dish, easily adapted and doubled, you could easily make it with either prawns, chicken or just with plain noodles and a few vegetables. The one I did today was with fried tofu, because we had it at home, and I adore Tofu..

Toddler Blip is still in nursery and Daddy is at work… as for baby Flipper he is still in my tummy and he seemed to enjoy the noodles!

Also you could use a store bought Satay sauce (the consistency is very different so you may need to use more). I normally calculate 50g of noodles per person. Whatever, noodles you fancy or have laying around will do, I do find that thick noodles are really good for this, like Udon noodles. I didn’t have them, but some random noodles I picked up in the Asian store ages ago,  still worked brilliantly.

This makes an excellent packed lunch as well.

Satay Noodles with Tofu

Serves 1

50g noodles, cooked as per package and rinsed in cold water
4 tbsp Satay sauce (see recipe from yesterday)
4 pieces fried tofu (optional)
2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
¼ hot red fresh chilli, finely chopped
Corriander, small bunch coriander finely chopped
2 radishes, finely sliced
2 spring onion, finely chopped
2 tbsp finely chopped peanuts
1 tbsp vegetable oil
50 ml water

1 lime wedge (optional)


  1. Firstly, cook the noodles according to instructions on packet, then wash and rinse under cold water and set aside.
  2. Now, make sure you prepare all the vegetables. Make sure to keep them separately, as they different things go in at different times. Keeping a bit of chilli, coriander and radishes aside for garnish.
  3. Add the oil to a pan and add the garlic and chilli, when lightly fried to crisp (not burned) take out the garlic and chilli.
  4. Turn the pan to low and add the Satay sauce and the water to the remaining oil. When simmering add the tofu and warm through, then add the noodles. Make sure the noodles get proper coated in the sauce. When all warmed through add the remaining ingredients, and toss together.
  5. Serve in a bowl with the lime wedge and reserved chilli, coriander and radishes as garnish and some extra Satay Sauce if you fancy.

Bon appetite – as my granddad would have said


These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (Correct as per July 2017).

Noodles 23p Satay sauce 25p Fried tofu 21p Garlic 6p Red chilli 7p Coriander 25p Radishes 10p Spring onion 10p Peanuts 6p 1 tbsp vegetable oil 2p 50 ml water

1 lime wedge (optional) 4p

Total: £1.29 for the portion – based on Tesco prices.



Asian, Pork, Thai

Left over Thai mince, turned into delicious lunch

So yesterday, we made the build it yourself Thai Wraps, the portion was for 4 people, as we currently are only 2 adults, 1 Toddler Blip and still waiting on Baby Flipper to make his arrival it was way too much for us all.

So, what to do with the leftovers, well, my husband wanted the wraps with him for lunch, and made four. Which he packed up in his lunch box. Toddler Blip was going to nursery and had food there so it was only me left. There was still a large amount of cooked mince left probably around ¼ of the portion from yesterday, and a portion of coriander, chilli, spring onions, crushed peanuts and radishes, and a bowl of the cooked rice noodles I cooked for mainly Toddler Blip to have with the mince the day before.

Therefore, for my lunch, I decided to make spicy rice noodle lunch… All I needed to add was some finely sliced and fried garlic to the dish and some sliced lime. If we were two who should have eaten it, I would have added whatever vegetables laying around in fridge, freezer… you could use mushrooms, normal onions, corns etc…. or to double the portion quickly just use a big handful of beansprouts….

You could obviously, make this without the leftovers, so if you just fancied the Thai Rice noodles as a complete dish, all you do is make the Thai mince from previous recipe, then cook enough rice noodles for 4 people. If you cooked this from scratch, you should ensure to cool the rice noodles, and the recipe would probably stretch to 6 people instead of 4 as the rice noodles fills you up more than the salad leaves.

It was delicious, and a lovely way to ensure that the leftovers was used.

Leftover Thai noodles
Serves 1 (easily doubled)

¼ of the leftover Thai mince
Rice noodles, enough for 1 person (approximately 50p), cooled and cooked
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
2 tsp chilli, finely sliced
1 tbsp spring onion, finely sliced
1 tbsp coriander, chopped
1-2 radishes, finely sliced
1 tbsp peanuts, finely chopped.
2 teaspoons hot chilli oil
1 slice lime

Firstly, make sure that all the ingredients, are chopped and ready to be used in the cooking. This is a very quick dish to make. You don’t have time to do preparation in between.

In a non-stick pan, add the leftover Thai mince and warm through on a high, put aside in a dish and keep warm.

Now add the Chilli oil to the pan warm up and add the finely sliced garlic and chilli to the pan, fry it on to the garlic is crisp but not burned.

Then add the cooled cooked noodles and quickly warm through, it takes only a minute or two.

Now add the mince back into the pan, and mix it through with the rice noodles. Turn off the heat, and add the spring onions, coriander and radishes.

Put it in either a bowl or plate, add the peanuts and serve with the sliced lime and eat.

Bon appetite – as my granddad would have said


These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (Correct as per July 2017). Remember to shop around you can get a lot of these products even cheaper. Especially Asian grocery stores etc. Also, I now grow my own coriander and chili at home. But then, not everyone has this option.  

Thai mince, £1.04p (see the calculation on yesterdays post)
Garlic 6p
Coriander 25p
Radishes 10p (based on 12 in a 58p bag)
Chilli 7p (based on 3 in a 60p bag – needing around 1/3 of a full chilli)
Chilli oil 10p
Peanuts 10p
Lime slice 4p
Rice noodles 25p
Spring onion 10p

Total cost £2.11 for lunch…



Asian, Pork, Thai

Thai “build it yourself” pork mince wraps

A few weeks ago, I was lucky to pick up some reduced packets of Pork mince from Waitrose, 99p for 500g. I got two packets which I put straight in the freezer when I came home. Reduced items are a brilliant way of saving a bit of cash on your shopping. But only if you need it or definitely are going to use it. Often, I go to the shops and see something I would never use or normally buy, in that case, what is the point? if I buy it just because its reduced and then I throw it in the bin, I have wasted money.

In this case, I didn’t really know what I was going to do with the pork mince. What I did know was that I didn’t fancy anything normal, like meat balls etc. On top of that, because, the husband is still doing the low carb diet, it needed to fit in with that. Doing a lot of searching on the internet, I found some interesting recipes for Thai mince. But loads of them was served with rice, or with ingredients I didn’t have at home. Therefore, I have amended it to fit in with what we got at home and what we would eat. Also. I made it a bit More kid friendly so everyone could put their own wraps together. 

Even Toddler Blip tried it!!


Build it yourself Thai wraps
Serves 4

500g Pork Mince
½ tbsp Sugar
1 White onion, finely chopped
3 Garlic Cloves, crushed
Thumb sized piece of Ginger, grated
1 Lime, juice and zest
1 Red Chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
50g Creamed Coconut
1 Tbsp Fish Sauce
2 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
4 Tbsp Soy Sauce
Small bunch of Mint, finely chopped

Garnish optional
Salted Peanuts, chopped
Fresh Coriander, chopped
Red Chilli, sliced
Julienned carrots
Sliced radishes
Finely chopped spring onions
Homemade chilli oil.

Serving Suggestion
Lettuce leaves, white rice or rice noodles.


  1. Start by preparing the vegetables by grating, crushing and chopping all the vegetables for the mince.
  2. Over a high heat fry the pork mince in a wok along with the sugar, when cooked through, remove the mince and set aside.
  3. Depending on how much pork fat is left in the pan, you may want to add some more oil, then turn down the heat to medium and fry the onion, garlic, chilli and lime juice and zest for a couple of minutes until fragrant.
  4. Now return the mince to the wok and stir to combine.
  5. Add the creamed coconut and allow it to melt down before adding the fish sauce, rice vinegar and soy sauce. Cook for a further 10 Minutes stirring occasionally.
  6. I like to serve the meat separately in a bowl, then all the lettuce, and toppings separately. That way every one can assemble their own food. This especially works well with my toddler.

Bon appetite – as my granddad would have said.


These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (July 2017), obviously the price will vary depending on the toppings you choose, and the main serving.. Hence, I have only costed the meat

Pork Mince £1.89 Sugar 5p
White onion 16p
Garlic Cloves 9p
Ginger 10p
Lime 35p
Red Chilli 20p
Creamed Coconut 25p
Fish Sauce 4p
Rice Vinegar 42p
Soy Sauce 25p
Mint 35p

Total cost £4.15without garnish or main ingredients


Chicken, Japanese, Salad

Wasabi Chicken Salad

So the Husband has started the Atkins diet and actually following it more or less. with a few exceptions. Hence, I cooked him the following meal this evening. I did realise after that a few of the things wasn’t really allowed in what is called phase 1 of the Atkins diet, but no matter what he will be eating much healthier than before…  (so that is okay) 😛

We did cook one of the chicken breasts without the wasabi peas so Toddler Blip could try it as well.. wasabi is a bit strong for him. – he was still NOT convinced!

wasabi salad 1

I could see this working very well with a slice of homemade bread, but that we will have to do another time. We only made half portion though. 🙂 as there is no way me and him and our lovely Toddler Blip, could eat all of this, but it would make a lovely lunch the following day – if bringing to work.  

Serves 4

100 g Wasabi peas
100 ml Milk
600 g Chicken breast or chicken thighs
160 g edamame beans (soy beans)
60 g Baby spinach leaves
1/2 a medium cucumber
1/4 of a Mooli finely sliced or a handful radishes finely sliced
Some steamed broccoli florets (optional)
1 Avocado sliced
1 tbsp Drained Pickled Ginger

1 Tablespoon Rice wine vinegar (any vinegar will do).
2 tbsp Sesame seeds, toasted
2 tbsp Mirin
2 tsp Soy Sauce (or Tamari)
1/2 teaspoon wasabi Paste
1 small clove Garlic


1.       Preheat the oven to 180C
2.       Pulse the Wasabi peas in a food processor until finely chopped, transfer to a bowl. Place milk in another bowl.
3.       Flatten the chicken slightly, then dip it in the milk and afterwards coat in wasabi peas, season with salt (be careful though, as the wasabi peas are slightly salty already).  Place the chicken on a baking tray (with baking paper). Cook for 15 min or until cooked through.
4.       Finely slice the radishes, make ribbons of the cucumber and finely slice the avocado.
5.       Steam the edamame beans until tender, then cool under cold water.  Combine with the spinach.
6.       Roast the sesame seeds in a pan.
7.       Combine all the ingredients for the dressing and add the toasted sesame seeds.
8.       Now arrange the edamame beans, spinach and the rest of the salad ingredients on a nice big platter.
9.       Finely slice the chicken and add to the salad, chop the ginger and put over.
10.   Serve with the dressing on the side.
11. EAT IT… mmmmmm

wasabi salad 2

Bon Appetite – as my granddad would have said.

100 g Wasabi peas (£2.00/200g x 100g)= £1.00
100 ml Milk (£1.00/ 2272 ml x 100ml) = 5p
500 g Chicken breast or chicken thighs = (£5.50/950g x500g)= £2.89
160 g edamame beans (soy beans)= (£2.00/600g x160g)= 53p
60 g Baby spinach leaves (£1.50/240g x60g ) = 38p
1/2 a medium cucumber = 25p
Handful radishes finely sliced, 1/2 packet from tesco 23p
1 Avocado sliced 44p
1 tbsp Drained Pickled Ginger (£1.99/190gx20p)=21p
1 Tablespoon Rice wine vinegar (any vinegar will do). (£1.99/150ml x 18ml) = 24p
2 tbsp Sesame seeds, toasted = (0.85p/100g x10g)= 9p
2 tbsp Mirin (£1.59 /150ml x 36ml) = 38p
2 tsp Soy Sauce (or Tamari) – (£1.70 /500ml x 14 ml) = 5 p
1/2 teaspoon wasabi Paste 18p
1 small clove Garlic 3p
= £6.95

You could make this dish much cheaper by replacing the Wasabi peas with salted peanuts. And instead of edamame beans use normal peas.

Use chicken thighs instead of the chicken breast (this is quite a good saving £2.73 a kg compared to £5.79 for chicken breast) and serve with homemade pita/naan bread.

This works well as a filler. I have also previously bought wasabi pouches/ginger in Yo Sushi at 5p each. One of each is enough for the recipe – you can walk in and just buy that.

In the meal my husband did today, he replaced normal radishes with Mooli (Japanese Radish) as we got one reduced in Tesco. You may also notice that one of the chickens doesn’t have the Wasabi peas on, this was down to the fact that my son will refuse the wasabi peas and as I’m currently unwell Wasabi doesn’t go too well with me either.


Chinese, Noodles

Very spicy Chinese hot pot style soup/noodles (A bit like Japanese Ramen)

For a while I have been craving Chinese style noodles, (being pregnant might have something to do with that). So today it was time to have it!

(A bit like Japanese Ramen) we serve it the day after having had a Chinese hot pot, and it’s kind of a leftover dish. But this time I made it from scratch. (Stock can be frozen). You could also cheat and use the finished stock bases.

As baby blip wasn’t impressed by the spicy part, he had plain noodles, carrots and cucumber and tried the peanuts (disgusting he said to the nuts). He also ate a pear, jubiii healthy!! And a yoghurt. -oh well one day he will enjoy mummies food (I hope).

It’s really hard to price this dish, as if using spices from supermarket it’s more expensive. The stock base it self can be made for around 27p per person (assuming you use the spices from Asian stores). The finished stock from Tesco is even cheaper £1.00, so around 12.5p per person but it doesn’t pack the same punch. 

With the toppings, I really can’t give you a price as it’s up to you what you put on and got available- I listed a whole range of things, just as a suggestion (I wouldn’t use all at ones, so pick and choose).

It Serves 6 -8

Home made-Stock ingredients

2 tbsp vegetable or groundnut oil (2p)

3-4 long dried Sichuan chillies or long dried chillies (10p)

1tbsp whole Sichuan peppercorns (10p)

1 tbsp chilli bean sauce (available from Asian grocers) (30p)

1 tbsp chilli sauce (20p)

3 pints hot water -more if you want it weaker.

1 lamb, vegetables or chicken stock cube (10p)

2 whole star anise (10p)

1 cinnamon stick (can be left out) (20p)

4 cloves garlic (12p)

2.5cm/1in piece fresh root ginger finely sliced (20p)

2 red chillies, de-seeded, sliced (20p)

6 dried Chinese mushrooms (can be left out) (30p)

2 tbsp chilli oil (can be left out) (20p)

The leftover bone from leg of lamb (can be left out). -not calculated into the main price, as not needed.

(£2.14 total cost) -this was difficult to calculate as I use spices from Asian shops so much cheaper than super markets

Soup base per person for 8= (£2.14/8)= 27p

+ whatever you want to put in the soup!

Soup ingredients

– this can vary depending on what you got in/fancy. I listed a whole range, but wouldn’t normally use it all together 
2 bok choy

1 red onion finely sliced

1 handful coriander finely chopped

3 spring onions (green and white part chopped)

1 block tofu

1 handful chopped peanuts

1 large carrot julienned

1/4 cucumber finely sliced

Noodles for 6-8 people

Chopped chilli for decoration

Boiled eggs

Leftover lamb meat

Finely sliced radishes

Daikon julienned



Etc etc.


  1. For the stock, add the oil in a pan then add the chillies and Sichuan peppercorns, cinnamon stick (if using) and stir fry for a few seconds, or until fragrant.
  2. Transfer to the slow cooker, now stir in the chilli bean sauce and chilli sauce and then pour in the stock. Add the star anise, Chinese mushroom (if using), garlic and ginger, chillies, chilli oil and the bone from the leg of lamb if using, now leave on high for 4 hours.
  3. Cook the noodles according to packet (if using). Then add to a bowl, put the spicy stock over and add The soup ingredients to top. In whatever way you like.

Bon appetite – as my granddad would have said!

Another hot pot stock that could be used

Chinese, Tofu

Mapo Tofu

I’m pregnant again and unfortunately been suffering from HG (Hyperemisis Gravidarum) since week 6.. I’m now, 33 weeks pregnant and near the end!! 

Initially I lost 7kg. However, with medication I have been feeling slightly better. 

Not long ago I really fancied / Craved Mapo Tofu..a Chinese dish.. one thing is to fancy something another is to eat it, when suffering from hg..

But here is the recipe…
Mapo tofu – for 4 portions around 63p a portion. I have tried costing it, but difficult to do accurately due to the fact that I buy the Chinese ingredients in a Chinese supermarket and in big portions xx


150 ml chicken broth (3p value Tesco cubes)
1 teaspoon cornstarch (3p)
2 teaspoons soy sauce (5p)
1 teaspoon sugar (5p)
1 tablespoon sesame oil (10p)
2 medium cloves of garlic, minced (6p)
2 teaspoons minced ginger (5p)
4 green onions white part only, minced (20p)
1/2 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns (5p)
100 g ground pork or beef (Morison £2.00 for 500) 40p
2 teaspoons doubanjiang (chili bean paste) (10p )
Approximately 340g of silken tofu, drained and cut into 2 cm cubes. (£1.30 from local Chinese shop).

= £2.42
+basic rice 10p

Total £2.52 which is 63p per person..

green part of green onions minced for garnish

1. Add the chicken stock, cornstarch, soy sauce and sugar to a small bowl and stir to combine.

2. Heat a wok or large frying pan until hot. Add the sesame oil, garlic, ginger and green onions and stir-fry with a spatula until fragrant. Add the Sichuan pepper and continue stir-frying.

3. Add the ground pork and use the spatula to break it up into small grains (you don’t want clumps of meat). When the pork is cooked, add the doubanjiang and stir to distribute.

4. Add the tofu, and toss to mix (if you stir it, the tofu will lose its shape).

5. Give the stock mixture a good stir to incorporate anything that may have settled, and then pour it over the pork and tofu. Toss to coat, then boil until the sauce thickens.

6. Garnished with the green parts of the green onions, then serve with hot rice.

mapo tofu


Bon  Apetit