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Money Saving Meals :  Shop Smart, Cook Smart, Eat Smart - 100 Budget Stretching Recipes and Suggested Weekly Menu Plans - Philippa Sandall

Money Saving Meals

Shop Smart, Cook Smart, Eat Smart - 100 Budget Stretching Recipes and Suggested Weekly Menu Plans

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Published: 1st November 2011
Format: ePUB

Money Saving Meals shows how to make meals that take us back to the basics so that we eat well and save money.

It is about feeding yourself and your family cheaply and cooking meals that aren't complicated, expensive or require a visit to a specialist deli. Feeding four people well on $10 is not that hard. You will find you'll be eating less processed foods so you won't just save money, you will be eating healthy as well.

Money Saving Meals isn't about whipping up instant meals from a can. It is about returning to old ways, when a meal was savoured and the smell of it cooking brought the whole household together.

The Sydney authors of Money Saving Meals are also fans of the MasterChef TV show, but set themselves a health and price challenge! Instead of Julie’s Pan-fried Steak and Chips with Tarragon Salt costing $35 a portion and dripping with fat, they devised a similar dish costing only $7.50 per serve and much healthier!

The following is a sample recipe from Money Saving Meals:


This sang (or san) choy bau uses economical shiitake mushrooms not water chestnuts. You can add grated carrot and zucchini to the mixture or grate whatever other vegetables you have on hand.

About 30 mins to prepare, including standing time, and 20 mins to cook.

Makes 4 serves

4 dried shiitake mushrooms

1/2 teaspoon chicken stock powder

1 tablespoon canola or peanut oil

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed

2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger

300 g chicken, pork or turkey mince

125 g vermicelli (2 squares from the pack with 4 squares)

1 tablespoon soy sauce

2 green onions, sliced

8 iceberg lettuce leaves

Place the mushrooms in a heatproof bowl, cover with boiling water and stand for 15 minutes. Drain (reserving 1/2 cup of the mushroom liquid), chop the mushrooms finely, discarding the stalks if you like. Mix the reserved mushroom liquid with the chicken stock powder.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan and cook the onion for 5 minutes over medium heat or until soft. Stir in the garlic, ginger and mince and cook, stirring to break up the mince, for about 2-3 minutes or until the mince is cooked through. Add the mushrooms and stock, bring to the boil, then simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Put the vermicelli noodles in a heatproof bowl, cover with boiling water, leave for a minute to soften, then drain immediately in a colander and cut into small pieces with kitchen scissors.

Add the soy sauce, green onion and half the chopped noodles to the mince mixture and stir to combine. Make the salad.

Spoon the filling into a lettuce leaf and roll up to serve, or place in lettuce cups (if they are nice-shaped leaves) or serve it all on the table and let people help themselves along with scoops of salad.


100 g snow peas, thickly sliced on the diagonal

1 carrot, grated

2 green onions, sliced

1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds

2 tablespoons canola oil

1 teaspoon sesame oil

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar

1 1/2 teaspoons sugar

Blanch the snow peas in boiling water in a heat proof bowl (let them stand for 1 minute). Drain and combine in a large serving bowl with the carrot, green onions, sesame seeds and remaining noodles. Whisk together the canola oil, sesame oil, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar and sugar (making sure that the sugar dissolves) and toss through the salad.

The following is another sample recipe from Money Saving Meals:


Mushrooms are a mighty option for meatless meals. With this risotto, you don't have to stand around ladling hot stock and stirring. Cheating, yes, as it's more like a pilaf. We splurged on the porcini mushrooms they really transform a dish made with button mushrooms and they don't blow the budget.

About 20 mins to prepare, including soaking time, and 30 mins to cook.

Makes 4 serves

20 g dried porcini mushrooms

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, peeled and finely chopped

350 g button mushrooms, wiped and sliced

1 1/2 cups short- or medium-grain rice

3 cups hot chicken stock

1 teaspoon lemon zest

1/2 cup finely chopped parsley

1/3 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese

Soak the porcini mushrooms in 1/2 cup water for 10-15 minutes, then chop the mushrooms finely and reserve the liquid to tip into the risotto with the stock.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan (you need one with a lid) over medium heat and saute the onion and garlic for 4-5 minutes until the onion has softened, then add the button mushrooms. Cook over low heat for a minute or two then stir in the porcini mushrooms.

Tip in the rice, stirring to coat well, and cook for a minute or two until it just turns translucent. Pour in the stock along with the porcini liquid and stir well to mix. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer gently for 15-20 minutes until the rice is creamy and al dente - lifting the lid to give it a stir occasionally.

Remove from the heat, season with freshly ground black pepper, stir in the lemon zest, parsley and Parmesan and serve hot.

ISBN: 9780733623806
ISBN-10: 0733623808
Series: The Hungry Student
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 208
Published: July 2009
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 21.1 x 15.5  x 2.0
Weight (kg): 0.3
Edition Number: 1