Last day of the £7 a week challenge and I can’t say it’s been easy. I’ve run out of bread and most of the other ingredients. I still have plenty of rice and spaghetti left, plus some of the tinned carrots. Next time I probably wouldn’t buy carrots but at 20p a can it was a cheap way to get some vitamins. A budget this low really isn’t sustainable for long and I know I didn’t get nearly enough vegetables. I also have 2/3 of the jar of curry sauce to use up so maybe I’ll cook a chicken curry next week, but it’ll need punching up a bit with flavour as it was a little bland. Even though I was living on such a tight budget I still managed to buy free range eggs, so there really is no excuse for people to not buy them.
Today I have Arancini, an Italian dish normally made from leftover risotto. I use the last crust of bread to make breadcrumbs, and use a little milk instead of egg to help them stick. Try not to move them around too much when frying or they will break up. I also use the last of the spinach to make a dip and the rest of the tomatoes to make a salsa. I use lemon juice but lime would’ve been better.
Toast and Jam
Tomato & Mozzarella toasted sandwich
Arancini with Salsa and creamed spinach
Adapted from Delicious Magazine
The saved 1/3 of rice
A little flour
A little milk
A few squares of mozzarella cheese
Cooking oil, for deep-frying
The crust of loaf grated for fresh bread crumbs
Using slightly wet hands, divide the rice into golf ball size pieces.
Take 1 piece of rice and flatten to a small disc. Put a pieces of the mozzarella into the centre and shape the rice around the filling into a ball, patching up any gaps with a little more rice, if necessary.
Repeat to make as many as you can.
Heat a deep-fat fryer or some oil in a large, deep saucepan to 180°C. (To test the temperature, a cube of bread added to the oil should brown in 40 seconds.)
While the oil is heating up, coat the rice balls in a little milk, then the bread crumbs and deep-fry in batches for 1-2 minutes, until crisp and golden.
Drain on kitchen paper and serve hot or cold with the dips.
Creamed Spinach Dip
Half the last 1/4 of the onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoons plain flour
100ml full fat milk
1/2 Tin of spinach
Heat the butter in a saucepan, then add the onion and cook for 5 minutes until softened. Stir in the flour and cook for 2 minutes, then slowly start to whisk in the milk.
When it has all been incorporated, gently cook for 5 minutes until the sauce has thickened.
Place the spinach in a clean dishcloth, squeeze out any excess liquid, then stir into the sauce and gently heat, season well.
Tomato Salsa Dip
The last Half of the finely chopped Onion leftover from the other dip
1/2 a tomato Chopped finely
A few tablespoons of the tinned tomato
A pinch of mixed herbs, salt and pepper
A squeeze of lime or lemon juice
Mix all the ingredients together and season until it tastes how you like it. If you have some coriander you can chop that in too.