Fuel Poverty Day 1


Salmon and cous cous • Photo by PhilAshley.com

So we decided to start this challenge off nice and easy with steamed fish and couscous mixed with salad ingredients. We’ve also used a ginger dressing to zing it up a bit. I have a bamboo steamer that I originally bought for decoration, but use now and again for Dim Sum. Just make sure that it doesn’t have any metal pins holding it together.

I like many people don’t really use the microwave much, maybe starting jacket potatoes, reheating leftovers, and the odd bag of popcorn. So this week will be a bit of a challenge. I’ve looked around online to find some recipes, and the one’s from America, I have converted cups to grams, as that’s what I use. But look online for measurement converters if you need to.


Toast and jam or porridge

Cheese salad sandwich

Steamed salmon on couscous mix with salad and ginger dressing

Coffee cake


Steamed Salmon and Couscous with ginger dressing

Serves 4


4 pieces of fresh or defrosted Salmon Fillets
100g Couscous
150ml of boiling water
2 Spring Onions
1 tomato
2 inches of Cucumber

Plus Ginger dressing ingredients

1/2 an inch of Ginger grated
Finely slice Clove of Garlic
1/2 a Red Chill,
1/2 a Spring Onion
3 tablespoons Olive Oil
2 of Soy Sauce
1/2 the Juice of a Lemon.


Firstly finely slice a spring onion, the cucumber and a tomato all deseeded, and put to one side.

Secondly boil a kettle and pour it into a measuring jug to 150ml then pour this onto 100g of couscous in a bowl and cover with a plate to keep the steam in. Leave for at least 10 minutes, or until you are ready.

Meanwhile In the microwaveable steamer lay a sheet of grease proof paper and with a knife make a few slits in it. (This will keep the wooden slats clean, but also let the steam through). Put the salmon on top of the paper and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Microwave on high power for 2 minutes then check how the fish is cooking, and add another minute or two if you need to.

While this is cooking make your ginger dressing by mixing all the ingredients together then taste to Check the flavour and adjust accordingly.

When the couscous is ready mix in to it the sliced salad and dish it up onto plates. Lay the salmon on top and drizzle on the ginger dressing.

Serve straight away.

Save a little salmon if you can, by cutting a small piece off each fillet to have for sandwiches later in the week. Still leave in the steamer to cook at the same time. You can make this go further by mashing it up with mayonnaise and sliced cucumber, (just like a Marks & Spencers sandwich filling).

Coffee Cake • Photo by PhilAshley.com

I also made Coffee cake in the microwave, which is something I would never normally do. I added Walnuts to mine, but maybe chocolate buttons or other decorations would work.


Coffee cake

Makes 10 slices


85g Butter
85g Sugar
2 Eggs
85g Self-Raising Flour
2 Teaspoon Instant Coffee Powder
Small handful Walnut pieces (optional)

Ingredients for the Buttercream

1 Teaspoon Instant Coffee Powder
1 Teaspoon Milk
25g Soft Butter
100g Icing Sugar


Firstly beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.

Gradually add the eggs followed by the sieved flour and instant coffee powder.

Transfer to a microwave-proof dish and cook on full power for 2 minutes.

Reduce the power to medium and cook for 2 minutes.

After 4 minutes, check to see if the cake is cooked – it should be risen and spring back when touched.

If it needs a bit longer, cook on medium for 1 minute more at a time, checking after each minute until the cake is cooked. Although remember it will keep cooking after you take it out.

Remove and allow to cool.

Meanwhile, make the coffee butter cream. Dissolve the coffee in the milk, then add the butter and icing sugar. Mix until smooth, then spread over the top of the cake

Some of the free events happening in London this weekend, Westminster Abbey and Leicester Square, Part of Lumiere festival.



Budget food ; Eat for less  ; Eat for a pound  ; eat below the line ; Healthy eating ; Eating cheap . cheap recipes ; food poverty ; food waste ; delicious food ; foodbank ; Eat well for Less ; Frugal . Thrifty ; money saving tips ; easy tasty recipes ; cheap and cheerful recipes; cheap eats ; cheap and healthy ; budget recipes ; cheap family meals ; cheap meals for students ; cheap recipes ; Thrifty eating ; budget dinner recipes ; Quick, easy, cheap meals ; healthy recipes for two ; cheap recipes for 2 ; budget recipes for students ;