We’re a third of the way there! I’m honestly surprised I’ve made it this far through BEDA. You never know, I might actually… finish this thing? *frantically throws own hands at some wood*
Today, I want to do something a bit different: not quite a recipe post, but almost. Basically, this is a quick round up of some of the cheapest meals on my rota – stuff that costs, hopefully literally, pennies to make, but is still filling and satisfying. If you’re a student, then like me, you probably rely quite heavily on your student loan; mine’s pretty much run out at this point, so it felt like apt timing. Here are a few cheap, but still tasty and filling, meals to make around this kind of year.
Mini Roast Dinner
If you do a veggie roast – and I’m a vegetarian anyway – it halves the price of whacking a roast together. You just need some carrots, a parsnip or two, and a few tatties; anything else is extra. Chop as much as you like into similarly sized pieces, stick it all on the same roasting tray, cover it all in oil, salt and pepper, and roast. If you have any, a chopped up onion and a few garlic cloves will add loads of flavour – they’ll be absolutely black by the time you take everything out the oven, but I absolutely love them regardless. If you’ve got a quid extra or so, I’ve recently fallen in love with these giant Yorkshire puddings from Tesco – so roast your veg, whip some cheap and cheerful gravy, and whack it all in the centre. Not quite a full roast dinner, but comforting and delicious enough you won’t really mind.
Brassic Bean Wraps
Again, this one is super easily customised: this works just in a saucepan on the hob, and/or I’ve used my slow cooker. All you need is a few tins of mixed beans – pretty much whatever takes your fancy from that aisle will work, within reason – and as much cheap veg as you like. Onions and bell peppers are always a winner, plus any spices you have in the back of your cupboard – crushed chillies, paprika, maybe some turmeric. Heat it all up, stick in a wrap (supermarket own brand, natch), and enjoy – you can’t really go too far wrong.
Dad’s Pasta Bake
My Dad does the best pasta bake in the whole world, ever. I’ve still not quite worked out how he does it, but this is my very best imitation – I’ll warn you now, though, you’ll make more portions of this than you intend to. So either get some mates round or be prepared to eat leftovers for lunch for at least two days. For this, you’ll want about two cans of cheap tinned tomatoes, and at least one red pepper, one onion, and a few mushrooms, plus some cheese. The secret ingredient, though, is garlic – either grate or press about four garlic cloves into the sauce. It’s pretty simple to put together: boil your pasta, pop it in an oven proof dish, cover with your sauce (made up of all the veg just mentioned plus whatever else you fancy popping in), top with cheese, and bake. I do mine at about 200 celsius for an hour; seems like loads I know, but I promise, the cheese will be so brown and delicious and it makes the sauce so thick and rich. Definitely worth the effort.
Happy BEDA, pals. Do let me know if you want more cooking posts – I’m a huge foodie, and I’d love to put something a bit more swish together next time, if you’d like to read it. I’ll take pictures and give you real measurements and everything.