Sunday, 11 January 2015

Books, budget and Bambi

Now that I have some job security I can start making plans for this year and get some sort of budget in place.  I've been making lists and sorting them into needs and wants.  Sadly, the recent spell of high winds and stormy weather has left me needing to replace my back door a little earlier than I wanted.  Hopefully it shouldn't be too expensive and will improve heat retention. As far as my wee house is concerned, most of what I have planned are wants eg a dishwasher!  Luckily OH is fairly handy so he fit a dishwasher into my small kitchen without much cost.  I just need to do my research on prices.

Flowers from my colleagues on getting the temp job. Thanks for your lovely comments on my previous post :-)

Now for the Bambi bit!  Anyone eat venison?  It's lower in cholesterol than beef and just as tasty, maybe even better.  But some people can't get past the Bambi connection!!  OH bought this large haunch on impulse in our local butcher before Christmas.  It cost £30 (eek!!) and weighed 2.3kg.  It's wild venison and came from an estate in Perthshire 10 miles from here, very near where I used to live.  It was bought frozen so I kept it in the freezer.  I defrosted it and roasted it with just salt and pepper last night and made a simple gravy from the juices.  It was delicious! I can honestly say it's the best roast joint I've ever cooked :-) It's already generously fed 3 of us (OH went back for thirds!!) I sliced it and removed all fat and sinewy bits and filled 2 casserole dishes.  I reckon there are at least another 10 servings to be had from it.

I then took all those fatty sinewy bits and simmered them in a little red wine and water to make more gravy.  Waste not, want not!!

This is the smaller dish of meat I kept for myself.  It's just melt in the mouth tender.
Now for the book bit of my title.  Like most people I also started the new year by saying I must read more books.  In my internet travels I came across a reading challenge I rather liked.  I've set up a page (see bar across top) to record the books I read.  I think this list will challenge me to read books I wouldn't even have considered reading.  I know a few folks who are giving it a go too.  Have a look at some of the suggested categories :-)


  1. Congratulations on the job security - it must be so hard to justify spending if you don't know if you'll have a wage in a few weeks.

    We don't eat a lot of venison mainly because it's hard to get hold of fresh and organic in my area (the Midlands) at a price that doesn't make my eyes water. However at Christmas I ordered a kilo with my Christmas meat order, and we wound up having it for Christmas dinner. Because it's so lean there's very little waste, and it produced succulent, richly flavoured meat for my husband and I. We ate more than we normally would, and then got a further four portions out of it. At £20 that's not a bargain by most frugal people's standards, but I think it compares pretty favourably with the overall cost of an organic turkey at Christmas and was much cheaper than buying goose or duck, given how little waste there was. With a little less greed it would have served 8, so I'm definitely going to buy some more and freeze it for special occasions. That or I might have to start taking potshots at the deer I see through the mist when taking the dogs out for morning walks!

  2. Totally agree it's not a frugal bargain but I guess the secret is to stretch it out with Yorkshire puddings or something. I really object to the cost of turkeys at Christmas and have only once in over 20 years cooked one to perfection. They're always dry no matter what tricks I try! So maybe I should try harder to convince everyone that venison for Christmas dinner is a better option!

  3. OH would have loved the venison but as I am not a meat-eater I never buy it. Perhaps I should try to get him a piece and freeze some to eke it out though.