Recent Hints

Full strength DIY 'Dettol' spray for just 2c a bottle!

A little supermarket research led me to making a huge saving on keeping germs at bay! When my two young children had a gastro bug, I needed anti-bacterial spray to clean up and stop the spread of germs, which vinegar didn't touch. The cheapest anti-bacterial spray I could find was Dettol anti-bacterial spray which cost $4.20 for 500ml. On reading the active ingredients it said it contained Benzalkonium Chloride 0.095%. Then, I saw that a bottle of Coles brand disinfectant was $1.40 for two litres. I read the ingredients and saw Benzalkonium Chloride 1%. The instructions said to dilute it in a ratio of 1:20, or 30ml to 600ml water. So I bought that one, made up the solution and put it in an old spray bottle I already had. It worked just as well and cost just over 2c per spray bottle of prepared solution, compared to $4.20 for the Dettol spray! While Coles brand disinfectant says it can only be used on “floors, walls, bathroom and toilet areas”, not in kitchen areas like the Dettol spray, for me these were the only areas that I needed to disinfect and worked a treat!

By: Freedom from the machine 2 responses in the members' forum

Many meals from one rolled roast

I have found a way to get maximum meals and value from one single rolled roast. I bought a rolled pork roast which was way too big for just the two of us. Not wanting to be living on leftovers all week, I decided to cut it in half before cooking it. As I was about to place the uncooked half in the freezer, I decided to cut it into thinner slices and use the meat as pork chops instead. This has worked well! I also plan to cut the rolled roast into chunks in future, to use for stir fry, sweet and sour pork and so on. Normally you could never get pork chops or stir fry for $7.99 a kilo! There's no reason why you couldn't use this method with other rolled roasts too.

By: Jaye 5 responses in the members' forum


Hottest Hints

Freeze your own grated cheese

To enjoy the convenience of pre-grated cheese, buy a block and grate your own - much cheaper than spending money on those costly supermarket bags!

Buy a block of cheese, grate it into a large ziplock bag and add a rounded tablespoon of cornstarch to the bag. Shake well.

This keeps the cheese from sticking together in a lump and you can store it in the freezer for as long as you want. It thaws almost instantly!

By: Paula Scott 29 responses in the members' forum

Sometimes we all have to just make do!

At 12 years old, my daughter is already helping our family save money on snacks using her Simple Savings skills! With five children in the house, we do a big shop just once a month and are careful to make our food and treats last until the next shop. Recently we were nearing the end of the month and getting low on food. I arrived home one day to find my daughter baking biscuits. 'They're Doos!' she told me. 'You always said if there was nothing in the cupboard, we had to make do, so I made Doos!'

The name has stuck in our house and now whenever we have 'nothing' in the house for lunch boxes, snacks or afternoon tea, she just makes a batch of 'Doos' using whatever she can find in the pantry to 'make do' with. She is proving to be very inventive with her recipes and is turning out to be a real baker. She'll turn out simple but delicious treats such as honey joys, choc chip biscuits, Anzac biscuits, pikelets and pancakes in no time at all! She really has shown that you can make something from almost anything in the pantry and would be wonderful at the $21 Challenge! Here is the recipe for her latest creation, called 'Sort of Scones!'

1 cup oats
1 cup self raising flour
1/2 cup sugar
125g butter
1 egg
1/4 cup milk

Mix all ingredients together, then roll into balls and place on a greased baking tray. Bake in a moderate oven (around 180C) for 10 minutes.

I couldn't be prouder of my daughter's efforts to help us save money and keep everyone well fed. Whenever we think our parenting has a lot to be desired, it's moments like this which prove we have to be doing something right - good things do rub off too!

By: Jenny Cuffe 34 responses in the members' forum