Ariel Does Food in England: Part 1

Because Boyfriend is trapped in the states without me, I have to somehow fill my emotional void through some productive means. That means is food. No, that does not mean I’m eating excessively or obsessively, it just means I’m focusing a lot of my energy into finding the healthiest, cheapest options I possibly can. These are the stakes: I get 112 pounds a week (16 a day), and my goal is to spend less than that every day and save up as much extra money as possible for important things like cute tops, shoes, and wine. Do you know how life changing it is to be able to indulge in my love for wine whenever I feel like it? It’s like if chocolate was illegal. Try to wrap your head around that first before I continue. So chocolate is illegal, and suddenly it’s not, and you can now have a bite when you go out with friends and savor it and feel super relaxed and de-stressed. Yeah. It’s like that.
So here’s the thing, in addition to the 16 pounds a day, I get a free breakfast in the hotel-esque place I’m staying. I also started, thanks to my wonderful grandparents, with 53 pounds. My school also supplied me with an Oyster card with over 100 pounds on it for using the Tube. All of these things have been incredibly helpful when saving money, but still, I can help you eat freaking cheap here.
Sometimes I only spend about 8 pounds a day. For some people that’s one meal, but not for this girl. And if you wanna know my secret to saving money on food, oh, I will tell you. If I’d started doing this earlier it would have been way easy to just post day by day, but I’ll give a brief overview for now. Just an FYI the exchange rate right now is 1 pound = $1.60
After the jump, find out what tips/tricks I’ve learned so far.
           Split food! Or be smart about your leftovers. My England Partner in Crime and I love to split everything because 1) it’s cheaper, 2) healthier! I actually finish what’s on my plate, feel satisfied, and don’t have to worry about eating more just so I don’t waste food! 3) More money to try other awesome food later.
If you can make two meals out of something, by god, do it. While walking back from a pub, I discovered a Thai place that has 3.50 pound take away buffet. You fill a plastic container (reasonably sized!) as much as you can for the set price of 3.50. Hell, yes. I got two meals!
3.       Take away in England is always cheaper .They don’t want you to eat in their establishment ever. They despise your presence. They offer you so many rewards to get the fuck outta their restaurant. It’s great! For example, there’s this yummy sushi place a couple blocks down from me where you can get various boxed lunches for between 3-5 pounds! Today I got the large sushi bento box for 5 pounds. It had 6 pieces of salmon/cucumber role, 2 larger fish roles (they were yummy but I forget what type of fish), two salmon sashimi, 1 shrimp sashimi. SO FILLING! The Indian place that I have fallen in love with, which happens to be right next door to the sushi, offers a lunch special for 3 pounds that includes two types of curry, rice, naan, and I believe one other thing I can’t remember. For serious.
4.      There is a store called Tesco—all I can think when I read ‘Tesco’ is ‘Tesco—where the Tescs go. Thanks for ruining me, Petco—and it is England’s gift to the universe. They had so many delicious looking pre-made meals and various “salads” (greek olives and feta, tabule, couscous) for deals like 2 for 3.50 pounds. Um, yes please. I bought two packs of soup for a pound each, and there’s 4 soup packets in each pack. A huge bottle of water is 81 pence (basically pennies.) They have mini 1 pound sushi snacks. Because Tesco is so cheap, I have a minor concern that a 3rd world toddler is somehow assembling and packaging these various meals. Until I am faced with hard proof, though, I will continue to consume cheap and delicious foods.
5.      Last night at tesco I bought a couple meals worth of Indian food for under 4 pounds. A ready-made thing of rice with at least two servings, and a ready-made potato curry with also at least two servings, as well as a pack of 4 samosas.
6   Walking everywhere to get your food burns even more calories! I love it!

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