Well, if you’ve read my posts from earlier this week, on Monday and Tuesday, you know that there are coupon books valid right now for both the US and UK. There are some decent deals to be had certainly. And in the case of the UK, you don’t want to hang about because the current coupons are only good through October 30.
Thistle Chunky Breaded Haddock Fillets – I bought this awhile ago, when there was a coupon for it; which was the reason I bought it too. Turns out that I’m glad they had the coupon because the haddock is really good. The little hunks of haddock fillet are thick, but not very big. If I were really hungry I think I could eat two of them, and Dave definitely can. The fish remains tender, moist, and flaky after cooking too. The crunchy breading is really yummy, as well. And it does get crunchy. I was amazed at how crunchy the breading actually gets while cooking, which isn’t always the case with breaded fish. The breading isn’t flavoured with anything and doesn’t have any particular taste of its own, but the crunchiness makes up for that. I think you could probably add a bit of your own flavour to the breading by adding a dash of ground cayenne or lemon pepper before cooking. I haven’t tried that, but I think it should work. The fish was really good though and aside from the breading getting crunchy, I guess, that is the main thing that matters. It’s nice to be able to find a decent frozen fish item since it is much easier to keep some frozen fish on hand as compared to getting fresh fish during the week. Since the fish is cooked right from frozen, it is perfect for a mid-week dinner. You can pop the fish in the oven (it takes about 25 – 30 minutes to cook) while you make the rest of your meal. I like that kind of easy preparation during the week when I’m not feeling like cooking anything too time consuming. 1.25 kg for £5.49 (£6.99 – £1.50 coupon) (US: $8.60). Item #: 0053879.
Microplane Box Grater and Zester Set – I have, or had at least, the lousiest box grater ever. It’s small and hard to hold and is always unsteady when I’m grating anything on it too. So, when I saw this nice box grater at Costco, I decided it was certainly worth it. There are a couple of things that I really like about it: it’s good sized, very sharp, has four usable blades, and has a very comfortable handle. The blades are all stainless steel, and the whole thing is dishwasher safe too. It’s very good sized, like an adult sized grater, compared to my little kiddie version that I did have. Each side of the grater has a very usable blade design too, so four in all: extra course grate, fine grate, medium ribbon, and slicing blade. Since I didn’t bring my mandolin with me to London, I think it will be nice to have the slicing blade for things like cucumbers. The handle comes well above the grater and had a rubberized covering to make it comfortable on your hand, plus the grater box has legs that allow for some space under the grater but they also have the rubberized coating to make them less likely to slide all over when you’re grating something. Another nice feature is all about ease of cleaning. The extra fine grater plate removes so that it can be cleaned individually as well as give you better access to the other blades. But wait there’s more! They’ve also included a handheld zester/grater, one of those long thin kind. This grater/zester also has little feet on the front to make it a little easier on you when using it, plus it has a very nice, big rubberized handle. This one is also completely dishwasher safe too. And lastly, both graters have protective covers so that you don’t accidentally cut yourself when it is in the cabinet. Since these are made in the US, I’m betting you can find this set at Costco US locations too. It is certainly a bit on the pricey side, I think, but I don’t know how much a decent box grater and zester really are to be honest. When I checked on Amazon, the zester/grater by itself is almost as much as this set, with a price of £17.00 – £20.00, and the box grater by itself is right around £35.00. For a set just like this, it is £36.99, so considerably more than I paid at Costco as it turns out. Apparently, this isn’t pricey for this kind of quality grater. £19.99 (US: $31.32). Item #: 0099652.
Curtis Sultanas – I’m not really a huge fan of raisins, like Sun Maid, because they’re always too hard and dry. However, I do like these very nice juicy sultana raisins. I picked these up at Costco to add to my muesli and to just eat plain, as well. I must admit that I did have a bit of hesitation about purchasing these though because the bag is so big at 2 kilograms. I’ve had these for a couple of weeks now, and despite having a decent sized scoop of them every day, I feel like I’ve barely made a dent in the bag. Luckily though, they’re good until next August. Surely that’s plenty of time to eat my giant bag of sultanas. For those of you that aren’t full of raisin knowledge, a sultana is actually a particular type of seedless, white grape. And clearly, it’s also how people refer to the raisins made from these grapes as well. Sometimes sultana raisins are also known as ‘golden raisins’, though not all golden raisins are actually made with sultana grapes. It’s very confusing and muddled, obviously. But these raisins definitely have a lighter, more golden color, than ‘normal’ raisins that I’m used to having. And of course, they are way more juicy and moist. The sweetness is fairly intense if you eat very many of them without anything else. They would definitely put an abrupt end of any kind of sweet tooth craving you might be having. I like them though because of the juiciness and the nice sweet taste. They really are perfect to add to my morning muesli to just add a little extra sweetness. Neither Dave nor I like raisins in our cookies, but I think these would be perfect for that purpose. Or maybe you’re planning on whipping up a fruit cake or stollen for the holidays and these would be great for either of those items too. 2 kilograms for £3.95 (US: $6.19). Item #: 0111416.
Scotch Beef Carvery Rib Joint – Oh, there’s nothing that Dave and I like better than a giant hunk of meat for dinner. I wouldn’t normally get a rib joint because they seem like a lot of meat, but by the time it was cooked and we had cut off the bone and sliced it into two pieces it wasn’t that outrageous. Those bones weigh a lot more than I would have thought apparently. I’m glad that we decided to get this too because it was very delicious. Since it is so thick, the inside stays very juicy and tender, which is perfect for us. Since this isn’t my normal cut of meat, I wasn’t really sure about how to prepare it, but I consulted my recently purchased Ginger Pig Meat Book and got easy guidelines to follow for a nice tender piece of meat. So, here’s what I did: I cooked it at 220 C for 25 minutes, at which point I turned the oven down to 170 C and cooked it for 30 minutes per kilogram for rare, but if you wanted it medium you’d cook it for 55 minutes per kilogram. So, in my case I needed to cook it for 45 minutes since I wanted my 1.5 kilograms of meat to be rare. All together, that was just 70 minutes of total cooking time for me. I had decided to have some roasted vegetables with it too, so I just added them all to the bottom of the pan and rested my rib joint on top and everything turned out perfectly. The cookbook has a much more complicated rub than I used. I went with a simple salt, pepper, and garlic powder mix to rub all over the the meat before I cooked it. It had a great flavour and, as I said, was very tender and yummy. This would be perfect for a nice Sunday roast or for a fairly painless meal during the week even. 1.485 kilograms for £16.32 (£10.99 per kilogram) (US: $25.57). Item #: 0040119.