Frugal Living

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Extreme money saving in the Kitchen!

What would life be like without the Dishwasher and Fridge !

You have to look at going without in the kitchen in two ways 1. Appliances to save us time are keeping their costs down pretty well and 2. they give us more time to do the things we'd like to be doing or simply speed between work hours etc.

So let's have a look at the most common Kitchen Appliances and just ask ourselves how important they are and could we go without them in terms of cost and convenience.......

The Fridge and Freezer

The old 'when I was young' scenario comes in here. My family didn't have a Fridge or Freezer until I was about 6 years old and I can recall the walk in Larder to this day, the Meat Box, bowl of water to put the milk in and the netting over the butter and cheese etc.
The difference now is that we don't have so much of the Butcher, Fishmonger and Greengrocer driving around the houses selling from the Van, this making us more prone to buy food in bulk and store in the Fridge and Freezer.
But in theory we could, with a Larder, return to the old ways, buy more on a regular basis etc.

Meeting somewhere between, we could go smaller with our Fridges and Freezers thus saving on the original outlay and in electricity used. Remember that if you have an old Fridge and / or Fridge Freezer, it may seem to be running OK., but is probably costing you a lot more to run.
Do we really need one - Yes, but with running costs in mind

The Dishwasher

Of all the Kitchen Appliances, I guess we have to be honest and say this is probably the least important, although if you are in a working family, the time saving is considerable. Also, we have to take into account the cost of water used if washing up manually plus electricity cost of running water to rinse the plates etc. by hand.
Do we really need one - No!

The Washing Machine and Tumble Dryer

Once again we look back 40 or 50 years ago when these items were a luxury, we managed then so in theory we could manage without them now.
Also once again, we look at these items as fairly big time saving products especially when you're working and have a family. Like living on your own, you could wash your clothes by hand and in the summer hang them out to dry and in the winter hang them in a heated room.
Do we really need them - The Washing machine more than the Tumble Dryer, but back to basics, the answer would be No. The main thing is to use them less frequently and on cooler washes.

The Microwave

The Microwave Oven is a recent addition to Kitchen Appliances and is the most environmentally friendly way of cooking. Where we go wrong with a Microwave is that we tend to buy food designed for quick Microwave cooking and this is always most certainly more expensive. With a good Microwave Cooking Book, we can save quite a lot over the costs of Oven and Stove Cooking.
Do we really need one - No, but environmentally friendly wise plus cost effectiveness - Yes

The Electric Kettle and Toaster

Theses are both time saving and items where you don't have to worry about forgetting to switch off the Oven Ring or Grill. There is a theory that Fast Boil Kettles are cheaper to run than normal speed - this is wrong, the Fast Boil takes less time but uses more electricity, so it's cancelled out.
Do we really need them - No to both, but both probably save on fuel if you have a electric Cooker because of the time it takes to heat up.

The Cooker

There are three alternatives here; Gas, Electric or Solid Fuel Stoves. To be fair, we have to eat, so this Appliance is really essential to our needs. The savings one could make are more in the original outlay and maybe cooking ahead for the next day along with today's meal if you see what I mean. For those working, a Slow Cooker is economical or you could in theory just use a microwave / oven.
Do we really need one - Yes, but we could use a good Microwave / Oven

I've purposely left out things such as Food Mixers, Blenders, Electric Knives etc, as these are, in my mind, all completely pointless!

So what does this tell us, nothing you didn't know already I suspect, but there's the 'what if' situation - you're all electric and a massive power problem in a rural area cuts everything out for a month, could you survive that, yes you could. It would be interesting to try it out !!

I shall now take the money and run!!


Convenience and more time to spend elsewhere


Great storage, but at a cost

"A good kitchen should be sufficiently remote from the principal apartments of the house, that the members, visitors, or guests of the family, may not perceive the odour incident to cooking, or hear the noise of culinary operations." Mrs. Isabella Beeton, Book of Household Management, 1861

What don't we
really need?
More Relative Pages
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Fridge Freezer Running Costs per annum

Grade / Cost
A++ Less than £14.04
A+ = £17.43
A = £23.48
B = £31.47
C = £39.94
D = £45.99
E = £50.83
F = £56.88
G = More than £61.00

(June 2010)

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