Most of us can grow various bits and pieces from the garden but we still find ourselves buying plenty of food from various shops, markets etc. I quite like to cook so I don't mind doing a few extras if it saves me buying it down the track. There are obvious things like tomato sauce, pasta, mayonnaise, stock and breadcrumbs for example, but what else do you or have you made before? I make all the dairy based things like Yoghurt, cheese and butter on occasion but given I don't have a cow I'd have to buy an incredible amount of milk to achieve enough for the family. I still buy bread but I always make a loaf on the weekend. I have been making vinegar for 4 years now and have about a lifetime supply of red wine and cider vinegar. My next projects are to get back into making beer. I used to make it regularly but lost touch with it. Small goods is another big project I'm working on. Currently in the process of building a cold smoker and curing chamber. I aim to make my own bacon, ham and salami. I'm looking for ideas... What else can I make instead of buying?

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  • The only thing I can suggest is freezing crop for use down the track.

    Some needs blanching for a moment in hot water, like beans (don't overdo it like I did last time - they come out limp but still useful). Corn can just go straight into a bag with or without the husk.

    • Besides the figs, banana's and mulberries I've never really had an over supply of things to freeze which is unfortunate!
      • You have three times the number of people to feed than I do Craig, stuff get's eaten quicker.

  • I do my own jerky.  That stuff costs almost $100 a kilo!  You gotta be kidding me.  I don't like bought jerky either Craig.  I'll have to give you a crack at mine - you get to flavour it to your own taste so it should in theory be perfect. 

    Can't remember the last time I bought pesto. 

    I buy cheap cheese to cook with and I also only tend to do breads on the weekend.  Same with pasta, I love to make it occasionally but not mid-week.

    If I wasn't so busy, I'd do all my own chilli sauce and relish.  They're pretty easy too. I also have a year's supply of different jams in the pantry.  I could do my own peanut paste, but I tend to be too lazy.  Mine is certainly nicer than the shop bought stuff.

    Oh, and of course I don't buy booze. 

    • I'd be interested to try, never had a home made one. I've always much preferred the flavour and texture of melt in your mouth type meats like Prosciutto, Jamon and Salami rather than chewy and dry jerky. That said I've never tried a good one.
  • Yes good example. I find it staggering that many of those deli items are so expensive. I saw some for $14.99 for 100g the other day! Easiest thing in the world to make.

    Mustard is another really easy one to make. I should get a dehydrater, they seem interesting. I struggle to get into jerky and the like but I love dehydrated fruit, especially pineapple!
    • and they are damn noisy. 

      • Which?

        • My 5 tier one - I have to use it in the laundry over night.  Yeah, it's a top motor.

    • There are often el cheepo electric dehydrators for sale at shops like Homeart. Around $40 will see you with a 4 or 5 tray bottom-motor dehydrator. Mine is working very well. The top-motor ones are much noisier. Do the drying outside if you can, cuts down on the hot air inside the house. We've got one for small jobs and when we have a glut of Bananas, the 12-tray oriental knock-off of an Excalibur did us proud.

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