I am a weird, vulture like stingy foreigner

I am a weird, vulture like stingy foreigner

This morning The Telegraph published a piece titled “My late night supermarket shopping saves me £2,800 a year”. As we are featured in this piece it was only natural for me to visit the online version of it and have a peak at the comments… now I wish I hadn’t done it. Actually this isn’t true. I think it was fine to visit and even the reading of it, but I should have never engaged and definitely never replied to some of them. I guess it was an impulse and when you find yourself under attack you are naturally overcome with an urge to defend yourself… how silly of me…

The piece was supposed to relay that you can save money by smart shopping. It looks like some people who cared enough to comment didn’t actually care enough to read the article fully or simply took it in a different way than what was intended.

The first attack was on my job. One guy thought that being a self-employed online moderator is so redundant that it actually makes me jobless. Someone else thought that I am probably hoping to secure in time a nice, well paid, lots-of-holidays, public sector job with all the trimmings – the mirror-image of self-employment. Really? Why people are so quick to project their own dreams or hopes on to others? I would hate to work for someone, especially in the public sector… as to trimmings? What trimmings? Being stuck in a cubicle 9 till 5?

Yet another person had decided that my lifestyle of frugal shopping makes me a sad personality. Quite the opposite, in my humble opinion, it makes me happy and gives me more money to spend elsewhere.

Someone else suggested that I should get a life? I actually have one and I am very proud of it.

One guy actually called me a vulture… how bizarre! I wonder if Mr. Seank knows what vultures are and what they do. I don’t actually scavenge, I pick food from the shelves just like he does I assume… the only difference is that I know which shelf to pick my food from and more specifically what time of the day I should go shopping in order to get a better bargain.

It’s sad that some people can be so narrow-minded. It’s seems it is so much easier to criticize something than to actually try and understand it. I was told that bargain shopping is not very British, maybe this is why so many people wouldn’t do it or even consider doing it… stuck with being an old stereotype or maybe just too proud to grab those good bargains is just plain silly in my mind.

There was also a comment suggesting that maybe if I work harder I would be able to afford full priced food… this was actually a funny one… I never said I can’t afford it, I simply chose to shop this way. Saving money on my food shopping, or any form of shopping come to that; leaves me with more money, and sometimes with some money to spend on other stuff. Not only this, it also gives me in most cases better quality food. A good percentage of reduced food at the end of the day comes from the finest or the organic selection, they are usually the most expensive ones and often unsold… so please explain to me why would I chose a shop value type of food (like some other comments suggested) over reduced but much higher quality products that are still in date at the time of my purchase? I simply don’t see any logic in this. And let’s face it, most labels on the food products have very little to do with its usability, they are there to empower buying power, they are there to prey on the lack of knowledge of the masses, they are simply there to make you buy more or at least more often.

I have learnt the meaning of labels and I have great understanding on how long my food will actually last before getting spoiled. I covered it earlier in my “7 Top Tips How to Reduce Food Waste” post.

I am not ashamed of my shopping style. I am actually proud of it and I have no inclination whatsoever to apologies for it.

I just feel sorry for all those people out there who failed to understand it.

People don’t have to agree with me and they for sure don’t have to follow my steps but I do think that before posting a comment or reply the individual should at least try to understand the piece and the meaning behind it. For no other reason than it will help them to form a non vitriolic and informed opinion to their replies. I also consider the other angle to this situation and that is that these foods if unsold will just be destroyed. There is no option under our law of donating it somewhere; it will not go to anyone who might actually really need it. If no one will buy it, it will go to the bin; in my opinion that is the greatest tragedy, that is a shame!

This whole comment situation had me bouncing of the walls most of the morning. It reminded me of The West Wing and The U.S. Poet Laureate episode when Josh posted a reply on Lemon-Lyman.com, which started a series of troubles. C.J.Cregg had a great came back to this whole commenting malarkey: The people on these sites: they’re the cast of One Flew Over the Cookoo’s Nest.

But there is always a silver lining. I’ve received a lovely email from Raphael who decided to write to me after seeing all the abuse some people gave me. Thank God we are not all the same. I am glad there are still a few people around who are full of civility and human compassion.

Philogenes wrote to me as a reply to one of my comments: You must know by now that most commenters aren’t interested in the facts, just their own opinions! …I didn’t know it but now I do. Lesson learnt. I was actually under the impression that if someone, as I regularly do, decides to leave a comment it will be meaningful and on topic… I was wrong, epic fail!

So, what do you think?

Am I a weird, vulture like stingy foreigner?

Can my way of shopping really be offensive to some?

Was the published piece really a reason for so much negativity?

And just to clear something else. I didn’t get paid for this feature. I didn’t do it for the money or for the fame (as suggested by yet another “friendly” comment). I have had my 15 minutes of fame with other articles published in various newspapers across the country and my own recipe on a billboard… I am not hungry for more, believe me. I agreed to do it in order to show some people another way, a way of saving a few pennies (and sometimes pounds) and having something to show for it. I hoped that maybe this feature would encourage some people to be more savvy when food shopping. I simply wanted to do something good, is that really so bad?

Review – Delicatezza – Real Italian Food in London

Delicatezza LogoLondon – a busy city full of busy people and inevitably at any given moment a lot of them are hungry people, who are spoilt for choice when it comes to food.  1000’s of restaurants, cafés, and takeaways have built up businesses to meet this unending tide of need. However it is not always easy to find the right place to buy your food that specifically caters to our evolved palettes desire… so many of us use the trial and error method. We go, we buy… oh yes we like, we go back and buy more…or we don’t like, we move on to the next choice or even the next place, which is more than likely next door or just around the corner… The choices are seemingly endless and the only real limit for many of us is the contents of our wallet… but who amongst us likes to spend more than necessary for a great meal? When choosing a take-away firstly we need to decide what type of cuisine we fancy and then find a supplier of that cuisine that suits our budget… and ideally we would love for our food to be tasty, healthy and prepared with some if not total love.

Well we have found out about a company that ticked all our boxes, and after sampling their wears we need to tell you about them so you can enjoy as well.

Delicatezza offers a lovely selection of Italian Food. You can pick from:

A Freshly Made section that offers a range of handmade filled pasta, fresh egg pasta, pre-prepared meals, fresh sauces and award-winning cannoli, mozzarellas and sausages.

or

A Pantry section featuring a hand-picked selection of premium delicatessen items, from a superlative truffle range through to a bakery, a wide choice of antipasti and a fantastic set of drinks to suit any occasion.

I was offered the chance to try them out… just looking at their website I become so hungry my saliva glands were in overdrive, so I simply couldn’t refuse. I was provided with a £30 credit which gave me a fantastic selection of products. I picked:

My order screen shot1x Caprino (avg. 140g)

1x Lucanica (avg. 300g) – Chilli

1x Modena Balsamic Vinegar (250ml)

1x Lasagne Sheets (500g) – 500g

1x Girasoli – Braised Beef / 250g

1x Pizzaiola – 250g

1x Napoli (avg. 400g) – Mint, Sundried Tomato & Scamorza

This is a lot of food for £30.

I ordered more ingredients than ready meals as we like cooking, but there is an extensive choice of Fresh Meals, including vegetarian options.

When your food is ordered you can pick your delivery time slot. Unfortunately for some at this moment in time delivery is only offered in the London area (I really hope this will change someday soon).

My order from Delicatezza
My order from Delicatezza

A lot of us eat with our eyes first and the guys at Delicatezza must for sure know this. Their food looks delicious, their packaging although not fussy is very effective at conveying the sense of quality of the product inside, it is inviting and it really looks the part. Every pack is carefully labelled so you know exactly what is inside. As you would expect you can study all the ingredients used if you so wish, all best before dates and cooking instructions are clearly stated.

All clearly labeled, so you know what you eat when to eat it by and how to cook it
All clearly labeled, so you know
what you eat
when to eat it by
and how to cook it

We ate our Girasoli with Pizzaiola as they came… after cooking of course… and prepared meals using the rest of ingredients.

Girasoli with Pizzaiola Sauce
Girasoli with Pizzaiola Sauce

We cooked some lasagne, spaghetti with egg and sausage (we used Lucanica Chilli for this one) and a traditional English mash, beans and sausage using Mint, Sundried Tomato & Scamorza Napoli.

Our mash, beans and sausage
Our mash, beans and sausage
Spaghetti with Egg and Lucanica Chilli Sausage
Spaghetti with Egg and Lucanica Chilli Sausage

Did we like the food?

Yes, we did like it however… it was not what we expected, it was a big surprise. This is not actually a criticism; let me explain… We like spicy food and we do buy chilly flavoured foods such as sausages from many different sources… and although they are often marked as spicy they are never really that hot… Lucanica is! Really, it is HOT. I guess you would think I should have expect that when ordering a chilli flavour, but taking our past experiences into account I was prepare to get something maybe with a mild to moderate heat… but oh, no… Lucanica Chilli is hot, really hot! Same with Mint, Sundried Tomato & Scamorza Napoli – you can taste all the things which were used to make it, especially the mint. So if / when you will be placing your order with Delicatezza it is worth remembering that the food will taste as stated on the box! This is such an amazingly nice change; you can finally enjoy your favourite flavours. No more do you have to convince yourself that what you are eating tastes like what the label says, that it’s really is that particular flavour, even though you can’t distinguish that flavour whilst it’s in your mouth. Delicatezza’s food lets you read the label and then hits you with a fully loaded express train straight from flavour town, you will be left in no doubt what so ever what you are eating, I bet even on a blind test you would know without any doubt or question.

Would we buy it again?

Yes, we would definitely order some more; especially given that there is so much more we haven’t tried yet.

So, if you are one of those hungry Londoners out there is search of a nice Italian meal look no further…  Delicatezza is there for you!

Give ‘em a try Gov.

.

I received a £30 credit to shop with Delicatezza for the purpose of this review. All opinions are honest and my own.

Shopping

Around noon Mark suggested we go shopping as he is missing self raising flour. Small top up shopping – me thinks… why not…

4h and almost £400 later we had to put sits down in my Astra to bring our “top up” shopping home.

And guess what? We forgot self raising flour...
And guess what?
We forgot self raising flour…