My version of a baked dinner cost about two dollars for two portions. The meal is made up of potato, pumpkin, and onion - all peeled and baked in the oven with a little olive oil; steamed silverbeet and a portion of cauliflower bake.
A cauliflower bake is simply cauliflower washed and cut into flower heads and placed in a dish - microwave on high to half cook the cauliflower. Drain the water from it. Make a cheese sauce from scratch, pour that over the cauliflower and bake in the oven at the same time you're baking the vegetables.
Place a tablespoon of butter in a small saucepan and melt over medium heat. Add a tablespoon of cornflour or plain (all purpose) flour and mix together. When the butter is melted and the flour combined, add about a cup of milk and mix. Make sure your heat is low now as you don't want it to come together too fast - that will create lumps. Add a cup of shredded cheese and mix in. Add salt and pepper to taste and a pinch of nutmeg. Keep stirring until the sauce is thickened and smooth.
I bought this cauliflower for $2 at my local market. The cheese sauce would cost about $1 to make. There is enough in this to last Hanno and I for three meals. Tonight it will be reheated to have with mashed potato with onion and parsley, carrots, cabbage and button squash. Tomorrow night I'll mash the last of it up to make bubble and squeak.
I always aim to make five different vegetables per evening meal. My version of the baked dinner gives you the baked vegetables that are crispy and caramelised, the protein part of the meal is the cheese sauce on the cauliflower. We followed this with simple fruit salad from the back yard of fresh oranges, bananas and passionfruit all cut up and combined. Oh, and we each had a bottle of Corona beer left over from my birthday party. ;- )
And just for good measure here is the bread baked yesterday. It's a corn and barley loaf with poppyseeds, made in a cake tin. I had mine hot with butter and vegemite and a cup of tea.