EATING out is becoming an even rarer treat these days, what with the economic meltdown and ever-increasing bills – never mind the fact that I am quite useless with budgeting my finances.

Ever since I’ve earned a wage, I’ve been terrible at keeping my bank account in order.

At the start of the month I usually live like a king: Treating myself to bits and bobs here and there, and then within a week I realise I will have to live on bread and water until the next payday.

Mind you, bread is really quite pricey these days, so it’s just water.

Though my water bills seem to have gone through the roof lately.

Anyway, I digress.

All of the above means that I am usually incredibly eager to ensure I get value for money on the ever-decreasing occasions that I head to a bar or restaurant for something to eat.

So imagine my delight when my girlfriend and I visited the Golden Dragon, in George Street, Lancaster.

To begin, we ordered the mixed starter (£10) – an absolute feast which proved to be a bargain with its plentiful supply of sesame prawn toast, spare ribs, special fried rice, spring rolls and more.

Then I chose my old favourite sweet and sour chicken (£6.80) which was delicious, and my girlfriend plumped for duck in plum sauce (£7.20).

We shared a special fried rice (£4.50) and chips (£1.70).

We agreed that we’d ordered too much really, such was the magnitude of the tasty starter, and we could have easily shared a main dish and rice between us.

Needless to say, a doggy bag was required to ensure the financial disaster that is Daniel Orr made his pennies stretch as far as possible.