Hello, foodie friends. I hope the month of March was a good one for you, and you got the chance to get out and about for some good eating.

This month, I have been forced to confront an uncomfortable truth about myself. Already aware that I'm old, slowly greying and will never play at Wembley, there's another fact about yours truly which I must digest.

That is thus. I, Mark Heath, am a food snob. It's been levelled at me numerous times over the years, given my fondness for fancy dining spots, Michelin stars and wine flights.

Not that there's anything wrong with any of that - cooking at the highest level is an art, with the theatre of service and atmosphere among things that I'll happily pay extra for.

East Anglian Daily Times: I love a fancy restaurant - but there are plenty of brilliant cheaper eats out there in SuffolkI love a fancy restaurant - but there are plenty of brilliant cheaper eats out there in Suffolk (Image: Mark Heath)
But, when my own mum suggests 'you're only interested in expensive places' and I break out into a cold sweat at the thought of lunching in a carvery - or worse still, a Greene King pub - I guess I'd better own that food snob moniker and address it.

Yes, I like nice things. But you don't - and shouldn't - have to pay through the nose for good food in Suffolk, a county blessed with a hugely exciting and thriving food scene.

So this month I bring you the start of my search for the best cheaper eats in Suffolk. I'm defining that as a single dish for less than a tenner, or a meal for two for £40 or less.

Oh, and chain restaurants - that bastion of dull, uninspired, identikit food - are banned. I'm here to promote our independents!

I've recruited my fellow food reviewers to chime in too, but I'll kick off with a few from me...

East Anglian Daily Times: Hmm Burger is well worth a visit!Hmm Burger is well worth a visit! (Image: Archant)
- Hmm Burger, Newmarket: A good burger is a joy, and in my humble opinion, those on offer at Hmm are the best in Suffolk. They start from £8.45, and I'd highly recommend their Blue Burger. That's a touch over the tenner at £10.85, but trust me, it's worth it - stilton AND a beautiful prime beef patty? Yes please.

East Anglian Daily Times: The toasties at Wright's are tremendous The toasties at Wright's are tremendous (Image: Mark Heath)
- Wright's, Bury: Sticking with the sandwich theme - or at least meat between bread - you have to give Wright's toasties a try. These fine folks have elevated the simple sarnie to an art form. My favourite is the Bloody Mary infused short rib for just £9.50. Woof.

East Anglian Daily Times: The Bildeston Crown is a beautiful placeThe Bildeston Crown is a beautiful place (Image: Mark Heath)
- Bildeston Crown fish and fizz: We had our best meal of the year so far at the cracking Crown last month, though our bill was considerably more than £40 - indeed, enough to give my old man heartburn when it came up in discussion. But the Crown offer Fish and Fizz Fridays for just £18 per person, which is great value for food and setting of the highest order.

East Anglian Daily Times: The Stowupland Crown boasts a beauty of a beer garden - and some great value pizzasThe Stowupland Crown boasts a beauty of a beer garden - and some great value pizzas
- Stowupland Crown: A lovely little thatched pub by the side of the A140, we often head here for their pizzas, which are easily enough to feed two. Adding a bowl of really good chips (£5) and a pair of pints makes it a meal for under £40. We go for the carne (£16).

Ok, enough from me. Let's hear from our other reviewers...

East Anglian Daily Times: Amigos in Bury is an award-winning eateryAmigos in Bury is an award-winning eatery (Image: Liz Heath)
Reece Hanson: Amigos, Bury - "I have a huge appetite, and it's rare that my eyes are bigger than my belly, but I waddled down the stairs and out the door after my first visit. The portions are hefty and would be a challenge to finish if they weren't so delicious. Amigos delivers on everything you want from Mexican cuisine. Most main courses are around the £17 mark so it may be a little pricy for a cheap eat, although you can knock a couple of pounds off for meat-free dishes, but what really cements Amigos' place on this list is their two-for-one offer on main courses on Tuesdays. At a time when we're all counting the pennies and cutting back on treats like meals out, Amigos offers fabulous and filling food for a fraction of the price."

East Anglian Daily Times: The Grazing Sheep is Clarissa's pickThe Grazing Sheep is Clarissa's pick (Image: Archant)
Clarissa Place: The Grazing Sheep, Ipswich - "From a breakfast spot with a view to a place to sit to enjoy a leisurely lunch, this is high on the list of places I bring friends and family to when I am meeting them in Ipswich in the day.  The open sourdough sandwiches are varied and always packed with fresh ingredients and choices in the past have included the Avo sandwich (£9.50) with added bacon or the parma ham and manchego cheese pan de cristal (£6.95) with added crisps. Filling enoughg to get you through the day, helped by the fact you have the wonderful Waterfront as your view." 

East Anglian Daily Times: Charlotte recommends Wok Wraps in FelixstoweCharlotte recommends Wok Wraps in Felixstowe (Image: Wok Wraps)
Charlotte Bond: Beach Street, Felixstowe - "I love going here with friends and family and there’s so much choice! They're all independent food outlets with one of my favourites there being Wok Wraps. I got a salt and pepper chicken box when I last went - you get the chicken which tastes amazing, with chips, rice and crispy onions for £9.50. I was stuffed after that!"

Tom Cann: Magpie Inn, Combs Ford -  "I am a big fan of the Magpie. The carvery is really lovely, and at just £12.50 for a medium size carvery, it's a brilliant price. They have a selection of meats, good variety of veg and you can fill up your plate as you wish so definitely getting your money's worth. The fact that two people can have a Sunday roast cooked for them for £25 combined is a great price and definitely worth it. I would recommend it to anyone."

Right, there's a few there to get your teeth stuck into - literally. This is something I'm going to be returning to in future columns, so send me your recommendations!

Contact me at mark.heath@newsquest.co.uk. Together, we can find and celebrate Suffolk's best cheaper eats.