Monday, December 31, 2012

The rest of the story...

Now, the rest the story.

One thing that I forgot when I was writing yesterday is like in almost any undertaking, you need a plan. Make meal plans after you get home from shopping.

If you have to answer the what's for dinner ? question after a long hard day, it's to easy to say pizza delivery if you don't have plan. It doesn't have to be entailed,just a list of seven main dishes. You don't even have to stick to the plan, just have a plan.

We were going to have salmon for dinner this week. But, I ran out of stock and two trips to Safeways yielded zero salmon.

The other point that I didn't make was that you need to take a mental note of anything in the fridge that is gone, or is old, but not dead and use it up on your plans soon.
If it is to far gone, give it a decent burial. We call this dump everything dead!

If you check mid week and incorporate anything on the edge into your meals or do something with it, this should be at a minimum. bread crumbs, croutons, banana bread, soup stock? Some things should be frozen up front when you buy on bulk.

Another thing worth mentioning again is Almost free pizza. My co worker's first reaction to this was, who's giving away free pizza? LOL No such luck, the operative word is ALMOST ! You keep two zip lock bags in your freezer door and every time you are chopping something that goes on a pizza you set aside a bit for the bag. The same goes for meat...hamburger crumbles, chicken, sausage. In would probably keep them in separate bags. You can reuse the bags if you want to.

When you have enough for a pizza, you make crust (easy food processor crust ist on previous blog). Sauce can be slightly watered down tomato paste with garlic and Italian herbs or some pasta sauce you have held back from another day with added herbs to taste.

I priced the cheese at Costco yesterday. It was all really expensive compared to previous trips. It has been on sale for 5.00 a brick lately. I have even got shredded for 5.00. I haven't checked the business Costco lately. WinCo used to have big bags cheap. We haven't been there for a while, at the rate thing are going it's hard to predict.

When aren't stable, it takes some true diligence. it's not too arduous task if you just commit to your key staples. The things that you buy one or two of a year,don't really impact you that much.


Pasta .88 - 1.00 16 oz...pasta has an 8 YEAR shelf life
Canned diced tomatoes .50-.67
Canned beans .67
Re fried beans .78
Pasta sauce (hunts) .75-1.00
Instant mashed potatoes. .50-1.00
tuna 1.00 or careful meat and fish have a shorter shelf life.
Cheese 2.50 a poumd....not that long ago it was 2.00

I keep some CAMPBELLS soup. I want to pay .75 or less.
If I don't find it on sale, I don't buy it.

We like tomato roasted red pepper soup. When Costco has it, it's about 2.00 a box. it is up to 4.00 or more a box at other stores. Only get it Costco. We add fresh basil, some milk and some blue cheese and some chunks of tomato...YUM.

Guess that all the time I have for today. Work is callimg me...

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Please share. I know that there are unemployed, underemployed and people that have had to resort to food stamps. Our economy is not out of the woods yet. My hope is to reach some of these people and help them.

Some people enjoy a new or old recipe, some the time saving tips, some laugh at my bad keyboard skills..not used to two finger typing with a baby at my side "helping" and the auto spell check!LOL. Whatever your reason, I hope you can fimd something you can use in the blog.


Sunday, December 30, 2012

The Nuts and Bolts of Meals on the Cheap

It's the first of the month...almost. Every first of the month I do a review of the
Basic principals of meals om the cheap. I want to pay 1/2 price for food. The USDA has stats on how much you should spend based on family size and ages. It is not adjusted for the drought prices we are experiencing.

Groceries on the Cheap takes a three- pronged approach. Planning and organizing, shopping wisely, and cooking from scratch.

Once you get yourself set up, you should spend very little more time than the average person does without the concept and be a whole lot richer! LOL

If you spend more time on the front end of the. "Get the meal on the table train " and less on the back end and you will be a lot better off. You get "paid " for shopping , not for cooking. If you spend an hour shopping and you save 75.00. Basically you are makimg 75.00 an hour. This is a concept not everyone can see.It's not a virtual concept.


First, compile recipes for main dishes that use inexpensive sources of protein.
Rice and beans, chicken, pork, some beef, eggs, cheese, tuna, some fish. start with seven and expand to 14 to give yourself more variety.

Next, make a list of stock items that you use frequently. At our house that would be diced tomatoes,canned beans, instant mashed potatoes, refried beans, some corn and green beans, pasta, black olives and canned pasta sauce.

Start a small spiral notebook or a spreadsheet and track the price you paid, where you purchased it and when you purchased it.

Page Heading: Green Beans

1/2/12 QFC. 1.59
3/6/12 top. .67

Soon you will see a pattern and know the lowest price. When the price is at it's lowest, buy as many as the store will let you buy, as many as you can afford to buy, or as many as you need to replenish your stock, whichever comes first. If I use something once a week, I keep 24. If I use it once a month, I keep 6 .


The main idea, is never pay full price for anything. My mother used to call it not paying top dollar.

Take advantage of what meats are the cheapest any particular week. Use the least expensive veggies that are in season. They will taste better too. Roma tomatoes have more flesh and are usually cheaper.

When the weekly ads come out, take a piece of computer paper and divide it into quarters. Mark each quarter with the name of the store. Now go through the ads and write the things that are truly on sale that you use. Forget the ready made junk food. When you are done, cross off anything that is cheaper elsewhere and anything that you have enough of. Now pick the two stores that have the best prices in the things you want. I don't bother to go to two stores if there is only one thing on the list.

Take the ads, your list, and any coupons you have come across. Get in the store, get your list, and get out. The more time you spend in the store, the more money you will spend. The stores have spent a great deal of money researching ways to get you to impulse buy.

I used to work for a grocery wholesaler. There one store that has a 42 percent markup. That is huge. Stick to the large chains. We hit Costco, winCo, Grocery Outlet, and the Bakery Outlet about every four to six weeks. I usually try to hit them when we have other errands in the area or group my stops to make the best use of our gas. I don't advocate going across town for .15 savings. I stock when I go. often I save a dollar a unit--that ads up fast.

When a roast or London broil is cheaper than hamburger, we make our own hamburger.


besides going to the specialty store every other day to buy just what you need for two nights dinners, ready made foods and snack foods are the fastest way to derail your budget.

My daughter and I diasected a hamburger meal box. It is on a prior post, it is a real eye opener.

There are ways to cook from scratch almost as fast as using mixes or ready made .
The slow cooker and pressure cooker are your best friends here. Also anything that you can quickly prep and shove on the oven works well too. The microwave is a boon for some things. I really like the microwave pasta cooker. It uses one "pot" to cook drain and don't have to watch the pot. Just use a few less minutes than it calls for, it tends to overcook.

I frequently post recipes that are easy and quick.

I almost always precook my meats the day of shopping, or the next day. buying bulk meat and pre cooking and meal size portioning is a way to waste less and get a headstart on dinner prep. This is especially true of hamburger. I either buy hamburger in bulk, or make low fat myself. Then, I make taco meat,meat balls, meat loaf,and crumbles, or some of the above. I defat the taco meat and crumbles.The meat loaf is baked in a meat loaf pan so that the grease drains, and I cook meatballs in the oven on a rack lined sheet pan. The technique for defatting is in a previous post.

I roast a chicken , pretty much set it and forget it. Then separate it into leg portions, and two breasts. Make stock from the bones. That makes four meals.

Never buy a chicken less than 3 pounds. Every pound over 3 pounds is gravy. Three pounds is the break even point. you don't want to pay for too much bone to meat ratio. A precooked chicken at the deli is usually three pounds. Costco is the cheapest. You are paying 1.67 a pound for chicken. I frequently get good northwest grown chicken for under a buck. It takes about 10 minutes to prep a chicken. It motivates you to scratch cook when you do the math. A six pound chicken is about 4.00 less than two three pound ready made chickens. If it takes you ten minutes to prep a chicken, you are making 24.00 an hour for your labor and you are getting more chicken for your buck.

I take and roast off a beef or pork roast. We have a roast dinner and thinly slice and freeze the rest in meal sized portions for a roast beef a jus or BBQ sandwiches.

There are a few things that are cheaper than scratch to buy, or that are just too much bother to make from scratch. Remember, when we are spending the majority of our time on shopping, rather than cooking.

Pasta, taco shells, mayonnaise(because of health reasons), and refried beans come to mind. I buy canned beans on sale and they are about the same price as dried beans. Rinse them well to reduce the sodium. Beans have a really short fridge life. It's not worth it to cook them from scratch and taking a chance on getting sick. You can cook them in pressure cooker.

Another note, there are storage solutions that keep fruits and veggies longer. They are well worth the investment.

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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Suddenly Saturday...

Yesterday I found myself with an hour to kill in north Seattle. I need a box of Kleenex , but no dollar stores have them. I went to the grocery outlet. Coffee is always cheaper. My husband prefers regular instead of designer coffee.

They usually have red and yellow peppers for .50 and Roma tomatoes cheaper than anywhere else. They have designer chicken sausage that my husband actually likes.
Sausage, peppers and red potatoes are really good and not too bad for you when you use chicken sausage!

Some of the canned goods are more expensive than the sale prices at the chains.
I got sweet potato fries and hash brown patties. I refuse to make hash browns from scratch, because I usually have a big, glutenous mess.

They usually have a wide variety of cheeses, some less expensive, some not.

Its a treasure hunt, you never know what you may find.

On to Safeways. The salmon was gone. No surprise. I took advantage of the Friday specials that they have extended to the weekend. I got chicken wings. London broil is cheaper and better fat comtent than hamburger. We'll make our own ground beef.

Next time... The basics.

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Friday, December 28, 2012

meals from the ads

It's two in the morning. tomorrow is going to be a long day, so I decided that I would get a head start on it.

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, prices are going up rapidly I suspect because of the drought. Its going to take some creative meal planning to compensate. But,like our mothers and grandmothers before us during the great depession and WWII, I suspect we will survive. One could hope that the federal government would step up to the plate and give the farmers subsidies, but with the cliff being so rocky, I am not holding my breath.

On to food....

My formula for meals is 2 beef, 2 chicken or pork, 2 vegetarian and a fish.

Safeways has salsa cheaper than you can make it. We tried a few wks ago, it wasn't bad.

Tacos, refried beans.

London Broil, roasted root veggies.

veggie fritata

mac and cheese

salmon ( on sale this weekend at Safeways)

Chicken pot pie

Pork roast , mashed potatoes, green beans and salad


chicken and pork is from last week . (frozen)
I plan to make ground beef this week out of the London broil that is on sale.
don't forget to de fat it.

Cheese is still a bargain at 2.50 a pound.

if you have been stocking, you have time to regroup and make adjustments to compensate for the higher prices.

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Thursday, December 27, 2012

This weeks ads

We finally got this weeks ads today. I am hoping that the holidays are over and they go back to some real bargains. With what I have seen lately, I wouldn't be holding my breath. LOL


Pork blade steak 1.99
London broil 2.49..bulk alert
Cheese 2/ the size of the package u need 8 oz
Hormel entres B1G1..***
Lettuce 1.00
Salsa 5.00

5 dollar friday
Salmon 5.00


Oranges .48
Lettuce .88
15 percent ground beef 2.49***
tillamook cheese 4.99
New bread mix 2/5


carrots .89
20 percent ground beef 2.66
Pork shoulder 1.49

yogurt .60
Beans .69

That's all folks. It's still a dismal week.
There is a lot of ad space taken up with holiday splurge foods. Maybe they will be better next week.

*** notes
London broil is 2.49. It is cheaper, for better quality to grind your own beef this week. The fat content will be less.

Assuming hormel entres are a net of 3.50 or so, they are good hedge on the watsnfor dinner we got home late Delima. With some instant mashed potatoes and a salad,youncan have dinner on the table in literally less time that it takes to call the pizza place!
The sirloin tips are the only flavor we have tried and liked.

There are coupons out there for a dollar off the new bread mix. It isnstill cheaper than buying bread. Can't believe 3.50 for hamburger buns. that warrants a trip to
the bakery outlet. I'm fact, the poor ads should warrant a trip to WinCo. I will be glad when we get one of our own.

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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The calm after the storm

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas.  We had a very busy, but fun Christmas.  Christmas day was lounging around in our pajamas putting together toys ( put peg A in slot B) and watching our grandchild thorally enjoy herself.   What Fun!

I got a new keyboard for my tablet.  Haven't figured out how to use it yet, so I am using the main computer. 

Turkey noodle Soup 

4 quarts Poultry Stock
1 large onion, chopped
5 large carrots, peeled and diced
3 stalks of celery, chopped
1 tsp poultry seasoning
salt and pepper

2 pounds leftover turkey, cut into cubes
1 can corn
1 can white beans

16 ounces of egg noodles

Cook veggies and seasonings in 1/2 of the broth for a half hour. 
add remaining ingredients except noodles  and cook on simmer for an hour. 
Add noodles, and cook 15 minutes or until noodles are tender. 

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Tuesday, December 25, 2012


Merry Christmas

I am takeing today off to enjoy my family.

I will be back tomorrow.

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Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve

It's the day before Christmas all through the house.....

My son baked about sixteen dozen cookies and two pumpkin pies. He has a Pullman kitchen, so he came down and used my kitchen. I am lucky enough to have two ovens so it made the job more efficient. LOL.

My daughter spent the day delivering presents to her friends.

My husband and I decided we would take advantage of having time to ourselves and go Christmas shopping for each other. We are at a point that we have everything we need and would rather spoil our grandchild than buy each other presents. But, my husband felt compelled to get me something.

So, I bought him some gummy vitamins. He finds it really unpleasant to swallow the horse pills he is taking.

He bought me a new glue gun, a T square, and a box for my alcohol pens from the recycle store. I was really excited that he found the box. I have been looking for something that would work. I refuse to spend a hundred dollars for a box to hold markers-- a bit over the top in my book. LOL

Christmas is for enjoying time with family and gifts should be somethimg the recipient really wants, or needs, or never dreamed of ever having.

My sorority made Christmas for a family. I had so much fun! I got 120 dollars worth of stuff on their list for twenty dollars. The boxers for the son were 35.00 and I got a barbie for the daughter and a sterling and gemstone pendant for the Mom. I Thorally enjoyed myself and hope the family has the best Christmas ever!

An inexpensive gift or something handmade for the recipient is much more thoughtful that an expensive present that the person doesn't want or need. Everyone has something that they either don't have time or patience to make for themselves or that they can't bring themselves to buy.

Gifts aren't about the money, they are about the effort and thought that goes into them.

Some of my best Christmases were when we were poor and "made" Christmas--it's all about the memories.

Merry Christmas . I hope you have a blessed and memorable Christmas!

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Sunday, December 23, 2012

Merry Christmas Eve's Eve

Merry holidays are upon is. I have to pick up a couple of things from the grocery store to finish holiday meals, but I am. Pretty much done.

I picked up the Woman's Day magazine for January. It got me with Quick meals .
There are a lot of recipes, bmt not all of them would pass the husband and children test.

I can't reprint the recipes, but I can tell you what they are. If younwant tonbuy a magazine, they are 10 per cent off at joannes and thirty percent off at Costco. Costco has more expensive and yuppie magazines.

Peanut butter and banana pancakes--Elvis is still alive LOL

ravioli with sausage and Brussels sprouts
Pasta with quick meat sauce
Pasta with roasted cauliflower, tomatoes and pepperoni

Spaghetti with bacon, fried eggs and swiss chard
Creamy spinach and broccoli lasagna

Eggs Benedict casserole

No bake hot cocoa cake

Spiced beef and butternut squash stew

Seared salmon with lentil salad

Quick turkey chili
Pork chops with balsamic braised cabbage

Vegetable fried rice

Louisiana Hoppin' John

I like the apple pancakes forma special occasion ( Christmas breakfast!)
pork chops or roast with balsamic cabbage is interesting
Peanut butter and banana pancakes might be a hit with the kids

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Saturday, December 22, 2012

Suddenly Saturday.

Two days until Christmas eve. I quit baking for Christmas. My son makes cookies and my daughter makes fudge. Consequently, my stress level is at zero! We are bringing food to the family parties, but that's not a big deal.

Christmas morning we have Belgin waffles, bacon, and Christmas oranges. I haven't been able to find real Japanese oranges for several years now,

For the vegetarians,

VEGGIE SKILLET from land of lakes booklet

2.5 cups bow tie pasta, cook and drain.

2T butter
1tsp minced garlic
2med zucchini, cu into 1/2 inch slices
median red onion
1 T fresh basil
1 cup cheese in /2 inch cubes

Stir fry everything except the pasta and cheese until veggies are tender. Stir in pasta and heat through. Stir in cheese. Salt and pepper.


1 medium red pepper, chopped
1/2 cup chopped onion
1-1/2 cups spinach leaves
1/2 cup milk
8 eggs
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2cup crumbled feta cheese

1 can diced tomatoes, warmed with garlic and herbs.

In skillet, cook red pepper and onion 3-4 minutes
Add spinach and cook until spinach is wilted.

In bowl, combine milk, eggs, garlic salt and pepper. Stir in cheese.

Reduce heat to med low and add egg mixture to veggies.
Cook, lifting the eggs on the side of the pan until eggs are set and the top is done.

Spoon warm tomato over at serving time.

One of the ways to beat the rising cost of meat is to eat vegetarian a couple of nights a week. My mother did that before the word vegetarian was in our vocabulary! LOL

I got cheese for 2.50 a pound at top. It is tillamock. I spent more than I usually do, but I picked up some last minute stocking stuffers and it's Christmas. Well go back to frugal after Christmas.

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Friday, December 21, 2012

Three days until Christmas. Eve

Three days and I'm sure the little ones are waiting with anticipation. Our little one isn't old enough to know what's going on, but I'm looking forward to her squeals .LOL

Last night we had the pork stew that I posted earlier I'm the week. Itvwas really easy to cook the pasta in the microwave cooker and heat the stew and walk away.

On to food.I haven't shopped yet.

Beef Stuffed French Bread

1pound ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion
1large baked potato, peeled and cubed
1can cream of mushroom soup

1 tsp parsley
1/4 tsp garlic powder

Loaf of French bread

1) brown meat and onion until meat is no longer pink and drain.

2) add re sing ingredients except the bread and cheese and simmer for 10 minutes.

3) cut the loaf of bread lengthwise. Hollow out some of the bottom , leaving 3/4 inch shell. Place the removed bread in a blender or food processor and make crumbs. Add 1 cup crumbs to the meat mixture. Add cheese.

4) stuff the bread shell. Wrap with foil. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes before cutting.

I would use already cooked and drafted meat. I don't usually have mushroom,s around because my husband is not fond of them. I might substitute olives and add some Ed pepper just because I like some color . It seems more appetizing to me.


Add chopped, cooked spinach that has been squeezed dry and Parmesan to your basic meatball recipe. Add red sauce and shredded white cheese. Fill sub buns.

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Thursday, December 20, 2012

Thursday , we have ads

I finally got the ads yesterday. Yesterday we had pork roast, mashed sweet potatoes, green beans and pear and blue cheese salad.

Now, to the ads...


Ham 1.79

Top roumd roast B1G1. Nets 3.25 a pound
Spiral ham 2.79

Peeled carrots 1.00 pound
Celery 1.00
Sweet potatoes 1.00
Veggies .60


Spiral ham. 1.97
Butter 2.50 @
snack crackers 1.77 @
Cheese 4.99 @
satsumas 2.98
Vegetables .67
Turkey .69

Green beans 1.79


Ham .99
Coffee 7.99

Sirloin tip roast 2.99
Celery .99


bar cake 5.00
Shrimp 5.00


apples .88
Ham .99
Spiral ham 1.99
Coffee 7.99
Yams .79
Celery .89
8 pounds potatoes 1.28

I am not seeing a whole lot of bargaims which is a typical for a holiday ad.

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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

No ad wednesday

There were no ads in our mailbox yesterday.

Since the holidays are upon us, I thought I would post some somewhat healthy dips from my blender cookbook.


1/2 of a small jalapeño pepper, seeds removed
1 clove gRlic
1/2 medium small onion, peeled and cut into chunks
1/2 of a medium green pepper, cut onto chunks
2tsp olive oil
1/2tsp cumin
1can garbanzo beans, drained
3T water

Place in blender in order

Jalapeño, pulse 5-10 seconds

Onion and green pepper, pulse 5 seconds 2-3 times

Heat oil in skillet and sauté garlic and cumin, add onion mixture and cook until veggies are tender. Cool

Place onion mixture, beans and water in blender. Mix until smooth.

Place in serving bowl.

2 cups


From kitchen aid

2 T butter
1/2 cup chopped onion

2 T flour
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp thyme
1/4 tsp pepper

2cups chicken broth

1/2 cup water

1 16 ounces frozen broccoli
1-1/2 cups corn

1 cup milk

1) cook onion in butter 2-3 minutes. Stir in flour, dry mustard, thyme, pepper, broth and water. Bring to a boil.

2). Add broccoli. Reduce heat and leat on loe about 10 minutes. Cool.

3) place mixture in blender in batches. And blend until smooth.

4) return mixture to saucepan.

5). Add corn and milk.

6) simmer until warm.

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Makes 4.5 cups.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Tuesday QUICK

I pulled out my bisquick leaflet book for today's blog. My mother in law used to make pie from bisquick. Apples are a buck a pound now, so it is a lot of bang from your buck!



1/2 cup bisquick
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped nuts
2T firm butter


3 Tart apples, peeled and sliced.
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup bisquick
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 T butter
2 eggs

Heat oven to 325. Spray 9 inch pie plate with cooking spray.

In small bowl, mix dry ingredients for topping. Cut in butter.
Set aside

in medium bowl, mix apples, cinnamon and nutmeg and pour into pie pan.

Mix remaining ingredients. Pour over apples.

Sprinkle topping on top of bisquick layer.

Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes.

Doneness test is when the apples are tender and the topping is golden brown.


3/4 cup bisquick
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup reduced fat ranch dressing

4 Boneless skinless chicken breast

2T butter, melted

2 cups frozen corn

Heat oven to 425 degrees

Spray a 9x 13 pan

In shallow pan, mix bisquick, salt and pepper
In another dish, pour 1/2 cup salad dressing
Coat chicken with dressing, and then with bisquick.
Place in pan and drizzle with melted butter.

Bake in oven for 30 minutes or until meat reaches 170 degrees and juices run clear.

Cook corn and drain. Stir in 1/4 cup dressing. Serve over chicken.


I think you could use boned chicken, but adjust the cooking time.

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Monday, December 17, 2012

Monday madness

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

European Pork Stew

1 poumd pork cubes ( about 3/4 of an inch)
olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 tsp minced garlic

2cups chicken broth
1can diced tomatoes
1 red pepper, roasted
1/4 cup Greek olives, pitted and cut up
2 tsp orange peel
1-1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
2 medium yellow summer squash , cut I to small pieces

12ounces ORZO cooked and drained

1) cook meat cubes in oil until browned. Do it in batches.
2) Add onion and garlic and cook briefly. Add broth, tomatoes, peppers, olives,
Orange peel, seasonings.
3) bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 50 minutes.
10 minutes longer until squash and meat are tender.

Serve with ORZO or couscous.

I think that you could brown the meat and finish this in the slow cooker up to the squash addition. Then put the squash in and set it to high.
I cook pasta in a microwave pasta cooker and use a bit less time than it calls for. I haven't cooked couscous, but I think it is as simple as instant rice.

Greek olives are a bit of a stretch of the budget. Red peppers are fifty cents often at grocery outlet. Oranges are inexpensive this time of year. Yu can use the orange for another meal.

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Sunday, December 16, 2012

Notes on Sunday

Nine dayS until Christmas. I know we all wanted to hear that.

Last week on the chew , they featured a pork roast that they comed, spread with Dijon mustard and rolled om chopped herbs. It sounded really good. I am sure that the recipe is on the website.

Nacho Pie
From taste of home

1pound ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 -8 punce can tomato sauce
2T taco seasoning

1 tube crescent rolls

1-1/2 cups crushed tortilla chips, divided
1cup sour cream
1cup shredded American cheese

In skillet, cook beef and onion until beef is no longer pink, drain
Stir in tomato sauce and taco seasoning. Let cook 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, open crescent rolls and pinch together to make a " pie crust."
place on pie pan.

Speinkle 1 cup crushed chips over pie crust
Top with meat mixture
Carefully spread sour cream over meat mixture.
Sprinkle with cheese and remaining chips.
Bake at 350 for 20-35 minutes or until cheese is melted and crust is golden.

Notes :

In would use already cooked and defatted meat. I would probably add some peppers.
It would be a good recipe for leftovers from a party. The bottom of the ch bag, crescent rolls are on sale during the holidays, the recipe for taco seasoning
is in an older post. Serves6-8.

On another note--I went to the goodwill this week. Some of the prices on gloves and gift bags were more expensive than the dollar store. I found canvas boxes for organization in a broad range of colors for 4.99 and they have straight sides. They also had white shelves with a plate groove really cheap.

Of anyone has an idea for a post, please let me know.

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Saturday, December 15, 2012

Grocery shopping is a crap shoot!

We went shopping as usual this week. I picked Top foods and Costco. I noticed that prices were up and just for you prices were more than I paid for the same products last week. I expect some fluctuation on sale prices. But, Costco is usually pretty stable.

Cheese that was 1.92 a pound last time I bought it, was 2.79 a bound. A forty percent increase.

We just got notification of our social security can bet that it isn't forty percent!LOL

To say that prices are not stable would be an understatement. Top had cheese shreds on "sale " for 2.00. That's four dollars a pound. It's harder to second giess what is the lowest price, but you can still compare and take advantage of what is the lowest price.

We don't buy a huge variety of foods so it isn't to hard or time consuming to keep track.

I'm trying to continue on my easy fast meals to reduce the stress of holiday time. I am finished with my decorating, Christmas cards, and wrapping. I don't bake anymore, I'm diabetic and the last time I spent hours baking Christmas treats the family decided they were on fat police diets and just wanted cardboard cookies. In figure someone else can bake, and I'll spend the time enjoying the kids. Their excitement is so fun to watch. Christmas is for kids.

I made the students in my daughters class snowman soup packets and place favors for another group.

On to the recipes!

I did get pork loin for 2.00 a pound.

Pesto Pork Roast
mix in blender or food processor
1/4 cup olive oil
2cups basil leaves
1/2cup parmesan cheese
4 peeled garlic cloves
Process until blended

Reserve 2 T pesto in a small bowl. Add 2 T olive oil to the reserved pesto.

Cut 12 Roma tomatoes into slices. Place on bottom of roaster. Salt and pepper.
Place 4-5 pound roast on the top of the tomatoes. Salt and pepper roast. Spread pesto over roast.

Bake at 350 for 1-1/2 to 2 hours or until meat registers 160 degrees.

Cook a pound of dried egg noodles. Drain. Remove roast to rest on platter. Add tomatoes to the noodles.

From taste of home


I would roast the tomatoes separately in olive oil maybe with a little Parmesan.
And add them to the noodles. If basil is to pricy, you could substitute parsley or check to see if costco's pesto is cheaper.

This would also work for a smaller roast . Just adjust the cooking time.
I have a thermometer that has a probe and a programable pad that you can set the meat and the doneness. It beeps at you when the meat comes up to temperature, I think I paid 25 dollars at Costco years ago. It was well worth the expense.

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Friday, December 14, 2012

Finally Friday

Friday...I have had a cold and haven't left the house all week.

Meat has taken another hike. Safeways just for you has higher prices than I can get the food elsewhere.

Roast is cheaper this week than hamburger. A dollar a pound makes it well worth your time to grind your own.

Pasta Pizza Soup

1 pound ground beef
4 ounces sliced mushrooms
1 medium onion, chopped
1 celery rib, sliced
1 tsp minced garlic
4 cups water or beef broth
1can diced tomatoes
1.5 tsp dried oregano
1.5 cup cooked tricolor spiral pasta

Sauté meat and veggies until veggies are tender and meat is no longer pink.
Stir in remaining ingredients

Cover and simmer for twenty minutes. Add pasta until heated through.

Chili Skillet

1 pound ground beef
1cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1 tsp minced garlic
1 cup tomato juice.
1can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
4 tsp chili powder
1tsp oregano
1tsp salt
1/2 cup uncooked long grained rice.

1cup corn
1/2 cup black olives
1cup cheese

Cook ground beef until no longer pink with the onion, green pepper and garlic.

Add the tomato juice, kidney beans, chili powder, oregano, salt and rice. Cover and simmer 25 minutes or until rice is tender.

Stir on corn and olives. Cover and cook 5 minutes. Add cheese and cover and cook 5 minutes more.

From taste of home


I would use 3/4 of a pound of pre cooked, defatted hamburger and use less onion.
Rinsing canned beans reduces a lot of the sodium . Cooking dried beans is the about the same price as canned. If you cook dried beans, you need to use them including leftovers soon. Beans and rice have a short fridge life. When on sale, sliced olives are cheaper than whole olives.

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Thursday, December 13, 2012

Thursday cold weather dishes

I had one hit on yesterday's ad post!

Beef Barley Soup

1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped celery
2-1/4 cup tomato juice
1/2 cup water

1/4 cup pearl barley
1tsp chili powder

Salt and pepper

Cook beef and veggies until veggies are tender and meat is no longer pink.

Stir in remaining ingredients.

Bring to a boil and reduce heat. Simmer an hour.

2 servings

Note. You could use pre cooked and defatted meat and just cook the veggies and add meat. You could substitute cooked stew meat into small cubes.


2 small zucchini, chopped
1/4 cup chopped onion
Olive oil

1cup v8 juice
1small tomato cut Into wedges

Sauté zucchini and onion until tender. Salt. Add V8 juice and tomato. sprinkle with pepper and dried basil.

Cook until heated through.

Garnish with shredded cheese and or crumbled bacon.

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You can leave a comment below. There is an anonymous option. If you don't want the ads dissected, please let me know. L

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Dollar dinner mix

At grocery outlet this weekend I picked up a taco kit for a dollar. It had six flour taco shells, six hard corn shells, taco seasoning, taco sauce. I used leftover chicken, re fried beans , lettuce, tomato, cheese .

A dinner for three dollars and fifty cents and I have shells and sauce and seasoning left for another meal.

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Wednesday ads

These are this weeks ads


ham .99
Apples .88
Milk 2.69
Beef bottom round 2.99


Baby back ribs
Oranges, 8 pounds



Cream cheese .99
Shredded or singles 1.99

Pork loin 2.00
Turkey .69

Lean ground beef 3.99 ***

Pasta 1.00

Foccacia bread 3.99 ***


English cucumbers 1.00
Butter 2/5.00
Sour cream 1.00
Baby carrots .99


Ham .99
Coffee 7.99
Chicken .99
Canned veggies .69

notes ***. Roast is a dollar a pound less than the lean ground beef if I had to jace broind beef, I would gri d my own. The bread is no bargain, but the best bread I have ever eaten if you like hot peppers.

That's about all.

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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Skillet suppers

Following the theme of quick and easy.


1 pound cooked chicken cubes
1 medium onion, chopped
1cup baby carrots, cut in half
1 cup frozen broccoli

2 ounces uncooked noodles ( 1 cup)
1-3/4 cups chicken broth

1 can cream of mushroom soup

Parsley to garnish

Sauté onions in olive oil until soft.

Add all ingredients to the skillet and bring to a boiling, reduce hest and simmer 10 minutes covered. Uncover and cook 5-8 minutes longer until veggies and noodles ar tender.


Pre-made meatballs

1/2 package speghetti

1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can tomato sauce
4 ounces pesto
1 tsp oregano

1) cook and drain speghetti and heat meatballs in microwave.

2) heat sauce ingredients in a saucepan 10-15 minutes

3) place meatballs in sauce and add pasta.

Garnish with parsley and parmesan.

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Monday, December 10, 2012

Monday madness 12/10

It's Monday the dreaded start of the work week. The holidays are fast approaching.

From Betty Crocker

Four Cheese Mashed Potatoes for a croud.

5 pounds of white potatoes, peeled and cut into one inch pieces

3 ounces cream cheese
1/4 cup blue cheese
1cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup parmesan cheese

8 ounces sour cream
1tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp paprika

Chives to garnish if desired

1) cook potatoes and mash.

2) in bowl beat together cheeses, sour cream and salt.

3) mix the potatoes and cheese mixture , add milk if necessary to make right consistency.

4) put into greased pan. 9X 13. Bake at 350 for 35-0 minutes. Serves 24.

5 grams fat each. 135 calories.

This can be made ahead and baked later.


1 can EACH OF

28 ounces of tomatoes

14.5 ounces of great northern beans
Corn, drained
Kidney beans

2stalks celery, thinly sliced
1 small zucchini, sliced
1 medium onion , chopped
1 cup shredded cabbage,

1/2 cup elbow macaroni or broken spaghetti

1 1/4 cups water
1tsp Italian seasoning
2veg bouillon cubes
1 clove garlic, minced

Parmesan to guarnish

Place everything but the Parmesan in a 4 quart pan. Heatto boiling. Reduce heat to low.

Cover and simmer 15-20 minutes until macaroni and veggies are tender.

2 grams fat, 305 calories

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Sunday, December 9, 2012

Sunday notes

Last night we had pork roast and oven roasted root veggies. Both were cooked in the oven and took 30 minutes. I got some organizational work done in my studio while it Cooked. The roast was on sale at Safeways and I picked up garlic rosemary parmesan cheese at grocery outlet. I had to go get boxes at the dollar store so we stopped by the grocery outlet too. they usually have a good variety of cheeses. Sometimes they have bargains on them, but not all are on sale. The parmesan was .50. Because we had never tried it, I would rather have a small size. It was really good.

Parmesan Rice and Peas with bacon. From Betty Crocker Simple Home Cooking ,2006

2 slices bacon , chopped
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1 cup uncooked long grained rice
1 can chicken broth (14 ounces)
1/2 cup water
1cup frozen sweet peas
3/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/8 tsp pepper

In a two quart saucepan, cook bacon until done. Add onion and stir one minute. Stir in rice until it is covered with bacon fat. Stir in broth and water. Heat to boiling, then reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer about twenty minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed. Gently stir in peas. Cook one to two minutes until peas are hot. Stir in cheese and pepper.

I would use the bacon ends I got cheap. This would also work with instant brown rice.
I would use the Romano cheese that I already have and my chicken stock or better than bouillon .

Slow cooker pork stew

1-1-2 pounds pork cubes
1-1/2 cups carrots, cut into slices
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cups peeled and cubed parsnips
1-1/2 cups peeled butternut squash
4 cups chicken broth

Sage, thyme, salt, pepper--1/2 tsp each
3T flour
1T butter

Brown meat on stove . Place om slow cooker.
Add remaining ingredients except flour and butter.
Cook on low 7-8 hours.

Mix butter and flour to make paste. Stir into stew.
Cook on high for 30 minutes until Gravy is thickened.

Adapted from the same booklet as above.

Note. This would be a good Sunday dinner When you are busy with Christmas preparations.
I love the cook and walk away meals.

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Saturday, December 8, 2012

Suddenly Saturday

It's Saturday . I thought I would continue to post recipes that are easy because we all have extra things on our agenda for the holidays and easy food is a stress reducer!
the holidays are supposed to be for having fun with friends and family.

Oven Roasted Vegetables

1/2 pound baby carrots
1/4 pound mushrooms
1 onion, peeled and cut into wedges
1 zucchini, cut into pieces
4 red potToes, cut into fourths

Olive oil
Italian seasoning
Parmesan cheese

Place veggies on baking sheet with sides. Drizzle with olive oil. oss to coat veggies. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning and cheese.

Bake at 450 for 30 minutes.

Taco Skillet Helper!

Mix together in skillet:

1 pound taco meat ( 12 ounces cooked meat)
1.5 cups water
1cup salsa
1can corn, drained well

Heat to boiling. Stir in 1-1/2 cups instant rice.
Bring back to a boil. Cover, take off neat and let stand 8 minutes.

Fluff rice.

Sprinkle with
3 ounces Mexican blend cheese
Cover and let stand until cheese is melted , about 2-3 minutes.

Garnish with lettuce and tomato.

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Friday, December 7, 2012

Finally Friday

It's finally Friday and I have a lot of errands to do. I just spent some four in the morning organizing my studio and purging.

On to food-- meals from the ads

My mix is 2 vegetarian, 2 chicken or pork, two beef and a fish. This assures a variety and enough of a mix to please everyone some of the time. Your mix may be different.

Chicken roasted
Hearty chicken soup


Shrimp stir fry

Mac and cheese
Bean soup

Most of these meals are either fast or make ahead.

Once you have roasted the chicken and portioned it out, you have four meals partially made. The meatballs were done when you batch cooked the hamburger as was the taco meat. Stir fry is fast. Bean soup is a matter of throwing stuff in the slow cooker. That leaves scratch Mac and cheese.

Mac and cheese in the Slow cooker usually calls for evaporated milk. I am not too fond of evaporated milk so I would rather make it with a white sauce. I usually use a variety of cheeses. It's a good way to clean out the cheese drawer of bits and pieces,

I usually make a topping of breadcrumbs, Parmesean and parsley.

If you use rice with the meat balls, you can double batch it for the stir fried shrimp.

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Thursday, December 6, 2012

Thankful it is Thursday.

It's Thursday already. Time to clean out the fridge and note what we might need.
Some notes? A friend of mine made a cake that was really healthy. It was a spice cake mix and a small can of pumpkin. Cake mixes are on sale this week. She made it in a bunt pan, but I would bet it could be made in a 9x13 also or in cupcakes.

Chicken is on this week as well and it's cold and flu season...yuk.

Hearty Chicken Soup

1 cup total of chopped carrot, celery, and onion.

6 cups chicken broth

1-1/2 cups chicken cubes

Salt, pepper, poultry seasoning to taste.

1-1/4 cups dry egg noodles.


In a large pan, sauté veggies in olive oil. Add broth, seasonings , chicken and noodles. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until noodles are tender.

Chicken Shepherd's Pie

Make white sauce with 3Tbs butter, and 3 Tbs flour and 2-1/4 cups milk. stir in two tsp poultry seasoning.

Remove from heat and stir in 3/4 cup cheese.

Add about 10 ounces of cooked chicken pieces and 1-1/2 cups of peas and carrots.

Put mixture in a 2quart greased baking dish. Top with ome package instant mashed potatoes, made up.

Top with grated cheese. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. Let stand for 5 minuts before eating.

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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Wednesday , add day

The adds for this week.


Chicken .99
Pears .99
Oranges .50
Pork shoulder roast 1.49

Stove top stuffing 1.99**

Raspberries 2.99




Cake mix .99. ( buy for deal)
chocolate chips 1.49
Marshmallows .79 ***snowman soup alert
Chili 1.00

Dukes .69
Apples 1.00

Raspberries 2.50
Lettuce .88
Apples .99 red delicious
Cheese, tillamock 5.49
Pears .99
Cake mix, Duncan Hines 100
Frosting 1.40

Buy 10--- 2.70
Sliced cheese
Chocolate!! Godiva. Stocking stutters?

Buy 10 - 1.70

Buy 10- 2.20


Chicken .89
Apples .99
Broccoli, cauliflower .99
romas .99

Buy 2 Jimmy dean sausage for 6.00 and get free eggs

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Retro and Costco cookbook

Last nights dinner. It was chili Mac from the Costco cookbook. We had nachos the night before, so I used the left over taco meat and chilies. Less than a five dollar meal.

Having a plan, but being flexible is the key. Without a plan, it is too easy to fall into the " let's order pizza " trap when you have had a long hard day.

Soup or stew in the crockpot is another tool to use when you know it's a hectic day. We all have busy lives and the holidays make life even more busy.

Last night we were talking about recipes from the sixties. Some of them my family never had. My mom was a stickler for basic food. She was of British decent and most everything was pretty basic and plain.

I remember beef stroganoff, Mac and cheese, tuna casserole, an omelet that she finished off in the oven so it puffed, clam chowder, meat balls with rice in them. We had liver with a red sauce, and spaghetti and braised beef on rice and hamburgers.

Mom would Bake bread pm Thursday's and we would have pizza in the mid fifties.

Some of these, I cook now and everyone likes them. ( except my daughter has become a vegetarian)!

Let's talk about almost free pizza. Keep a couple of freezer zip locks in your freezer door. Whenever you are chopping or cooking anything that goes on a pizza, set some aside in the bag. Veggies in one, meat in another. When you get enough to make a pizza, make the dough( see earlier post for easy recipe) and make a pizza. If you really want to be frugal, set a little pasta sauce aside too. Add Italian seasonings.

Guess that's all for today, I have to get to work on some other things.

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Monday, December 3, 2012

Monday madness

OK, I decorated the house yesterday and I'm pooped! I thought I would talk about the Costco cookbook that I picked up last time I was shopping.

There wonderful pictures of all the recipes.

I can't copy the recipes, but here are a few. The cookbooks are free at Costco.

Nutella stuffed French toast
cinnamon pancakes with maple cream cheese glaze
spinach quiche
Egg stuffed tomatoes on an English muffin bed...don't know about that one!!
Muffins galore.

Mm. Can we say Christmas morning!!

My reader is out dead and I have to go in the other room to finish.

Black bean and corn salsa
Asparagus and Brie soup

Fresh tomato lemon pasta with walnuts ,olives and feta
Parmesan roasted steakhouse potatoes
Crunchy harvest salad with honey cider vinaigrette
Double blue spinach salad

Mac and cheese
gingered salmon
baked tilpa with tomato tRtar sauce
Tilpa with red pepper sauce
Ground beef and rots cassarole
Chilli Mac
Tex Mex chicken tort a

Peach and custard creme tart
French apple slices YUM!
Chocolate brownies with peppermint bark...sounds like Christmas to me"
Rice pitting with cherry sauce

And many many more. Remember if some ingredient is too expensive...substitute if you can, or splurge!

I'll be trying some of these recipes soon. Many are fairly low cost and healthy.

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Sunday, December 2, 2012

Two hundred Posts!

I can't believe this is the two hundredth post!

I got frozen peaches from Grocery Outlet for a buck a pound. I need to use them so I thought I would share a peach pie recipe.

Pastry for a double crust pie

5 cups frozen peaches, thawed and drained.
1T lemon juice
1cup sugar
1/4 cup tapioca
Pinch of salt
Butter, cold

Place bottom crust in pie pan.
In bowl, combine peaches, lemon juice, sugar and tapioca and salt.
Place in pie pan.
Dot with butter.
Place top crust on pie and flute,

Egg wash crust and sprinkle with sugar and nutmeg.

Bake at 425 for 40-45 minutes or until crust is golden brown.

Twice baked Potatoes

4 baking potatoes
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup milk
1cup grated cheese
4 slices bacon cooked and crumbled
1tsp Dijon mustard

1) bake potatoes , cut slice off top and scoop out the insides, leaving the shell.

2) In a bowl, mix the potato insides with butter, milk and mustard. Fold in the cheese and bacon. Sprinkle the top with green onion if desired. sprinkle with paprika. Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes, or until cheese is melted and potatoes are warm.

Time will depend on of you pre make the potatoes, or cook them write after you prepare them.

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Saturday, December 1, 2012

The basics revisited

This blog is about groceries on the cheap. That doesn't mean cheap food, it means good food cheap. The USDA has stats in how much it should cost for a family to eat. It is based on ages and family size. I want to pay half. It is meals: better, cheaper, faster!

1/2 price groceries takes a three pronged approach at getting food on the table.
1) plan and organize 2) shop wisely 3) cook from scratch.

1) plan and organize
First, gather recipes that your family will eat that use low cost sources of protein.
Seven will do to start, but fourteen is better so you have variety. I want to average 5 bucks a dinner. I call it 4+1 = 5. Four people, one meal, five bucks.
Think pork, chicken, vegetarian and some beef. It getting harder because of rising food costs.

When you get home from the grocery shopping trip,plan 7 meals. It doesn't have to be a fancy meal plan-- just jot down 7 main dishes . Make a mental note of what was in the fridge before you went shopping and incorporate anything on the edge in your meals first. Store fresh food properly. There are a lot of storage solutions that keep your food fresh longer. They are well worth the investment.

About once mid week, take stock of the bread bin and fridge and do something with anything on the edge--incorporate it into the next meal,put it up, or as a last resort, throw it out. Bananas can become banana bread, stale bread can become bread crumbs or stuffing mix, vegetables can become stock.

2) shop wisely

The mantra here is not to get stuck paying full price. Make a list of staples you use frequently. In our house, that would be beans, cheese, re-fried beans, diced tomatoes,
Pasta sauce, some canned veggies,some tuna and pasta.

Keep track of how much you pay, where you bought it, and when you bought it. This can be in a small spiral notebook that you can carry with you, or on a spreadsheet. Mark the top of the page with the food and the size of the package. Then take a line to mark the date, the store, and the price you paid. Soon you will will see the lowest price for that product. You need then to buy 1) as many as you can afford 2) as many as the store allows, or as many as you need to maintain your stock, which ever comes first. If I use something once a week, I keep 24. If I use something once a month, I keep six.

When the ads come out, take a piece of paper draw limes to quarter it and top each quarter with the name of the store. Now go through the ads and write down the items and prices of anything on a good sale that you use and the price. Record the fruits and veggies you may need, and the meat prices that are low. Now, cross off anything
That is a higher price elsewhere,and anything that you already have an adequate supply of.

Now pick the two stores that have the best prices. Go there with your ads and list.
Get in, get your list, and get out. The longer you spend on a store, the more money you will spend. The grocery stores have spent a lot of research money to get you to impulse buy. Not all stores are created equal. There is a huge difference in prices, and no one store has low prices on everything. I used to work for a food wholesaler.
One grocery store has a 42 percent mark up. That is huge!

Don't overlook the stores that don't sell food for their main focus. Sometimes, they have the best prices. Always check pull dates. For example, I got diced tomatoes at Big Lots for .48. The same brand at QFC this week was 1.00 ON SALE. I think the regular price is 1.59. You can see that it would not take long to realize a big savings.

I am not advocating running across town to save .15. I plan my trips to the two stores to incorporate our other errands and maintain a tight circle so we don't waste gas. Going to the closest store for dinner foods every day or two is the worst thing you can do for your budget.

I have guidelines for meat and veggie purchases. I try for less than 2.50 a pound for meat, and a buck for veggies and fruit. It is not working lately with rising food prices. Balancing good nutrition goes along with this too.

3) Cook from scratch. :

One of the fastest ways to derail your budget is to buy ready-made or packaged mixes.

My daughter and I dissected a cheeseburger macaroni meal box. It had .20.8 cents worth of macaroni, and 1.57 ounces of a sauce mix. We paid 2.08 for the box. At that rate, the Cheese burger sauce mix cost 13.28 a pound. They have to list ingredients in order of volume. The first ingredient was cornstarch and the last was cheese whey and preservatives. I never met a cheese I didn't like, and I never met a cheese that had no cholesterol. If it sounds to good to be true, it probably is. You can buy REALLY good cheese for 13.28 a pound.

In most cases, there is a way to cook the same things just as fast and a whole lot cheaper. With few exceptions, scratch is better and less expensive without the preservatives. I don't think that re-fried beans and tortillas are worth making from scratch. The few times I make cake or brownies doesn't warrant scratch. I can get the mixes for a buck frequently.

Depending on the time of year, instant mashed potatoes are cheaper than scratch. I can sometimes get them for .50. Pasta sauce ( hunts) is as low as .75. You can't buy the tomato product that cheap!

There are styles of cooking that make scratch cooking fast cooking. The slow cooker is really your friend as is a pressure cooker. The new electronic ones have safety valves. Any food you can prep in a few minutes and put in the oven is fast food. You can be doing other things while dinner cooks.

If you spend time to precook meat when you have a less stressed time, you save a lot of time when things are busier. I cook and defat ground meat when I get home from the store, or the next day. You can roast a chicken, cut off the leg portion, and cut the breast in half. Serve half the breast for one meal, cut the rest of the breast meat in cubes for a pot pie or pasta, and freeze the leg portions to make another meal. Save the breast bones and the neck, etc for stock. Roast off a roast. Have a roast dinner, and then slice the rest of it thin for sandwiches-- either roast beef a jus or BBQ pork.

Making your own seasoning mixes, salad dressing and croutons and bread crumbs is a real money saver.

Basically, if you spend more time on the front end of the "get the meal on the table" train and less time on the back end, you will be better off. No one is paying you to cook, but you are being paid well to shop. The average family spends 150.00 a week on food. If you spend 75.00 and you spend an extra hour shopping, you are making 75.00 an hour. This is a concept nots everyone can grasp. If they don't have the money in their little hot hand, they can't see it! LOL. Another abstract is that you would have to earn 90.00 to spend that 75.00. Food for thought.

Thanks for stopping by.
Please share. The object of me writing this blog is to help people eat better for less. I know the unemployment rate is still high and there are people who have had to resort to getting food stamps. We have all had times when we have had to economize.
I hope you enjoy this blog and get what you can use out of it. Some people enjoy seeing a new recipe, or being reminded of an old one, some enjoy the time saving tips. But, whatever it is, I hope I am helping someone.


Friday, November 30, 2012

Finally Friday

IT's finally Friday! It's gettimg hard for me to think of things to write about. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

I bought a new CROCKPOT and it didn't cook the food properly. My split pea soup was still crunchy after 8 hours cooking. I e mailed CROCKPOT company. They are sending me a new crockpot. Albeit by mule 6-8 weeks, but at least they are sending me a new one. It pays not to be complacent.


2 pounds beef cubes
1 tsp minced garlic

4 large carrots, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 pound red potatoes, cut into quarters.
1 med red pepper, chopped.

1can diced tomatoes, undrained

1/4 cup floor

1can tomato paste.
1cup beef broth

1) brown off beef with a teaspoon of minced garlic
2) add beef, and veggies to slow cooker .
3) pour tomatoes over the top.
4) make a slurry of the tomato paste, broth, and flour and pour into slow cooker.
5) season with salt, pepper, and thyme.

Stir mixture . Cover and cook on low 6-8 hours or until meat is done.


Tomato paste os about .52 at Costco. It is .50 at grocery outlet. Red peppers are .50 at grocery outlet.

Beef is on sale at Safeways. You have to cut your own cubes.

Canned tomatoes are on sale this week. Note the range of prices.

I buy better than bouillon at Costco. A jar lasts a long time in the refer.

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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Meals from the ads /thursday

A lot of stores this week have canned tomatoes on sale. The range in price for the same product is .75 to a buck. QFC is the most expensive and Top is the least. That is twenty five percent off.


1) quiche , salad
2) salmon with root veggies
3) Mac and cheese, broccoli
4) roast chicken , mashed potatoes, green beans , salad
5) chicken potpie
6) Swiss steak, mashed potatoes, salad
7) braised beef tips, rice, waldorf salad,glazed carrots

Notes. Round steak is buyone get ome Safeways. Cut your one tips.
Chicken is on sale.
Eggs are on sale.
Salmon is on sale.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Wednesday grocery ads

Finally we have ads! Such as they are.

There are not many bargains out there!


Apples .78
Whole fryers .99
Chicken thighs .99

Tomatoes , diced .88 **
Pasta sauce .88 **

Tomatoes , diced .75**
Pasta sauce .75**

Salad .99


Berries . 99
Sirloin chops B1G1, nets 2.75
Hunts tomatoes 1.00**


Round steak 2.50net B1G
pork loom rib 1.79
Milk 2.99
Reggs 1.69. Coupon
Tuna 1.00
Snack Crackers 1.99
Pasta sauce .89**

That's about it. Note the ***. Price comparisons on tomato diced and pasta sauce.
Quite a large spread in prices.

Cold weather is coming, time for soups, chilling, and pasta!!

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012


Inspiration can come from anywhere. Often I see somethimg on a cooking show or in a magazine and it will remind me of something my mother made, or give me an idea of how to make somethimg similar at low cost.

Shrimp Chowder

2cups total of onion, celery carrot and red peppers.
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2cups milk
1/2 pound shrimp ( cooked) and cleaned. (if large, cut I'm half)
2 large potatoes, peeled and diced
1cup vegetable broth
1cup corn.

In pan, sauté veggies In butter until soft. Stir I'm flour and gradually add milk to make a sauce.

Add potatoes, broth and corn and cook until potatoes are soft. ( the smaller the dice for the potatoes, the quicker they will cook. Duh! )

Add shrimp and heat for ten minutes or until it is heated through.


2celery ribs, sliced
1/2 cup chopped onion
16 ounces of split peas


1/2 pound sausage, cooked and defatted

1 cup carrots, sliced.
2potatoes, peeled and cubed

Parsley, basil, salt and pepper

in a soup pot, Cook celery and onion in olive oil until tender.
Put peas in pot with 1.5 quarts water. Reduce heat and simmer 25 minutes.

Stir in remaining ingredients and 3 cups water. Cook an additional 30 minutes until peas and veggies are tender.

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Monday, November 26, 2012

Monday madness, November 26

And we start another week. 1 month until Christmas. December , I think, is the busiest month of the year. Some of us have December birthdays as well. I am going to attempt to ease the stress by posting ways to streamline time in the kitchen and gettimg ready for the holidays.

If you don't do it already, take time to sit down with a cup of coffee or tea and make lists and fill out your calendar. Your computer should have ome that you can print out and keep just for the holidays.

If you haven't gathered it yet, I am a big fan of the crockpot. I can put dimmer on early in the morning when it is less hectic, and have dinner ready when we are ready to eat. If we are coming in at odd times, we can all eat when it is convenient.

Making food ahead when you have a sane day helps too. If you already have the meat done, it is really fast to cook a starch and a veggie.


1 pound of ground beef or pork. ( about 12 ounces of cooked and defatted meat)

1/2 large onion, chopped
1tsp chopped garlic
1/2 red pepper, chopped
1stalk celery
1can beer
1/3 cup ketchup
2tsp mustard
1tsp chili powder
1tsp vinegar
Hot pepper sauce if desired

If you have not already cooked meat, cook meat until no longer pink and drain.
Combine the rest of the ingredients and cook on low 6-8 hours, or on high 3-4 hours.

Serve with hamburger buns and French fries or veggie sticks.

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To answer a question, Big Lots is an over stock store that sells everything from toys to food and everything in between. Trader Joes is a alternative food store that sells some regular food, but a lot of vegetarian and speciality foods for special therapeutic

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Notes on Sunday

It's Sunday. We are all pretty much full of turkey by now!LOL

I am assuming that the grocery ad people took the week off. I took the week off from serious shopping too. Because I stock up, I don't have to shop occasionally.


2 pound stew beef
2T paprika

1can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 3/4 cup beef stock
1 large onion, sliced
3 large carrots, cut up
1 red pepper, roasted and cut into strips

1/4 cup water mixed with 2T cornstarch. (slurry)

8 ounces of sour cream

Noodles, cooked and tossed with butter and parsley.

Sprinkle paprika over stew meat. Cut in smaller pieces if necessary.
Put in slow cooker.

Add next section of ingredients to slow cooker.
( tomatoes through peppers)

Cover and cook on low 10-12 hours or high 5-6.
During the last 1/2 hour cooking time, add your cornstarch slurry.

When stew is ready, remove meat with a slotted spoon and add sour cream. Stir and place meat back in slow cooker, or transfer the entire dish to a serving dish.

Serve over the cooked noodles.

Note: sour cream is cheaper at Costco. If stew beef is expemsive, you can cut yournown from another cut of meat that is on sale.
I keep better than boullion in the refrigerator, it lasts long time and I always have chicken, beef, or veggie stock on hand. I can get the beef and chicken at Costco in a large container. The veggie is harder to find.

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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Suddenly Saturday

Ah, still no grocery ads. I didn't shop for groceries this week. We went to and I picked up a few Christmas presents and a few grocery items, it that was it. I always buy sour cream and butter at Costco. butter is cheaper if you get it in pound bricks. It is really easy to cut off a short cube and it uses less butter. tomato paste was .52 cents. Onions were 4 dollars a bag.

On a non food note, they have ponchos for little girls....flower power...for five bucks. They have a hood.

BLT Potato Soup

3 slices bacon
1T olive oil
6 tsp minced garlic

4-5 new potatoes, scrubbed and sliced
3 cups chicken broth

2 cans diced tomatoes, undrained
Parsley or chives

1) Dice the bacon and fry in the bottom of a Dutch oven, remove bacon with a slotted spoon and drain on a brown paper bag.

Discard most of the fat. Add olive oil. Reduce heat and cook the onions until soft.
Add garlic, salt and pepper.

Add the chicken stock, 3 cupsnwater, and the potatoes.
Cook the potatoes for 15 minutes until they are tender. Add the tomatoes and cook 10 minutes longer.

Puree the soup. Add water if necessary to make the right consistency.

Guarnish with bacon and parsley.

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Friday, November 23, 2012

Black Friday

Today is black Friday. I am not going anywhere near a store, except maybe my own! LOL

We are all stuffed from yesterday. It's leftover day for many of us.

There are still no grocery ads this week. I got a lot of black Friday ads.

Veggie Omelet.

1 onion, minced
3 tsp minced garlic

1 cup roasted vegetables. ( great use of leftovers or a stair step )

7 eggs
1/3 cup 1/2 and 1/2
Salt, pepper

1cup shredded cheese

Sauté the onion and garlic in olive oil until just tender.
Add roasted vegetables and cook until they are warm.

Remove vegetable mixture from pan.

In bowl, mix together Eggs, cream, salt and pepper. Beat well.
Put egg mixture in pan. Cook 3. Minutes without stirring. Run a spatula around the edge of the pan to let the uncooked egg run under the cooked egg.

When egg is set, add vegetables on top, then the cheese.
Fold the omlet over and cook a few minutes until the cheese is melted.

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Thursday, November 22, 2012


Happy thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving is a time of the year when we can take a break from economizing. That being said, I did make an observation while shopping this week. Just about everything that was traditionally a holiday staple, was full price, or more than full price. While I don't believe in pinching pennies on the holiday, paying double wrankles me.
I still would and have bought the things that I normally by when they were on sale in the previous few weeks. For, example, pork loin is still two dollars a pound often. This week, QFC wanted over 4.50 a pound! That's not economizing, it's not getting taken advantage of!LOL.

Things you can do with left over turkey.

1) turkey, cranberry sauce panneni
2) just plain leftovers
3)turkey casserole - cream sauce with spaghetti
4) turkey soup
5) turkey pot pie

We all know this, but sometimes I get in a rut and forget.

Pumpkin Soup

1 -16 ounce can pumpkin
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup carrot, chopped
1/4 cup chopped onion
A pinch each of salt, oregano, rosemary, ground red pepper
4 cups vegetable broth or chicken broth.

Put everything but the broth in a slow cooker. Gradually stir in broth. Cover and cook on low 6-8 hours, or on high 3-4 hours. Serve with sour cream and pumpkin seeds if desired.

On another subject:

It have a very large compote thar I put a candle in the center of and then fill the space around it with seasonal things. On Halloween/Thanksgiving, it might be leaves or candy corn. For Christmas it is cranberries and/or some evergreens out of the yard.
Valentines day might bring red paper hearts or conversation hearts. st. Patricks day, paper shamrocks. Easter brings Easter grass and plastic eggs, or jelly beans. The red -white and blue holidays get ribbons or little flags. A green and a white candle and found things makes a year round centerpiece. If you don't have a compote, you could do the same thing with a glass bowl or large jar.

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I'll do ads as soon as I get some.
I did get just for U today.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

It's Wednesday, no ads yet, two!!

Yet another week , I have no ads on Tuesday night. I think this time that the stores are not releasing them because of the holiday.

I'm reading in some blogs that people are decorating for Christmas this weekend. Thanksgiving came early, and I am not in the mood yet-- too busy with other things this year. Halloween never got put up this year. I managed to get pumpkins and pilgrims up though! Time will tell if I get any help!

On to the theme of this blog! LOL

I am going to see after thanksgiving, if they mark turkeys down. Since I am not cooking thanksgiving dinner, I can cook one this weeked!

Teriyaki Sauce

1/2 up chicken broth
2T brown sugar
2T teriyakibsauce
1tsp dry mustard
1tsp orange peel
1/2 tsp ginger.

Chicken or turkey

Place a pound of a mixture of broccoli, baby carrots, and water chestnuts that have been blanched in a crockpot. Top with 2 T quick cooking tapioca and a pound of leftover chicken or turkey. Cover with sauce.

Cook on low 4-6 hours or on highb2-3.

Serve on rice.

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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Tuesday talk

I thought I would try for the next couple of days to post recipes that use the leftovers from thanksgiving.

Broccoli Ham Bake

3 cups chopped frozen broccoli

1/4 cup chopped onion

2T flour
2 1/4 cups milk
1/2 cup shredded cheese
2 cups cooked ham, cubed
1 1/2 cups stuffing cubes

Cook broccoli.

Sauté onion in 3 T butter, stir in flour, and gradually add milk.
Cook until it comes to a boil and stir 2 minutes. Reduce heat and add cheese until

Add broccoli, ham and 1cup bread cubes to the cheese sauce.
Place in greased baking dish.

Top casserole with bread crumbs with parsley and Parmesan cheese.

Bake 350 25-30 minutes.

Note you can use leftover broccoli , stuffing cubes, and ham if you have it.

Turkey quiche

1/2 onion, chopped
olive oil
2tsp minced garlic
6eggs, slightly beaten
3/4 cup cream
2 cups turkey, cubed
2 cups grated cheese
5 bacon strips, cooked

Sauté onion and garlic

In large bowl, combine eggs and cream. Add remaining ingredients.

Pour into greased 9 inch pie plate.
Bake at 375 for 35 - 45 minutes.

Bake until knife in center comes out clean.

Let stand 10 minutes.

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Monday, November 19, 2012

Monday madness, November 19

It's Monday. Short week yeah! And I domt have to cook thanksgiving doesn't get any better than that! LOL

I'm on a slow cooker kick! In the hectic days of holiday, it's a way to keep your sanity and the stress level down.

Pasta sauce

Note. This is more expensive than the Hunts pasta sauce when you get it on sale. But, if you want scratch sauce, this sounds pretty good.

1/2 pound sausage, cooked and defatted
1/4 pound ground beef, cooked and defatted

1/2 onion, chopped
1tsp minced garlic

1 can diced tomatoes
1 8 ounce can tomato sauce
1-4ounce can mushrooms, sliced and drained
1/2 a red pepper, chopped
2T. Quick cooking tapioca
1tsp Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients in the slow cooker.

Cover , and cook on low for 8-10 hours, or on high 4-5 hours.

Note. I have a microwave pasta cooker. In my opinion, it is one of the best kitchen investments that I have made. They are out ten dollars. I found ome in a two dollar box lot for a friend. You put your Pasta on the cooker, fill water to the correct waterline, and cook in the microwave for the set time. No watching the pot, ome pot to wash. The pot has a lid that you put on and drain the water into the sink.

Literally, in less than 15 minutes you can get the pasta cooking and make a salad and butter French bread.

That's all for today.

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Sunday, November 18, 2012

Notes on Sunday

Yesterday we went shopping to get some necessities near the mall. We stopped by Top because my daughter wanted a couple of things.

The thing that I noticed that I think I was getting the gist of it in the ads, was that there was " free" turkey if you spent 150.00. It wouldn't have been hard spending 150.00 because everything had a super high price on it. The stove top stuffing that we paid .79 for a couple of weeks ago was 1.40 on sale! Cream of mushroom soup was top dollar too.

I did find green beans for .67 and black olives for a 1.00. I picked up a hot air popcorn popper at kohls, so I bought some popcorn. The popcorn in a bag was cheaper than the popcorn in the bulk section. It is a lot cheaper and more healthy than the stuff in the microwaveable pouch. I'll pay for my popper in a very short time.

On to food...sort of

I came across a thanksgiving treat a few years back.

Pilgrim hats

Chocolate wafers. ( they are a round thin chocolate cookie. I found them at Safeways, but haven't looked this year. )

Peanut butter cups

Put the peanut butter cup upside down on the chocolate wafer. Use frosting for glue.
Pipe a square of frosting in the center to make a buckle.

They are real fast and really cute.

A few years ago I found a recipe for pumpkin creme brûlée on line. easy and no crust!

our thanksgiving has changed through the years. My mother always cooked baby creamed o ions, sweet potatoes that had marshmallow centers and corn flake crust ( like a snowball sort of) green beans with almonds, homemade dressing with celery and onions,
Mashed potatoes, green jello salad with pineapple and green pepper. And of course turkey. And pumpkin and mincemeat pies and crab cocktails for starts.

I remember one thanksgiving that we went to four stores looking for alphabet macaroni so that we could paint it and glue it on the place cards!

Ah, for nostalgia! LOL. We all adjust. As I get older, it's not as much about the food as it is about the fellowship.

I guess that's all for rambleing

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Saturday, November 17, 2012

Autumn recipes

Since I have to admit to myself that it is fall, here are some fall recipes. It's hard to believe that they have Christmas decorations up in the stores already. It's not even thanksgiving yet.

Fall slow cooker pot roast

1.5 to 2 pound pot roast.

4 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into pieces. About a pound.

1 cup beef stock
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp pepper

Place cut veggies im bottom of slow cooker.
Brown the roast in pan on top of the stove with a little oil. Put on top of veggies in the slow cooker.

Mix seasonings with stock. Pour over meat.

Cook on low 8-10 hours.
Garnish with apple wedges if desired.

You can use meat juices for gravy, or thicken it with a slurry of water and cornstarch.

Slow cooker stuffing

1/2 cup hot water
6 ounces of mixed dried fruits. ( cut in small pieces if necessary.

1cup chopped celery
1/2 cup green onion, sliced
1/2 cup butter
Parsley, sage. Thyme. Marjoram
Salt, pepper.

10 cups dry bread cubes

1/2 cup chopped pecans
1.5 to 2 cups chicken broth

1) plump dried fruit with hot water,

2) sauté celery and onion until celery is limp. Add seasonings.

3) place bread in large bowl. Add dried fruit, water and all.

4) add veggies and pecans.

5) add enough broth to moisten .

6) place stuffing in a slow cooker. Cover and cook on low 6 hours or on high 3 hours.

Note. Two slices of bread equals one cup of cubes. Toast on slow oven.

You could use dried cherries or cranberries for the dried fruit.

This recipe frees up the oven for other dishes.

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Friday, November 16, 2012

Friday Finally

It's been a crazy week. Yesterday we had a little visitor (bird). Somehow he got in the house. I'm sure thankful it wasn't at the same time that the neighbors cat decided
To visit! LOL after knocking down all my thanksgiving decorations and scarimg the grandchild half to death, my husband came home and chased it outside!

add that to the alarm system deciding it needed new batteries and beeping every hour on the hour it was a crazy day!

On to food.

Meals from the ads

1) obviously, thanksgiving dinner.
2) turkey soup
3) sausage and bean soup ( make something easy the day before you marathon cook thanksgiving)
4) Cuban panninis, salad
5) sirloin roast
6) roast beef a jus sandwiches
7) Mac and cheese, mixed veggies

Roast is on sale at top. veggies are on sale for a buck.. See post.

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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The weekly ads

The mailman finally brought the ads.

Turkeys at Safeways are based on how much you spend this week.

Spend 150.00 free
Spend 100 .49
Spend 50. .69

Boneless pork loin 1.99

Broccoli .79

Milk 2.99
Green beans 2.50


Turkey 7.00
Turkey, large 9.00

With a fifty dollar purchase

Yams .48
Celery 2/1.00
Berries 2.99
Pie crustv2/5


Turkey .69 small
Turkey .49 large
With 30 purchase

Butter 2/4
Frozen veggies 1.00
Ice cream 3/10
Celery . 69
Yams . 99xxx
Berries 2.99


Free with 150 purchase
.49 for 100.00
.69 for 50 purchase

Butter 1.88 coupon
Cheese 4.99 w coupon
Frozen veggies 1.00
Mashed potaroes1.00
Eggs 2/5
Cranberries 2.00
Berries 12 ounces 5.79

Nothing is a big bargain.

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It's wednesday! No ads yet

This would normally be the day that I would analyze the ads. Because of the holiday, the mail is late. Better luck tomorrow! LOL

Yesterday we had quiche and salad for dinner. I had bits and ends of bacon that I got for free at Safeways. It made for a really cheap dinner. The bacon and eggs were free. We paid for salad and bisquick!

Pork chops with potatoes ( slow cooker)

6 pork chops, 3/4 inches thick
1T cooking oil

1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/4 cup wine
1 sr cup Dijon mustard
1tsp thyme
1tsp minced garlic

6 potatoes, cut in /4 inch slices
1 medium onion, sliced

1) brown pork chops

2) in bowl, combine soup, wine, mustard, thyme, garlic and onion.

3) add potatoes and onion and stir to coat.

4) put in slow cooker and top with pork chops.

Cook on low. 7-8 hours.

6 servings

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Tuesday ideas

Breakfast casserole

1 pound pork sausage
1large green pepper, chopped
1medium o ion, chopped
1 pound loaf bread, cubed ( bakery bread)
1cup ( 4 ounces) shredded cheese
6 eggs
2cups milk
1tsp mustard

1) cook sausage and green pepper.
2) place bread in a greased 9X13 pan
3) top with sausage mixture and cheese
4) whisk eggs, milk and mustard
5) pour over the top.
6) refrigerate overnight.
7) remove from refer and let stand 30 minutes
8) Bake uncovered at 340 for 30- 35 minutes.

Individual apple treats

In separate bowl, combine 1/2 cup sugar with 2 tsp cinnamon
Unroll a pre made pie crust on a floured board, spread crust with butter.
Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon mixture.
Cut the pastry onto 1 inch strips

Cut apple onto wedges. Wrap pastry around apple wedge, sugar side out.

Place apples on a parchment lined baking sheet. Brush tops with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

Bake at 425 for 13-15 minutes.

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Monday madness

Better, cheaper, faster. Meals on the cheap!

First, I made a pot roast last night. I thinkthat there is something different going on with the beef we are getting. It was in the slow cooker for over 8 hours, and still tougher than. I would like. It is usually fall apart tender, this was not.
Next time, I will get up earlier and allow a full 10 hours.

Chicken Sausage
1/2 pound linguini, cooked and drained. ( keep warm)

2 teaspoons minced garlic

3 medium peppers,assorted colors, cut into strips

4 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped

1pound chicken sausage, cut into bite sized pieces.


1) sauté garlic in olive oil. Add peppers and cook till peppers are limp. Add sausage and cook intil heated through. Add tomatoes and Parmesan. Garnish with parsley.

2) serve over pasta

Turkey and black bean quesadillas

stir together

Cheddar cheese
Turkey breast cut into strips, thin
Can of black beans, rinsed and drained

Place mixture between flour tortillas that have been brushed with butter or olive oil.
Place on a bakimg sheet
Bake at 10- 15 minutes at 375.

This would be good with a tomato soup. Or topped with lettuce, tomato, sour cream and salsa.

Note. You could use sandwich turkey, or chicken, or leftover turkey ( thanksgiving black Friday?!?)

Another note. At business Costco they had 27 percent hamburger for 1.49 a pound. They also had shredded cheese in a variety of types for 2.32 a pound. Peppers were a buck a piece. I have doumd them cheaper other places. Ready made salad was really cheap.

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Saturday, November 10, 2012

Food glorious food

Last nights dinner.

Quick Chicken and Couscous

1 medium carrot, thinly sliced
2green onions, sliced

1 1/2 cups cubes chicken or turkey, cooked
1cup frozen peas

2tsp curry powder

2cups chicken broth
1cup couscous

In saucepan, cook carrots and onion in butter until carrots are crisp tender. Add chicken, peas, and curry powder. Cook one minute. Add chicken stock and bring to a boil.

Remove from heat. Stir in couscous. Cover, let stand 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork.

Easy skillet Tex Mex

3/4 pound ground beef
1cup instant rice
2cans diced tomatoes

1/2 cup water
4 ounces of cubes cheddar cheese

Tortilla chips

1) cook beef until no longer pink and drain. ( or use pre cooked defatted meat.)
2) stir in rice, tomatoes, and water. Cook until mixture comes to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until rice is tender- 6 minutes.
Stir in cheese, sprinkle with chips.

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...and one fish

Yesterday we talked about a formula for meal plans to introduce variety in your meals.
I found a canned ( or left over) salmon recipe looking through my old cookbooks.


8 ounces of Shell pasta, cooked and drained

1/2 cup frozen peas
5 plum tomatoes

1cup milk
1 can cream soup
1T butter

1/2 cup parmesan

Onion, garlic, w sauce and Tabasco sauce. ( about a tsp each except Tabasco to taste.

1/4 tsp dill

1) put peas in colander and thaw under running cold water.
2) seed tomatoes and cut into small cubes.
Set aside
3) make sauce. In saucepan combine soup and milk. Add butter, seasonings, and cheese.
4) heat to almost boiling, melting cheese.
5) drain and pick salmon if necessary. Flake fish. Fold into sauce with tomato and peas.
6) pour sauce over pasta.

Kirkland salmon is really good quality. I sometimes get salmon on sale at bar tells.

Roma tomatoes continue to be cheap with just for u at Safeways.

Pasta was a buck again at Safeways, it is better brand to wait for a .88 on the blue box. I'm getting g old, o forgot the name LOL.

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