Archive for August, 2013


Simple Supper

Today was one of those days where I needed something easy to prepare and to the table in a flash. Autumn is upon us and it made me think of good old-fashioned creamy tomato soup and toasted cheese with red grapes for dessert. Nothing fancy about this meal but I sure didn’t hear any complaining. I used 1% organic milk in the soup and whole wheat bread with extra fiber for the sandwiches. The cheese is light American, but not organic. Sometimes you have to pick your battles. In this case I’m talking about the battle with price and availability of certain items.

Creamy tomato soup and toasted cheese with red grapes

Creamy tomato soup and toasted cheese with red grapes

Toasted cheese

Toasted cheese

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It was a comfort food mood tonight. We enjoyed pork chops fried with onions and peppers, spicy jack scalloped potatoes and zucchini and summer squash. Not what you would call healthful, but it’s time to clean out the pantry and freezer as we are embarking on a two week experiment starting Friday, September 6. We’ll be switching over to mostly organic and cutting out red meat and processed foods. We’ll see how much better we feel after that detox.

Pork chops, spicy jack scalloped potatoes, and zucchini and summer squash

Pork chops, spicy jack scalloped potatoes, and zucchini and summer squash

Tacos Revisited

When life hands you leftover taco ingredients…make a salad. Let’s face it. Leftovers are boring. So what do you do when faced with perishable ingredients that just aren’t going to keep for a few days and leftovers from the previous night in the frig? Instead of wasting your hard-earned dollars that went into buying those ingredients, find a way to reinvent the dish.

There are those who don’t mind a repeat performance, but then there are those who just despise leftovers or simply have a hankering for something new and different each day. For the later crowd, spruce up what you already have and it’ll hardly be like eating leftovers at all, whether it be tacos turned into a salad or leftover chicken or turkey dinner fixins morphed into a gourmet chicken sandwich or “waffle”. You’ll have to stay tuned for that one.

Her taco salad

Her taco salad

His taco salad

His taco salad

Yum!

Yum!

Beefed up Tacos

It may seem like a contradiction but I beefed up our tacos by using less beef. An addition of dark red kidney beans and corn added nutrition by way of fiber and antioxidants, and reduced the amount of meat we ate without even noticing. It’s a great way to save a little off of your grocery bill too. Beef is becoming more expensive, even the ground variety. We enjoyed these with a scant sprinkling of a Mexican cheese blend, baby leaf lettuce, fresh, juicy tomatoes from the garden, and our very first batch ever of homemade salsa.

Beefed up tacos

Beefed up tacos

Beefed up tacos

Beefed up tacos

Shave off some fat and calories by using ground turkey or chicken. Just make sure it’s skinless ground breast meat you’re buying or you could be eating just as much fat as in ground beef. We used 90% ground beef here.

What’s Been Cooking

The sabbatical has ended.

What a better way to begin than to share some of the frugal and healthful things we’ve been consuming. That seems to be the number one complaint I hear since I’ve stopped posting. “I miss seeing what you’ve been cooking!”

BBQ Ribs, Coleslaw and Potatoes

BBQ Ribs, Coleslaw and Potatoes

Coleslaw is cheap to make, even if you buy the bag of shredded veg on sale. Make your own low-fat dressing or buy a low-fat version. It gets better as it sits in the frig and is an easy and delicious side dish to serve with many different kinds of meals.

Buffalo Chicken Sloppy Joes, Loaded potatoes and salad

Buffalo Chicken Sloppy Joes, Loaded potatoes and salad

A more healthful spin on a family favorite, using ground chicken breast and packed full of veg. There has to be more than a serving of veg in this sandwich.

Chili con Carne Meatballs over bulgar wheat

Chili con Carne Meatballs over bulgur wheat

Chock full of fiber with beans and bulgur wheat. Lean ground turkey was used for these spiced up meatballs.

Chicken Marsala, Spaghetti and salad

Chicken Marsala, Spaghetti and salad

Chicken and onions sautéed with Marsala wine. This meal only took minutes to prepare. We used leftover spaghetti and a nice green salad to round out the meal. Use up those leftovers!

Greek Chicken Salad with homemade Tzatziki sauce

Greek Chicken Salad with homemade Tzatziki sauce

This dish was a spin-off of something I saw Jamie Oliver create on his 15 minute meals. If you think you can’t get a nutritious and quick meal on the table you need to watch a couple of his shows about this concept. Couscous only takes minutes. Utilized your food processor to help you with the veg. Homemade Tzatziki is a delicious and refreshing treat.

Pignoli (pine nut) Cookies

Pignoli (pine nut) Cookies

These were a splurge but pine nuts are good for you. If you’re going to eat sweets why not get a little “nut”trition why you’re at it. It’s also a bonus to share traditional ethnic recipes with your children.

Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed Peppers

Fresh from the garden stuffed peppers. Stretch your meat of choice by adding whole grains and vegetables to your stuffing. Comfort food at its best.

Enjoy! There’s a lot more to come.

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