Thursday, April 23, 2009

yummy tomato sauce

Meredith Stencil is our guest contributor for this one. You can also add this sauce over some steamed veggies if you don't want to use pasta.

**Notice there are a lot of ingredients in here that I say to have around the house**

Recipe from a friend from Torino, Italy.Enough sauce for about 10 oz pasta (little less than half the box) Double recipe for more. Serves 3-4

4 tablespoons olive oil
half onion chopped finely
1 carrot, peeled and chopped finely
1 14 oz can of diced tomatoes
1-2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 beef or chicken bouillon cube
1 red pepper
crumbled or dash of red pepper flakes (optional)
1/2 teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
handful of chopped fresh herbs or teaspoon of drive ( oregano and rosemary if dried)
1-1 1/2 teaspoon sugar

Heat oil in wide skillet. Add onion, carrot and celery. Cook vegetables until wilted, stirring frequently. Add tomatoes, garlic, bouillon, red pepper, salt, herbs and sugar. Bring to a boil then reduce to low. Simmer on low heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Got old bread?

Hello everyone! Have you ever fixed hamburgers or hot dogs for your family and have then been left with extra buns that just end up growing mold? Well, here is a great solution that I tried out last night - CROUTONS!

Heat your oven to 375 degrees. Take your hamburger and hot dog buns (or any almost stale bread without mold) and cut it up into squares. Spray some spray butter on the squares, and sprinkle salt, garlic salt, oregano and basil leaves on top. Bake the bread squares in the oven for 15 minutes and then you've got delicious croutons! This is a great way to make sure you aren't wasting any of your food.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Brownie Peanut Butter Cups

These easy brownies are courtesy of Melanie Levy,

She got the recipe from and they got it from Nestle. Enjoy!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

A GREAT, cheap ten-minute meal

Ben and I were really lazy tonight and made this quick, cheap meal. It was actually REALLY good.

3 cans of tuna
a few squirts of low fat caesar
a few shakes of dill
one chopped onion
one sliced tomato
a few squirts of dijon
one package of couscous
one can of green peas (I like Lesueur)

- Mix the low fat caesar, dill, dijon and tuna in one bowl; we added a little bit of tobasco, too.
- Sautee the onions in a skillet.
- Once the onions are soft and a little brown, take them out of the skillet and mix them in the bowl with the tuna.
- Make patties with the tuna mixture and put them back in skillet and cook for as long as you want. The patties will totally fall apart, but they are really good!
- Take the tuna patties out of the skillet and put on your plate.
- Slice the tomato and put it on the hot skillet for about one minute. Place on top of the tuna.

- Make the couscous according to the package and serve as a side.

- Make the green peas according to the can and serve as a side.

Sooo yummy and it will cost you less than $10 to feed two people....PERFECT!

If you are like Ben and me, you will have a skinny cow ice cream right after dinner...

Items I've Found Helpful to Have Around

Have you ever been looking through one of your many cookbooks and realized that every recipe in there requires a million ingredients that you don't have? Here are some things that I've found helpful to have around the house that are used in a lot of recipes that I've come across and that help to have when you are trying to put together a last-minute meal:

Peppers (I usually buy whichever color is the cheapest - those things are expensive!)
potatoes (both sweet and regular)
a few random frozen vegetables - your choice
canned peas and canned beans (we like black beans and ranch style beans)
Cream of Mushroom soup (you can get low fat, low sodium)
Cream of Chicken soup (same - it comes in the healthy version)
Buillon cubes and chicken broth (or vegetable broth for you vegetarians like my lovely sister)
ground turkey
chicken breasts
whole wheat pasta
cous cous

The Easiest, Most Delicious Soup

I make this soup almost every Sunday and my husband LOVES it! We eat it all week long for lunch and a good soup before dinner. It freezes well.

Italian Wedding Soup

1/2 cup of olive oil, 2 onions, 8 cloves of minced garlic, 1/2 cup of chopped fresh parsley (I often forget to pick this up at the store so I go without it), 2 10 oz packages of frozen spinach, 3 15 oz cans of cannelini beans, 4 bouillon cubes, 5 cups of water, 2 tsp of oregano, 1 tsp of basil

you can also add grated parmesan cheese on top when serving, but we leave that off

Heat the oil in a large pot. Lightly brown the onions, garlic, and parsley and saute for about five minutes. Add the spinach , beans, water, and boullion cubes, oregano, and basil and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes (I let it simmer for about 30 minutes).