I typically don’t make a lot of breakfast casseroles. I don’t really know why. Maybe it’s because I had a small family, I’m not a morning person (I should hashtag that!) and for years, although I have a few breakfast casseroles on my site, I love this Potato Cheese Strata. It’s kind of like my “signature” dish when I have overnight company, but it’s huge and more complicated. But now I have a “new” breakfast casserole, Overnight Breakfast Sausage Casserole. I’m kinda psyched about it.
If you’ve overindulged over the holidays, you might need to do some “belt tightening” to get back on budget. Here are a 12 ways to slash your food grocery costs.
We’ve all been there – the New Year comes & when we sit down with the bills we wonder what we’ve done. Or at least, if I’m being honest, I’ve been there. And then it’s triage time. While some items might not be totally in your control, your food budget is. Most of these ideas are very doable all year long, a few are only for the short term and couple are not good strategies at all unless you’re in a place of desperation. I’ll explain that, more below. In the meantime, here’s how to put your thumb in the dike & slash your food grocery costs.
Happy New Year’s, everyone! I’m looking back to what’s just been a crazy year for me! It was actually October of 2017 that I came back home after an extensive time caring for my folks and it took more out of me than I realized, the emotional and especially the physical labor of it all. It really was all too much for me.
So Happy New Year’s, everyone! I can’t believe it’s New Year’s Eve, already! So what do you do for New Year’s Eve? Me, I’m kind of an old curmudgeon. I mean back in the day I’d go out with the girls but these days I’m usually perfectly happy to stay in, stay warm & safe and maybe stay up till midnight.
I was at the store the other day grabbing some vinegar when I happened to notice a small bottle of Balsamic Reduction for sale, right next to the Balsamic Vinegar I was buying to make a reduction. But lemme tell ya, it was pricey! The bottle was darling, though, with a cute little cork, but even that couldn’t justify paying that much for a Simple Balsamic Reduction.
Ok, so the other day for some reason, I decided I HAD to have a popover. It seemed something I could whip up without too much hassle, especially since I usually make my Popovers in a Muffin Tin. I love making those popovers; they’re just stupid simple and so delish. Well, ya’ll know how that goes. I decided I needed something special to go with my Popovers, so I decided I better make Easy Strawberry Butter. And of course, I kept thinking that both Popovers and Easy Strawberry Butter would be great for New Year’s brunch. I cannot believe how fast the days are whizzing by…it’s just days now before I have to remember to put 2019 on everything. That gets harder, every year!
I’m not sure what made me think of this old-fashioned recipe…I’d call it comfort food. I don’t think I grew up on it, but it was always around at someone’s house. I remember making this way back when I was a young Mom. I always called it Ground Beef Noodle Bake. I suspect it has roots in the German Kugel but became “casseroled up” in the U.S., much the way our “American Goulash” did.
So ya all know if you follow me (and if you don’t, I’d love it if you do! Check on the sidebar at the right) that I just posted out my Saltine Cracker Caramel Bars. I just couldn’t resist taking another crack (bad pun) at a cracker treat. I am all about quick, fun and easy this year! I’ve been so behind at getting my holiday treats posted because of my various “ailments” (Btw, my hand & shoulder seem to be better after cortisone shots although I had my doubts at first!) that I’m doubling up and posting two treats, today.
It’s been a bit humbling for me not to be able to do much cooking (or typing) with my bum hand and shoulder. Especially when Christmas is only days away. So I’ve been trying to find super easy Christmas treats that can be knocked off at the last minute. I figured at this time of year, everyone needs something easy, bum hand or not! And when that recipe is as good as these Saltine Cracker Caramel Bars no-one will guess just how easy they are.
Guys, I gotta tell you I haven’t been this excited about Fudge for a long time. My wonderful neighbor and friend (thank you “S”) dropped off some Fireball Whiskey Fudge the other day. I fell in love at first taste. And the funniest thing about that is that I’m not a huge fudge person and I don’t care much for Whiskey.
I remember Martin Sheen was featured on the back pages of Bon Appetit, where they used to run a celebrity spot every month. It wasn’t until I got my copy of “Best American Recipes 2003-2004” by Molly Stevens (I loved that series of books) that I paid attention. She highlighted Martin Sheen’s Pumpkin Cheesecake in the most glowing terms. She’s not wrong!
I was chatting with my friend Tonya on facebook book the other day. I asked if she’d made anything great in her Instant Pot and she gave me this recipe, Instant Pot Mexican Chipotle Chicken Soup. This soup saved my life! Thanks Tonya for sharing!
Way back in the olden days (my granddaughter just asked me not too long ago what it was like when I was growing up, lol), way back when I had more energy, when I was a little more “Martha” than I am now, I used to do a lot more DIY and crafty kind of things. One of those things was drying oranges for all kinds of stuff. A.nd this year I came across a method that makes Beautiful Dried Oranges.
When the holidays roll around and you’re asked to a party, do you usually say, “What can I bring?” And what if you don’t usually cook, or can’t cook. And maybe your budget is overextended as it is. That’s when you might think Party Tray. And if you know how to assemble a Cheap Holiday Party Tray, all your problems are solved. At least the what to bring option is. I apologize that this tray isn’t decked out in Christmas trappings. Between my bad shoulder and hand, I’m a bit limited and obviously made this Cheap Holiday Party Tray right around Thanksgiving. If you follow me, you might even recognize a few of these items. I’ll link to them, too.
Cheap Holiday Party Tray
Do y’all know Nathalie Dupree? She’s like the queen of Southern cooking; the Southern Julia Child. So when a friend (the same friend who introduced me to Panera’s Steak & White Cheddar Panini and many other meals & recipes over the years – she has great taste!) mentioned that Nathalie Duprees Meatloaf was a family favorite, I couldn’t wait to try it. It’s actually been on my must make list for a while and I gotta say it’s just the perfect thing to make on a cold winter weekend.
I know I probably should have had this post out weeks before Thanksgiving, but better late than never, right? Anyway, I figure a lot of you must have Turkey for Christmas, too, or you can pin it for next year. And what a turkey this Almost Bon Appetit’s Dry Rubbed Turkey is! The “Almost” is because I’ve changed it up, just a bit. Find the original recipe here on Bon Appetit’s site; they have several dry-brined turkey recipes.
What if you could have hot chocolate whenever you wanted? And not just any old hot chocolate but a premium hot chocolate at the drop of a hat? Yep, you can if you make a batch of Refrigerator Hot Chocolate Mix ahead of time. And keep it in the fridge, obs!
I’m a huge fan of Lo Mein so when a friend mentioned she saw a recipe for Instant Pot Lo Mein, I was wowed. Could I make a Fast Fresh Instant Pot Lo Mein? One that’s as good or even better than my skillet versions? Maybe even better than takeout? The answer’s “Yes!” As in yes, yes, yes, pluheese! If you love Lo Mein, this Instant Pot version will rock your world.
When I decided to make my Lighter Mongolian Beef, I wanted to look a little into the history of Mongolian Beef. I already knew it wasn’t an authentic Mongolian recipe but had heard rumors that Mongolian Beef was invented by the owner of PF Chang’s. Turns out that Mongolian Beef was originally made in Taiwan.
Does anybody remember way back when I posted a copycat recipe for Panera’s Steak & White Cheddar Panini? I mentioned I already had a “go-to” sandwich, but I followed my friend’s lead and ordered the steak one. My “go-to” was Panera’s Turkey Artichoke Panini. When I was out with my friend I didn’t realize it was no longer on the menu, which is a good thing because I swear I had to grieve alone when I found out.
I used to be kinda opposed to Hot Spinach Artichoke Dip, just on principle…and here’s the deal: Back in the ’80s, it was all about the creamy Spinach Dip and it was served warm or cold in a bread bowl. I loved that stuff! And I remember how fancy we all thought it was, too. Then in the ’90s it was all about the Hot Artichoke Dip. It seemed that just about every restaurant had a version. It was everywhere! And I loved that stuff, too! Of course, I’ve always had a thing for artichokes, and guess who else in the house does? Homer, my cat. She goes nuts over them. She can smell even the canned artichokes in the grocery bag and immediately comes running!
I made this beautiful guacamole recipe from Ina Garten some time ago; I never did post it. I thought it would be nice this time of year when we’re all looking for a little sumpin’ sumpin’ to make and bring to Christmas parties or game day get-togethers, so here is Ina Garten’s Guacamole.
There’s something about Olive Garden. People love it or hate it, but I have to say they’ve cracked the code on how to keep America’s diners happy and coming back. My folks are big fans (more about that, below) but my favorite thing, by far on the menu, is their Zuppa Toscana Soup. Luckily, it’s super easy and fast to make at home. You just need Olive Garden’s Zuppa Toscana Copycat recipe.
If you follow me, you might know I’m all about leftovers and transforming them into marvelous new dishes, so I wasn’t daunted at all by the five pounds of mashed potatoes I had when I made my Slow Cooker or Oven Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes. I had a few ideas, but after seeing Gail’s post for her Duchess Mashed Potatoes on her site, Snap Shots in Cursive, I couldn’t get them out of my mind. Out the window flew any thoughts of gnocchi and pierogies, and inspired, I decided to make this Duchess Potatoes Casserole (From Leftover Mashed Potatoes).
Here it is, Thanksgiving already. Well, just past. And I thought this might be a great time to put out a recipe on my Best Ham Stock, Instant Pot or Not. I know a lot of you have had Turkey and so I’ve already got you covered with my Best Chicken or Turkey Stock.
Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop Read More
One thing I do love around the holidays is these salty, sweet nuts with just a bit of a kick to them. They’re a little sugary, a little salty, slightly spicy, crunchy and just divine. And Sweet Spicy Slow Cooker Nuts are pretty much addictive.
Are you a fan of Boursin Cheese? If you’re not familiar, Boursin Cheese is a rich, creamy, herby blend of Gournay Cheese developed in Normandy, France. And while I’m a fan of Boursin Cheese, what I’m not a fan of is the price…so for the upcoming Holidays, I thought I’d make a knock-off. So here’s an Easy Homemade Boursin Cheese that’s going to be perfect for snacking with crackers, as an appetizer or maybe an addition to your cheese board.