Wednesday, January 27, 2010

when you're poor, you gotta do watcha gotta do... sigh...

i bake.

a lot.


i hate baking.

a lot.


but i'm discovering something about myself. i may not hate baking as much as i have in the past. note, i'm not saying i love it. but i'm discovering that i actually kind of enjoy it. or maybe someone has taken over this blog and is typing this post. annie, i'm looking at you... haha

anyway, i have recently taken up baking on a fairly regular basis. why, just this week, i've made apple crisp and cookies. and i plan to make tortillas, a couple more loaves of bread, some granola bars and/or muffins (having just re-discovered my recipe for banana muffins on this blog), and possibly some cookies.

 i've also begun making soup more often. from scratch.

i have to make soups from scratch (including broth, since commercial broths are rather high in sodium, and that doesn't mesh with my littlest man's congestive heart failure). to do this, i've started shopping differently. now when i go to the store and buy chicken, i make sure to buy it with the bone in. then when i cook it, i take out all the bones and spend the evening using them to make broth. (if you're lucky, i'll post those details later.) the next day, i make soup.

i've decided that i love soup, and the more i make it, the better i'm getting at it, too. soup is awesome. that's all i'm gonna say about that. and in fact, when i'm done this, i'm going to post my current fave recipe, which is loved by everyone in this house... and the occasional babysitter. ;) it's quite scrumptious, actually: sausage and lentil soup. and believe me, it's just as easy to make as it is yummy. mmm... sausage and lentil soup...

the other thing i did yesterday, for the first time in my entire life, was to make hot cocoa. and holy marshmallows, batman, it was AWESOME!!!! infinitely better than hot chocolate!! i'm going to be making this more often, and don't be surprised if i have the recipe memorized in the next week or so. the kids loved it, i loved it, it's cheap, it's easy, it's slow (which is definitely the way to go when it comes to food, etc, if you ask me), and it's satisfying on more levels than i care to admit.

and one other thing i've done recently... i rediscovered my local library. did you know they let you take books home... for free?!?! it's a poor booklover's dream come true. why, just last week, the kids took out several books, and i grabbed a few for myself, including one about ADHD, a barbara coloroso book, a magazine, and three novels, including one Sophie Kinsella (and no, not The Undomestic Goddess; i already own that one. haha). and today i went again on my own, and borrowed another novel, which i'm digging so far (it involves Dracula!!) and... get ready for this... a cookbook. you may be able to guess my heretofore held opinion of cookbooks, given that they contain actual recipes, for which one must - gasp! - measure! but i've decided that cookbooks are perhaps the most glorious kind of books. because. that's why. just because. in fact, just thinking about them right now, i have a smile on my face. :) <---- that's me, right there, in case you were wondering.

anyway, i have to run at the moment. it's about time i start working on supper for tonight. in case you're wondering, perogies with bacon and fried onion, smothered in (gah! i'm gonna butcher the german here... forgive me, anni) schmauntfat... basically, it's milk, flour and bacon grease. and yes, it's a beautiful meal. comfort on a plate, if you ask me. and the kids all begged for it tonight, so there you have it. toodles!!!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

ah, wendy, how i love thee...

my friend wendy, wonderful wendy, posted a couple recipes on facebook tonight. and um, yeah. YUM!!!! (at least, i'm assuming so... they look good, though i haven't tried them... yet.) and they looked so delicious, i thought i would share them here. :)

Taco Bake
1lb lean ground beef
1 small onion
1 cup salsa
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 pkg hot taco seasoning mix OR 2 tsp chili powder
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups crushed tortilla chips
3 oz (approx) light cream cheese
tortillas for scooping

brown the ground beef and onion, drain well, then on medium heat add in the salsa, cream cheese, mayo and spices.

in and ungreased baking dish (like a round deep one) layer meat mix, some crushed tortillas and half the cheese, and then repeat.

Bake uncovered at 350 for about 25 minutes.

I topped with fresh tomato, avocado and lettuce and a dab of sour cream but clearly there are many possible options.

Scoop and eat with tortilla chips or scoop into hard taco shells or on a bed of lettuce. Enjoy!

*** to make your own tortillas - cut up a stack of corn or flour tortillas into 8, lay flat on baking sheet. Spray with cooking oil and lightly salt. Bake at 375 for 10 minutes, watching carefully. They will crisp as they cool.

Why I Write Here

i like this blog. this is where i write about homelife. my kids, my pets, recipes, natural cleaning products, gardening, cool finds... that's what i write about here. this is the hands-on part of my personal journey. i'm reclaiming myself, a self i lost in a hospital somewhere, among all the meds, plastic, waste and complexity that comes with Special Needs parenting. i crave simplicity, and this is my journey to create it for my family and me.

i'm prolific! check out my other blogs!

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