Sunday, September 25, 2011

Hearty healthy soup

This is the best soup I've ever made! We've had it twice in 2 weeks, which seems to be our pattern. I make something good, and then we keep eating it over and over until we're sick of it. Hopefully you'll enjoy as much as we have! Here's the recipe:

Spinach, chickpea and rice soup

2 thinly sliced green onions. .99
4 cps chicken broth. 1.89
3/4 cp orzo or arborio rice. 2.30
1 lemon. 1.00
1 can chickpeas. .98
1 (6 oz) pkg. Baby spinach. 2.50
1/3 c. Grated parm (I bought the good stuff here... 8 bucks for a wedge. But it's worth it!)
Olive oil. Pantry
1 Tsp dried oregano Pantry
1/2 Tbsp minced garlic. Fridge
Salt and pepper
2 cups water

Heat the oil in the pan, then sauté the green onion and garlic for a minute. Add chicken broth and water and bring to a boil. Add the rice, drained chickpeas and 1 Tbsp of grated lemon rind. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Stir in oregano, some salt and pepper to taste, 1 Tbsp lemon juice, parmesan cheese and spinach. The end!! So easy and so good. $2.41/serving if you don't buy the expensive pram cheese and just use what you have in fridge. If you buy the good stuff, you're looking at $4.41. Still not too bad!! As soon as I can figure out how to upload the picture from the iPad, you will be very impressed :)

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Throw it in the crock pot!

Yesterday I knew that I didn't want to cook when got home. I wanted to watch my dvr'd project runway, walk lily, and pack for the weekend. So I decided to throw some stuff in the crockpot before I went to work and hope for the best when I got home. Success! Here's the recipe:

Crockpot chicken breasts

3 chicken breasts. 5.00
1 can cream of chicken soup. 1.00
1 can cream of mushroom soup. 1.00
1 can chicken stock 1.00
1 pkg. Sliced mushrooms. 1.99
10 crushed ritz or club crackers. Pantry

Put everything in the crockpot. Cook on low while you're at work. Serve over rice or noodles. Makes 3 servings at 3.34/serving. Now...i'm not sure this is the healthiest thing in the world... So eat with some broccoli.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hummus... OH so good :)

I love hummus.  It's gotten to be a little bit of an obsession.  I eat it on cucumbers, carrots, crackers... and lately I've just started eating it with a spoon.  Brent thinks it's weird, but I've told him that's how people in the Mediterranean do it! (I have no idea if that's true)  Anyways I've started buying ridiculous amounts of the stuff.  In fact, it was on sale at Publix this week... so I bought 3 tubs.  Did I mention that Brent doesn't eat it? 

One really neat thing I did with the stuff last week was put it on chicken!  I know that sounds funny, in fact when I told my mom she said it sounded gross (thanks mom) but it's really good, really healthy, and REALLY cheap!

Hummus Crusted Chicken

2 chicken breasts pounded to 1/2 inch               $3.50
3 Tbs original or garlic flavored hummus           $1.89
Bread crumbs                                                 pantry
salt and pepper                                               pantry

1. Preheat oven to 350
2. Salt and pepper the chicken breasts
3. Spread the hummus evenly over the chicken breasts.  This is the glue for your bread crumbs!
4. Cover each breast in bread crumbs, place on baking sheet and bake for 25 minutes.

It's almost like fried chicken, but with a nutty-flavor.  It's delicious. :)  $2.70/ serving

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Another meatless Monday!

Brent's FINALLY home from his bachelor party!  (Although he informed me tonight that he has 2 more to go to in the next couple of months... another one in New Orleans.  Unbelievable.)  Anyway, he needed some healthy food to detox a little bit, so tonight we had a mega-meatless taco salad!  I used the Catalina dressing that my mom used to always put on taco salad, and as far as salad dressing goes, it's pretty healthy (70 calories/serving.)

Mega-Meatless taco salad (serves 4)

1. 1/2 head of iceberg lettuce (chopped)                   $0.99
2. 1/2 can of black beans rinsed and drained             $0.89
3. 1/2 can of chili beans rinsed and drained               $0.99
4. 1/2 can of corn                                                   $1.00
5. 1/2 chopped red pepper                                       $0.99
6. 1/2 chopped cucumber                                        $0.99
7. 1 chopped tomato                                               $1.24
8. 1/2 cup shredded Mexican cheese                        $ 2.00
9. a couple handfuls of crunched, baked tortilla chips $3.50
10. Catalina dressing                                               $2.99

Mix everything together :) It's so good.  The only problem is that you're left with a bunch of half cans of everything!  So what I did was mix the corn, black beans and chili beans together, and tomorrow I'm going to add a chopped tomato and some cilantro to make a salsa.  You could even put some jalapeno and chopped avocado in there too!  yummmm.....  Total cost per serving: $3.90.  However; you've got a lot of leftover ingredients because you didn't use all of anything.  While eating this Brent said, "Wow, this is better than I expected."  Now... should I be insulted or flattered?

Sunday, August 14, 2011

pizza idea!

I have always LOVED pizza.  The best is the greasy delivery kind that makes you feel terrible after you eat it.  Growing up I can remember my mom always making little mini pizzas on English muffins or bagels or french bread, and I've imitated that many, many times since I've started cooking for myself.  Another idea that's a little healthier is to use those sandwich deli flats that are only 100 calories!

1 deli flat sandwich bread               $2.50 for a pack of 6
3 Tbsp. jarred spaghetti sauce        $1.00-3.00 depending on brand
1/3 cup mozzarella cheese              $2.00

Spread the sauce on the bread, cover in cheese, put it in the toaster over at 400 until it's done :)  The bread is 100 calories, the sauce is maybe 20 and the cheese is about 100.  220 calories for PIZZA!?!?!  love it!  And you're looking at less than $1.00 per serving. Win-Win!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

sweet and spicy!

I've been making this recipe for a while.  It's my absolute favorite pork recipe. Brent likes it because it uses a lot of those Asian flavors that he loves. I think what makes it so good is that it's sweet and spicy at the same time.  If you're not into super spicy, you might want to use only 1 serrano pepper, or use 1/2 a jalapeno.  Don't leave it out all together though because it's really what makes the chutney so good.  Also... this one is all about timing.  Get the chutney going for a while, and then start on the pork. 

Pork tenderloin with pineapple chutney

3 cups pineapple tidbits                $2.70
1 cup chopped onion                    $1.05
2 chopped serrano peppers            $0.18
1/4 cup brown sugar                    pantry
2 Tbsp chicken stock                   pantry
1 Tbsp minced ginger                   fridge or the tube is 3.99... but it lasts for a while
1/2 cup chopped cilantro              $0.99
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil          pantry

1. Heat oil in a large pan.  Saute onion, peppers and ginger for 6 minutes.
2. Add pineapple, brown sugar and chicken stock.  Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes. 
3. Let cool for 20 minutes then stir in the cilantro

1 lb pork tenderloin                      $6.05
1 Tbsp sriracha or chili sauce        fridge
1 Tbsp soy sauce                         pantry
1 tsp. rice vinegar                        pantry
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil         pantry

1. Heat oven to 400
2. Head olive oil in a pan that can be put in the oven.
3. Cover pork with salt and pepper.  Put the pork in the pan and cook for about 4 minutes, or until the down side gets seared.
4. Combine the chili sauce, soy sauce and rice vinegar in a bowl.  Brush half of the mixture on the pork.
4. Flip the pork over (now the sauce side is down) and put it in the over for about 15-16 minutes.
5. Remove from oven, let cool and then brush with the rest of the sauce.

Slice and cover in the chutney!! SO good!!  Serves 4 at $3.74/serving.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Finally a new meal!!

I'm embarrassed to say that I haven't made anything new in a week!  I've just been repeating some recipes I already posted. I swear Brent could eat the same thing every night for a week and be perfectly happy.  This must be a man thing because my mom has told me that dad does it too.  She can just about guarantee that when she asks him what he wants for dinner, he'll say.... salmon.  Brent's the same way.  Once I make something he likes, he just wants that for dinner every night.  I don't know if I should be flattered that he likes something I made... or annoyed that he doesn't have faith that I can keep making good stuff.  So last night we tried something new, and it was another success!  Very yummy.

Chipotle Pork Tacos!

1 lb pork tenderloin                   $6.00
1 cup shallots                           $1.56
4 Tbsp chipotle sauce               $0.89
1 lime (juice and zest)               $0.45
1 1/2 Tbsp minced garlic           fridge
1 tsp dried oregano                   pantry
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil       pantry
1/4 tsp. salt                              pantry
1/2 cup light sour cream           $1.89
8 corn tortillas                          $0.89

1. Pound the tenderloin to 1/4 inch thickness and cut into strips
2. Mix lime zest, lime juice, chipotle sauce, garlic, oregano and salt in a bowl with the pork.
3. Cut the shallots into small strips. 
4. Put 1 Tbsp oil in the pan and saute the shallots for approx. 4 mins.  Take out of pan and put aside. 
5. Add the remaining Tbsp of oil to the pan and cook the pork strips until only slightly pink in the middle (or all the way cooked if you like it that way!)
6. Heat up 2 corn tortillas in the microwave, then top with 1/2 cup of the pork mixture and some sour cream.  SO good!!  Makes 4 servings at $2.92/ serving!!
Brent said that he'd like to marinate the meat and then cook it on the grill.  Personally I like the way the corn tortilla tastes with it... so much healthier and more flavorful than a flour tortilla!  But I if he wants to cook it, heck... I'm game. :)  Enjoy!!