Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Memorial Day!

I just joined a food co-op featuring a laundry basket full of fresh produce for only $15.00! If you live in Arizona you should join.

With these delicous goods I turned the red potatoes into this delicious goodness. I sliced them up, tossed them in olive oil, rosemary, and alpine touch. I then placed them in tinfoil and cooked them on the grill for 15 minutes. They were perfect!

I had a fresh green salad with tomatoes, cucumber, feta cheese, and greek salad dressing with s juicy fat steak topped with saute'd mushrooms! Scrumptions!
For dinner we had corn on the cob and I sliced up all of the fruit that came in my basket with yogurt and granola. I feel healthy already! I appreciate this new cheap way of getting produce because it makes me eat fruits and veggies!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

They say it's your birthday..........

I was thinking of places my husband could go on his birthday for a free meal or treat since his birthday is coming up. I found this great website listing what is available. I will also add one more website as locations and available restaurants my differ. Some are just for children and it may be a hassle, but we can't be too picky during this economic sadness!
Applebee's - Free dessert on your birthday
Arby's - You get a special offer for your birthday
Atlanta Bread Company - They have a VIP eClub that you can sign up for, gaining you a free cookie on your birthday.
Baskin Robbins - Get a free 2.5 oz. scoop if you sign up for their Birthday Club.
Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream - Become a Chunk Spelunker and you can get some free ice cream!
Buffalo Wild Wings - Free dessert with a $5 purchase. (click on the tree house in the upper left corner on their site!)
Burger King - Free kids meal to all kids club members.
California Pizza Kitchen - Free kids meal during the month of their birthday if you register first.
Captain D's - Join their D's Club and get a coupon for $3 off any meal, among other freebies (13 and older)
Cheesecake Factory - The birthday guest will be presented with a complimentary scoop of ice cream with a lit candle accompanied with a "Happy Birthday" song from our staff
Chili's - Free dessert if you join their club.
Coldstone Creamery - Join now and get a free creation on your birthday.
Cracker Barrel - Free dessert
Dairy Queen - Free ice cream coupon via e-mail for kids 16 and under. They also have a Blizzard Club for adults with the same offer.
Denny's - Free meal & sundae to kids under 10 as long as you sign up ahead of time.
Golden Corral - Free meal to Birthday Club members during the month of birthday (And many people say this isn't limited to just kids!)
Joe's Crab Shack - Free cake if you join their club.
Krispy Kreme - Free half dozen glazed donuts and a coffee mug with either coffee or soda in it! You might want to sign up ahead of time.
Logan's Roadhouse - Free song and slice of cheesecake.
Macaroni Grill - Free dessert plus an OPERA-style "Happy Birthday" song. Plus, join the Mac Pack for a free appetizer anytime!
Moe's Southwest Grill - Signup for their newsletter and get a coupon for a free burrito. They also have a birthday club for kids under 10 to get a free kid's meal on their birthday.
O'Charley's - You receive a gift for joining and on your birthday
Olive Garden - Free dessert if you sign up
On The Border - Free appetizer if you sign up.
Outback Steakhouse - Free dessert ---ask your server
P.F. Chang's - Free cake or cheesecake. Must sign up for their e-mail list.
Qdoba Mexican Grill - They will send you a voucher for free chips n' salsa just for signing up. Plus, you can look forward to a big surprise on your birthday. (Hint: It's fast, fresh and made right in front of you.)
Quizno's - receive a coupon for a FREE SAMMIE. Plus, tell us your birthday and get a FREE COOKIE that day.
Red Lobster - Free slice of cake if you join their Overboard Club.
Red Robin - Free Hamburger if you sign up for Eclub.
Ruby Tuesday - Just let us know the date and we'll send you the gift of a special offer to mark the occasion.
Ryan's - Join the Mega Bar Meal club and get not only a free meal on your birthday, but a free meal just for signing up!
Schlotzsky's - Get a free sandwich if you sign up ahead of time.
Sonic -Get a free Wacky Pack Kid's Meal on children's birthdays if you register here.
Taco Bell - Free combo meal of your choice: (not valid outside Alabama) CALL FIRST to be sure they will honor this at your location!
TGI Friday's - Free birthday dessert plus free appetizer just for signing up!
The Fox and Hound - Free appetizer just for joining plus free entree on your birthday.
Wendy's - Free kids meal on their birthday (plus, $1 off coupon for signing up on their website)
Zaxby's - Join their Z-Mail club and you'll get a coupon for a free meal, whether or not it's your birthday! Kids can sign up here for Zaxby's Kid Club and get not only a free meal, but a free cookie on their birthday!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Easy Pork Chow Mein

1 Pork Roast 1-2 cups
1 1/2 cups bamboo shoots
1 onion
1 1/2 cups celery
2 cups prepared pork gravy
1-2 tbs. soy sauce
2 tbs of butter
salt and pepper to taste
1 pkg crispy chow mein noodles

Here's the deal! This is a great recipe following a Sunday Pork Roast dinner. This is delicious, easy, and frugal since you are using a roast for two meals. So yesterday I made a pork roast prepared by throwing a pork roast in a deep oven safe pot with a little bit of water and salt and pepper. Cook for 4 hours at 320 degrees. I served it with typical mashed potatoes and gravy. The good part is the next day using your left overs you can whip up this tasty Asian dish!
Using 2 tbs of butter saute the onion and celery . Pour your left over pork gravy over the onion and celery. You should have about two cups of prepared gravy. If you don't have enough left over make more this way:

* 1/4 cup flour
* 1/4 pan drippings or margarine
* 2 cups water
* 2 tsp. flavored bouillon granules or 2 cubes


1. In medium skillet add drippings or margarine
2. Over medium-high heat, cook and stir until dark brown
3. Stir in water and bouillon
4. Cook and stir until thickened
Next, add sliced up left over pork roast and bamboo shoots. Bring to a boil. Add soy sauce and salt and pepper to taste. Finally, pour over crispy chow mein noodles. Serve and enjoy!

It was so tasty I forgot to take a picture of the final result. I just gobbled it right up!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Tangy Glazed Turkey Meatloaf

Please excuse the picture, meatloaf never looks super tasty, but this little loaf was delicious! I am more of a turkey burger fan these days than hamburger and was excited that this turned out. I will say turkey burger is a bit tricky to be able to tell if it is done by way of color. I used a meat thermometer for 175 degrees.
1 lb. ground turkey
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1 small onion
1/2 tsp poultry seasoning
2 tbsp catsup
1/3 cup milk
1 egg beaten
salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Mix well and pat into small loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

For the Glaze
2 tbs brown sugar
1 tsp dry mustard
1/4 cup catsup
1/4 tsp nutmeg

Mix glaze ingredients and spoon over meatloaf. Bake 20 minutes longer. Serve and Enjoy!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

A smile for your Sunday.

Stay tuned for an upcoming delicious dinner recipe! For now enjoy a little laugh with my latest favorite clip.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Banana Cupcakes with Caramel Cream Cheese Frosting

My first cupcakes! I'm still on the banana kick and wanted to make cupcakes for my husband's coworkers. I would like to say thank you to CREAM PUFFS IN VENICE for this delicious recipe for the frosting. I didn't use the cupcake recipe however, I used a basic banana cupcake recipe.

Banana cupcakes: makes 12
* 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
* 3/4 cup sugar
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
* 1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (about 4 ripe bananas), plus 1 whole banana, for garnish (optional)
* 2 large eggs
* 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a standard 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
2. Make a well in center of flour mixture. In well, mix together butter, mashed bananas, eggs, and vanilla. Stir to incorporate flour mixture (do not overmix). Dividing evenly, spoon batter into muffin cups.
3. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of a cupcake comes out clean, 25 to 30 min. Frost, serve, and enjoy!

For the Frosting: (thanks to Cream Puffs in Venice)

First the caramel sauce:

* 2 cups whipping cream
* 1 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
* 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter

Bring cream, brown sugar and butter to boil in heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer sauce until reduced to 1 3/4 cups, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Before using, rewarm over medium-low heat, stirring frequently.)

When cooled, add caramel sauce to the frosting:

1 pckg. cream cheese (8 ounces), at room temperature
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup caramel sauce
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup icing sugar

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and butter together at high speed until light (about 2 minutes).

Lower the speed and add the vanilla extract and caramel sauce. Mix well.

With the speed on low, add the icing sugar until incorporated and then increase the speed to high and whip the frosting for 2 minutes.

I don't have the fanciest baking equiment so I used my son's medicine dropper to apply little caramel dots to the cupcakes from the leftover caramel sauce.

My verdict: I thought that banana and caramel would be a fantastic combination, but I have to say I was slightly disappointed. I think the cupcake needed to be a little bit sweeter to go with the cream cheese frosting. Otherwise they were a big hit!

Raw Spice Bar

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