Sunday, April 28, 2013

What I ate: Last week's meals

Sunday: Planned over beef burritos
Monday: Rotisserie chicken, baked potato and salad
Tuesday: Pulled pork, baked potato and salad
Wednesday: Mediterranean soup
Thursday: Smothered chicken, served with peas
Friday: Bisquick chicken pot pie
Saturday: Burgers and Mediterranean soup 

Desserts: Cookies and cream fudge
Lunchbox treat:
Lemon bread

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Reclaming rice

    I was given a package of microwave rice -- pop the cup in the oven, nuke it for a couple of minutes, and you've got a side dish.
     One problem ... I didn't like it.  Apparently the manufacturer uses oil to speed the cooking process, and that oily taste was very pronounced,
     So, the other cup ended up in the pantry .... where I came across it a few days ago.

     I figured I had nothing to lose, so I dumped the rice into a strainer and give it a good rinsing.  Then I decided to cook it like instant rice.

      Didn't work.  After 20 minutes, I had water and uncooked rice.   So I simmered it for 15 minutes or so.

     Success!  Turned out to be quite tasty, even given that it  was, er, past its expiration date.


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

For the canners out there

Came across this story about must-haves for the well-stocked canning pantry. 

Those of you who are old hands at this could probably add a few more.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

What I ate: Last week's meals

Sunday:  Pork stir fry (otherwise known as clean out the produce bin).
Monday: Baked tilapia, corn on the cob, leftover fava beans.
Tuesday: Beef and rice burritos. Using some reclaimed rice ... more about that later.
Wednesday: Broiled pork loin chops served with lentils and carrots (cooked in ham broth I kept from a previous dish) and sald.
Thursday: Baked swai (with chili seasoning), lima beans and grits.
Friday: Pasta with meat sauce, served with salad.
Saturday: Planned-over pork stir-fry.

Dessert: Strawberries with angel food cake. Lunchbox treats, oatmeal cookies (from the markdown bin).

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Random thoughts

Just a couple of bits ....
TV? What's that?
There’s a new buzz word out there: Zero TV
Apparently, that’s the name for folks who have pretty much forsaken traditional TV. Forget cable and satellite, they don’t even bother with over-the-air TV … just watch shows via the Internet on their computers.
(We here at the Casa de Chaos are in the “cord cutter”category. We ditched the dish a couple of years ago (and don’t miss it) but still use rabbit ears for the TV.  The few non-network shows we watch are easily found on the Internet.)  
 Here's the story if you're interested:

Yeah, thanks ...

I take surveys for a bit of extra $, and I got "exciting news." 

Instead of sending me a check when I complete a survey, they're going to give me points, which I can accumulate for merchandise (or, I hope, actual money).
Can't say I'm at all excited by this. I've noticed that with other companies, the number of points needed to get anything keeps creeping up ... and the points earned are going down. 

 Just getting harder to make a buck these days, isn't it?

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Saving bit by bit

It's the little things that add up, they say. But it's easy to forget that in process of daily living.

So, to remind myself that it does add up, I try to come up with a list of those little things I've done recently.. (It's also a nice exercise for when you're stuck in a waiting room without a lot to read.)

So, here goes:

Found coupons for a haircut, and an oil change.
Borrowed a book from the library rather than buy it.
Patched DH's yard-work pants.
Found the right part in our stash to do a minor repair on the bread maker.
Rather than go buy a loaf of bread (because I hadn't fixed the bread maker), I made drop biscuits to use for little sandwiches.

Then the ongoing stuff:

Take all work lunches from home
Use cloth napkins at home and for work lunches
Use rags for most general cleaning
Save ice cubes, water from the cats' bowls, etc. to water the plants. 
Stretch our food as far as possible, by using leftovers and planned-overs in the menus.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

What I ate: Last week's menu

Sunday brunch: Bacon and scrambled eggs, fresh mango and toast
Monday: Teriyaki chicken and peppers
Tuesday:  Ate out
Wednesday: Chicken breasts stuffed with bacon and mushroom. Served with rice and steamed asparagus.
Thursday: Pork mole, served with (leftover) rice and salad. 
  Friday: BOGOF at the noodle shop ... couldn't resist
Saturday: Ham on biscuits with white chicken chili

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Garden report: Have we begun?

The weather is beautiful here, and I couldn't resist, so I bought my first plant of the season.  

Got some kale ... so that and my sprouted garlic will give me a small start.

Now let's hope it stays above freezing!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

What I ate: last week's menu

Busy week, so made more use of planned-overs than usual.

Easter Sunday: Pork loin baked with potatoes; steamed asparagus.
Monday: Ate out (a tradition --  eat at a  restaurant that offers all the opening-day games on TV)
Tuesday:  Green beans, ham and potatoes (cooked with the ham bone).
Wednesday: Planned-over chicken and noodles. (Did have to make some extra noodles.)
Thursday: Hamburger and chips.  (Not the most balanced meal, but it was a freebie).
Friday: Planned-over pork loin with corn on the cob and baked potatoes.
Saturday:  A from-the-freezer day. Chili for me, pizza for DH.

Dessert:  Gingerbread pudding.   Lunchbox treat: Mulberry muffins.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

March freebies

It turned out to be  a pretty good month, after all:

Breathe-Right strips

Pantene shampoo and conditioner


Downy Infusions

Downy Unstoppables

Tide Pods

Tide Boost

1 liter Pepsi Max

1 20oz bottle Pepsi Next

1 bottle water

1 Mountain Dew Kickstart

Eucerin lotion

Breakfast croissant

1 order Southwest eggrolls

1 pizza (sort of by accident. The restaurant messed up my order, so the manager gave it to me for free).

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

What I ate: last week's meals

A bit late due to the holiday post ....

Sunday: On my own, so had a bowl of cabbage soup.
Monday: Baked ham, steamed fresh broccoli and yellow-corn grits
Tuesday: Baked chicken quarters, baked potato and Asian slaw
Wednesday: Pasta with sauce and meatballs (homemade). Served with salad.
Thursday: Planned-over day -- ham with grits and slaw.
Friday: Baked tilapia, slaw, fava bean and chickpea mix. (an experiment ... never had fava beans before.) 
Saturday: Chicken & Noodles, made with leftover baked chicken.

For dessert: Angel Lush.   Lunchbox treats: Wheat germ drops