Posts Tagged ‘Saving Dinner’

Dill Pickle Soup for Food Stamps Cooking Club?

January 19th, 2012

It sounds odd, but Dill Pickle Soup is really tasty and satisfying!

After parting company with a tooth recently, all my menu called for was soup.  No problem; soup is one of my comfort foods.  When I was offered Dill Pickle Soup I was intrigued.  Now it is my new favorite soup.  Best of all, it’s easy and quick to make and it is really inexpensive.

Here is the list of ingredients and how I tweaked them:

DILL PICKLE SOUP

2 tablespoons butter or oil

1/2 cup flour

7 cups chicken broth *Make your own broth to save the big bucks; use bouillon + water if you have no broth

1/2 cup very finely chopped dill pickles  *I used the food processor

2 tablespoons dill pickle juice  *add this as  you process the pickles

2 tablespoons + 1 pinch white sugar

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce  *Remember, the Kitchen Police will not arrest you if you do not have this in your pantry!

2 teaspoons minced garlic  *I used garlic powder and nobody died

4 teaspoons onion powder  *I know; it sounds excessive.  It’s perfect.

1 teaspoon curry powder  *Raise your hand if you ever had curry powder on hand…grin…

1 teaspoon dill weed

1/2 teaspoon pepper

2  cups warm milk

Melt the butter in a large soup kettle over medium heat.  Whisk in flour and cook til it becomes pale and light brown.  May take a coupla minutes.  Whisk in chicken broth until thickened and smooth.  Crank the heat to medium high, add dill pickles, juice and all; add sugar, W. sauce, garlic, onion, dill, curry  and pepper.  Bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat to medium LOW and simmer for about 5-7 minutes.  Remove from heat and whisk in warm milk.  This will serve 4 people.

***Mother Connie prefers a soup that is a bit thicker than this recipe made.  To accommodate this, I used some of the liquid from the soup pot with a spoonful of cornstarch, stirred it well, and added that back into the soup.  I whisked the whole business until it was the soupy consistency we prefer.  I could also have added leftover mashed potatoes or instant potato flakes.

The fun of cooking is the opportunity to be creative.   And devouring what you create!

I did not calculate the cost of this soup but I know it’s way less costly than most soups.  It will go really well with your favorite sandwich and a piece of fruit.

If you are a user of food stamps from the SNAP program; if you utilize food commodities; if you love dill pickles and enjoy being frugal, this will be ideal for you!  Those of you who depend on food pantries will find this recipe useful as well!

Drop us a line about your experience with this creation: foodstampscookingclub@gmail.com.  Thanks!

Connie Baum

The FTC wants you to know there are links in this post.  Should they be clicked, resulting in sales, your humble blogger would be fairly compensated.  Please do your due diligence when conducting affairs online or offline.  Always do business with those you trust implicitly

Spice Advice and Food Stamps Cooking Club

May 9th, 2011

 

Need Spice Advice? We have it here!

Greetings to all you precious Club Members and Guests!  A GINORMOUS magnifying glass has been pressed into service because your humble blogger has been aching to get back into the game.

Because we are gaining new club members in DROVES-thanks to all the new people who have submitted their names and email addies-it felt important to share with you the information we got today from Leanne Ely, The Dinner Diva from Saving Dinner.

As you  know, we are sending out a series of messages about cooking tips, including spices.  Because of that subject matter we want you to have THIS, too:

“The Ultimate Spice Cabinet Clean Out
by Leanne Ely, C.N.C

How many of us have professed to want to eat healthier, lose weight and get organized? It’s almost as if these three things are the ultimate trifecta! Believe it or not, one of the best ways to do all three of these things is to spice up your low calorie fare with herbs and spices.

But before you can organize your spices, you need to do a quick spice check. I’ve got this feeling we’ve got some OLD, ancient spices sitting in those cupboards! Let’s go on an archaeological dig and see what kind of fossils we can unearth. Here’s how you’re going to know you need some new spices–

You may need some new spices if:

*The date stamp on the bottom of the jar was from when you were in high school:

*The company who made the spice in the first place is out of business. Since 1980!

*The can is rusted and the label indistinguishable-you don’t know what’s in there.

*The label is missing so you smell it to identify it and can’t!

*The smell of the spice smells oddly like the garage on a rainy day.

*You mistakenly grab ground ginger for white pepper and it didn’t ruin what you were making because it had no flavor!

According to the website of McCormick Spice, if you still have spices in a tin can, you know the square and rectangular shaped cans with shaker and spoon out tops, they are seriously out of date-with the exception of black pepper-they have not manufactured the cans in over 15 years!!

The shelf life of spices is as follows:

Ground spices: 2 to 3 years

Whole spices: 3 to 4 years

Dried Herbs: 1 to 3 years

Great rule of thumb to figure out what to keep and what to pitch-if your spice is over a year old, it needs to be tossed. To keep your spices fresh and nice, you will want to buy only what you need and mark the bottom of the container with a Sharpie, indicating the date you purchased the spice.

I love buying my spices at the health food store (they are unbelievably fresh and cheap, because you buy what you need) and discount stores like Wal-Mart (2 for $1.00!). You can always have fresh spices when you get them this way.

Are you ready to spice up your life with some FRESH spices? Old Spice is cologne, not what should be hanging out in our spice drawers. Let’s get some fresh ones this week!

Now that you have all fresh and new spices, be sure and pick up a copy of our Ultimate Mix Ebook to create some spice, soup and sauce mixes of your own!

Copyright (C) 2011 www.savingdinner.com Leanne Ely, CNC All rights reserved.

This information will be helpful for everyone who has a kitchen.  It will be of particular interest to those who use SNAP or WIC; for those who get food from a food pantry or those who have food commodities.  Many of our Club Members are simply frugal and careful with their food budgets Users of Angel Food Ministries will benefit from this, too!

Your messages continue to delight the heart of your Webmaster…please keep them coming  at foodstampscookingclub@gmail.com !

Connie Baum

The FTC wants you to know there are links in this post.  Should they be clicked, resulting in sales, your humble blogger would be fairly compensated.  Please do your due diligence when conducting affairs online or offline.  Always do business with those you trust implicitly.

 

Food Stamps Cooking Club: Kitchen Oopsie?

March 9th, 2011

 

Rainy had an 'Oopsie' in her kitchen but came out a real WINNER!

Rainy, faithful Club Member

“Cooking Mistakes in the Kitchen

I know; you read the title of this post and immediately an experience, or two, came into your mind that you’d probably not want anyone to know about, right?  I had a mistake take place in the kitchen yesterday; and still, I am going to spill the beans –  Others just might benefit from my sharing what happened.

It was a milestone birthday for one of my children.  He is no longer a teen.  Kind of a big, special day for him.  So I asked him DAYS ago what kind of a cake he wanted to have.  I always let my kids pick what they want regarding meals & cake on their special day.

Well, he likes what he likes, and he requested what he usually does, which is a chocolate/chocolate cake.  Ahhhh, well, that was great because you see, that happens to be my favorite as well.  I make it from scratch and it happens to be one of my most often requested cakes.  So, I made sure that I had enough flour, sugar, Hershey’s dark cocoa powder, and baking soda, as well as, eggs & shortening.  I often run out of the shortening because in the old days when there was money to spare, I kept an extra can or two in the cupboard.  It isn’t so easy to stay stocked up these days with the economy as it is.  Anyhow, I was prepared.  I bought my favorite frosting (I know I can make it…but, I got it on sale).   I did not stress.  I was prepared; or so I thought.

See in the middle of making my very special cake for my very special son’s birthday… I discovered that one of my children had drained the MILK jug without telling anyone.  Sooo, what to do?  We had already gone to town to take children to school, so another run to town wasn’t the most financially responsible thing to do with gasoline at $3.50 a gallon.  I put on my thinking cap and reasoned…I’ve made muffins by doing this, but how will it taste; I substituted orange juice for the milk.  Now I knew that the moisture level of the cake would be fine…but, I wasn’t so sure how everyone would react to the flavor mixture.

Can I just tell you it was great without sounding like I am tooting my own horn?  Cause it was.  I loved it and more importantly everyone else did too.  Note to self: Orange/dark chocolate cake is just as good as those fancy orange chocolate chocolates that you buy in those premium candy boxes!

It got me to thinking, some of my best dishes have come about because I have substituted ingredients when I didn’t have what a recipe called for.  I tweaked it and made it my own.   The lesson here is…not only to try to keep your pantry stocked with staples by buying them when they are on sale and can be tucked away; but, to also make sure that any ingredients you may need that are perishable, are there in stock in the house.  Another lesson is, don’t freak out.  See what you can substitute in a pinch.

Now, I consider this a successful mistake in my kitchen.  I didn’t double check on the perishable milk supply, but it didn’t derail the cake baking, so all is good.  However, I won’t tell you about the time I forgot that I was boiling eggs and left the house; only to find out that boiling eggs dry on a cooking stove makes a great science project, when said eggs become projectiles that can fly so high that they can actually leave dents in your kitchen ceiling!  Oooops, did I just type that out LOUD? hahaha

What mistakes have YOU made in the kitchen that are memorable?  Care to share?”

~Rainy

Mother Connie here: Thanks so much for letting us in on your “new found” recipe, Rainy.  I do hope our Club Members cruise over to your site and leave you some love…Your orange chocolate combo makes me think of the gift box of candy we received not so long ago.  Those orange chocolate drops were so delicious!  We think of those as “Vitamin C with dark chocolate” so they are naturally HEALTHY!  grin

Rainy makes a great point.  It might be that beginning cooks or users of public assistance such as WIC, SNAP, food commodities or food pantries are reticent to substitute one ingredient for another for fear of making a mistake.  We need not worry and we need not think about the Kitchen Police or the Food Police, either.  Preparing tasty, life giving foods for those we love and making wonderful memories in the process is what it’s all about!

On a completely different note, I wish to BABBLE about the nomination this blog received yesterday.  The outpouring of love by your votes has warmed Mother Connie’s heart.  Thank you so much.  Just being nominated made this blogger feel like a winner!

We hope you will share YOUR kitchen oopsies with us.  Send your stories and post your comments.  Email us at foodstampscookingclub@gmail.com – it’ll make our day!

Your sponsors for the Food Stamps Cooking Club are Saving Dinner and Living on a Dime; Angel Food Ministries and ToothSoap. We are also sponsored by Rapid Cash Marketing. These folks love it when you cruise over and leave THEM some love, too.

Connie Baum

The FTC wants you to know there are links in this post. Should they be clicked, resulting in sales, your humble blogger would be fairly compensated. Please do your due diligence when conducting affairs online or offline. Always do business with those you trust implicitly

Food Stamps Cooking Club: ANOTHER Ole Dead Chicken?

March 3rd, 2011

Leanne Ely, The Dinner Diva, is Saving Dinner AGAIN with 3 great ideas for chicken breast recipes!

My email was great fun just now!  Leanne Ely graciously sent out another set of recipes for ole dead chicken!  Just what we need, just when we need it!  Scope it out:

“3 Recipes with Boneless Chicken Breasts

by Leanne Ely, C.N.C

The great thing about boneless skinless chicken breasts for the cook is they are like a blank canvas–the creativity and ideas to take this poultry to the next level is endless! Chicken takes on the flavors of the spices and ingredients accompanying it, making it amazingly versatile.

Besides being extremely convenient, boneless chicken breasts don’t even need to be thawed before cooking (most of the time anyway) and are great way to get your clean, lean protein.

Bon appetite and enjoy all these great new recipes, all using chicken and a delicious fruit salsa!

Chicken Tacos with Fruit Salsa
Serves 6

The Salsa
1 cup cubed fresh pineapple (or use frozen)

4 nectarines, pitted and chopped (or use frozen peaches)
2 mangos, peeled and chopped (or use frozen)
2 large tomatoes, chopped finely
1/2 cup diced red onion
2 limes, juiced (use only juice)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 teaspoon  sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cracked black pepper
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped finely

Combine all ingredients in a bowl tossing gently. May store in fridge for up to 24 hours before serving. You may also process, prior to chopping, in a food processor to desired consistency.

The Tacos

4 large boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut into bite sized pieces
1 cup lemonade
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 clove garlic, peeled, smashed
2 green onions, chopped finely, including green part
1 (12 ounce) package corn tortillas
1 container Greek yogurt  *use like sour cream

In a large skillet over medium high, heat oil until hot, then add onion and garlic and cook until onion is clear. Add chicken, cooking until outside of chicken is white and center is almost done. Now add the rest of the ingredients, cover, turn down and simmer until chicken is no longer pink and juices run clear. Wait about 15 more minutes. Remove lid to cook down liquid if necessary.

While cooking the chicken, warm the tortillas in the oven until soft. Once chicken is cooked transfer to serving bowl, place chicken mixture into tortillas, wrap. Add yogurt and Fruit Salsa as desired.

Variations:  Use lettuce greens of your choice, pita halves for the shells. Put all ingredients out and let each person make their own. You can also use great big Romaine lettuce leaves in lieu of the tortillas for a truly low carb meal.

Grilled Chicken with Fruit Salsa
Serves 6

Fruit Salsa(from above)
6 skinless, boneless chicken breasts halves
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon cracked black pepper grated
1 tablespoon fresh ginger
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup lemon juice

Combine juice, soy sauce, ginger, pepper, and garlic in a plastic bag or bowl with a good seal, place the chicken inside, seal and shake to coat, marinate for at least one hour, but no more than four, turning each 30 minutes or so.

Prepare grill or broiler. If you’re using the broiler, place pan one rung from the top. If you’re using the grill, use a medium direct heat. Remove chicken from bag, and discard the marinade. Grill chicken on s grill rack, or in a broiler pan, lightly oiled with olive oil. Cook 5 minutes on each side or until center of chicken is done. Serve with Fruit Salsa over chicken.

Chicken Taco Salad

1 head lettuce of choice, shredded *not Iceberg; no nutrition
1 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 cups tortilla chips, crushed
Grilled Chicken, cut into cubes
Fruit Salsa
Greek yogurt

In a large bowl mix all in ingredients except Greek Yogurt, separate into four to six servings, and top with a dollop of Greek yogurt.

~Leanne

Copyright (C) 2010 www.savingdinner.com Leanne Ely, CNC All rights reserved.

What would we do without one another?  Leanne helps us with Saving Dinner; Tawra and Jill help us when we are Living on a Dime and those who cruise by here to leave their mark entertain and enlighten us.

These are important considerations if you are using food from a food pantry or depend on food commodities.  We need encouragement if we have an EBT card for WIC or SNAP, too.  Even users of Angel Food Ministries can use all manner of new ideas, as can those who are just plain frugal and pinch their nickels until the buffalo bellows!

Please feel free to leave your comments here and do make our email fun: foodstampscookingclub@gmail.com.  THANK YOU.

Connie Baum

The FTC wants you to know there are links in this post. Should they be clicked, resulting in sales, your humble blogger would be fairly compensated. Please do your due diligence when conducting affairs online or offline. Always do business with those you trust implicitly

Food Stamps Cooking Club: Is March Nutrition Month?

March 1st, 2011

 

March is National Nutrition Month!

March is the time to celebrate NUTRITION!  We have come up with a list of foods you’d be wise to avoid:

Foods to Avoid
No one on the planet should ingest this stuff!

Soda pop

MSG

Hydrolized Protein

Trans Fats

Oleomargarine

Canola oil

Soda Crackers, Snack Crackers

Chips

Baby carrots

Aspartame

Corn Sweetener

Candy

Soy

Hot Dogs

Processed Lunch Meats

Hamburger/ Tuna Helper

Gravy, sauce or other prepared mixes

Boxed Macaroni meals

Seasoning packets

Corn sweeteners

Food that has been nuked/microwaved

This list was prepared, not to spoil all your fun, but to help you be as healthy as humanly possible.  Healthy bodies are not created from the foods listed here.

The argument that ” oh, but these are all I can afford” is false economy.  I know this from personal, painful experience.

“So,” you ask, all befuddled and confused and maybe you feel denied, too…“What SHALL we eat?”

Those of you who avail yourselves of food commodities and goods from a food pantry are scratching your heads.  You who have EBT cards for SNAP or WIC are thinking, “WHOA.  SAY WHAT?”

And I don’t blame you one little bit.

Even you who order Angel Food Ministry’s bundles and make every effort to keep a tight rein on your food budget must be wondering what on earth is left to eat, after studying this list.

Here is how you discover what there is to eat:  Take your family on an outing!  Gather them round and explain to them you will be going on an adventure.  They can explore the grocery store to find REAL FOOD to eat.  Real food doesn’t need labels.  Real food can be found in bins and refrigerated cases.  It does not need to be boxed up, either.

Most times the real food lives at the outer edges of the grocery store: dairy, meat, veggies and  fruits are all real food and would make a great way to celebrate National Nutrition Month!  Beans and grains are also wonderful, real foods that nourish our bodies.

Kids love to be involved…let them participate in choosing real food.  Avoid the chips aisle, the aisles that have soda and candy and desserts in cans and boxes.  Those have been “handled and tampered with”; therefore, those are no longer foods-if, indeed, they ever were!

Real food is simple, nourishing and satisfying.  It’s pretty, it’s interesting and the variety is unlimited.  Every season presents new delights for your palate and as the seasons change, so do the colors of real food!

Make this fun.  Don’t approach real food as a chore or a punishment.  Think of the adventure of climbing that pyramid!

Even if you are living on a dime you can be  a key factor in saving dinner as you celebrate National Nutrition Month!  ENJOY!

Connie Baum

The FTC wants you to know there are links in this post. Should they be clicked, resulting in sales, your humble blogger would be fairly compensated. Please do your due diligence when conducting affairs online or offline. Always do business with those you trust implicitly

Food Stamps Cooking Club: Neighbor Helping Neighbor?

February 19th, 2011

Lined up on Mother Connie's kitchen counter are glass jars of dried beans, rice, sugar, mushrooms, noodles...oh, and cookies!

The challenge was put to the Club Members about how we could help one another to get our families fed in times of extreme need…what could we do to assist those who may not fit into the parameters of the SNAP or WIC program?  What about people who cannot, for whatever reason, access a food pantry or qualify for food commodities or do not have Farmers Market Coupons.  Some may have Angel Food bundles; others may be in serious need.

A good friend of the Club, Maxine-not the Maxine who wants us to cook from scratch but the Maxine who roves and keeps in touch by means of a laptop-has sent this suggestion, accompanied by her good thoughts and loving light:

“Connie, your call was wonderful!  I have been thinking of ideas: The idea I come up with is to make individual or small packets of beans, dried fruits and vegetable etc. that people could turn into healthy soup. While people prepare it they also smell the aromas and feel the love that is in it.

Yes, we will be going through different times…we have lived
in times of helping through government help but I often felt how much we were able to do the help vs helping the greed and dependence in us all.


I certainly would encourage gardening and community gardens and the drying of excess fruits and vegetables – soup and other eating.  I like President Obama’s “can do” as an absolute. I’m not meaning to be so hard but I so believe God NEVER gives us more than we can handle.

How we allowed this country to get so out of kilter is a mental thing a huge lack of spirituality.    I’m the first to say it won’t be easy but I know it will be fulfilling in the end.


Wild berries and anything else we find we need to honor and preserve to the best of our abilities.

I think the importance of getting each one of us to know it is up to us – not” them.”   We are all one and the Knowing of that One has within it Abundance for us ALL.

It’s easier SAID than DONE. “

~Maxine H.

OK, Maxine.  You see the jars of goodness lined up on the counter.  I have little bags I could put together some dry ingredients and share with people.  Maybe it could spark a “Soup Event” whereby anyone with a bag of beans and some rice could add their own creativity to it and make sure people who are in need have the fixin’s for at least the ‘soup of human kindness.’

Maybe people have some sprouts seeds to share.  Growing living food in a sunny window is good on so many levels and is a wonderful teaching tool for children.  We could make up little packs of sprouts seeds to accompany the soups!

Keep those ideas flowing, people.  One in 6 children in America is hungry.  How can this Club be of assistance?  How can we share our love and our supplies?

***These people posted comments but their messages are so powerful that I want to place them HERE as well.  The Food Stamps Cooking Club Members are the BEST people in the world!  Thank you, Lorraine and Carol!

Connie…
I love this philosophy and try to live it myself.  We share excess eggs with people who know who can use them.  We also plant gardens and share.  Here is a way of helping someone long-term.

Why not gift them with vegetable plants so they can grow their own vegetables as well? If they don’t have garden space…pot them up a big salad bowl in a big container.

You could plant a tomato plant in the center, some green onion sets, leaf lettuce all around and maybe a cucumber plant trailing over the side, possibly even some radishes.

Also, when shopping…and the store has those buy one get one free sales?  Why not give the one you got free to someone in need.  This is a good practice to start.  You never know how this might help someone to feed their family.  Those are just a few suggestions!

~Lorraine

“Connie:
I love the idea of a “salad bowl” potted garden. Easy on the elderly, infirmed, appartment dwellers, etc.

Connie’s jars remind me of my own, filled with beans, peas, rice, etc.

What about gifting the rest of an opened package of seeds if your crop is now germinating and you won’t be planting again this season? While I try to save seeds for the next year, they don’t always carry over. If sharing my extras would bless someone, why not?


I also repurpose large coffee cans from Aldi’s (remove the outer label), attach a new label, place contents in a ziplock and then store in my new, metal container

~Carol

JEEPERS…I’m waiting for Paula and Maxine S and Sandra and Working Poor to chime in….guys?   And other Club Members-I suspect YOU have fabulous ideas, too!  Share the wealth, gang!

On a slightly different note, have you been to Carol’s blog to take a look at her cookies?  O MY…you can ALMOST smell them.  Be sure to leave a comment for her when you pop in.  Carol’s blog has great money saving ideas!

Please visit our sponsors, if you have a moment.  Especially if you are Living on a Dime or have a yen for Saving Dinner!  You might like our sister sites, as well:  The Healthy and Wealthy You or SoapyTeeth or Mother Connie Sez. OF COURSE, as you may have imagined, we are always jonesin’ for comments.  You can email us, too:  foodstampscookingclub@gmail.com

Connie Baum

The FTC wants you to know there are links in this post. Should they be clicked, resulting in sales, your humble blogger would be fairly compensated. Please do your due diligence when conducting affairs online or offline. Always do business with those you trust implicitly.

Food Stamps Cooking Club: Plum Delicious?

February 17th, 2011

Stirred custard with plums

This plum pudding looks and tastes exactly like my childhood! Even the tablecloth is one my mother used!

What persuades us that “bigger is better”  and “more is better than enough”?

These questions came up because I’ve been cooking from my mom’s old cookbook, the TNT Betty Crocker Cook Book circa 1950-something.  The recipes for various dishes are considerably smaller than recipes in today’s world.

No wonder obesity is such an issue…but, I digress.

Someone asked me what to do with dried plums.  They make great lunchbox snacks, that’s for sure.  And you can “stew” them by letting them soften in water that’s brought to a boil and let them steep just like tea.

My mother used to do that to dried plums.  Then she would strain the liquid and save it for breakfast juice to be drunk the next morning.  Sometimes she would use dried plums WITH pits; Dad liked to chew on them! :)

I remember Mom making custard to pour over them, too.  She would often make baked custard but that has a texture that is very different from stirred custard.  Baked custard is firm; stirred custard is soft and goes well with fruits or as a filling for layered cakes.

Here is something straight out of my childhood you will enjoy.  Bear in mind that it makes enough for 4 modest servings.  I might have doubled the recipe but my double boiler would have been OVER full, had I fallen to my temptation!

HARRIET’S STIRRED CUSTARD

4 eggs, slightly beaten

2/3 cups sugar + 1 teaspoon

1  teaspoon flour  *I rounded my spoonful; the Kitchen Police did not storm the room…

2  1/2  cups scalded milk

1/4 teaspoon salt

2  teaspoons vanilla

Combine the eggs and sugar.  Add the flour.  Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly.  *I used a whisk.

Stir constantly as the mixture cooks.  You want the water in the double boiler to be HOT but you don’t want it to boil!  As soon as the custard is thick enough to coat a spoon it is ready for the salt and vanilla.  Chill in individual bowls with plums or plumped dried cherries or raisins.  This yields 4 delicious servings.

*If you want to have just plain custard, the Kitchen Police will not object and neither will those who share your table!  grin

This recipe is perfect for users of WIC or SNAP; it will be valuable for those who have food commodities or have food from a food pantry because it is simple and very inexpensive to make.  It is nourishing and it would surely classify it as a comfort food!

Have you had the time to cruise over to Living On a Dime or Saving Dinner yet?  Both are offering some interesting product sales if you are interested in saving money on your food and household expenses.

You might also like to jet over to Rainy’s blog to thank her for the interview she put up there for us!  She, like you, GETS the value of the Food Stamps Cooking Club and was eager to promote it!

Many of you have been promoting us on your own by encouraging those in your circle to submit names and email addresses in order to receive our series of cooking tips and occasional email messages.  We thank you for this.

We are equally grateful for messages that come to our inbox: foodstampscookingclub@gmail.com hint/hint   grin

Connie Baum

The FTC wants you to know there are links in this post.  Should they be clicked, resulting in sales, your humble blogger would be fairly compensated.  Please do your due diligence when conducting affairs online or offline.  Always do business with those you trust implicitly.



Lorraine Wellman and Connie Baum Speak About Food Stamps Cooking Club?

February 17th, 2011

Food Stamps Cooking Club: Do You Know A Muffin Man?

January 24th, 2011

What IS it about muffins that are so satisfying and yummy? Maybe it's that they are very easy to prepare and vanish in a wink!

We have been discussing a Magic Master Mix on this page lately and in case you’ve missed it, we are making it available once again.  It is very easy to put together and VERY handy to have on your shelf for quick breads and fast meals on the cheap!

MAGIC MASTER MIX

8 cups unsifted enriched flour

1/4 cup baking powder

3 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon iodized salt

1 1/3 cups nonfat dry milk powder

3/4 to 1 cup vegetable oil

!. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and dry milk powder.

2.  Drizzle oil over dry mixture; cut in with pastry blender, fork or fingers.

3. Store in covered container in fridge.

This yields about 10 cups and keeps for about 3 months.

NOTE:  When measuring for mix, stir lightly, pile into cup-no shaking-and level off.

To make muffins:

3  cup + 2 tablespoons Magic Master Mix

3  tablespoons sugar

1  egg, beaten

1  cup water

Combine Magic Master Mix and sugar.  Blend egg and water, add to mix.  Stir gently just until dry ingredients are moistened.  Mixture should be lumpy.

SIDEBAR:  How come my GRAVY recipes don’t call for LUMPY? grin  END SIDEBAR

Fill well greased muffin cups 2/3 full, bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.  Congratulations!  You now have one dozen doozies!

Of course, you are free to add berries or raisins to this mix.  This is only a basic recipe.  Be careful not to be overly generous with berries and such, for they can weigh down the dough.

You could use cupcake papers to make these or even little baking cups-my mom used Pyrex oven proof bowls for her muffins-but if you make sure your muffin tins are well greased, you should have no problem.  When the muffins come out of the oven, just upset the tin on a cooling rack or towel to remove the muffins. Oh, the aroma will be scrumptious!

Do you use an EBT card from WIC or SNAP?  Do you have food commodities?  Do you have goods from a food pantry?  Maybe you use Angel Food Ministries?  HowEVER you fund your food budgets, we are here to help.  Maybe you have ideas you would like to share with the rest of the club.  We welcome your comments and your mail!  foodstampscookingclub@gmail.com  or just make your comment here on the blog where it says “Comments”…MAKE OUR DAY!

Some of you are new here. and we welcome you with open arms! We know you are new because we see new names on our roster as you entered your name and email so you can receive our series of cooking tips and very occasional messages.  WE THANK YOU FOR THIS.

We are also happy that you have been visiting our sponsors which include Saving Dinner, ToothSoap and Rapid Cash Marketing. When you get to their place, be sure to tell them that Mother Connie sent you their way.

Connie Baum

The FTC wants you to know there are links in this post.  Should they be clicked, resulting in sales, your humble blogger would be fairly compensated.  Please do your due diligence when conducting affairs online or offline.  Always do business with those you trust implicitly.

Food Stamps Cooking Club: Same Ole Snacks?

December 13th, 2010

Have you ever thought about a ALTERNATIVE to the old standby, "PB & J"?

Hang onto your hats, kids!  I have an idea for you whose time has come!

What kid-or grown up, for THAT matter-doesn’t love a good old fashioned peanut butter and jelly sammie?  It has gone into lunchboxes and picnic baskets since forever and we have a new twist on it for you:  HUMMUS!

Who’d a thunk it?  I never ever would have even considered marrying those elements.  But I heard Lynne Rosetto Kasper talk about it on her radio show and I just HAD to try it.  I just so happened to have hummus made up because I wanted to use it for a sandwich spread with leftover chicken.

Don’t run to the store and BUY hummus; it’s just too easy and much cheaper to make it at home.  Here’s how I threw mine together:

Mother Connie’s Hummus

1 can garbanzo beans, liquid and all

a shake or two of onion powder  *Use real onion if you have it.  Measure it by how much or how little YOU like.

a shake or two of garlic powder  *Use real garlic cloves, if you have some on hand.  One or two cloves per can of beans should do it.

a squirt or two, maybe three of lemon  *Use real lemons if you can.  If you have bottled lemon, just don’t mention it if  the Food Police stroll through your kitchen.

a generous palm full of cumin

a pinch of cayenne pepper and/or chili powder

Enough vegetable oil to make it the consistency you like.  For dipping you may want a thinner hummus; for sammie spreads you might like it to be thicker.

I used the food processor but if you use your your blender it will work just as well.  It takes some time to break up those garbanzo beans, because they are so firm, so be patient with it.

When it has finished blending it is ready to be spread or dipped into!  YUM  Apple or orange slices dipped into hummus are delectable.  Celery, broccoli or carrots are also yummy when dipped into hummus.  Or you might use toast points; even crackers.

SIDEBAR: NO CHIPS, PLEASE.  MOTHER CONNIE DOES NOT WANT YOU TO USE CHIPS, FOR THERE IS NO NUTRITIVE VALUE, thank you very much. END SIDEBAR

HERE IS THE TWIST:  Spread bread slices with hummus and add peanut butter and jelly just the way you ordinarily would.  Your taste buds will be SO HAPPY!

If you are a user of food commodities you are very likely to have canned garbanzo beans.  If you are a user of food pantry food it is a distinct possibility you might have garbanzo beans as well.

This does not preclude your cooking your own dry beans!  Just wash them, soak them overnight and cook the daylights out of them BEFORE you salt them.  This would be extremely cost effective.  It would NOT be considered ‘fast food’…grin.

Do you use an EBT card for WIC or SNAP?  This idea might just be the ticket for you!  If you have bundles from Angel Food Ministries, this will help your bounty go even farther.

We can’t leave this page before we thank everyone for their keen participation in commenting and signing up for the series of cooking tips.  You’ve been sending your friends!  We can tell!  And we appreciate it mightily.

Please remember you are welcome to send your comments to foodstampscookingclub@gmail.com  or leave us your comment on this blog.  We prefer you do not leave spam messages;  it’s not fair to all the faithful Club Members when you are inconsiderate in that way.

We note that you are visiting our sponsors and our sister blogs and we deeply appreciate that.

Connie Baum

The FTC wants you to know there are links in this post.  Should they be clicked, resulting in sales, your humble blogger would be fairly compensated.  Please do your due diligence when conducting affairs online or offline.  Always do business with those you trust implicitly.