Monday, January 8, 2018

Crossing Guards

We have lots of snow in my neck of the woods. How are you doing where you live? No matter, that, they never plowed lots of the streets , I plowed threw the snow with my car to get to my corner as a Crossing Guard. They closed every other city and towns schools in Perth County except for Stratford... Go figure? The kids are real troupers to walk in all that snow. It was two -three feet high in some places because the sidewalks were also not plowed yet. I only started this job but already find it a rewarding experience to keep the kids safe on the streets of Stratford Ontario. So snow or not I will be faithful to my corner twice a day until June :)

Monday, January 1, 2018

DIY Wine Cork Bird Feeder

Photos by Suzzycue Hi, Happy New Year to you all ,this fine, snowy ,first day of 2018. If you are anything like me, I have been hibernating through these two weeks of freezing ,record breaking cold spells, we are in now, in Ontario. Hope you enjoyed your New Years Eve. Stratford had a beer tent with music behind the Grand City Hall this year. I didn't attend this Celebration. The thoughts of going into an outhouse at 28 degrees below zero were not welcoming to me but I bet the younger Generation enjoyed it. I stayed home with my bottle of wine and watched the New Year burst in from the comfort of my electric throw. Since we are now snowed in and my hangover has passed. What do we do with all the wine corks my friends and I saved throughout 2017 from good dinners and great times together. Do you hang on to your corks like a good memory? I do it is something about throwing out a wine cork that isn't in my DNA. :) I made a DIY wine cork bird feeder that is a fun up-cycle project. The birds will love it and I can put it on my balcony now , for the birds to enjoy the New year too. Make yourself a wine cork bird feeder and here is how to do it :)

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Portobello Mushroom Burger

Check this out a yummy #portobello mushroom burger with all the tasty drippings of a hamburger with a lot less calories. Taste,is what, I was really after but saving a few calories won't hurt me either :) I didn't even miss the meat. Why did I try this, because two big mushroom caps were on sale for a $1.00 yesterday at walmart's vegetable bargain rack. So I brought them home and cleaned off a bit of soggy bad part, do not wash a portobello mushroom because they will end up a black mess in your hand... I found out the hard way. You can wipe them off with a towel, like you do other mushrooms because if you rinse them with water they become tough.Then you scrap out all the black ribs found on the underside of the mushroom. How to Cook : I fried it skin side up in butter in my cast iron frying pan. Then I tossed in the pan, fresh spinach to wilt, s/p. I flipped the big mushroom cap over and melted old cheddar cheese on the top. I had no buns so I toasted bread. Then I piled on mayo, portobello mushroom cap with cheese and topped it with the wilted spinach. Oh man... if you love mushrooms like I do you need to try this :)

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Steak and Eggs

Photo by Suzzycue Hi friends :) If you are like me ...this time of year, I play casino games on my laptop. My favorite right now is solitare areana , but I love the slots and poker. I was sitting at home playing on my laptop[ for free of course, it doesn't get any more, good ,#frugal entertainment than... that LOL],and I wondered how to make my home casino experience seem more like the real thing. I did do the Vegas trip and realized it was the food, that was missing. I wasn't going to cook up a big smorgasbord on my budget but realized #steak and #eggs would add a nice touch. I had some AAA Angus, boneless, stewing beef that I bought half off at Walmart and a 2$ dozen eggs in the fridge. So I heated up the cast iron frying pan, dabbed in some olive oil, 2 smashed toes of garlic, 4 mushrooms sliced , and about 5 chunks of the stewing beef. After flipping the stewing beef once, I added some butter and an egg to the bottom of the pan. When the egg was fully cooked sunny side up , I layered my plate, with the beef, mushrooms, egg , and poured all that buttery, garlic oil goodness from the pan over the top with s/p to your taste. YUM :) My home casino now is complete and the breakfast was so good, I will visit again tomorrow morning. Enjoy!

Monday, November 13, 2017

One Pot Chicken Cacciatore Recipe

All Photos by Suzzycue I watch a lot of #RachaelRay shows and I have for many years. The show last week about cooking a spaghetti dinner , by throwing raw spaghetti noodles in the bottom of your roasting pan and coming out good... made me a real skeptic. The rule of thumb, is to boil the noodles, in the biggest pot you own and put in enough salt, in the water, to taste like the ocean. The bigger the pot, the better, then you pour the noodles into a strainer, over a sink to get the water off, saving one cup of the starchy water to bind the sauce to the noodles after you add it all to the pan of sauce on the stove. So my curiosity was up and I had to give it a try. My thoughts were that, all the starch from the noodles, would make the dish one gummy mess :(
I shook my head as I laid the raw spaghetti noodles on the bottom of the roasting pan. On top of the raw noodles I added ,chopped green beans, 4 halved brussel sprouts, 6 garlic toes smashed,a few hot chilly peppers I had in olive oil, and one chopped green pepper, s/p and fresh oregano, thyme, and chives that I grow myself. I put the raw skinless chicken legs ,attached to thighs, right on top of it all and poured the tomato sauce, over the top of everything in the roasting pan. This is my own recipe for this dish. I then put it into a pre-heated 350 degree oven and roasted it for two hours. I was scared to look at what it would become.
Well... I will tell you it was the best #chicken-Cacciatore I have ever made. The noodles didn't even stick to the pan. I guess there was enough juice from the chicken legs and the vegetables to cook them. The starch and the fat from the chicken legs made a rich, thick tomato sauce that really stuck onto the spaghetti noodles. The chicken legs were moist and cooked through perfect which is important. YUM... just the way I love it. Throw everything into the pot and two hours later you have dinner... this is my kind of cooking :) A big thanks to Rachael Ray for this idea.

Saturday, November 4, 2017

One Pot Thanksgiving Dinner Scalloped Potatoes and Ham

Photos by Suzzycue Thanksgiving is one of my Favorite Holidays... no presents :) I think we should take the time to enjoy this Holiday and give Thanks for all our Blessings. If we don't celebrate the Holidays, then it gives some people, like ME :) ,nothing to look forward to and that is not good. That is what this #Frugal one pot #Thanksgiving-Dinner is all about. A friend of mine asked me over ,to help clean out her freezer, and gave me a chunk of ham she wasn't going to use. Driving back to Stratford , I decided to stop in at Walmart and see what, was, their, leftover dollar bags of veggies, I could use with this ham. I found about five pounds of potatoes and decided to make scalloped potatoes and ham for Thanksgiving dinner. Then, I thought... since I am older, I have trouble with dairy products( #Lactose intolerance) so, I bought some cream of mushroom soup to use, instead of all that milk, ( would be 2 cups if you used milk and a dab of butter) and found a dollar box of mushrooms to add also.
Here is the One pot Thanksgiving dinner recipe, depending on the size of the baking dish you use: 6 new potatoes sliced as thin as you can, 1 onion sliced thin,slice all the mushrooms thin, 1 can of cream of mushroom soup, 1 teaspoon of cornstarch, salt and pepper to your taste. and of course the star of the show, is the chunk of ham thinly sliced. Then you alternate the ingredients, as you stack them, in rows, until the pan is full. Open the can of mushroom soup and pour over the top of everything. While cleaning the mushroom soup can out with 1/2 can of water mix in, the teaspoon of cornstarch, and pour it on top adding salt and pepper. Cover the dish with foil,Bake for 90 minutes and I shared this dish with the lady that give me the ham and her neighbors. The four of us had a great celebration with a great one pot Thankdgiving dish. Please try this at home :)
Cooking Tip for this recipe You can use any kind of cream soup for this recipe. they are all good. If you use cream of chicken ,then put chicken in the dish. If you use cream of celery then add celery to this dish and so on. I added extra mushrooms because I used cream of mushroom soup Delicious :) Here are some more frugal, easy, great recipes you might like to try.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Small Yellow Roasted Potatoes

Photos by Suzzycue This is another Fall Favorite of mine :) These small yellow potatoes can be found in any grocery store in the fall. You can also buy them in white, red, yellow, and multicolored with even purple potatoes in the package. The big yellow potatoes are the best for making latke potatoes or potato pancakes as I call them. There is so much starch in the yellow potatoes that all you need to make potato pancakes is : grated yellow potatoes ,salt/pepper and shallow fry in your cast iron frying pan until brown on both sides... YUM:) The small yellow potatoes ,wash, I cut in half,mix up on the cookie sheet with olive oil,and rosemary. I put the pan directly under the broiler and ten minutes later, turn over potatoes for another five minutes. Plate them up with butter s/p and feel them melt away in your mouth. I love this dish :) SOOOOOO GOOOOOOOOOOD!