Beef Goulash

Do you remember eating Goulash made with ground beef and elbow macaroni as a kid? It was a very popular dish in the 70s. It’s easy to make, tasty and very frugal. It’s one of our go-to meals when we don’t know what to cook.

I love the fact that I basically just need to brown the ground beef and then move everything to the oven to finish cooking. Great for those evenings when there are lots of chores to catch up on around the house, or when I’m too tired to stand at the stove stirring pots.

I serve this with either a side salad, cole slaw or steamed broccoli.

Beef Goulash
 
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 1½ pounds ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, sliced
  • 1 (16-ounce) can stewed tomatoes
  • 1 tomato can (2 cups) water
  • 1 (7-ounce) package uncooked elbow macaroni (1½ cups)
  • 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
Instructions
  1. Cook and stir ground beef, onion and celery in 4-quart ovenproof Dutch oven until beef is brown; drain. Stir in remaining ingredients.
  2. Cover and bake in 350° oven until liquid is absorbed and goulash is hot, about 40 minutes; stir.

 

Homemade Beef Goulash

 

Beef Bean Enchilada

Enchiladas is one of my favorite comfort foods and we have it on the menu quite often. The recipe below makes a nice big pan of beef and bean enchiladas. There is usually enough for dinner and a few leftovers for lunch. You can make them with the corn tortillas as suggested, or replace them with flour tortillas if you prefer. They have ground beef and refried beans. seasoned with taco sauce and topped with enchilada sauce and of course cheese. We like black olives in there, but they are totally optional. Feel free to leave them out or substitute your favorite cooked vegetable in there. We’ve added canned corn and black beans in the past with good results.

Beef Bean Enchilada
 
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1½ pounds ground beef
  • 1 onion medium chopped
  • 1 16-ounce can refried beans
  • 1 cup olives pitted, quartered
  • ⅓ cup taco sauce canned or bottled
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 10-ounce cans red enchilada sauce
  • Vegetable oil
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 3 cups cheddar cheese shredded (12 oz.)
  • Sour cream dairy
  • Canned or bottled green chili salsa
  • Sliced pitted ripe olives
Instructions
  1. In a large skillet over medium-high heat sauté beef and onion until meat is browned and onion is tender; drain off fat. Add beans, olives, taco sauce, salt and garlic powder. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat; keep warm.
  2. Preheat oven to 350° F. In a small saucepan heat enchilada sauce; pour half the sauce into an ungreased shallow 3-quart baking dish. Pour oil into a small skillet to a depth of ¼ inch. Heat over medium heat. Dip tortillas, one at a time, in hot oil to soften; drain quickly on paper towels. Place about ⅓ cup of the meat filling on each tortilla; roll to enclose filling. Place seam-side down in baking dish. Pour remaining enchilada sauce over the filled tortillas.
  3. Cover with cheese and bake, uncovered, for 20 to 25 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted.
  4. In a small bowl combine sour cream and salsa. Serve warm enchiladas with sour cream-salsa and olives.

 

Plate of Bean and Beef Enchiladas

Creamy Leek Potato Soup

On a cold winter day like today, there’s nothing better than a nice warm bowl of soup.

I thought I’d share a simple recipe with you today that I’m about to make for dinner.

I’ve been cooking this for a few years and published it in my “St. Patrick’s Day Kindle Book“. Enjoy!

Creamy Leek Potato Soup
 
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 large leeks, thoroughly trimmed and washed
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 Tbsps olive oil or other cooking oil
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 lb gold potatoes (like Yukon gold) potatoes, peeled and diced
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • ½ cup milk (or half and half)
Instructions
  1. Cut the cleaned leeks into small pieces, and put in a large pot along with the onion, garlic, and oil, and cook over medium heat, stirring, for about 3 minutes or just until the leeks and onions soften slightly.
  2. Add the chicken stock and water, stir, then add the potatoes. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and let simmer very slowly for 25 to 30 minutes. The potatoes should be very tender.
  3. To puree soup, use an immersion blender, or let cool slightly and pour into blender or food processor and pulse until smooth. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
  4. Put soup back on low heat after blending, then stir in milk and allow to warm, but do not boil. Serve with a pat of butter in each bowl and some chopped chives if desired.

 

Creamy Potato and Leek SoupOn St. Patrick's Day Everyone Can Be IrishOn St. Patrick’s Day Everyone Can Be Irish

St. Patrick’s Day gives us all an excuse to have some fun and eat delicious comfort foods.

Just thinking about corned beef, cabbage & soda bread give me goose bumps.  Those classic Irish dishes are among some of my favorite but it’s fun when you can find new recipes that make your tummy happy.

Since St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner I thought it would be nice to put together some recipes and crafts and create a kindle ebook to celebrate.

You’ll find delicious Irish food along with a bunch of crafts that your family will enjoy creating together.

And remember, with all Kindle ebooks, you don’t need a Kindle to download them. Amazon makes it easy to put right on your computer, laptop, or other e-reader or device. And the price is right, too!

http://www.hillbillyhousewife.com/stpaddybook

White Beans with Red Pepper

We love beans in any way shape or form around here. They are a frugal staple, healthy and very versatile. When you’re ready to step it up and make some “sophisticated” bean dishes, give these white beans with red peppers and pesto a try.

The recipe is from the Thrifty bean cookbook and is the most elaborate dish in the cookbook. Don’t let the long ingredient list turn you off from trying this though. It’s delicious. You can also omit the pesto, or use your favorite pesto in a jar.

Red Pepper White Beans
 
Ingredients
Pesto:
  • 1 crushed garlic clove
  • 2 Tbsp. toasted pine nuts
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. water
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ⅛ tsp. fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 cups basil leaves
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese
Beans:
  • 1 lb. great northern beans, dried
  • 10 cups water, divided
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh sage, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1½ cups onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup (from a jar) roasted red bell peppers, chopped
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. fresh ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. Start by preparing the pesto: add the garlic, pine nuts, olive oil, water, salt, pepper, basil and Parmesan cheese to a food processor and process until smooth.
  2. Now prepare the beans: first, sort and wash them. Add the beans and 4 cups of water to a 6 quart pressure cooker. Cover and make sure lid is tightly closed and over high heat, bring to a high pressure. Reduce the heat to medium (or a level that will keep the high pressure) and cook for 3 minutes. Place the pressure cooker under cold running water; remove lid and drain the beans.
  3. Put the beans back in the cooker and add 6 cups of water, olive oil, sage, garlic and onion. Put lid on and make sure it’s securely in place; bring to high pressure over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium (or a level that will keep the high pressure) and cook for 12 minutes. Put the cooker under cold running water. Now remove the lid off the pressure cooker and let the bean mixture stand for 10 minutes.
  4. Drain the mixture (beans) into a colander that is sitting over a bowl. Reserve 1 cup of the liquid. Place the beans back into the pressure cooker; add the 1 cup reserved liquid. Now add the vinegar, bell peppers, salt and pepper. Stir well to mix everything together. Top the beans with the pesto sauce.

 

White Beans with Red Pepper

Potato Broccoli Soup Recipe

Is there anything better than a nice bowl of soup on a cold day? Actually there is…. if you can just pull it from the freezer and heat it up. I often make a double batch of this and freeze half of it for a quick lunch and dinner later on in the month. We love this particular soup for either lunch or dinner. I serve it with some fresh bread or biscuits.

The mushrooms in this recipe are optional. If my husband is here I usually leave them out since he’s not a big fan. Otherwise they add some nice body to the finished soup and make it feel more filling.

From the Freezer Soup and Stew Recipes Kindle Cookbook.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Potato Broccoli Soup Recipe
 
Ingredients
  • • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • • 6 C broccoli stems and florets, chopped
  • • 1 large potato, chopped
  • • ½ C fresh mushrooms, chopped
  • • 1 small onion, chopped
  • • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • • 4 C of vegetable broth
  • • 2 tsp curry powder
  • • ¼ tsp pepper
  • • ¾ C low fat milk
Instructions
  1. Place a soup pot over medium heat and add the oil. Once the oil is hot add in the broccoli, potato, mushrooms, onion, garlic and the celery and stir together. Sauté the vegetables for 10 minutes or until all the vegetables are tender.
  2. Pour the broth into the pot then sprinkle in the curry powder and pepper. Stir to combine the ingredients together well. Bring the broth to a brisk steady boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pot and simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Transfer the soup by batches into the blender. Puree until very smooth. Return the soup to the pot and place the pot over low heat. Stir the milk into the soup well. Continue to heat for 5 minutes or until completely heated through.
  4. Makes 6 servings
  5. To reheat frozen soup there's no need to thaw. Place the soup into a soup pot over low heat. Stirring often allow the soup to thaw. When the soup has thawed, cover the pot and continue cooking on low, stirring often, for approximately 15 minutes or until the soup is heated through.

 

Freezer Soups and Stews – Volume 1 Freezer Soups and Stews - Kindle Cookbook

Soups & stews are the ultimate in easy, breezy comfort food and can feed a crowd like nobody’s business. So, it stands to reason that having a stash of handy soups & stews that can easily go from freezer to the pot just makes sense.

I’ve included several easy to make recipes that will allow you to create inexpensive & healthy meals that can be ready in a flash!

Order your copy on Amazon.com 

Broccoli and Potato Soup - Great For Freezer Cooking

Homemade Strawberry Muffins

These muffins are perfect for Valentine’s Day. They are yummy, look cute and best of all they freeze really well. In fact the recipe is straight out of my Freezer Muffin Kindle Cookbook.

Homemade Strawberry Muffins
 
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 1¾ cups flour
  • 1 cup strawberries, chopped
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, whisk milk, oil and egg, set aside. In a large bowl, mix flour, salt, baking powder and sugar. Toss in chopped strawberries and stir to coat with flour. Pour in milk mixture and stir together. Spoon batter into paper-lined muffin tin, filling the cups almost to the top.
  2. Put in freezer for about 3 hours or until frozen. Once frozen, transfer to a gallon size freezer bag and store for up to 4 weeks.
  3. To bake remove from freezer and place back into muffin tin. Bake at 375 degrees for about 30-35 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown.

 

Strawberry MuffinsReady for more delicious freezer muffin recipes?

Freezer Muffin Kindle CookbookFreezer Muffins – From Freezer To Fresh Oven Baked Muffins 

Starting the morning off with piping hot muffins straight from the oven can make your family very happy.

Some of the recipes you’ll find are:

  • Almost Apple Pie Muffins
  • Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
  • Banana Nut Muffins
  • Blueberry Mango Muffins Topped with Coconut Streusel
  • Blueberry Orange Muffins
  • Chocolate Chocolate Chip Muffins
  • Cinnamon Apple Oat Bran Muffins

These are great alternatives to cereals or pop tarts on a busy schedule. You can also pack the more savory muffins in brown bag lunches in place of a sandwich for a yummy surprise.

Order your copy on Amazon.com 

Barbecued Pork Sandwiches

We love good barbecue around here. I used to head down to a little restaurant down the road to pick up a pound or two … until I figured out how easy it is to make my own. Look for pork roasts to go on sale and stock up when you can. You can freeze the meat before you cook it, or freeze the cooked barbecue if needed.

Instead of using a dutch oven, you can also cook it in your slow cooker. Mine takes about 6 hours on high or 10 hours on low (depending on the size of the roast).

Barbecued Pork Sandwiches
 
Serves: 16
Ingredients
  • 1 pork shoulder roast (about 5 pounds), trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt, optional
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • ¼ cup vinegar
  • Hamburger rolls, split
Instructions
  1. In a Dutch oven, combine meat, onions, chili powder, salt if desired, water, ketchup and vinegar. Cover and simmer for 4 hours or until the meat falls apart easily. Skim off the excess fat. With a slotted spoon, remove meat, reserving cooking liquid. Shred the meat with two forks or a pastry blender. Return to the cooking liquid and heat through. Serve on rolls.

 

If Cooking for Two: Freeze in serving-size portions to have a quick and easy meal.

Homemade Pork Barbecue sandwiches

Crockpot Breakfast Casserole Recipe

I love waking up to the smell of breakfast cooking. Sadly, I’m the morning person around here so that doesn’t happen very often… unless I whip up this easy breakfast dish the night before and stick it in the crockpot before going to bed. By the time I’m up and had my first cup of coffee, a delicious hot breakfast that sticks to my bones is waiting for me.

This overnight slow cooker breakfast recipe is perfect for Sunday mornings, especially if you have a large family or overnight guests. .You can switch things up by using sausage instead of eggs or some chopped bell peppers to make it meat-free.

Crockpot Breakfast Casserole
 
Ingredients
  • 12 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 bag (32 oz) bag frozen hash browns
  • 1 lb bacon
  • 1 small onion
  • 1½ cup shredded cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Start by cooking your bacon. I cook it in the oven the night before. Chop up the bacon once it's cooled a bit.
  2. Chop your onion and set aside.
  3. Crack the eggs into a large bowl and beat them. Add the salt and pepper.
  4. Pour about ⅓ of the hash browns into your slow cooker. Top with a layer of ⅓ of the bacon, onion and cheese. Repeat two more times, ending with the onion. Save the cheese for now.
  5. Pour the egg mixture over the layers, then top with the last ½ cup of cheese. Cook on low for 10 to 12 hours (overnight) and enjoy for breakfast.

 

Slowcooker Breakfast Casserole with Eggs Bacon and Potatoes

Carrot Cake Poke Cake Recipe

I love a nice slice of traditional carrot cake and will grab it for dessert if we are out for dinner somewhere (which doesn’t happen very often). For some reason it’s not something I bake on a regular basis. I don’t know why. Instead, when I really have to have some carrot cake, I started making this fun poke cake version instead. It’s yummy and goes together quickly. It also makes for a great birthday cake.

Carrot Poke Cake
 
Ingredients
  • 1 Spice Cake Mix
  • ¼ Cup Raisins
  • 2 Cups Carrots, shredded
  • 1 Small Box Orange Jell-O Gelatin
  • 1 Cup Boiling Water
  • ¼ Cup Butter, softened
  • 4 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
  • ½ tsp. Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 2 Cups Powdered Sugar
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Prepare packaged cake as directed, and then stir in raisins and carrots until well mixed. Pour into a 9x13 pan and bake as directed.
  3. Using a fork or skewer poke holes all around the cake about ½ inch apart.
  4. In a separate bowl, pour boiling water over dry gelatin and mix for 2 minutes until dissolved. Immediately pour over cake.
  5. Refrigerate approximately 3 hours.
  6. Mix butter, cream cheese and pumpkin pie spice in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until well blended. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating until all powdered sugar has been used and mixture is well blended. Spread evenly over cake.

From the Poke Cake Kindle Cookbook
http://amzn.to/1ByVlZ0

 

Carrot Cake Recipe - Poke Cake

Creamed Chicken

Creamed chicken is such an easy and versatile dish (as you’ll see in a minute). It’s a staple around here. I serve it plain over noodles, rice or toast. If you have some leftover veggies sitting in the fridge, add them to the mix toward the end. Or use one of the 7 variations of this basic recipe below.

If you come up with your own variations, please share them as a comment below. And of course you can also make this with leftover turkey instead of chicken after the holidays.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Easy Creamed Chicken
 
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced OR ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ⅓ cup flour
  • 1-1/2 cups chicken broth (use 2 bouillon cubes & 1½ cups water)
  • 1-1/2 cups milk
  • 2 to 3 cups of chopped, cooked chicken
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
Instructions
  1. Melt the butter in a 3-quart sized saucepan. Add the onion and garlic and saute until the onions are tender and fragrant.
  2. Stir in the flour, until it is absorbed by the fat and clinging to the vegetables.
  3. Gradually add the chicken broth and milk. Cook and stir until the mixture boils. Boil for a full minute.
  4. Stir in the chicken and salt and pepper to taste. Cook and stir for a few more minutes to thoroughly heat the chicken and to blend the flavors.
  5. Serve over rice or biscuits or toast or noodles.

 

Creamed Chicken Recipe With 7 Variations

 

This is only the beginning . . . .

Chicken Crepes: Prepare Creamed Chicken above. Also prepare a batch of Crepes. Use a slotted spoon to scoop up a good juicy lump of chicken from the sauce, and fill each crepe in turn. Some of the meat will stay in the sauce, but most of it will be rolled up in the crepes. Arrange the prepared crepes in a well oiled 9 by 13-inch pan. Drizzle all of the remaining sauce over top of them, and sprinkle with 1/2-cup shredded cheese. Bake at 400° for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese is nicely melted. Serve hot with a fruit salad and Brussels sprouts or green beans.

Chicken A’la King: Prepare Creamed Chicken above. Sauté a chopped green pepper and 2-cups of sliced mushrooms along with the onions in step 1. If you don’t have a pepper, you can use a cup of canned or frozen peas instead. Add them in step 4. If you use canned mushrooms instead of fresh, then drain them well and add in step 4 too. Serve over popovers, or toast, or fresh biscuits. You can make this without the mushrooms if you don’t have any on hand. It won’t be authentic A’La King, but it will still taste very good.

Chicken Pot Pie: Prepare Creamed Chicken above. In step 4 add 2-cups of leftover, canned, or frozen vegetables (slightly thawed). I like to add peas and carrots, but mixed vegetables or green beans and corn would be fine too. Simmer for a few minutes to heat the vegetables all the way through. While the sauce is cooking, prepare a double pie crust and line a large pie plate with the crust. Turn the prepared chicken and vegetable mixture into the crust. Arrange the top crust over the pan and crimp the edges to seal. Cut a few slits in the top to allow steam to escape. Bake at 400° for about 40 minutes, or until the top is brown. Serve hot with lots of green vegetables, and fresh fruit for dessert.

Chicken with Biscuits: Prepare Creamed Chicken above. In step 4 add a pound of partially thawed, frozen mixed vegetables, or about 3-cups of cooked or well drained canned vegetables. Stir it all up and let it boil While the mixture cooks prepare a batch of drop biscuits by combining 2-1/2 cups of home made biscuit mix and a cup of milk. The dough will be very soft. Turn the boiling chicken and vegetable mixture into a well oiled 9 by 13-inch pan. Drop the biscuit dough on top of the hot mixture. Bake at 400° for about 20 minutes, or until the biscuits are golden brown. Serve hot with apple wedges, tall glasses of milk, and oatmeal raisin cookies for dessert.

Chicken Tetrazzini: Prepare Creamed Chicken above. In step 1 add 2 cups of sliced mushrooms. If you want to use canned mushrooms instead, then drain them well and add in step 4. If desired, add a dash of wine or lemon juice or sherry in step 4 too. While this is cooking, boil up 6 to 8 ounces of spaghetti. When it is tender, drain it well and mix it with the creamed chicken mixture. Turn this into a well oiled 9″ by 13″ pan and sprinkle liberally with Parmesan Cheese. Bake at 350° for half an hour. Serve with spinach, butter-bread and orange sections.

Chicken Divan: Prepare the Creamed Chicken above. If desired add a dash of wine or lemon juice or sherry in step 4. While the creamed chicken is cooking, steam or microwave a pound of fresh or frozen broccoli. Arrange the broccoli in a well oiled 9 by 13-inch pan. Pour the creamed chicken mixture over top of the broccoli. Sprinkle 1/2 to 1 cup of shredded cheese over top of the mixture. Bake at 400° for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbly. Serve with biscuits, muffins or noodles.

Chicken Curry: In step 1 above cook 1-cup of sliced celery, 1 chopped apple (with the peel; red is pretty), and 2-teaspoons of curry powder along with the onion. Proceed as directed. Serve the chicken curry over rice. Accompaniments may be arranged in small bowls at the table. Choose from homemade yogurt, coconut, raisins, canned pineapple chunks, chopped peanuts, finely chopped boiled eggs, tart jelly, chopped pickles, and minced onions. Plain sugar cookies make the perfect dessert.

How To Cook Bacon In The Oven

I love bacon, but I’m not always the biggest fan of cooking it. I have a pretty small kitchen right now and when I cook it in a pan or cast iron skillet, grease splatters everywhere.

I switched to cooking it in the microwave for a while (in between some paper towels to soak up the grease). It works in a pinch, but the bacon just doesn’t have quite the right flavor and texture.

A couple of months ago a friend of mine introduced me to the idea of baking bacon in the oven. It sounded good, but I was a little concerned about bacon grease splattered all over the inside of my oven. I finally gave it a try and it works great.

We’ve been baking bacon every weekend and it turns our perfect ever time. Just watch it towards the end so the bacon doesn’t get too dark.

How To Cook Bacon In The Oven
 
Ingredients
  • 1 pack of bacon
  • aluminum foil
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 400F.
  2. Line 2 cookie sheets with aluminum foil.
  3. Lay the bacon slices on the cookie sheets. They can touch on the sides, but you don't want them to overlap.
  4. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes depending on the thickness of the bacon and how crispy you like it.
  5. Pour the bacon grease in a glass jar and save it in the fridge for cooking eggs and the likes later.
  6. Move the bacon slices to a plate. If you like you can set them on paper towels first to soak up some of the grease.

 

 

Baking Bacon

Easy Peanut Butter Fudge

My daughter and I played around with some fudge recipes yesterday and I thought I’d share one of the results with you. We made delicious, super creamy peanut butter fudge with sugar, milk, marshmallow creme and of course plenty of creamy peanut butter. It turned out great and is our favorite fudge recipe yet.

It turned out a little softer than our other fudges, so this one is staying in the fridge until it’s gone (which won’t be long). It’s a little sticky and messy to make, particularly when getting the marshmallow creme in the pot. It’s well worth it though.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Easy Peanut Butter Fudge
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups sugar
  • ½ cup of milk
  • 1⅓ cups of peanut butter
  • 1 7oz jar of marshmallow cream
Instructions
  1. Butter a 8x8 pan or a small casserole dish.
  2. Pour the sugar and milk into a heavy pan. Make sure you use a pan that's large enough to add the remaining ingredients and stir everything together.
  3. Heat the mixture over medium high heat until it comes to a boil. Boil it for 3 minutes. Watch it carefully and do a lot of stirring so the milk doesn't bubble over. Reduce the heat a bit to keep it boiling but prevent it from boiling over.
  4. Turn of the heat.
  5. Add the peanut butter and marshmallow cream and stir them in until everything is smooth.
  6. Pour the hot mixture immediately into the prepared dish.
  7. Sprinkle with toppings if desired (we added chocolate chips on half the pan) and cool in the fridge until set.

 

Creamy Peanut Butter Fudge

Sausage Spinach Bean Soup

This soup is so perfect on a cold and rainy day like today. I love the hearty flavor and between the sausage and the beans it’s a filling meal. Just add some biscuits or a slice of homemade bread.

The recipe is from the Cook Once – Eat Twice Cookbook. It has all kinds of recipes that you can fix one day and turn into a different meal the next day. This is a great example. I make a big pot of beans one day and serve them with cornbread and then use the leftovers in a yummy pot of soup like this the next day.

Sausage Spinach Bean Soup
 
Ingredients
  • 8 oz. pork sausage
  • ½ cup onion, chopped
  • 2 (19 oz.) cans of Great Northern beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cup fresh spinach, washed and chopped
  • 1 (14 oz.) can chicken broth
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, fine shredded
Instructions
  1. Crumble the sausage into a soup pot, stir in the onion.
  2. Place the pot over medium heat.
  3. Cook the mixture for 5 minutes, stirring often, until the sausage is cooked.
  4. Add the beans to the pot and stir.
  5. Pour the chicken broth into the pot, add the thyme.
  6. Bring the soup to a boil then reduce the heat to low.
  7. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes.
  8. Stir in the spinach and continue cooking 5 minutes or until the spinach is wilted.
  9. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese before serving.
  10. Makes 4 servings.

 Variation:
Add some spiral pasta during the last 10 minutes of cooking time for a more filling dish.

Bowl of kielbasa bean and spinach soup

Easy Homemade Macaroni and Cheese

Do you still make the boxed kind of Mac & Cheese? We did for the longest time. It was just so quick and easy to pick it up at the store and fix it as a quick side dish or a something for the kids to eat. But then I started to think about all the extra preservatives and colors in there … and let’s face it, that yellow powder that comes with the box kind is not cheese.

I started playing around with some homemade recipes and came up with this version.

The recipe is from the Homemade Convenience Food eBook.

Macaroni and Cheese
 
Ingredients
  • 1½ cups elbow macaroni
  • • 1½ cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • • 3 Tbsp butter, cut up into little pieces
  • • ½ cup milk
  • • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Boil macaroni until it is just tender, then drain.
  2. Meanwhile, spray a casserole dish with nonstick spray.
  3. After draining macaroni, pour ½ macaroni into casserole dish. Arrange ½ of the pieces of butter on top of the macaroni, then top with ½ of the shredded cheese. Repeat layers again. Pour milk over the top and add a sprinkling of salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees, uncovered, for 40 to 45 minutes.
  5. No more need for boxed mixes. This is just as easy, if not easier; you don't have to stand and stir a pot.

While this takes a little time, it is well worth it. If you are in a hurry, just boil some pasta, drain it, put it in a bowl and add a little butter and grated cheese. Stir it all up and serve. It’s not as good as the recipe above, but much tastier and healthier than the box kind.

Homemade Macaroni and Cheese dinner with noodles

 

 

Make even more convenience foods right at home! You’ll save money, control ingredients, and avoid expensive “fast foods” when you start making your own favorite convenience foods. Click on here to find out about our informative resource Homemade Convenience Foods – and dig into over 200 recipes for handy convenience foods you can make at home.

Eliminate those prepackaged foods from your pantry, eat healthier and cheaper while still cooking fast. Order your copy today!

 

 

 

 

Oatmeal Cookie Mix in a Jar

I shared this particular recipe on my Facebook page a few days ago and it was a big hit. I thought I’d post it here as well to make it easier to save it for later. You can pin it right from this post, print it, or bookmark the page. It’s a great little gift that’s perfect for friends, teachers and the likes. One Facebook friend decided to make these for her grand-kids and ship them there since she can’t bake Christmas cookies with them this year. What a fun idea.

Before you ask… yes, you can make the cookies from the mix with either butter or egg. Either one works well.

The recipe is from the No Stress Gift Giving On A Budget eBook
http://www.hillbillyhousewife.com/ebooks/gift-giving.htm

 

Oatmeal Cookie Mix in a Jar
 
Ingredients
  • • 1 cup flour
  • • ½ cup brown sugar
  • • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • • ¾ cup sugar
  • • ½ tsp. nutmeg
  • • 1 cup raisins or chocolate chips
  • • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • • ½ tsp. salt
  • • 2 cups old-fashioned oats
Instructions
  1. In a bowl, mix flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda and salt put to the side for the time being. Now, layer remaining ingredients in order given in a one quart wide-mouth canning jar. Pack down after each addition so everything fits. Add flour mixture on top.
  2. Instructions for tag: Pour the entire jar of cookie mix into large bowl. Mix until everything has been completely incorporated. Now, add 1½ sticks of butter or 2 eggs, slightly beaten & 1 tsp. vanilla. Use your hands to make sure everything has been blended in and then roll into 1” balls. Place 2 inches apart on greased baking sheets. Bake at 350 for 11-13 minutes.

Jar of Oatmeal Cookie Mix