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Showing posts with the label Cooking

30+ Cookbooks and Manuals You Should Have on Your Reference Shelf for Your Homestead and Your Preps

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Cookbooks are invaluable. They teach us so much about cooking, baking, canning, butchering, and more. They give specific instructions on how to do anything with cooking and the kitchen. They can really help the experiences and the novice alike.

While nothing really replaces the experience you get by doing and learning, having resources like cookbooks and cooking manuals is very important. You should have a good variety of cookbooks and manuals. Whether you are a canner, a preserver, a carnivore, a vegetarian, a hunter, or a gardener, you need to be well-rounded about you keep on your shelf.

In a crisis or a disaster, you may like to eat meat but meat may be scarce. Having some vegetarian recipes may mean you can have a filling meal with what you have on hand. You may not be a hunter, but you may need to know how to butcher your own meat. You may have a lot of produce from the garden or from gleaning and need to preserve it in a variety of ways.

You will notice that not all of these are c…

Easy Skillet Spaghetti: A Great Dinner for a Busy Night!

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We are a busy household. A lot of nights we do not eat supper until 7:30 - 8:00 at night. Sometimes we need to make supper on the fly and have something on the table quickly. Sometimes we just want to make something quick and easy because we are tired. This Skillet Spaghetti fits the bill.

This recipe is easy. Very easy! It is a cheap meal to make. It is also made in one large skillet or dutch oven. One pot meals are my favorite meals. So just about anything made in one pot will get a chance at this household. I based this recipe off of one that I first made 12-15 years ago. I have since changed this recipe and completely lost the original recipe. 

Easy Skillet Spaghetti

Serves 4-6 people

1 pound ground beef
1 - 24 ounce jar of pasta (spaghetti) sauce
24 ounces water
12 ounces spaghetti noodles, broken into thirds
Mozzarella and Parmesan cheese for garnish



1. Brown the ground beef in a large skillet or dutch oven until done. You can drain the grease if you feel there is too much, but I general…

Homemade Chili - A Winter's Delight!

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Chili is probably one of our favorite soups/stews at our house. Everyone loves it except for my son who doesn't love beans, but loves the rest of it! My daughters make it at their college apartment  for themselves and their friends. This goes over very well for crowds. We make this a lot in the winter!

The original recipe was my mom's recipe. However, I couldn't leave well enough alone. She doesn't blame me. She messes with recipes too! 

This recipe is really versatile! I have warmed up the recipe a bit from my mom's recipe because I like my chili a little spicier, but not too spicy. However, you can add more spice, red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, or some hot sauce if you would like. 

I also use two pounds of ground meat in my recipe. I usually use one pound of ground beef and one pound of ground pork. You can use whatever you like. This is good with all ground beef, all ground pork, with ground venison, and/or ground turkey. You can cut back on the meat to only 1-…

Homemade Hamburgers and Baked Potato Slices: Delicious Summer Recipes!

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One of our favorite summer meals to eat is Hamburgers and Baked Potato Slices. Both are simple and easy to make. You can also have dinner on the table in under thirty minutes!
I start with the Baked Potato Slices first. We use garlic salt to season these potatoes because my family is addicted to it. However, you can use any seasoning you want!
Baked Potato Slices
3-4 potatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick Cooking spray Garlic salt or any other seasoning you prefer
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. 
Slice the potatoes. Spray your baking sheet with cooking spray. I use olive oil cooking spray, but you can use whatever you have on hand. Lay the potatoes slices on the baking sheet

Spray the potatoes with cooking spray. Then sprinkle the potatoes with garlic salt or your chosen seasoning. Spraying the potatoes with cooking spray may seem weird, but it helps the seasoning stick and the potatoes to cook better. 
Put the potatoes in the oven for 20-25 minutes. You want them to be a little brown o…

Making Bread Is A Skill You Need To Learn! Bonus: A Round-Up of Great Bread Recipes!

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One of the skills I have probably worked the hardest on was to make my own bread. I wasn't very positive about my ability to learn how to make bread, but I knew I needed to learn how.

I had a bread maker, but I didn't like how the loaves came out of the bread maker. The crust was very chewy if not hard as a rock. Then I discovered the dough setting. Oh my. I found out that the bread maker could do the dough part, then I could take the dough out, put it in a bread pan, let rise again, and bake the bread. Wonderful!

That only works as long as the bread maker works. Something happened that the coating peeled off the bread maker pan and I didn't like having the coating in my dough. Somehow, I doubt that was healthy for anyone.

I had dabbled in making the bread from scratch and now the time had come to move beyond dabbling into full-time mastering the bread making skill. I learned how to make bread using my KitchenAid mixer. That mixer makes life a lot easier! However, I wanted to…

Ten Lessons Learned About Food From The Depression and Wartime

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The Great Depression was a time of lean years for many in the United States as well as all over the world. Many people learned valuable lessons on how to make food stretch and take advantage of cheaper processed food that came out during this time. Many people learned to survive on less and some people went hungry. 

When World War II came around, many of these lessons were needed to survive the war and stretch their rationing coupons. People were encouraged to garden during the Depression and were heavily encouraged to do during the war. Victory gardens appeared everywhere to help feed the people while more and more food was shipped overseas. 

Many of these lessons learned during these eras have been lost. We as a people are incredibly wasteful now. Our grocery budgets would be better off if we learned these same lessons and kept them in our kitchens. Then if we have lean times, we would be better off.

10 Lessons Learned About Food From The Depression and Wartime

1. Fat was never wasted. …

Egg and Spinach Open Faced Sandwiches

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Things to know about me:

1. I am not a fancy cook. Not at all. I could be if I wanted to, but I really like making uncomplicated things. This sandwich is one of them.

2. I will eat cold sandwiches, but I really, really like hot sandwiches with crusty or toasted bread.

I make these Egg and Spinach Open Faced Sandwiches for breakfast or lunch. I like them that much and I will eat breakfast at any meal. Also, this is a good way to get in your greens!

Gather your ingredients. Since I was making this for lunch I used 3 eggs. Sometimes I only use 2 eggs. I stuffed a sandwich sized baggie full of spinach. I also used 2 pieces of bread, but I have also been known to use leftover baked potatoes instead of bread. I also used a liberal amount of butter and some salt, but you can also use coconut oil and whatever seasoning you love.


Start by getting your skillet hot and add butter to melt. Drop your 2 slices of bread in the toaster.

Add your spinach to the skillet. Put it all in there. If you are using…

Once A Month Shopping Challenge: Month 2 and November's Meal Plans

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Here we are, Month 2 of the Once A Month Shopping Challenge!

I tried to be a little more prepared for this month. I have officially made my three planned stops as of yesterday. The first stop was to K-Mart to get:

2 bags of dog food
2 bags of cat food (grain-free for the cat with a sensitive stomach)
1 bag of cat litter
1 bottle of shampoo (for me)
1 bottle of shampoo/conditioner (for Dane)
2 bottles of conditioner (1 for me, 1 for Paige)
2 bottles of Vitamin C gummies (buy 1, get 1 free)

I cannot find the receipt right now, but I know I spent $76 with taxes and we saved $25 with coupons and discounts. Some things like cat litter have gone up a bit and that surprised me. 

The second stop was to Menards. I have this receipt! At Menards, I bought:

1 Plastic Window Kit to cover my inside windows
1 Plastic Door Kit to cover my back door until I get a new storm door
1 Garden Hand Shovel to replace the one the dog chewed up
2 different size drill bits because the ones I had were dull
1 set of sticky mouse…

October Monthly Meal Plan - A First In My World!

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In junction with my once a month shopping trip to the grocery store, I needed to work out a month of meals to make. This was actually pretty easy for me because we have a lot of the same meals from month to month. I usually try 2-3 new meals a month as well, but I don't always get it done.

From October 8th, when we went grocery shopping, this what I have made so far:

Thursday: Frugal Refrigerator Clean-out Frittata

Friday: Slow Cooker Roast Chicken with Rice and Peas

I put the carcass of the chicken back into the slow cooker, filled it with water, added 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar, and left it on low to cook all weekend.

Saturday: Breakfast and Lunch were find your own or leftovers. Paige and I were at State Marching Band Contest. Supper was Chicken Broccoli Casserole using chicken leftover from Friday's meal and broth from the slow cooker.

Sunday: Baked Oatmeal for breakfast, Chicken and Noodles for lunch using chicken from Friday night and broth from the slow cooker. Whatever b…

Frugal Refrigerator Clean-out Frittata

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So when you have a lot of eggs that need to be used up, some vegetables in the fridge that needs to be used up, and need a quick meal, what do you do?
You make Fritatta! I love frittata. I love saying the word frittata. So much fun!
Below is a couple days worth of eggs. While I sell them or send home with the college kids some of the extras, we still have to step up and eat them.

One of my favorite ways is Frugal Refrigerator Clean-out Frittata. How to make it you ask?
Ingredients: 8-12 eggs 3-4 vegetables you need to use up Butter or coconut oil for sauteing vegetables 1 cup of shredded cheese salt and pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. 
Crack 8-12 eggs into a bowl. I usually use about 10 eggs for the 3 of us. You can use more or less depending on how many you are feeding. You can also add a little water or milk if you want your frittata fluffier. I don't bother with that. Whisk the eggs until well blended and all the yolks broken.

In a nonstick skillet or a very wel…