Posts Tagged ‘cheap’

Just about anywhere you go, there 4 great ingredients are on hand and really affordable:
spaghetti sauce in a jar
cheese of some sort


And with those 4 things you can make a delicious snack, dinner, lunch, treat in about 10 minutes. And if you have a little ham or veggies or whatever you find around it makes it all the better.

::Traveler’s Pizza::
Cut the baguette into a 6 inch piece and slice down the middle so you have two flat pieces (the top and the bottom).

Put 1 Tablespoon on each side, then chop up the garlic and any other toppings, toss on a little cheese and bake.

You can bake it in the oven at 375 for 10 minutes or in the toaster oven on medium toast – you just want to melt the cheese.


The really great thing is that anything that looks good to you while you are wandering around – eggplant, tomatoes, peppers, onions, odd things you don’t know what they are, can be used to really dress up and fill out this little mini pizza. And from one baguette you can usually get about four 6″ sections – so at least 2 days of meals. You can change up the sauce too and use pesto or hummus or mustard, add some greens and you have a tasty sandwich to take out with you. Bagels can also be used instead of a baguette.


I’m going to make more tonight, and I’ll have my camera then so I’ll post a picture later after dinner.

My plan is to find some tasty clam chowder for lunch – they serve it in a sourdough bowl around the bay – i’ve seen it from 7.75 to as low as 5.25, so I’m hoping to get it for 4.75 today if I can find a shop that’s not a touristy area (aka not pier 39!).

See you all later!


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I LOVE popcorn. I have since I was a kid. It was always a special treat when we made it on the stove with lots of melted butter and salt and YUM! And it was always accompanied by a movie and paper cones made from construction paper and lots of friends (each kiddo was given their own cone of pop corn to eat out of while watching the movie). I think our parents would all rotate who had all the kids for a movie night so it was good for them and for us. So all growing up we had it, and then even when I was a teenager – with the microwave and microwave popcorn becoming popular – it was always a tasty treat. When I moved away to collage I didn’t have a microwave, just a toaster oven. I went back to making popcorn on the stove and I loved it all the more! Being in the middle of the corn belt there are a lot of local farms that sell pop corn and believe it or not, they all taste different and have different textures!

I was shocked when I learned a lot of my friends and classmates didn’t know how to make popcorn on the stove! Travesty!


So here is how you make popcorn for 1 to 2 people.

Popcorn :: The Yummiest!

1/4 cup pop corn kernels
1 T. oil (olive oil or canola works well)

NOTE: Popcorn kernels can be purchased by the bag at any grocery store, but in bulk is pretty cheap at the natural food store. And like with beans there is more of a turn around there, so you will know they are fresh.

Place kernels and oil in a small sauce pan.
Swirl around so all the kernels are coated with the oil.


Cover with a tightly fitted lid and turn on the burner to medium high heat.

Let it sit until you hear sizzling or the first kernel pop. From then on give the pan a good horizontal shake
every few seconds (especially when the popping really gets going).

Once the popping slows down (or there is more than 20 seconds between pops) place popcorn into a bowl and place pan lid on the top – to keep a late popper from exploding out of the bowl and taking a dozen pieces of popcorn with it). And when pouring it into the bowl, keep the lid semi over the pan. The reason you remove the popcorn right away is that the bottom kernels will actually burn… and burnt popcorn stinks like no other!


Right after I took this picture one kernel actually popped – trust me, if that lid wasn’t on there it would be a mess, haha.

Now, for toppings. A big part of how healthy (or unhealthy) popcorn is, is determined by what you put on it. Using a light oil to pop it in and eating a small portion helps.


Use sea salt instead of table salt for some good sodium.

Add some kick by tossing in some cracked pepper.

If you like cheesy popcorn a good alternative is using nutritional yeast (like a 1/2 T. is good). Use the flaked instead of the powdered (which I tend to literally inhale and then I cough like mad for 5 minutes).


Nutritional Yeast is pretty great stuff. It has 8g of protein per 2T, is low in sodium, and has lots of other random nutrients that vegans and vegetarians need but may not get otherwise. It makes a great crust on baked tofu too. I’ve heard people like it on toast and other things like that. So far, a topping for popcorn is my favorite use for it.

Any kind of herb is yummy on there – particularly thyme in my case – but everyone is different.

What do you like to put on your popcorn?

Until next time, have a happy thrift kitchen!

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 omelette 1.1 When I was a kid I watched the Frugal Gourmet all the time and the only thing I really remember from it was his show on making omelettes. Which is great because I love them, but a little funny because it’s the only thing I remember. Anyway, I’m digressing.

So the Frugal Gourmet had a great point about omelettes – use water instead of milk. He said that the milk actually causes you to have watery eggs – the dairy content of the milk cooks with the egg and then the water separates out after the fact. And interestingly enough, if you use water instead of milk and wisk it together, no water separates out.

And the neat thing is, this technique makes a tastier omelette and it’s less expensive than using milk in your omelette.

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