Monday, February 28, 2011
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
We watch a lot of those HGTV shows about people either buying or selling houses. One suggestion they always have for people who are trying to sell their houses is to de-clutter everything. I'm always wondering what they're supposed to do with all their stuff, and how they're supposed to live in the house in the meantime, but I'm also thinking it would be extremely nice to get rid of some of the clutter around here. So, when I found an article about de-cluttering the kitchen in the food section of my newspaper, I thought it might be helpful.
Does this sound like your kitchen?
Paperwork, mail and homework assignments litter the counter. The sink is full of dishes and coated in grime, the stove spotted with stains. A trip to the pantry is more like an excavation mission, and the spice cabinet is filled with bottles that lurk deep in the recesses of your cabinetry.
Mine isn't that bad, so perhaps I should just feel good about it? Then again, these tips might be extremely helpful:
- Start with the counter - the counter is the easiest place to toss mail and everything else that comes into the house because it's often the first area you go to when entering your house. Clear off the counter and implement measures to prevent future pile-ups, perhaps stacking wire baskets for each family member.
- Purge - go through cookware and utensils and get rid of what you don't need. Keep things you use regularly in the kitchen and store items you use infrequently somewhere else, such as the pantry or basement.
- But think "reuse" - don't just throw things away. If it's something you won't use again, consider donating to Goodwill or giving it to a friend.
- Consider your learning style - visual learners know what tool is right for them just by looking at it, while kinesthetic learners don't always know which pot or pan to use until they grab it. What does this mean? Visual learners may benefit from over-the-door hooks and hanging pot racks, anything that enhances visibility. Kinesthetic learners work better having everything within easy reach. Organize your kitchen according to what works for you, not for someone else or according to someone else's idea of how a kitchen should work.
- Give new storage systems a try - consider baskets for you spices, organized alphabetically so you can find them easier (I'm considering this one) or installing slide-out shelves to make things more accessible.
Monday, February 21, 2011
I'm copying a few recipes from The Dannon Kitchen so I can toss the (what do you call those? the foil seals from the top of the yogurt containers?) - anyway, so I can get those off my kitchen counter.
A couple recipes I want to try:
and a recipe I've tried:
I liked the dip. I think everyone else would rather I made my regular Taco Dip, but it's good to have options. Also, while looking up these recipes, I saw several other recipes I'd like to try. So many good-looking recipes on that Dannon Kitchen site...
Friday, February 18, 2011
It's almost always cheaper to buy your ground beef in packages of 3 lbs. or more. Then, when you get it home, you can divide it up into smaller packages. A kitchen scale is really handy for this, but you can divide it up into fairly even packages without one. For most recipes it's not going to matter if you're off a little one way or the other. I've only recently started using a scale.
A pound of hamburger fits nicely into a quart-size zipper bag. I've found that it works best to flatten each package before placing them into the freezer. The hamburger will freeze faster that way, and the packages stack neatly in the freezer. Additionally, when you're ready to use some of the hamburger, it will thaw faster, too.
I've started putting my hamburger into 1/2 lb. packages, since it's just my husband and me most of the time these days. If I need to cook for more people or make a larger recipe, I can easily take two packages out of the freezer at once. I bought two 3-lb. rolls of Ground Chuck at Walmart this week - because they'd marked it down to $5.94 (~$2/lb.) to sell it quickly, so I put 12 1/2 lb. packages in the freezer yesterday. That ought to do us for a while.
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
When Cory was home for winter break, he went shopping with me and mentioned something about Twinkies. Then we forgot to even look at the Twinkies. The next day I remembered this recipe I copied down years ago.
It's been a very, very long time since I had a Twinkie, so I can't really judge. Cory said they're not exactly like Twinkies, but they're close, and they're good. I'm still not sure about the creme filling, but we did put a little whipped cream in the middle right before we ate them, and they tasted pretty good.
I think I need to check out The Dannon Kitchen to see what else they have for me to try. I wonder if this recipe is even available there, considering I copied off a yogurt container or lid - before I used the Internet to find recipes, in addition to copying them off packages and cutting them out of newspapers and magazines.
Monday, February 7, 2011
I was going to make this Curried Lamb and Lentil Stew today, or a variation anyway. I have some cooked lamb in the fridge I was going to use. Then I discovered I don't have any lentils - so it's back to the drawing board. I'm searching for a curried lamb recipe without lentils.
Why curried lamb? It was mentioned in the book I'm listening to, and it just sounded good. There's a whole lot of food in the book that just sounds nasty, but this sounded really good.
I ended up putting together this recipe for Easy Lamb Curry and this one for Leftover Lamb Curry and came up with something that turned out pretty good.
The original recipe I used said to bake at 150°C, so I had to figure out what that meant for my oven. I found this handy site for converting Celsius to Farenheit and just plugged the 150°C in to get the 300°F I used.
I thought this turned out really good, but it was a little spicy so I knew my husband wouldn't appreciate it. I just heated up some of the leftover lamb I didn't use in the curry and gave him that with some leftover potatoes. And there's plenty of curry to last me for several days.
Where towels are for drying, and the white spoons don't go in the tomato sauce!
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See all the recipes I want to try!
There's nothing like a home-cooked meal!In this age of fast food and busy schedules, it seems almost a thing of the past. I have worked to find recipes which are not only good, but EASY! A lot of the recipes here can be prepared ahead of time. That way you can do the work when you have the time instead of waiting until the dinner hour when things seem to be most hectic. Most of these recipes use ingredients you should already have on hand. So check your pantry and GET COOKING!!
I really enjoy cooking, and I'm always trying and modifying new recipes. Most of the recipes on this site are ones that I have changed - either to suit my tastes or to use the ingredients I have on hand. All the recipes here are ones that I really like. There are so many recipes in the world that there is just no excuse for using one twice if it's not something you really enjoy. Now, whether the rest of the family enjoys them or not is another story, but I try to add special notes about who likes what.
I must admit that this site is also a way to keep track of the recipes that I really like. Haven't you had that recipe you really liked, but then you couldn't find it the next time you wanted to use it? Well, I have, so when I make something I really like, I am going to add the recipe to this web site. Then I will always be able to find it, and you will be able to enjoy it too. I usually read a recipe as a kind of 'suggestion' for how to make something. Even if I don't try them, I am always looking for new recipes. I read cookbooks for fun - especially the ones with good pictures! I hope you have fun visiting my kitchen, too!
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