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Thread: Cheap, healthy, fun meal ideas to cook at home.

  1. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by joshmpdx View Post
    I also love a good Casserole.

    I just made one with stuff in the house that turned out really well.

    1 - 1lb bag of egg noodles
    1 - large (ish) can of tuna (jalpano & roasted garlic)
    1/2 onion
    tablespoon garlic
    6oz of cottage cheese
    6oz of cheddar/jack
    1 can condensed mushroom soup

    Boil, fry, mix, stir & bake!

    Keep these coming!
    A casserole made with condensed mushroom soup is quintessential mid-century.

    We make something very similar to this about every three weeks. The one leftover my 9 yo not only eats, but demands.


    -jim
    Acceptable: Zounds! Balderdash! Jumping Jehoshaphat! harumph! Add smileys to all of my posts. Put them where you think they ought to go.

    The gin, the gin, glows in the dark, glows in the dark

  2. #22
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    Default Soup day!

    Hearty bean soup today.

    I have a large jar of a 9 bean mix. You can see a cup of it below.

    I soaked it overnight. As you can see from the second pic it tripled in size.

    There are the ingredients: Diced tomatoes, chicken soup stock, turnip, carrots, celery, and onion.

    Whoops, I decided to double the recipe.

    Sweat down the onions, carrots, and celery. Add all the other stuff (I pureed the whole tomatoes with an immersion blender) . . . added probably a couple of tsp of thyme ... cook for about two hours. Add salt and pepper to taste.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Mike

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  3. #23

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    nice! Is there anything that carrots, celery and onions can't do?

    Do the turnips hold together better then potatoes? Idahoes really fall apart.

    -jim

  4. #24
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    And to think you mixed milk and meat....

    Quote Originally Posted by ThePatrician View Post
    T-Bone Steak with Bacon-Mushroom Sauce

    2 bone-in T-bone steaks (1 lb), 1 inch thick
    5 slices bacon, cut into ¼-inch pieces
    1 package (½ lb) sliced fresh mushrooms
    ¼ cup A1 Original Steak Sauce
    ¼ cup dry sherry or water
    1 tsp brown sugar

    Heat grill to medium heat. Grill steaks 7 to 8 minutes on each side or to medium doneness (160'F) . Meanwhile, cook bacon in large skillet until crisp. Remove bacon from skillet; drain on paper towels. Discard drippings from skillet. Add mushrooms to skillet; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in bacon, steak sauce, sherry and sugar. Bring to boil; simmer on medium-low heat 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve steaks topped with mushroom sauce.

    This is my macaroni and cheese recipe. It looks complicated, but most of the ingredients are things that people already have laying around. About all most people would need to get is the meat, cajun seasoning, cheese, and macaroni, and those things are cheap and easy to get. This always, ALWAYS brings the house down. It looks complicated, but it is really very easy.

    Monster Mac’n’Cheese 6-8 servings
    2 tsp salt
    ½ pound macaroni
    ½ cup all-purpose flour
    3 cups milk
    3 cups grated cheddar
    ½ cup bread crumbs
    1 tsp olive oil
    8 tbsp butter (1 stick)
    ¼ - ½ cup finely chopped smoked ham
    ¼ tsp ground black pepper
    ½ cup frozen peas
    1 tbsp cajun seasoning

    1. Make sure the oven rack is in the center position and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
    2. Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil over high heat. Add 1 teaspoon of the salt, the oil, and macaroni, and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to medium and cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally with a long-handled fork or spoon to prevent the macaroni from sticking together. Using oven mitts or pot holders, remove the pot from the stove and drain the macaroni in a colander set in the sink, pouring away from you. Rinse under cold running water and set aside to drain well.
    3. Melt the remaining stick of butter in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, for 3 to 4 minutes. Do not allow the flour to brown. Add the ham and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Using the whisk, add the milk and cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture is thick and smooth, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon of salt, the pepper, 2 cups of the cheese, and the peas, and stir well.
    4. In a mixing bowl, combine the remaining 1 cup of cheese with the bread crumbs and cajun seasoning..
    5. Add the macaroni to the pot with the milk and cheese. Stir to combine well, then pour the mixture into a 2-quart casserole dish. Top with the seasoned cheese mixture. Bake until golden brown and bubbly, about 25 minutes.
    6. Using oven mitts or pot holders, remove the dish from the oven and let it rest for 5 minutes before serving.

  5. #25
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    Mostly what goes into soup here is what I have on hand. I had some Turnip left over from making stew. Yes turnips don't break down as quickly.


    Quote Originally Posted by gearchow View Post
    nice! Is there anything that carrots, celery and onions can't do?

    Do the turnips hold together better then potatoes? Idahoes really fall apart.

    -jim
    Mike

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  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Roadrash View Post
    And to think you mixed milk and meat....
    It's outstandingly difficult to keep kosher in Poland. The beef is terrible and chicken isn't the cheapest or most common thing in the world. It's a wee bit hard to find. Bacon and pork are ubuquitous, and all good hamburgers are half ground pork. Anyways, I have become more reform lately. Hopefully this makes it better:

    Thai Turkey Tenderloins
    1/2 medium onion, minced
    2 cloves garlic, minced
    2 tbsp. ground ginger
    1 1/4 lbs. turkey ten
    derloins
    3 tbsp. soy sauce
    1 tsp. hot chili sauce
    1 tsp. granulated sugar
    2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
    Wooden satay skewers

    Soak wooden satay skewers in cold water for 1 hour before cooking to keep them from burning while cooking into 1-inch strips.
    Marinade: Dice onion, mince garlic, and ginger. Mix all marinade ingredients together. Cut turkey tenderloins into 1-inch strips. Cut the strips into 3-inch long pieces. Lay strips in a pan and pour marinade on top, mixing so the turkey is coated evenly. Cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes to 2 hours. Thread marinated turkey pieces onto soaked sticks and place on broiler pan. Cover broiler pan with tin foil. Broil for approximately 8 minutes on each side.
    ~Matt "Every pizza is a personal pizza if you try hard and believe in yourself."

  7. #27
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    Big can crushed tomatoes $1.79
    Can diced tomatoes $0.89
    Pound Italian sausage $2.5
    Pound of pasta $1
    3 cloves minced garlic, 1/4 tsp red pepper, 1/4 tsp sugar, 3 tbsp EVO, 1 tbsp tomato paste, 3 tbsp fresh basil (or 3 tsp dried) < 1$

    In large skillet, heat oil on MedHigh until shimmering. Cook garlic and pepper flakes for one minute. Add tomato paste and sausage. Cook until sausage is no longer pink, about five minutes. Add crushed tomatoes and diced tomatoes, simmer for 20 minutes. Cook pasta while sauce simmers. Add sugar and basil off heat. You could use Italian seasoning mix instead of the basil.

    Won't put Mamma's all day simmer to shame, but knocks the stuffing out of store stuff.
    "He must be a king. He hasn't got Williams all over 'im!" - cb91710
    I spend my knights at the Veg Table.

  8. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by Topgumby View Post
    Big can crushed tomatoes $1.79
    Can diced tomatoes $0.89
    Pound Italian sausage $2.5
    Pound of pasta $1
    3 cloves minced garlic, 1/4 tsp red pepper, 1/4 tsp sugar, 3 tbsp EVO, 1 tbsp tomato paste, 3 tbsp fresh basil (or 3 tsp dried) < 1$

    In large skillet, heat oil on MedHigh until shimmering. Cook garlic and pepper flakes for one minute. Add tomato paste and sausage. Cook until sausage is no longer pink, about five minutes. Add crushed tomatoes and diced tomatoes, simmer for 20 minutes. Cook pasta while sauce simmers. Add sugar and basil off heat. You could use Italian seasoning mix instead of the basil.

    Won't put Mamma's all day simmer to shame, but knocks the stuffing out of store stuff.
    And that recipe serves a family of 2-4.

    I've made a "no canned tomatoes, just tomato paste" version, sans meat too, many times in my youth.

    -jim

  9. #29

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    This was a pick hit around our house.

    BBQ eatzza

    Take a whole wheat Pita
    spread Favorite BBQ sauce on one side
    Top with a bit of grilled Chicken cut into slices or chunks
    Add some Diced Sweet Red/Orange/Yellow Peppers
    I add some onion and Garlic to mine but do to taste
    a little mixed Mozzarella/Cheddar blend cheese
    And toss in oven for 5-10 minutes.

  10. #30
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Topgumby View Post
    Big can crushed tomatoes $1.79
    Can diced tomatoes $0.89
    Pound Italian sausage $2.5
    Pound of pasta $1
    3 cloves minced garlic, 1/4 tsp red pepper, 1/4 tsp sugar, 3 tbsp EVO, 1 tbsp tomato paste, 3 tbsp fresh basil (or 3 tsp dried) < 1$

    In large skillet, heat oil on MedHigh until shimmering. Cook garlic and pepper flakes for one minute. Add tomato paste and sausage. Cook until sausage is no longer pink, about five minutes. Add crushed tomatoes and diced tomatoes, simmer for 20 minutes. Cook pasta while sauce simmers. Add sugar and basil off heat. You could use Italian seasoning mix instead of the basil.

    Won't put Mamma's all day simmer to shame, but knocks the stuffing out of store stuff.
    That sounds mighty terrific.
    ~Matt "Every pizza is a personal pizza if you try hard and believe in yourself."

  11. #31

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    Hawaiian noodle bowl:
    1 package of Ramen
    2 fried eggs and a slice of Spam on top of the soup.

    I eat this at least twice a week and it cost about $1.

    Although fried Spam is one of my favorite breakfast meats, I boils this slice with the cooking soup.
    Chi Chi, get the yayo

  12. #32
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    I'm not going to list any specific recipes, but make several ingredient recommendations that can be used for healthy, tasty, and inexpensive meals.


    • Legumes (Beans, Peas, Lentils, etc.). Inexpensive, high protein and fiber, low fat. Can be prepared in a wide variety of cooking styles. Goes particularly well with strongly-spiced recipes.
    • Pastas (Macaroni, Spaghetti, Couscous, etc.) Inexpensive and a million different recipes. The whole grain pastas are good sources of protein and fiber.
    • Whole Grains (Rice [brown preferred], Bulgur Wheat, Barley, Corn Meal, Oats, Wheat Berries, etc.)
    • Inexpensive cuts of meat (Beef Roasts, etc.) Require long, slow cooking (stews, soups, etc.) for tenderness but are usually the most flavorful. If a meat grinder or food processor is available, grinding your own beef is 10X better than the packaged stuff in the supermarket made from questionable "trimmings".
    • Whole Chickens. Roast a whole bird and use for several meals.


    Recipes that make large quantities that can be frozen or refrigerated are another way to maximize savings (and save time). I usually cook a couple of large batches on the weekend and then weekday meals are based around the leftovers.
    Larry (TOFLAC-U, BOTOC, LOSER, The Rubberset 400 Club, Fountain Pen Junkie, Savior of Vintage Brushes, and some other stuff I forgot!)

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snargle View Post
    Roast a whole bird and use for several meals.
    Alas, with my two young food disposal units, a whole bird barely makes it through one dinner.

    Great advice from Snargle, BTW.

    I'm liking this thread. Good, fast, cheap are three words near and dear to my cooking heart.
    "He must be a king. He hasn't got Williams all over 'im!" - cb91710
    I spend my knights at the Veg Table.

  14. #34
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    Some really great, low cost recipes have been posted by the Art Of Manliness over the years, including my favourite.

    Quote Originally Posted by Art Of Manliness
    Pan Roasted Chicken Breast with Roasted Tomatoes and White Beans – this rustic, Italian inspired dish evokes all of the flavors of comfort food without the guilt. Utilizing a bone-in chicken breast adds flavor and keeps the chicken moist. We create a nice crispy skin on the outside of the chicken by pan searing the breast, skin side down, on the stovetop. After that, the flavors meld together while finishing off and roasting in the oven. This dish pairs well with a crisp Pilsner (Beer) or dry Chardonnay/Sauvignon Blanc (Wine).

    2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
    1 8 oz Bone-in Chicken Breast, skin on
    Kosher Salt
    Fresh Cracked Pepper
    Italian Herb Seasoning Blend
    1 Cup Cherry Tomatoes
    4 Cloves Garlic, peeled
    1 Cup Canned Great Northern/Navy/White Beans, drained

    Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. On the stove top, preheat skillet over medium high heat; add oil and heat until oil shimmers in the pan and just begins to smoke. Add chicken breast, skin side down, and sear (do not touch) for 3 minutes. Flip chicken breast, and add cherry tomatoes and garlic cloves to pan. Season the entire dish lightly with kosher salt, fresh cracked pepper, and Italian herb seasoning. Add the skillet to the oven and roast, 18 – 22 minutes, internal temperature should be 160 degrees F. With 5 minutes remaining, add beans to skillet with the tomatoes, stir and add back into the oven to heat through. Remove skillet from oven and plate, discarding garlic cloves. Serve.
    Check out;

    http://artofmanliness.com/2010/08/17...illet-recipes/

    http://artofmanliness.com/2011/09/27...riendly-meals/

    http://artofmanliness.com/2011/05/25...imalist-meals/

    http://artofmanliness.com/2011/07/27...serie-chicken/
    Last edited by Andy; 04-24-2012 at 09:23 PM. Reason: Can't spell :-S

  15. #35

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    Invest in a piece of parmesan.

    Pasta...

    e fagioli.

    alio e olio.

    e brocolli.

    carbonara (egg yolk not cream)

  16. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Topgumby View Post
    Alas, with my two young food disposal units, a whole bird barely makes it through one dinner.

    Great advice from Snargle, BTW.

    I'm liking this thread. Good, fast, cheap are three words near and dear to my cooking heart.
    One thing we love about a roast chicken (or turkey) is we take the left over carcass and simmer it for a couple of hours, reducing it to a couple of cups of broth. Freeze it for later. It's wonderful in so many recipes.

    -jim

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by gearchow View Post
    One thing we love about a roast chicken (or turkey) is we take the left over carcass and simmer it for a couple of hours, reducing it to a couple of cups of broth. Freeze it for later. It's wonderful in so many recipes.

    -jim
    For chicken throw them in a bag in the freezer till you get a few and then do as Jim says . . . more makes it more efficient. Just my take on it.
    Mike

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  18. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alacrity59 View Post
    For chicken throw them in a bag in the freezer till you get a few and then do as Jim says . . . more makes it more efficient. Just my take on it.
    I can see that. A turkey carcass is like 4 chicken ones. We're unfortunately freezer limited. It's chicken bones or ice cream. I would love to get one of those small chest freezers.

    -jim

  19. #39
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    We quite often have roast chicken on a Sunday - I will usually buy a bird about 1.8 to 2 kg, and brine it overnight in 2 litres water and a 1/4 cup each of salt and brown sugar. This is necessary here as the supermarket birds are pretty tasteless otherwise...

    Roast the chicken in the usual way, with root vegetables and carve off the breast meat for lunch. Remove the legs, and eat with salad for dinner. Get the missus to strip the carcase of what's left and cook the next night as a fricasse. Use the carcase and bones to make a stock and make soup with the stock. Four meals from one chicken.
    Driving down the razor's edge 'tween the past and the future

  20. #40
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    i am stealing/borrowing from westpac, but this is one of the easiest most tasteful recipes i know:

    [top]Ingredients

    ½ lb.Ground Pork or Turkey sausage, uncooked
    1 can (14.5 oz.)Tomatoes, diced
    1 can (14.75 oz.)Beef broth
    2 cupsRanchero Blend
    1 cupWhole Kernel Corn
    ½ tsp.Cumin, ground
    ½ tsp.Chili powder

    [top]Directions

    1. Crumble and brown sausage in a 2 quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Drain off excess fat.
    2. Stir in tomatoes, broth, ranchero blend, corn , cumin and chili powder.
    3. Simmer 20-30 minutes until onions are tender. *For food safety and quality cook to a temperature of 165°F.

    Yield:3-4 servings

    http://www.norpac.com/consumer/recip...hero-bean-soup

    i usually cook some cornbread with it...fyi
    Last edited by Jut; 05-01-2012 at 07:36 AM.
    I'm 37, I'm not old....Well, I can't just call you 'man'

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