3 Picnic Lunches You Can Make Ahead & Freeze – Easy Recipe

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Lunchtime can be a difficult meal to prepare, if only because it comes smack in the middle of the day. It seems breakfast has just been put away, and I’m feeling pretty good about knowing what’s for dinner, when I remember with a growl of my stomach: Lunch. Ugh. One of my strategies, and one I employ most in the summer months when cooking is less appealing and we more often want to take our lunch out to picnic with … Read More

Quick & Easy Recipe Chicken Pasta Dinner

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So, the other day I was totally uninspired for dinner. As I near my third trimester, I know this is going to be a more and more common occurrence! Not only was I uninspired and tired, but I had no quick foods on hand. I only had 1 can of tuna left, no quick-to-defrost or cook anything, and not enough eggs for everyone. My shortcuts had been used up and unreplenished. It was 5 o’clock. I had 2 chicken breasts … Read More

Review: Misto Oil Spritzer

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When I was scrutinizing my master grocery list, eyeing just how many items I could eliminate, I noticed “cooking spray.” “Cooking spray should be an easy thing to eliminate,” I thought. Turns out I use it a lot. Sometimes you don’t know these things until you do without. In our early years of marriage I didn’t buy cooking spray; I thought of it as a luxury item. But back then I also kept Crisco on hand and used that to … Read More

Review: Managers of Their Homes by Terri Maxwell

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This 175-page spiral-bound book by Steven and Teri Maxwell has been around for over ten years now. I’ve seen ladies (online only) mention their “MOTH schedule,” looked at a few online, and shrugged. I saw that the format was that you schedule out in columns what each member of the family is doing — including babies — and thought, “Ah, well, I could do that on my own if I wanted to make up a schedule.” And, when I have … Read More

Mystie’s Intense Coffee Ice Cream Easy Recipe

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  Making coffee ice cream was one of my top to-do items for the summer last year, regardless of my weight loss goals at the time.   I started off with the Cuisinart ice cream maker recipe, but, of course, adjusted it. I wanted intense flavor. The only thing worse than no coffee ice cream is weak coffee cream. For this, I admit, I cheated and bought a product not on my pantry staples list: Instant Espresso Powder. So, here’s … Read More

Easy and “Free” Homemade Breadcrumbs – Easy Recipe

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Breadcrumbs are a handy ingredient to keep on hand. They make great topping for baked casseroles, help meatballs hold together, and coat “fried” foods like baked onion rings. But instead of adding breadcrumbs to your list of pantry staples, you can easily make your own, possibly even with bread you would have thrown away! Quick & Easy Homemade Breadcrumbs Instructions Save bread heels, crumbs from the cutting board, leftover garlic toast. Save any and all bread that you might otherwise … Read More

Essential Tools: Kitchen Shears

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One of the most handy tools to have in the kitchen, beyond the essentials, is a good set of kitchen shears. From slitting open a pack of bacon, to cutting those strips of bacon in half, to snipping herbs and trimming fat off of meat. Use scissors instead of a pizza wheel to cut pizza. I don’t own a pizza wheel. Instead, I use scissors to quickly and cleanly cut pizza slices. Fewer tools, but multi-purpose tools, makes for a … Read More

Homemade Hummus Easy Recipe Without Tahini

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Hummus is a great accompaniment to fresh, raw veggies as well as flatbreads and chips. I have tried several recipes, attempting my own chickpea concoctions, and finally settled on a great version that uses only ingredients from my master pantry list — which means, a hummus without tahini. Tahini is a nut-butter-like paste made from sesame seeds. I tried a hummus using peanut butter as a substitute, but it tasted rather odd. Not a good solution. Hummus, I decided, needs … Read More

Homemade Baked Onion Rings Easy Recipe

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Most Sundays we get together in the late afternoon to play games with friends. Instead of putting on a normal family-style dinner for our combined crew of four adults and eight eating children (10 in another year), we lay out various appetizers and finger foods and vegetables and keep it informal. So, one week I got it into my head that I really wanted to contribute onion rings to the spread. I’d tried fried-on-the-spot onion rings before – twice – … Read More

Recipes Are Only Guidelines: Potato Hash is Never the Same Twice

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Simplified Dinners is written as a set of guidelines rather than hard-and-fast recipes. It is all about weeknight, get-dinner-on-the-table-with-whatever-is-on-hand meals. That means that the same dinner can end up looking — and even tasting — quite different. It’s all part of the fun!   Here are some examples of different potato hash dinners we’ve had over the last few months:       It’s all the same “recipe” — or, procedure — but it turned out differently every time.   … Read More

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