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Friday, March 18, 2016

Cheap & Cheerful Suppers for Mid-March

my favorite food this week, a modified Eggplant Parmesan on Tuesday


Fry bread, topped with
Hummus (I was out of parsley, so I used frozen chopped dill instead, still quite yummy)
Cole slaw


Leftover hummus on Dollar Tree crackers
Lil Smokies in BBQ sauce
Fruit salad
Cole Slaw
Leftover plum pie

Sunday (power was out for about 5 hours. I can light the gas cook-top with a match for cooking, but the kitchen was getting dark, so simple dinner it was)

Maple-pecan pancakes and syrup


Sloppy Joe's on homemade buns
Sauteed cabbage, in reserved sausage fat, with a bit of onion powder sprinkled over, and about 1 teaspoon of caraway seeds, cooked till still bright green
Pumpkin souffle


Eggplant Parmesan (more of an eggplant/spaghetti squash/tomato gratin)
Herbed pasta (basil, thyme, olive oil, butter, garlic powder, onion powder and Parmesan cheese on penne)
Frozen peas


Chicken enchiladas
Spanish rice
Canned corn, with chunks of canned tomatoes, in about 1/4 cup of leftover enchilada sauce

Thursday (birthday dinner)

Hamburgers on homemade buns (baked on Monday)
Sweet potato fries (from Dollar Tree)
Frozen green beans
Birthday cake and homemade ice cream (made in December with whipping cream about to expire)

So, am I the only one who didn't make corned beef and cabbage for St. Patrick's Day? With a birthday that falls on the holiday, we usually do something other than SPD foods.

I have to tell you about the modified Eggplant Parmesan. First of all, there wasn't any Parmesan in it. I used mixed pizza blend cheese. I also added 1 small spaghetti squash from last summer's garden, seeds scooped out, peeled and sliced, added as a layer in between two layers of eggplant. I don't bread the eggplant, but saute the peeled slices in a bit of sausage fat, then sprinkle each layer with seasoned bread crumbs and a small amount of cheese.. I didn't have any pasta sauce handy, so I used the tail end of a large can of tomatoes, cooked down with the juices and some seasonings added (herbs, garlic powder and onion powder). It was really good! And the house smelled divine while I was cooking.

What was the yummiest thing you made this week?

Just a heads-up, I'll be scaling back on blogging for next week, maybe just checking in once or twice. My daughters have spring break through Monday after Easter, and I want to snatch as much time with them as possible.  We'll use a small bit of that time in our trip to SF, and then hang around the house, go vintaging, hit the beach with a picnic if the weather is nice, and prepare for Easter.

Have a great weekend!


  1. Have fun next week!

    Our dinners were all freezer foods again. I can't remember them all but this is what I remember. I'll work backwards starting with yesterday. Reuben sandwiches and thai curry soup, turkey roast and rice or baked potatoes, roasted brussel sprouts and sauteed zucchini, homemade pizza, hamburger bbq on bread, baked chicken. We used up a lot of odds and ends from the freezer like a small bag of green peppers, a small bag of mushrooms, some pepperoni, small handful of cooked sausage and salami. But now we are so low on a lot of staples that I have to get to the store today.


    1. Hi Alice,
      Your Reuben sandwiches and thai curry soup sound delicious! Good job on using up the odds and ends in the freezer.

      Have a great weekend, Alice!

  2. We did not make corned beef on SPD, we had breakfast for dinner with Homemade Pumpkin Waffles, Homemade Sausage patties and Candy Apple Salad (this was loved by all including my super picky son who is on the spectrum). We made this meal because it was quick on a night when we also had a few other commitments. I do have a flat cut corned beef that I purchased for 1.69/ lb in the freezer which is planned for supper on Sunday evening.


    1. Hi Saryn,
      Your SPD dinner sounds very yummy! That's a great price on the corned beef. I didn't see any spectacular deals on it this year, in my area.

      Have a lovely weekend, Saryn!

  3. Wow, all of you ladies are making me hungry! :)

    I'm with Saryn, Lili, and we don't normally eat corned beef on St. Patrick's, but it IS a great time to get a good deal on the price for another day! We were supposed to go to the store yesterday, but changed plans. I'm hoping I can still find one today.

    We did make home-made Shamrock Shakes yesterday, though. :) Sara

    1. Hi Sara,
      I hope you find a good deal on corned beef, today, too!
      I haven't had a shamrock shake in years and years! That sounds like fun!

      Enjoy your weekend, Sara!

    2. They were sold out on corned beef (unusual, because often I end up buying corned beef after the holiday, other years); but the other items we bought at that store were almost all on sale. That was good, at least.

      I have a different small roast in the freezer, so instead of corned beef and pub potatoes (I only like cabbage raw), I'll do a Spanish roast with spicy potatoes. That'll be good, too! :)


  4. This week we were busy putting up a partition wall in our garage and reorganizing the work area. We had so many old bifolds (all same) so we used that instead of buying new material. Painted it with our leftover paints. We bought just a few 2x4 woods, so cost out of pocket was under $15 to put up that wall. Other than that, we shopped for the grandkids food next week, and made plans for Easter week activities (in lieu of Easter baskets). And thanks to Live and Learn, we will try her great suggestions at mealtime to cut down on food waste. Our granddaughter will join the boys, so it will be a full house and quite a challenge to serve them meals they all like. So we are going to make changes on how meals are served, going with buffet style dinners instead of plating their foods restaurant style. I'm hoping that by letting them choose from several main and side dishes (adding a new main/side daily plus leftovers from previous days) and holding them accountable to eat what is left on their plate first at the next meal, there will be less food waste. So this week we practiced making one grandsons favorite, Korean "japchae". Also to keep up with the basil overflow, I made myself basil,pesto and peas pasta salad with garden cherry tomatoes. It was my favorite, so I made another batch, lots of substitutions, using elbow macaroni and adding garden kang kong leaves that tastes similar to spinach. Also, miso soup again. We made a batch of bean patties since our freezer stock was low. And we had leftover Popeye's fried chicken from a SYWR points rebate deal. This week's meals were very uncoordinated, but that suits me just fine.


    1. We also didn't have a SOD dinner yesterday, but earlier in the week we bought cabbage @.19/lb. I guess stocking up on cabbage is how we remember the holiday.


    2. Hi YHF,
      You and your hubby are so productive in your retirement! You must be wondering how you ever found time to work in a career before retirement! Good job. Having the garage more organized will be so helpful. It's on my list of things I'd like to do, some year!

      Your plans with your grandkids sound like you'll be having a lot of fun! Good luck with the meal times.

      Great price on the cabbage! We haven't seen prices near that in years, here!

      Have a great weekend, YHF!

    3. Thanks, Lili, and have a wonderful time on your trip with your daughters. Sounds like a fun filled week for yourself too.

      Funny that you say "productive", because I've been feeling so unproductive. If I know I have to do something, inertia sets in and I find things to do that are not on my list. I'm really bad about pushing myself to do what I am told (even from me!!), but once I get started I can't stop. I guess I need to be inspired. My husband on the other hand likes to keep everything moving forward all the time. But I must say, it is nice to have that partition wall to allow more storage, now we can keep two rows of standing shelves from sight. We're also in a rush to use some of our remnant work parts before it gets unusable. Since we're in a new phase of our lives (more time than money), I feel we should use up what we already have and not buy more....there are so many things, when not thrown away or donated, that needs to be organized, just crazy, but I'm determined there is a way to organize and store things so I know exactly what we have. I know this runs counter to advice from organization experts like Marie Kondo.


  5. Have fun with your daughters while they are off.

    It can be such a nuisance when the power goes off while you are cooking. You made the best of it. That happened to us once on my son's birthday. We had a crowd of family to entertain but my husband was able to cook everything on the grill. The power came back on while we were eating. :)

  6. I think the big hit for dinner here is the homemade pizza night we have once a week. I use whatever cheese and toppings we have available and it always tastes delicious.
    Enjoy your SF trip and the extra time you have together next week!

  7. Hi Lili,
    No we do not eat corn beef & cabbage on SPD either. Actually I don't care for corned beef. I hope your daughters had a great birthday. Enjoy your week with them & have a wonderful & safe trip!

  8. I love cabbage prepared that way. We usually use bacon grease, but the same principle.


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