Tag Archives: Cooking

Save 90%! Gooseberry Patch Dinners On A Dime eCookbook ~ Only $0.89!

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Worth checking out ~ Amazon has temporarily lowered the cost on Gooseberry Patch Dinners on a Dime eCookbook for only $0.89 (Hardback retails for $16.95 in stores).  The cookbook includes more than 200 recipes for delicious, budget-friendly family meals.

About the book:

“When we were kids, our moms always seemed to know the thriftiest ways to fix delicious meals that everybody loved. Some of their dollar-stretching secrets still come in handy today! Dinners on a Dime cookbook is filled with easy, budget-friendly recipes for mouth-watering family meals. You’ll find festive, yet frugal suppers like 4-cheese mostaccioli bake, one-dish dinners like easy cheesy potatoes & sausage, and sides like buttery Parmesan potatoes.”

Do note that if you plan to get this book, you might not want to wait ~ we don’t know how long it will be available for this cheap. Also, if you do not have a Kindle, you can still download these cookbooks for free and read them on your PC, iPhone, iPad, Android, Mac, Blackberry and other devices (learn more below).

There are lots of other FREE books available anytime for download,  including a lot of great classics (go here).

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Don’t Have a Kindle?
No worries.  You likely already have a device to read Kindle ebooks in your home.  All you need to do is download one of the following FREE applications for your PC, Mac, Blackberry, iPhone/iPad/iTouch, Android, or Windows Phone.

*Free Kindle for iPhone/iPad/iTouch
This is the app I use to read my FREE books.  Download, here (or download directly through the Itunes App Store on your device) to be able to read Kindle books on your iPhone, iPad, or iTouch.

*FREE Kindle for PC
Download a FREE application
to read Kindle books on your PC.

*FREE Kindle Blackberry App
Get Amazon’s free Blackberry application to read Kindle books. Download yours for FREE here.

Find more Kindle apps for Mac, Android, and Windows Phone 7, here.

Linking to Amazon through our site helps support Frugal in Fort Worth (thanks!).

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Enjoy and Share! :)

Cheap Comfort Food (& It’s Healthy!): 13-Bean Fort Worth Soup Recipe

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This week’s winter weather has me in the mood for this hearty bean soup ~ terrific comfort food for a rainy, cold day like today.  This recipe will make enough to feed a crowd, is cheap to make, and is even better the 2nd day after the flavors continue to meld together in the refrigerator.  Add a loaf of crusty french bread and a salad and you’ll have a terrific meal to feed the family. 

Do note that to make this soup, you will need to soak the beans for at least 8 hours before cooking (so plan accordingly).    :)

Bon Appetite, y’all!

13-Bean Fort Worth Soup

Ingredients

4 1/2 Cups of a mixed Bean Soup Mix (We used Bob Mills 13 Bean Soup, but any multi-bean soup mix will work)
2 1/2 Quarts of Water (to soak beans overnight)
1/8 cup Apple cider vinegar

3 Quarts water or stock (chicken, vegetable, or beef)
1/8 Cup Dried minced onion
3 Tablespoons dried parsley flakes
2 Tablespoons cumin
2 1/2 Teaspoons garlic powder
3 Teaspoons dried basil
1  1/2 Teaspoons dried oregano
2  Cans (14 oz each) diced or crushed tomatoes (We used 1 can of Muir Glen Organic roasted tomatoes  & 1 can Rotel with Chilis because we like the extra spice & depth of flavor)
Salt & pepper to taste

Optional Ingredients for Variations
1 Cup Brown Rice    – AND/OR-
1 Pound of meat of choice (like stew meat, ham, chicken, or sausage), cut into bite size pieces    – AND/OR-
1 Can (4 oz) of Diced Green Chiles

Directions

  1. Rinse and sort beans. In a large stockpot, add the beans, the 2 1/2 quarts of water  and apple cider vinegar.  Stir and soak overnight (or at least 8 hours).
  2. Drain and rinse the beans and add back to the stockpot along with the 3 Quarts of stock (or water), and all remaining ingredients except the salt and pepper.
  3. Stir all ingredients together and bring to a boil.
  4. Cover and reduce the heat to and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours (until the beans are tender).
  5. Add salt and pepper, to taste.

Variations

  • Add 1 cup of brown rice during the last hour of simmering.
  • Add 1 pound of meat of choice, cut into bite-sized (like stew meat, ham, chicken, or sausage) to cook along with the beans. Add between steps #3 & #4 (right after the ingredients come to a boil and before you reduce the heat to simmer).
  • If you like extra spice, add 1 can (4 ounce) of Diced Green Chiles during the last hour of simmering.

Enjoy and Share! :)

 

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How to Make the Perfect Pie Crust From Scratch (Plus FREE Gooseberry Patch Pie Cookbook)

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A few years ago, I started making homemade pies to share with family and friends at the holidays. After trial and error, I have burned a few pies honed my skills on both savory and sweet pies and even watched a video on YouTube to learn how to make a lattice topped pie crust (it really is easier than it looks).  It is so satisfying to see the bubbling filling and golden brown crust of a pie come out of the oven ~ always a crowd pleaser!

Be sure to scroll to the bottom of this post to download the FREE Gooseberry Patch Savory Pies Cookbook.

10 Tips for Making a Perfect Crust for Any Pie

Store bought crusts are always a time-saver, but if you want a blue-ribbon pie, you need to make your crust from scratch.  It’s really not hard, and the results are fabulous when you use these tips:

1.  Start with a no-fail pie crust recipe. This recipe for Butter Flaky Pie Crust (allrecipes.com) is a favorite and will probably make you decide to never use shortening or margarine again in your baking.  The instructions are pretty easy to follow, too.

2.  Use very cold fresh butter. For the flakiest dough, chill the butter really well and cut into small pieces.  This helps keeps the butter from being over-worked when mixing the butter into the dough. If your kitchen is hot, chill the other ingredients and freeze the butter for 10 to 15 minutes before you mix it into the dough.

3. Make sure the butter is visible in the dough.  While many recipes call for you to work the butter into the flour until it resembles cornmeal, you should still see a few larger chunks of butter within the dough to insure optimum flakiness. You can use a fork, but cutting the butter into the dough is easiest when you use a pastry blender.

4. Limit the water in the recipe. Use just enough cold water so that the dough holds together when pinched.  Start with the smallest amount of water or liquid called for in the recipe. If the dough doesn’t hold together, add water by the teaspoon until it holds together.

5. Gently pat the dough into a 1″ thick round disk and chill.  Chill the dough disk at least 30 minutes before rolling.  Again, if your kitchen is warm, freeze the dough for 10 minutes to get it really cold before you start to roll it out.

6. Roll and turn the dough.  Use a floured rolling-pin to roll out the dough on a very well-floured work surface. After each roll of the pin, turn the dough 90 degrees to help prevent the dough from sticking. If the dough starts to stick to the rolling-pin or surface, re-flour the rolling-pin and/or the surface underneath the dough.

7. Roll with even pressure on the dough.  Keep the pressure of the rolling-pin even across the dough so that the edges are as thick as the center of the dough. Roll the dough out and away from yourself until the dough is evenly thick.

8. Brush milk or egg wash on the pie base and top. 
Brush the bottom crust with milk or egg white with a pastry brush (before adding the filling) to prevent the crust from getting soggy during baking.  Brush the top crust with the milk or egg wash to get a golden hue (to avoid burning, be careful not to wash the edge of the crust with the egg/milk).

9.  Avoid burning the crust by covering the pie edge with aluminum foil or a pie shield  (see below list of tools).
 Place aluminum foil strips or a pie shield (much easier than foil) around the edges of the pie before baking. Be sure to remove the foil or pie shield during the last 15 minutes of baking so the edge browns as well.

10. Place your pie plate on a baking sheet or jelly roll pan.
 The baking sheet helps brown the bottom crust evenly, makes it easier to remove the pie from the oven, and catches any pie filling that might spill.

My Favorite kitchen Tools for Making Pie Crusts:

Adjustable Pie Shield ~ love this for preventing burnt edges.


Adjustable rolling-pin ~ Evenly flattens dough and makes a uniform pie crust (also great for making cookie dough for cut-out cookies).

Ceramic Pie Plate ~Professional bakers recommend ceramic for pie plates since it absorbs and distributes heat evenly and bakes a crisper crust.  It really does make a difference in results!


Pastry blender ~ Mixes and cuts cold butter into flour quickly.

Pastry brush ~ Useful for brushing excess flour off
of dough and for applying egg wash.

 
FREE pie cookbook ~ For a short time, you can get a FREE download of the Gooseberry Patch – 25 Savory Pie Recipes cookbook. This is a Kindle download, but even if you don’t own a Kindle Reader, you can still get the cookbook for FREE on an iPod/iPad/iPhone, Android, Blackberry or your PC.  For dessert pies you might want to check out Martha Stewart’s New Pies and Tarts cookbook.

What are your favorite things to bake at this time of year?

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FREE Gooseberry Patch Cookie Swap Cookbook

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Gooseberry Patch has just released Cookie Swap, another terrific e-cookbook available for FREE download through Amazon Kindle. This latest release has a lot of helpful info for putting together a Christmas cookie exchange party along with some great-looking cookie recipes and other treats to get you started.

Do note that if you plan to get this book, you might now want to wait as we don’t know how long it will be available for free. Also, if you do not have a Kindle, you can still download these cookbooks for free and read them on your PC, iPhone, iPad, Android, Mac, Blackberry and other devices (learn more below).

FREE cookbooks available to download (Kindle Editions):

There are lots of other FREE books available anytime for download,  including a lot of great classics (go here).

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Don’t Have a Kindle?
No worries.  You likely already have a device to read Kindle ebooks in your home.  All you need to do is download one of the following FREE applications for your PC, Mac, Blackberry, iPhone/iPad/iTouch, Android, or Windows Phone.

*Free Kindle for iPhone/iPad/iTouch
This is the app I use to read my FREE books.  Download, here (or download directly through the Itunes App Store on your device) to be able to read Kindle books on your iPhone, iPad, or iTouch.

*FREE Kindle for PC
Download a FREE application
to read Kindle books on your PC.

*FREE Kindle Blackberry App
Get Amazon’s free Blackberry application to read Kindle books. Download yours for FREE here.

Find more Kindle apps for Mac, Android, and Windows Phone 7, here.

Linking to Amazon through our site helps support Frugal in Fort Worth (thanks!).

============================

Enjoy and Share! :)

Easy Mother’s Day Breakfast Ideas & Recipes: Let the Kids Cook

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We have rounded up some easy breakfast recipes to help get Dad & your little ones on the right track for Mother’s Day.  These recipes come from a few of our favorite home cooking & foodie sites, so even if the little one’s aren’t cooking breakfast for you, these are great sites/recipes to bookmark for use in the future.

Wholesome Mommy has some great advice for helping your kids take care of breakfast.  She says, “Decide on a simple dish/recipe that your kids can make all by themselves.  Leave easy to follow directions on the counter along with the dishes, tray, and any ingredients that the kids can’t safely reach themselves.  If you can, get your husband involved and tell him your plan so that he can help the kids get the things they need in the morning – but remind him to let them do it all by themselves!”  Her Mother’s Day breakfast recipes include Layered Granola Parfait, Cinnamon & Sugar Toast, Cinnamon Oranges, and some scrumptous looking Waffles with Pecan Maple Syrup

         

Mommy’s Kitchen Blog features some super easy recipes and easy to follow picture instructions for Yogurt & Granola Breakfast Parfaits, Bacon & Cheese Muffins, Sausage Cream Cheese Crescents, Easy Monkey Bread, Overnight French Toast, Fruit Smoothies, and more.

Food Network  has compiled a few recipes that they say are so easy, Mom won’t even need to help.  Their suggested simple menu for mom includes: Giada’s custardy Baked French toast with Blueberries, a Citrus Cream Smoothie, and The Lady’s Perfect Scrambled Eggs.

And for the somewhat experienced cook: AllRecipes.com has a “Mother’s Day Top 20” list of recipes that includes top-rated breakfast items like Simple Scones, Whole Grain Waffles, Crepes and a Cinnabon recipe clone (I must check this one out for myself!).  Do note that most of these recipes are probably too advanced for little ones, though.

Happy Mother’s Day, dear Moms.  I hope this is a restful, joyful weekend for you!   Enjoy and Share! :)

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Hot! Great Sale at Amazon on Top-rated Kitchenware & Cook’s Gadgets (Up to 75% OFF)!

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Just in time for Spring and Easter entertaining (or even upcoming wedding gifts), Amazon has a GREAT sale going right now on cookware and gadgets for the kitchen from some great manufacturers like Calphalon, Cuisinart, Pyrex, Rubbermaid, and more. Go here to search the sale by category. 
                        
A couple of my favorite finds are the Silpat Baking Mats ($15.88)  that make any baking sheet nonstick and the set of 2 Contemporary Calphalon Omelette pans (10″ and 12″) ~ you get both pans for $49.99!!!  I highly recommend these pans, as these are my “go-to” pans for just about everything that requires a skillet (really easy clean-up, too). I saw similar Calphalon pans selling at Williams-Sonoma for $275 when purchased à la carte!

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 Here is a sample of a few other great sale finds I stumbled upon:

Silpat Nonstick Silicone Baking Mat
Sale Price is $15.88 (Regularly $24.99)
Silpat baking sheets replace parchment paper and make any baking sheet nonstick (so no greasing is necessary). 
  
                      

Misto Gourmet Brushed Aluminum Olive Oil Sprayer
Sale Price is $8.50 (Regularly $15.99)
Replaces store-bought non-stick sprays like Pam! Fill this high quality sprayer with your best olive oil for cooking, grilling, sautéing, roasting and more. 
                      

 Pyrex 10-Piece Storage Set
Sale Price is $14.99 (Regularly $19.99)
10 piece storage set is made of nonporous glass that won’t warp, stain, or absorb odors with seal-tight lids ideal for secure food storage. Safe for use in oven, microwave, refrigerator, freezer, and dishwasher.
                            

Cuisinart Immersion Brushed Chrome Hand Blender
Sale Price is $28.99 (Regularly $55)
This handheld blender quickly purees soups, blends batters, mixes beverages, and more ~ right in pots, pitchers, bowls, or the clear plastic beaker that’s included.
                         

Cuisinart 5-in-1 Griddler
Sale Price is $83.33 (Regularly $185)
5-in-1 countertop unit works as a contact grill, panini press, full grill, full griddle, and half grill/half griddle.
                                

Sale Price is $25 (Regularly $44.95)
This kitchen Scale is highly rated for its accuracy and designed. It will weigh items up to 11 lbs, with results displayed in four different units: grams / ounces / pounds. kilograms. 
      
                   

Enjoy and Share! :)

  

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Want to keep up with fresh ways to save money
and button down the family finances?
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Frugal & Fun Fort Worth Weekend Events (Jan. 7-9) ~ FREE Learning Fun For the Whole Family!

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You will receive the latest saving tips on local restaurants, cheap
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Subscribe for FREE (here)!

ABOUT THE FRUGAL & FUN FT. WORTH WEEKEND EDITION ~
Fridays, we post ideas for FREE (or really cheap) weekend entertainment
for you and your family.
Subscribe to our blog updates, here (also FREE!).

This weekend’s highlights include:

  • FREE Williams Sonoma Cooking Technique Class ~ This
    1st in a 3 part series of classes will demonstrate the method of stir fry.
  •  FREE Woodworking Kids Clinic at Lowe’s ~ Help your kids
    learn a new woodworking skill.
  • FREE Pinewood Derby Finishing Workshop at Michael’s

  

:: Take a FREE Cooking Technique Class at Williams-Sonoma
    Saturday and Sunday, January 8-9, 2011

                    

Learn Fresh & Fast Stir-Fry Techniques!
In the 1st of a 3 part series on Fresh and Fast Cooking, Williams-Sonoma
will highlight the technique of stir-fry cooking ~ the Asian method of
rapidly cooking foods to retain nutrients, color and texture.

All participants will receive a 10% OFF coupon to use in-store
as well!

Note: You’ll want to call to reserve your spot since class size is limited.

Details, details
What:
For more information, go here.
When: Saturday & Sunday, January 8-9 ~ Note: 1 hour class
    times vary from store to store, so be sure to call for exact
    times & date.

Where: Click here to find a Williams Sonoma store near you.
Cost: FREE! Call your local store to RSVP.

::

:: FREE Lowes Build and Grow Clinic: Make a Game Box
    Saturday ~ January 8, 2011

                             

This Saturday, bring your child to a Lowe’s Build and Grow Clinic to
help them learn a new woodworking skill and make a FREE project to
take home.

All workshops are FREE, but you should probably show up early
to ensure you have a kit for your little ones.

Details, details
What: For more information and to register, click here.
When: Saturday, January 8, 2011 ~ 10:00-11:00AM
Where:
Lowes Home Improvement Stores.
    To find a participating location, click here.
Cost: FREE

::

:: FREE ~ Michael’s Pinewood Derby Car Finishing Workshop
     Saturday, January 8, 2011

                    

Bring your derby racer to Michael’s and add a little flair! They will 
offer an assortment of cool decals to use on your car, plus all the
materials you need to make a colorful pennant for cheering on your
team on race day.

This craft event is FREE, but you should probably show up early to
ensure you have craft supplies for your little ones.

Details, details
What:
For more information, go here.
When: Saturday, January 8 ~ 10:00AM-Noon
Where: All Michael’s Craft Stores. Go here to find a store near you.
Cost: FREE!

Enjoy and Share! :)



Want to keep up with fresh ways to save money
and button down the family finances?

Subscribe to Frugal in Fort Worth now. It’s FREE!

Subscribe to My Feed Get Blog Updates Delivered By Email - FREE! Follow Us On Twitter!


If you found these savings tips helpful, we’d love to know!
Leave a note in the comments section or forward this
site to others with the button below.

Bookmark and Share

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