Eating well on a tight budget isn’t as hard as it sounds. It just requires… creativity.
I didn’t have money to get new ingredients, and some of my pantry staples were already claimed for two planned meals, one for a party, and one for my daughter’s birthday supper of choice. So I have to get more creative here. I made up my own recipe. Now that I’ve been cooking for nigh unto 6 years as a married Mama, I’m a bit better at this than I once was. Still learning though! But this one turned out fabulously:
I started with the sausage. Before starting to use it for any meals, I cooked it for an hour at 350. It dries it out a bit, makes it crumbly and crunchy. JUST how I like it! If you like it more moist, cut your cooking time by 15-25 minutes, and ramp up the heat, maybe to 425, for 30 minutes.
Everything but The Kitchen Sink Summer Garden Pasta
Makes 8-10 servings. (Enough for our family for 2 meals. Dinner, and lunch the following day usually.)
aprox. 1 lb (pre-cooked as mentioned) sausage, cut into medallions.
1 lb mini bowtie noodles
Salt/garlic salt to taste
Drizzle Olive Oil into large, deep skillet. Turn into medium/high. (remember, the sausages are already cooked through, so we’re just heating up and flavoring.) toss in medallions and diced garlic cloves. Stir to coat,
Add in Sliced zucchini, and diced tomatoes. Add water (Enough to steam veggies and stew tomatoes a bit. Don’t stress over the skins,) Put lid on skillet, and cook on medium, for about 10-15 minutes, until tomatoes are soft and zucchini is clear. About the time it takes to boil the noodles in another pot.
Once noodles are boiled, drain. While draining noodles, remove lid from veggie skillet, allowing the water to boil off a bit, and the “sauce” to thicken. Salt to taste, using table salt OR Garlic salt. I did a mixture of both.
Add noodles. Toss. Serve with buttered bread and green veggie, such as broccoli or salad.
Pancakes, scrambled eggs, and sausage. Need I say more? 🙂 Everyone had one “link” This used almost 1 lb. A bit less.
Quick and Easy Pizza Crust
(I got this from Allrecipes, but I modified it a bit to suit our needs. Makes 2 large and 1 medium pizza crusts. Enough for one meal for our family, plus lunches the next day.)
Mix, let stand 10 minutes till frothy.
Add: 6 tablespoons oil
3 tsp Salt
7 1/2 c. flour
Mix til smooth. Let sit 10-20 minutes in bowl. 10 is fine.
Turn out onto floured surface. Knead. Separate into 3 rounded balls. We used 2 large pans and one medium, so I separated the dough accordingly.
Cover pans in light dusting of corn meal or flour. Spread dough into pans (Keep your hands well floured to prevent sticking and tearing of dough.)
Use desired toppings (we used sausage medallions, Pepperoni, and mozzarella cheese. I like to throw in green peppers and onions for veggie power!) Bake until cheese is golden and bubbling. Aprox. 15-20 minutes.
Sauce for pizza:
1 can Tomato paste
2 cans of water
1 tsp salt
1 tbspn sugar
spices as desired (I use an italian blend plus sweet basil and garlic powder.)
Put all ingredients in saucepan, heat and stir until thoroughly combined. Spread on Pizza dough, then add remaining toppings.
There you have it! 3 frugal easy meals that are delicious, nutritious, and just plain good eating! Enjoy!