Food

Dinner With My Family #18: Baked Salmon with Asparagus

Baked Salmon with Asparagus One of my favorite things to do in the kitchen is to cook an excellent meal with minimal dishes to do afterwards. If I can make something delicious with only the silverware, plates, and perhaps two more items in the sink, then it’s a big win for me. This leads us …

Dinner with My Family #17: “Magic” Jambalaya

Vegetarian Jambayala Karen writes in: I really like it when you show meals that you can use bits of leftovers in easy. Could you do some more of those? Sure! We do meals like this all the time at our house. One of our favorites is what I like to call magic jambalaya. All you …

Dinner With My Family #16: Penne with Cannelini and Tomatoes

Homemade Pasta: Penne with Cannelini and Tomatoes One common thing I like to do on weekdays when I don’t have enough leftovers for lunch is to prepare something that will make a casserole dinner for my family that I can easily pull a lunch’s worth of food from for myself right then. I prefer meals …

Dinner With My Family #15: Egg (or Tofu) Scramble and Burritos

One of the most popular posts I’ve ever done on The Simple Dollar was my post about bulk breakfast burritos, which is fitting because they’re one of my favorite meals. They were loaded with eggs and other goodness to make a delicious little breakfast. Of course, over the years, I’ve refined the burritos a bit. …

Dinner With My Family #14: Kung Pao Shrimp Skillet Meal

When I was a college student, one of the meals I consistently ate was ramen noodles. I could often pick up twelve packages of it for $1. I would take it home, boil it up, add the seasoning packet, and enjoy. Over time, my taste buds became a bit more discerning – and I became …

The Kitchen Dry Erase Board

The usual Friday “dinner with my family” post is taking a one week hiatus. I recently had what I consider to be a great idea that I thought I’d share with you while I’m still in the process of implementing it. A few days ago, I was at a food co-op distribution point (I’m not …

Dinner With My Family #13: Fajitas Bonitas

This is one of those dishes that’s surprisingly quick, but tends to be very impressive when it hits the table. I can easily get this from “glimmer of an idea” to “meal on the table” in forty minutes – even less if I get the vegetables prepped in advance. It makes the whole house smell …

“Banking” Meals

One of the biggest challenges I’ve come across since changing my diet has been the struggle to always have ingredients on hand for meals I can eat. Regardless of how carefully I make a meal plan, I always felt like there were one or two meals a week that would throw a monkey wrench in …

Categories: Food, Frugality

Dinner With My Family #12: Slow Cooker Jamaican Red Bean Stew

Jamaican Red Bean Stew Kevin wrote in this week asking me if I could show some meals that utilized a slow cooker, as he’d love to cook more inexpensive and healthy dishes at home but he’s often strapped for time in the evenings. I’m happy to oblige. One of our favorite slow cooker recipes is …

Dinner With My Family #11: Enchiladas, Vegan or Otherwise

Several people have emailed me recently, asking why I’m vegan. It’s not political at all. My dietitian simply recommended it based on some minor health issues that could potentially escalate into something serious. My diet (for now) is vegan with an occasional piece of fish (maybe once a week or every ten days). Eventually, I …

Dinner With My Family #10: Curry Pumpkin Soup and Sandwiches

Vegan Curry Pumpkin Soup I’ll be the first to admit that when I heard of the idea of curry pumpkin soup, I thought it sounded dreadful. Pumpkin soup? Are you kidding? My wife really wanted to try a curry pumpkin soup recipe she found in our copy of Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, …

Making Homemade Yogurt

Yep, you read that right. Homemade yogurt, in our crock pot. Of course, before we get started, it’s worth noting that I’m sharing something we do routinely in our own home, and if you choose to do this in your own home, I assume no liability over the results. We’ve done this many times and …

Categories: Food, Frugality

Dinner With My Family #9: Spinach and Artichoke Calzone

Spinach and Artichoke Calzone This week, I’m going to take two previous food articles (chicken, broccoli, and mozzarella calzones and fried rice with artichoke hearts) and smash them together, creating my single favorite meal I’ve found since going vegan. Seriously. I’ve enjoyed these calzones more than anything else I’ve tried. So, yes, along the way, …

Putting Food on the Table in Tough Times

Tony writes in: About two weeks ago, I lost my job. I was being paid cash to do some maintenance work but the guy hiring me couldn’t afford it. A few days after that I tried to use my credit card to buy groceries and I was over my credit limit. Right now I have …

Dinner With My Family #8: Fried Rice with Artichoke Hearts

Veggie Fried Rice with Artichoke Hearts Artichoke hearts are one of my favorite foods on earth. Whenever I see fresh artichokes on sale at the grocery store, I buy several, then look for ways to use artichoke hearts in every dish I can think of. What I usually do is take the artichokes home, remove …

Dinner With My Family #7: Spaghetti di Pesto alla Genovese

Spaghetti di Pesto alla Genovese Recipe I love Italian food. Sure, it can be pasta heavy, but it’s also often heavy on the fresh vegetables and the herbs, creating some delicious tastes, amazing aromas, and surprisingly healthy dishes. One dish we often make is what we call, in our own slang, “pesto pasta.” Basically, we …

Dinner With My Family #6: “Anything” Soup

“Anything” Soup We live in Iowa. This winter has been a long one and, for the past week or two, incredibly cold. Of course, that means we’ve been cooking a lot of warm, hearty winter meals recently. One of my favorites among these is what we call “anything” soup. Simply put, it’s a simple soup …

Can Cutting Out Meat, Eggs, or Dairy Save You Money?

In October, due to some medical results and the encouragement of a dietitian, I made the choice to switch to a vegan diet (with the minor exception of occasional fish consumption) for the time being. A vegan diet simply means that I avoid meat and all animal products, which would include milk, cheese, yogurt, eggs, …

Categories: Food, Frugality

Dinner With My Family #5: Burgers and Fries!

Veggie Burgers and Baked French Fries Yep, burgers and fries! Here’s a peek at my wife’s plate (she was handling some of the picture taking while I was getting the children seated): (I think she put some sort of barbecue sauce on them as a condiment.) So, how exactly is that a healthy meal? For …