Monday, March 30, 2009

Grocery Totals - March 29th

The hubby really wanted to go to HEB this week, so no Kroger deals to post. I just can't get the savings/deals at other stores that I can at Kroger, so I wasn't that thrilled, but I know he really wanted to get a specific chili starter that he can only get at HEB, and in the end we spent just over $70.

Total spent: $70.62

2 5lb bags of potatoes $2.00
2 green bell peppers $0.66
2 red bell peppers $2.58
Lettuce $1.49
Kale $1.29
Celery $1.36
Italian parsley $0.50
Cucumber $0.33
Green cabbage $1.18
4 tomatoes $1.39
5 bananas $0.95
Annie's shells and cheese $1.00
Annie's shells and white cheese $1.00
Two step chili $6.99
Mexican cheese blend $1.79
Cheddar cheese $1.79
Sliced turkey $1.00
5 lbs ground beef $8.82
2 pork tenderloins $9.48
Broccoli romanesco $1.99
Frozen green beans $1.99
Egg beaters $1.82
Rachel's lemon verbena cottage cheese $0.50
Rachel's pomegranate orange cranberry cottage cheese $0.50
Rachel's vanilla chai yogurt $0.79
Rachel's cherry blackcurrent yogurt Free after coupon
Athenos hummus $2.49
Cascadian farms vanilla almond cereal $2.49
Flatout original light wraps $2.67
Hamburger buns $1.59
Morton hot salt $1.92
Hoisin sauce $2.19
Shredded hash browns $1.98
2 tuna pouches $2.00
Total = $70.62

See other grocery deals at The Grocery Cart Challenge

Menu Plan Monday - March 30th

Monday: Welsh rarebit burgers with potato salad

Tuesday: Chinese pepper steak, jasmine rice and egg rolls

Wednesday: BLT's with avocado and zuppa toscana soup

Thursday: Cheesy hash brown chili

Friday: Sweet and sour chicken and pineapple fried rice

See other menu plans over at Organizing Junkie

Friday, March 27, 2009

Olive Garden Lemon Cream Cake

The hubby really wanted me to attempt a version of the Olive Garden's yummy lemon cream cake for his birthday dessert. I have to say that this turned out to be very much like the original and he took half the cake to work with him the next day and his co-workers also raved about it.

For the cake:
1 (18 1/4 ounce) betty crocker white cake mix
1 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup oil
3 egg whites

For the filling:
8 ounces cream cheese
2 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 cup heavy whipping cream

For the crumb topping:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup cold butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Make white cake following directions on box. Pour batter into 10-inch greased springform pan, and bake at 350 degrees for 40 - 45 minutes. Allow cake to cool completely when it comes out of the oven.

Make lemon cream filling by mixing cream cheese and powdered sugar in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Mix in lemon juice.

Whip cream in a large bowl with an electric mixer on high speed until it forms stiff peaks. Combine cream cheese mixture whith whipped cream.

Make crumb topping by combining flour and powdered sugar in a medium bowl. Add butter and dribble in the vanilla extract. Use your hands to mix cold butter into flour and sugar. Break butter into smaller and smaller pieces as you incorporate it into the dry ingredients. Be sure not to press the mixture together. You want to end up with a very crumbly consistency with pieces no bigger than a pea.

When the cake is cool, slice it in half through the middle and remove the top. Spread all but 1/2 cup of the lemon cream mixture onto the bottom half of the cake, then carefully replace the top half of the cake.

Spread the remaining 1/2 cup of cream filling over the top and sides of the cake. Sprinkle the crumb topping on top of the cake and press it onto the sides all the way around the cake.

Chill the cake for at least 3 hours before your serve it.

See other great recipes over at The Grocery Cart Challenge and Tempt My Tummy Tuesday

My Mother In Law's Meatloaf

When I asked DH what he wanted for his birthday dinner, he chose his Mom's meatloaf. I never had the chance to meet her as she died when the hubby was only 18 (and I was a year old at at the time) but I do have her recipe collection (pictured to the left) and her meatloaf is one of my favourite recipes of hers to make. It's impossible to take an attractive picture of a slice of meatloaf, but trust me, it tastes far better than in looks!

2 lbs of ground beef
4 slices of peppered bacon
2 eggs
1 onion diced
1 green pepper diced
12 crackers
1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon of worcester sauce
Salt and pepper

For the sauce:
1 cup of light brown sugar
1/2 cup ketchup
1/2 teaspoon of red wine vinegar
Dash of worcester sauce

Saute onion and pepper in olive oil until soft. Mix all the ingredients together, form into a long loaf shape in large baking dish. Spread a thin layer of sauce on top, cut the bacon slices in half and lay accross the meatloaf, cover with the sauce, bake at 350 for 1 hour.

Oreo Cupcakes

I saw this recipe over at Annie's Eats and thought they would be the perfect cupcake for the hubby to take to work with him for his birthday - kind of like cupcakes for the class, he was taking them whether he wanted to or not!

I think they turned out great and I loved the whipped cream topping as I'm really not a fan of the heavy, sweet frostings you normally find on cupcakes.

For the cake:
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup unsweetend cocoa powder, sifted
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
12 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
4 eggs
1 1/2 cups buttermilk, at room temperature

For the frosting:
1 3/4 cups plus 2 tbsp. whipping cream
3 tbsp. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
6 tbsp. Oreo cookie crumbs

For garnish:
24 Oreo cookie halves

To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners.

In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth. Gradually add the brown sugar and continue beating until fluffy, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Mix just until all the dry ingredients have been incorporated, being careful not to overmix.

Divide the batter between the prepared cupcake liners. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 18-20 minutes. Transfer the cupcakes to a wire rack and let cool to room temperature.

To prepare the frosting, in the clean bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine the whipping cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Beat on medium-high speed until the whipped cream holds stiff peaks. Gently fold in the cookie crumbs with a spatula.

Scoop the mixture into a pastry bag and pipe frosting decoratively on top of the cupcakes. Garnish with Oreo cookie halves.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Carolina Pot Roast With Ginger Snap Gravy

I found this recipe over at Dinners For A Year and just had to try it. DH was a little more skeptical, when asked if he thought he would like the ginger snap gravy, his response was "well, there's always ketchup" but I am happy to report that he ate this last night and the ketchup bottle was never opened! we both really liked this pot roast and will definitely be making it again!

4 pound eye round roast or rump roast
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large sweet onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 tablespoons ginger root, grated
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon pepper
1/3 cup flour
3 cups beef broth
2 teaspoons beef bouillon
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup ginger snap crumbs
2 tablespoons brown sugar

Heat oil in a large pan over medium high heat, brown roast on all sides then transfer to crock pot.
Reduce heat to medium and cook onions until softened, add garlic, ginger, chili powder, nutmeg, beef bouillon, sugar and pepper and cook for about a minute
Sprinkle flour over mixture and cook for another minute

Add beef broth and cook for another minute
Pour mixture over roast, cover and cook on low for 9 - 10 hours, until meat is tender
Remove meat and add sour cream and ginger snap crumbs, season to taste

Monday, March 23, 2009

Grocery Deals - March 22nd

It's DH's birthday this week, so there were a few things I needed to get for his birthday dinner that I had to pay full price for, but other than that I did pretty well this week. Got a great deal on fresh asparagus at $0.94 lb, the pineapple was on sale for $1.97 and I had a $0.75 coupon so it ended up being only $1.22 which is a great price for a fresh pineapple and avocados were 3 for $1 which made me happy!

Shelf price : $184.24
OOP : $71.30
Saved : $112.94
Pct : 61%

A&W root beer
Cottonelle ultra 12 pack
2 snuggle fabric softeners
Peppered bacon
Cube steak
Jimmy Dean hot sausage
Sara Lee bread
3 stride gum packs
Lipton tea
Celestial seasonings tea
6 asparagus bundles
1 fresh pineapple
4 beefsteak tomatoes
5 onions
3 avocados
3 pack fresh corn
2 lbs red creamer potatoes
4 Ken's dressing
Hershey's bliss chocolates
Cream gravy mix
popcorn snacks
Borden buttermilk
McCormick lemon pepper seasoning
McCormick mesquite seasoning
2 McCormick pepper grinders
canned beets
4 ziploc zip n steam bags
Fresh mozzarella cheese
2 sargento shredded mozzarella
Sargento sliced provolone
Pizza sauce
Duncan Hines brownie mix
10 whiskers cat treats pouches
Sea bonds
Sure deodorant
Log cabin syrup
Welch's juice
3 shedd's spread calcium
3 shedd's spread country crock

See other grocery deals at The Grocery Cart Challenge

See Other Kroger deals over at The New Frugal Mom

Menu Plan Monday - March 23rd

It's the hubby's birthday on wednesday and for dinner that night he chose his Mom's meatloaf recipe and a version of the Olive Garden's lemon cream cake for dessert - I hope it turns out somewhat like the original as he loves that cake, and I've never tried to make it before!

Monday: Carolina pot roast with ginger snap gravy

Tuesday: Tangerine bbq chicken with curry couscous

Wednesday: DH's birthday - Meatloaf, mashed potatoes and green bean bundles, with lemon cream cake for dessert

Thursday: Roast pork tenderloin with orange marmalade mustard sauce, roast asparagus and potatoes

Friday: Grilled pineapple chicken with coconut jasmine rice

See other menu plans over at Organizing Junkie

Orange Chicken

I found this recipe on another blog a few months ago (I don't remember which one though, sorry) and this weekend I just so happened to have all the ingredinats for it, so we decided to try it. I made a slight mistake by putting the full teaspoon of red pepper flakes into it, as it turned out out a little too spicy!

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 onion
1 green bell pepper
1 15 oz can of mandarin oranges
4 tbsp olive oil
Flour for coating chicken
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 cup orange juice
1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)

Cut chicken into 1 inch pieces and lightly coat with flour. Heat oil and add chicken, cook until lightly browned and crispy.

Add chopped onion and green pepper to chicken, cook for a few minutes, add mandarin oranges, the garlic powder, soy sauce, red pepper flakes and orange juice. Reduce heat to medium low, cover and let simmer for 35-40 minutes until the sauce has thickened.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Grocery Deals - March 15th

I did quite well this week at Kroger, and I even managed to get a number of expensive items - a $15.99 automatic shower cleaner as ours quit working, trash bags which were almost $8, and a number of other things DH added into the trolley.

Shelf price : $206.05
OOP : $59.93
Saved : $146.12
Pct : 71%

Pepsi 6 bottle pack
A&W root beer 2 ltr
Dr. Pepper 2 ltr
Scrubbing bubbles automatic shower cleaner
2 Cottonelle 4 pack
2 Stouffers chicken a la king frozen meals
Stouffers frozen spaghetti
Snuggle fabric softener
Cattlemans bbq sauce
5 Ken's thousand island dressings
Lysol disinfecting spray
Birds eye frozen green beans
Birds eye frozen sugar snap peas
Frozen vegetable medley
2 Toaster strudels
Edy's samoas ice cream
Joy of cooking frozen carbonara
2 Quaker instant oatmeal
Owens hot sausage
Air freshner glass container and scented beads
La choy sweet and sour sauce
McCormick pepper grinder
McCormick salt grinder
Nail saver kitchen sponge
4 ziploc zip n steam bags
3 Shedd's spread with calcium
3 Shedd's spread country crock
Ore-Ida potatoes O'Brian
Chex snack mix
Pepperidge farm wheat crackers
4 Mahatma yellow rices
Laughing cow cheese wedges
Sargento provolone cheese slices
Sargento salad finishers
Planters nut bars
Fiber one bars
3 Bertolli sauce pouches
Betty crocker potatoes
Hefty trash bags
3 Frank's hot sauce
Borden organic 2% milk
2 Quaker quakes
Pepperidge farm garlic bread
Pepperidge farm Texas toast
1 Cucumber
3 Green bell peppers
4 Sweet yellow onions
1 Lettuce
6 Sweet potatoes

Menu Plan Monday - March 16th

Monday: BLT's with avocado and butternut squash soup

Tuesday: Indian spiced chicken with crash hot potatoes and sugar snap peas

Wednesday: Crockpot bbq pork ribs, mashed potatoes and corn

Thursday: Chicken fettucine alfredo and salad

Friday: Sticky coconut chicken with mango coconut jasmine rice

This weeks menu plan monday is being hosted by Erin at $5 dinners

Monday, March 9, 2009

Apple-Cheddar Turkey Burgers

I found the recipe for these burgers in the current issue of the Rachael Ray magazine. They were supposed to be made with english muffins but I forgot to get those at the store, so we just used rolls instead. The recipe also calls for mixing mustard into the cranberry sauce, and I tried it, but I much preferred the plain cranberry sauce on my burger.

Apple-Cheddar Turkey Burgers
Serves 4

2 pounds ground turkey
4 scallions finely chopped
1/3 cup flat leaf parsley chopped
1 tablespoon grill seasoning
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 apple cut into 12 slices
8 slices extra-sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup whole berry cranberry sauce
2 tablespoons grainy mustard
4 english muffins, split and toasted
8 leaves of lettuce

In a bowl, combine the turkey, scallions, parsley, grill seasoning and poultry seasoning. Form into 4 patties.

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the patties and cook for 6 minutes on each side. Top each with 3 apple slices and 2 cheese slices, tent with foil and cook until the cheese melts.

In a small bowl, mix together the cranberry sauce and mustard, slather on the tops of the muffins. pile 2 lettuce leaves on each muffin bottom, top with patties and the tops of the muffins.

Grocery Deals - March 8th

Kroger has buy one get one free chicken this week, so we stocked up and got 6 packages.

I ended up not using that many coupons this week, and so my totals were definitely helped by all the b1g1 frees!

Shelf price : $135.98
OOP : $65.72
Saved : $70.26
Pct : 52%

2 packages of chicken breasts
2 packages of chicken thighs
2 packages of chicken drumsticks
Ice cream sandwiches
Stouffers flatbread
2 quaker oatmeal boxes
Light bulb
3 fuze drinks
Sea salt grinder
4 saffron rice packets
Jasmine rice
Sea bonds
Jimmy Dean sausages
2 rubber maid containers
2 rubber maid 4 pack mini containers
2 Sara Lee breads
Deli roast potatoes
3 hamburger helpers
Glucerna cereal
Purina one dog food can
Sharp cheddar cheese block
1% milk
Grapes ($0.77lb)
4 green bell peppers ($0.55 each)
1 cucumber
2 red chilis
Yogurt covered pretzels
Root beer
Organic large brown eggs
Curry paste
Coconut lip balm

See other grocery deals at The Grocery Cart Challenge

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Menu Plan Monday - March 9th

Breakfast options:

Pumpkin oatmeal with wheat berries, shredded coconut and honey
Vanilla chobani yogurt with almond cherry granola
Weetabix with banana
English muffin with scrambled egg beaters
Oatmeal with wheat berries, banana and honey

Lunch options:

Butternut squash soup
Spinach salad with tuna
Quinoa salad
Spinach wrap with tuna and veggies


Monday: Apple-cheddar turkey burgers with cranberry sauce and broccoli cooked in coconut oil

Tuesday: Beef stroganoff, with egg noodles for DH and courgettes cooked in coconut oil for me

Wednesday: Roti chicken and jasmine rice

Thursday: Beef rigatoni and salad

Friday: Pepsi pot roast

See other menu plans over at Organizing Junkie