Jordan Page YouTube Blogger

Do you watch or listen to YouTube.com?  Did you realize there are bloggers who post on YouTube?

I have found that I can listen to the YouTube bloggers through my smartphone and get things done around the house at the same time – hey, it at least makes the time go by faster when I am doing the dishes, etc.

So, here is the first (I think, since I have been planning on posting these for a long time, but don’t think I ever wrote one up) of the YouTube.com bloggers that I listen to weekly.

Oh, and no, these are not sponsored and if you say you found them through me they would have no idea who I was, but I would love it if you did tell them ūüôā

If you see Jordan Page’s face you might recognize her from the Rachel Ray Show or other television shows.¬† I had never checked out her blog or YouTube channel until another YouTube blogger mentioned her earlier this year.

Jordan Page –¬†https://www.youtube.com/user/funcheaporfree or search Jordan Page

or go to her blog:  http://funcheaporfree.com/

So, in September Jordan did a challenge called #Shelftember Challenge.  The premise was to eat the items you already have in the your refrigerator, freezer and pantry before going to the store and shopping for groceries.  You were give a small amount to buy fresh vegetables, milk, etc each week.

Since we were going on vacation in mid-September (yes, we had fun and I will post about it in the future) I thought this was a good idea for us to implement.

Well, other than a few shopping trips where we picked up bargains, something special,  something we needed to make a dish that went along with what we were eating from our refrigerator, freezer or pantry or to replace something we were running low on we have been eating mostly this way since September.

Oh, and I will say that we still go out to eat randomly, but I consider those ‘Dates’ and the cost falls into another bucket in our budget.¬† Hey, we need to have some fun in life and at least once a week I don’t want to cook ūüėČ

I can’t tell you exact amounts, but our food bill was definitely lower in October versus August.¬† The other bonus is we are starting to see some blank space in our freezer, etc so I will be able to buy the turkey that is on sale this week and have room for it in the freezer until Thanksgiving.

I will always be happy to have a stockpile of food for in case of emergencies (earthquakes, snow, floods, power outages, etc can all happen here), but it was getting a little crazy that each week we saw multiple things for sale in the ads and had to go buy them instead of having multiple days a week that we ate the food that we already had.

So, after doing this for a couple of months the husband appears to be on board.  From now on I will plan my menu for the week and then look at the local sale ads.  If there is something we are craving, a super bargain (think baking supplies that go on sale before Christmas, etc) or something that we are running low on then I will buy those items, but I will always be looking to get the items on sale or with a coupon, if at all possible

.

How do you keep your food bill under control?

Later – Heather

 

 

 

Tip Tuesday

So, I made some gluten-free sourdough starter with sorghum flour that I had in the house from the following recipe and we thought it was too sour.

https://successfullyglutenfree.blogspot.com/2013/12/easy-gluten-free-sourdough-starter.html

And, then I realized I didn’t have any brown rice flour in the house, but I realized that I had brown rice in the pantry so I ground some of the brown rice with a older coffee grinder (which hadn’t been used for coffee) similar to this one and made my own brown rice flour!

https://www.target.com/p/mr-coffee-174-blade-grinder-black-ids57-np/-/A-16391441?ref=tgt_adv_XS000000&AFID=google_pla_df&fndsrc=tgtao&CPNG=PLA_Appliances%2BShopping&adgroup=SC_Appliances_Food+Dehydrators&LID=700000001170770pgs&network=g&device=c&location=9030852&gclsrc=aw.ds&ds_rl=1246978&ds_rl=1247068&ds_rl=1246978&ref=tgt_adv_XS000000&AFID=google_pla_df&CPNG=PLA_Appliances+Shopping&adgroup=SC_Appliances_Food%20Dehydrators&LID=700000001170770pgs&network=g&device=c&location=9030852&gclid=CjwKCAjw6-_eBRBXEiwA-5zHadkXcFHD7V0BYp0KC6q7QsO17p_9CJ-gNlpOm-ZmRcdib-k4wi3E9xoCxD4QAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

At the moment the brown rice flour and water are sitting on the counter.  Later this week / next week I will report back how the sourdough bread turned out.

What creative cooking tips have you done lately?

Later – Heather

 

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Our garden has exploded with Zucchinis this season so I went looking for some new recipes.

I received a blog post from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe for ¬†‘The Best Chocolate Zucchini Cake’

https://www.melskitchencafe.com/best-chocolate-zucchini-cake/

and boy is this cake and chocolate whipped cream good!

To make this cake Gluten-free I used Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-free 1 to 1 Baking flour and the only other change I made was I used dark, unsweetened cocoa powder since that is what I had in the pantry.

I sent the leftovers with the husband to his work and his coworkers loved it and I received multiple requests for the recipe.

So, thanks to Mel’s Kitchen Cafe for posting the recipe and whipped cream. ¬†I will definitely be making this recipe again.

Do you have a garden?  If so, do you grow Zucchini?

Later – Heather

Crispy Slow Cooker Carnitas

I made a slightly modified version of this recipe tonight and it was a hit. ¬†So, I figured I would share and post it here so I don’t forget where I found it.

Do you watch/ listen to YouTube bloggers?  Well, I have found some I really like, but that list will be for a post in the future.

But, this recipe was published on YouTube on June 28, 2017 by ‘She’s in Her Apron’. ¬†A friend of hers found it from ‘Gimme Some Oven’ and the direct link is below:

https://www.gimmesomeoven.com/crispy-slow-cooker-carnitas/

I actually had two cooked, plain, shredded chicken breasts in the fridge that I didn’t have a plan for. ¬†So, I put the shredded meat in a saucepan and made the sauce with the addition of the juice from one Halo¬†mandarins. ¬†I then simmered it on medium-low for about 30 minutes.

After than I followed the actual recipe.  The husband commented on how good the house smelled when he came in the door and was more than happy to eat three tacos with this meat in them for dinner.

So, let me know if you try it and if you liked it.  This is definitely going in my list of Go To meals.

Heather

 

Grocery Outlet – bargains and Gluten free

Note:  I got nothing from Grocery Outlet (or any of the brands listed) for this review.  I am just really happy that the Grocery Outlet opened in our town.

Since my favorite grocery store closed last year I have been bouncing around the local stores and Costco for my shopping. ¬†I was happy when a Grocery Outlet opened locally. ¬†I knew from extended family (and other blogs) that they didn’t always have everything, but when they had something they usually had a good price on it.

Did you know that each Grocery Outlet is locally owned?  The statistic is that for every $100 spent in a local store $45 stays in the community.  I am definitely willing to try the local stores to keep the money and jobs here.

So, here are some of the items we have been buying there lately.

Morasch Meats ¬†–¬†Beef New York Striploin Steak (2 pack, 14 oz, ¬†$5.99) – Wow, we put some Dry Rub on these yesterday and cooked them on the BBQ. ¬†They were great! ¬† The husband and I were able to share one of them so we have the second one for another meal. ¬† (Note – I went back today and bought two more packages of them since it was so good.)

Organic chicken legs – I got a great price on these (I cooked them up the same day and took them on our camping trip a month ago).

Smart Balance spread for $1.99 – this is a great price and the expiration date is way out there

Individual Garlic Bulbs (3 for $1.00)

Flaked Coconut

Cans of soup – today I picked up a can of Muir Glen Organic Homestyle split pea (14.9 oz) for $1.49

Frozen Ore-Ida potatoes (I just picked up a bag of Zesties for $1.49 for the first time today so I will let you know what we think).

Hummus – Since I am the only one in the family that really likes hummus I bought a container for a great price (don’t remember the cost now since it was a month ago), and then froze it in smaller containers.

Gluten free mixes – Arrowhead Pizza crust mix , 1-2-3 gluten free Rolls Mix and Poundcake Mix (haven’t tried them yet, but I know their prices were definitely cheaper than other places)

They also have bags of Gluten-free All Purpose Flour and other gluten free mixes which I am thinking of trying in the future.

So, now I stop at the local Grocery Outlet before I head to any other grocery store.

Have you checked out your local Grocery Outlet store lately?  Here is the link to their website if you want to find your local store:  https://groceryoutlet.com/

Let me know if you try them out and what bargains you found.

Later – H

Udi versus Rudi Gluten free bread and Walmart

So, for a few years now we have eaten Udi Gluten free bread. ¬†The family likes it toasted and plain (when we rarely eat a sandwich). ¬†Up until now we have been buying it at Trader Joe’s. ¬†Well, this spring Costco (yeah!) started carrying a larger loaf in the frozen food section (in ours it is near the frozen berries – who would have guessed).

Anyways, I had seen coupons for Rudi Gluten free bread, but had never seen it in a store.  Well, the last time I was in Walmart (yes, I go there now, but not often) I went looking around and I found Rudi Gluten free bread in the frozen food section so I picked up a loaf.

The first time I tried the Rudi Gluten free bread I made it into toast. ¬†It was tasty and didn’t fall apart.

On Father’s Day we took a picnic so I took some Rudi Gluten free bread (frozen when we left the house, but defrosted by the time we got there). ¬†I hate to say it, but the bread fell apart as we were eating it.

(Note:  I did email the company that makes Rudi Gluten free bread and got a response that their bread does crumble.)

So, even though I don’t go to Walmart often I will be using the coupons I find to get some reduced gluten free bread for making toast in the mornings.

Oh, and both Udi and Rudi Gluten free bread are made in Colorado.

What new gluten free products have you tried lately?

Later – H

Chili’s and gluten-free menu

Did you know that Chili’s have a wheat / gluten-free (and other health options) menu? ¬†Our copy was dated 3/1/2014 – 4/7/2014.

Last time we were there the server happened to ask if we needed one. ¬†I said yes (I don’t have to eat gluten-free, but I try to stay away from as much wheat as possible and multiple family members have to eat gluten-free). ¬†He handed me a paper sheet with suggested the menu options.

I was happy to see that some of the items we usually buy are gluten-free.  For example:

– Loaded Baked Potato Soup

– Southwest Chicken (without the Tortilla Strips)

Memphis Dry Rub Baby Backs Ribs ** without sides

Original Baby Back Ribs ** without sides

What I was surprised by was that even the french fries were not listed as gluten-free.  I guess that is since they are fried with their other items.  Too bad.

Have you asked for a gluten-free menu at a restaurant?  What was the reaction?

Later – H

Gluten-free Carrot Cake Cupcakes….

I hope everyone has a wonderful Easter.  We were supposed to go out of town to visit family, but the family is sick.  So, we decided to stay home.

Yesterday we went to Costco and they had their (wheat) Carrot Cake Cupcakes on sale. ¬†They looked so good! ¬†I didn’t pick any up, but I did come home and decided to make some Gluten-free ones. ¬†Not sure if mine cost less, but I at least was able to control all of the ingredients that went into them.

This is the link to the recipe I used:

http://glutenfreecooking.about.com/od/glutenfreecakerecipes/r/glutenfreecarrotcake.htm

Oh, and by the way I added a page that lists other people’s gluten-free recipes that I have tried and liked. ¬†This is partly so I don’t have to keep finding the recipe and to give you some help also. ¬†Your welcome.

Later – H

 

 

sad news and Did you really get a good deal?

Do you remember when I posted earlier this year that Walmart had come to our smallish town?  Well, the only Nevada owned and operated grocery store announced yesterday that they are closing the store in town.  Am I happy?  No, since I have shopped there regularly for the last 20+ years.  It used to be the closest grocery store to my house, but now I have a Walmart that I have to drive by to get to town.  Oh, well.  Now I will have to decide which of the other non-Walmart stores I will go to more starting in December.

I started the lower section of this post before I heard about my normal grocery store closing.  I saw this blog post on HappyMoneySaver.com a few weeks ago:  http://happymoneysaver.com/ripped-walmart-packaged-chicken/

I realized I couldn’t even attempt to write a similar article since I don’t usually shop at Walmart or Winco, but I thought Karrie of Happy Money Saver¬†did a really good job of pointing out that we all are responsible for making sure we are getting a good deal (and not just assume).

And when I say that I am not just talking about prepackaged meat. ¬†For example – when is the last time you have figured out how much you were actually paying for an item (per ounce, etc) versus just picking up the ‘usual’ when you go to the store?

I had planned on making a written (versus by memory) price book so I could tell when a store has a super deal on a product so I can stock up at that time.  I guess it is time to start working on it.

Later – H

Grass fed beef – Maui

Do you eat grass fed beef?  Have you ever tried it?  When we stayed in Hana, Maui for a few days on vacation we took most of the food we thought we would eat with us (no, not from home, but went to the Safeway near the airport).

We decided we would go out to eat, etc in Hana at least once.  Well, the Hana Ranch Store had some Hawaiian made Chocolate Macadamia Nut ice cream so we picked up that (who could resist?) and we decided to pick up a package of Grass fed hamburger (from a ranch on Maui).  Our choices were really the grass fed hamburger or small steaks (hey, it is a small town).

All we had in our condo was Kirkland Sea Salt (which was completely caked over – what humidity will do for you) and pepper. ¬†My first thought was I hope the hamburger had a good flavor since there wasn’t much we could do to improve it.

We were pleasantly shocked at how good the hamburger tasted!  Since we are now home and live in area with cows I am seriously thinking of looking for some grass fed beef to see if it tastes as good.

Otherwise, I will have another reason to hope to visit Hawaii more often ūüôā

Later – H