Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Fake Out

I am very pleased to announce my sister ("Sissy") as the very first guest blogger! She has even told me that she has several other ideas to write about in the upcoming months. Thanks Sissy!

I will be the first to admit that I am not a good cook. I am not a good “baker” (as my children call it). In addition to not being good at it, I really don’t like to do it. It is for these reasons that I have become a “semi-not-so-semi-homemade” cook.

I have learned how to put an added “extra touch” on many “pre-made/store bought” items. Take a frozen pizza for example. Before baking the pizza (on a foil covered pan to speed up clean up), I sprinkle additional cheeses - whatever I have on hand - on top. Sometimes I have added extra pepperoni too.

Want an easy and healthy and a little bit more substantial salad? As Rachel Ray says, take a little help from the store. Besides a “bag of salad,” many grocery storesoffer pre-cut veggies that you can put on top. But the way I make it a little more substantial is by buying popcorn chicken at the deli counter. Throw a handful on top of your salad. They are already bite sized so don’t need cut up.

I’ll admit it. My chocolate chip cookies are Pillsbury place and bake. My kiddies like to help “make” them. We eat them before they are totally cooled; that’s how they are best. The next day when we eat them again, I put them in the toaster oven at 350 for about 1 minute. It warms them right back up and you would think you were eating fresh made cookies.

Meatball subs have become a staple for NFL game days (Go Colts!). Someone asked me if I have a good recipe. I sure do. Buy a big bag of meatballs at Sam’s or Wal Mart or your local grocery store. I have found that the pre-made ones taste really good and save sooo much time! Our favorites are the ones from Sam’s, but try them all and find your favorite. I put them in the crockpot with spaghetti sauce (again-your preference) and let them warm up until game time. Set out buns and sliced cheese (Provolone and Swiss), shredded mozzarella and grated Parmesan for on top and let everyone make their own. YUM!

Although, I don’t make a lot from “scratch” there are a few things that I do take the time to make. If I get invited back, maybe I’ll share some of those with you. For now, I will give you a very easy recipe for chili. It’s homemade but takes a lot of help from the store. If you can brown sausage and pour, you can make it. Enjoy!

Sausage Corn Chili

1 pound sausage, browned and drained

1 can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 can corn, drained

1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce

1 cup salsa

1 cup water

Mix all together in your crockpot. Let it go!.....until ready to eat. Top with shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream, and chips/oyster crackers/crackers.

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