Monday, January 28, 2013


January 28, 2013

The kids both decided to pack leftovers for lunch today. One took macaroni/chicken and the other took lasagna (both took leftover green beans too). Hurray for kiddos, saving $4. This may end up being their best week yet for saving lunch money.

After school, my daughter wanted a snack. She grabbed the bag of frozen chicken quesadillas. You know, the quesadillas that I had been trying to get the kids to eat up for what feels like forever. Guess what happened. She LOVED them. My son heard her raving about them so he heated some up for himself.....which led to an empty bag! Wohoo! My daughter even asked me to buy more of them. If only they had tried them when I first asked them to. Mom always knows.

I was browsing recipes online and came across a couple interesting ones. I found a recipe for spanish style quinoa. It called for chili powder, garlic powder, and cumin. Yum. Uh oh. How am I out of cumin?! Nooooooooo! Well, I figured that those spices pretty much make up taco seasoning so I grabbed a pouch of that. The recipe called for 1 teaspoon of chili powder and 1/4 teaspoon each of garlic and cumin. So instead I just substituted 1 1/2 teaspoons of the taco seasoning. I sauteed onion, garlic, quinoa, and some bell pepper (frozen from my garden). Then stirred in a can of tomato sauce, water, and the seasonings. Simmer for about 20 minutes.

Also while I was recipe browsing, I read a statistic. Now, I don't know if this is true or not but I read that roughly half of all food is thrown out. Seriously?! Since we started this challenge, we have gotten so much better at not wasting so much. However, the next thing that I read made me realize that we probably still have a long way to go. We are a broccoli loving family. We actually crave freshly steamed broccoli. After 14 years of marriage and making meals, I realize that I have been cutting broccoli incorrectly. Normally, I cut off pretty much all of the stems. For some reason, I had the impression that they were hard, dried out, and not edible. Little did I know that these are broccoli lies! Today I cut off the last couple inches of the stem because you could see it was tougher and a little dry. Then I held on to the floret part and peeled the rest of the stem. The stem can then be cut up in small circles (like you do for carrots). I threw the chopped stems into the steamer with the florets. I didn't say anything to the kids and decided to just watch them as they ate. My son ate his entire portion of broccoli (stem and all) and never said a word. My daughter picked out the florets to eat and left the stem circles. However, when I told her that she had to eat all of her veggies before she could have leftover birthday cake, she had no problem scarfing the rest down. I was pleasantly surprised with how they turned out. They were not tough. They were not dried out. They tasted, well, like broccoli. Ha. I think the trick is that you need to peel them.

I baked some salmon filets and dinner was all set.

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