Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Spasgetty and Meatballs

Mmm mmm mmm mm mmmmmmmmmmmmm. There's just something about eating a big plate of pasta with perfectly seasoned little mounds of meat. And to make it even more fun, I secretly play a game with myself to make sure that my meat:sauce:pasta ratio is perfect with every bite. Yes, it takes some planning, but I think it's worth it. My special recipe for...

Spaghetti and Meatballs

For the meatballs:

1 lb lean ground beef (15% fat is perfect)
1 egg
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup beef broth
1/3 cup panko* bread crumbs
1/4 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp drided basil

For the sauce:

42 oz. canned diced tomatoes (1 big and 1 small can)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp dried basil
1/4 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste

1 lb spaghetti noodles, or favorite pasta

* Panko bread crumbs can be found in the asian food section of your grocery store, and often the bulk bins. They have a light, crispy crumb that has much more texture than standard store bought bread crumbs. They are almost always my first choice when I need crumbs.

Combine all ingredients for meatballs, mixing until just combined. If you handle the meat too much, it will become tough when cooked.

Use a cookie scoop to measure your meat balls and roll between your palms to form a ball. Place on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and topped with a cookie rack. Drizzle meatballs with olive oil and place under broiler for 5-6 mins, or until the tops start to brown. Remove from oven.


Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil over medium heat and saute garlic until fragrant. Add tomatoes and sugar. Bring to a simmer and add meatballs. Let simmer until slightly thickened. Stir in basil, parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with cooked spaghetti noodles and top with more parmesan (can you tell I like parm?)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


So, I've done it. I've become a complete coupon nerd. A few weeks ago, I went to a class a girl from church was giving on couponing. I'm all about being cheap ( not that kind of cheap- I've just never liked the phrase "thrifty", or "frugal". Much like my dislike for the word "moist"..eew.) so I thought I'd give it a shot.

There are lots of blogs where the crazy couponers do (most) of the work for you. You just have to know where to look and learn some of the lingo. I've spent the last few weeks learning and collecting coupons. Today was my day to give it a go.

It was time for my monthly grocery shopping extravaganza -I hate food shopping, so I go as little as possible- and maybe I went a little crazy. Maybe some seasoned couponers (or not) can get a better than I did. Maybe I didn't add my totals right and I paid $15 more than I should have. But, I'm happy. I think I got a steal and I'm finally able to start stocking up my food storage.

So here comes the nerdy part-I took pictures. I got home, layed everything out that I bought and took pictures. In the couponing world, this is a common practice; buy your groceries, take pictures, and blog about the awesome deal you got. But, did I really do that? Yes. Wanna see? (Don't worry, I won't do this every time I go shopping)

What I got:

20 lbs. AP flour
10 cans Green Giant Veggies
4 Boxes Cheerios
2 Boxes Cinnamon Toast Crunch
1 Box Golden Grahams
1 Box Trix
6 Boxes 110 ct. Kleenex
2 Lipton Soup Mix Pkgs.
4 Betty Crocker Cake Mix
2 Betty Crocker Specialty Potatoes
3 Knorr Rice Pkgs.
1 Betty Crocker Frosting
9 cans Progresso Soup
1 Chex Mix
4 cartons Progress Chicken Broth
2 Viva Paper Towels
6 boxes Fiber One Granola Bars
4 cans Pilsbury Crescent Rolls
2 Betty Crocker Brownie Mixes
5 Jars Skippy Peanut Butter
1 pkg. Klondike Bars
2 Best foods Mayonaise
4 Ragu Pasta Sauces
2 Cottonelle Flushable Wipes
1 gallon Litehouse Apple Cider
5lb Idaho Potatoes
1 Litehouse Dressing
1 bag Crispy Onions
10.5 lbs Boneless Skinless Chicken Breats
3 lbs Beef Blade Steak
1 Danimals Drinkable Yogurt.
2 Healthy Choice Frzn. Entrees

What I paid: $104.23 (Would have been $89.23 if I wouldn't have forgotten how to count.)

A lot of these items I probably wouldn't normally buy. I generally try to stay away from too many processed foods. Sadly, for the most part, the foods that are promoted with coupons and deep discounts are. But, I see it as a great way to stock up my food storage. I'm sure I'll eat a bowl of Trix if I'm hungry enough and Mr. Cheney will eat it regardless- especially at $.50 a box!

If you're just jumping to be a nerd like me and want to know the tricks of the trade- and there are a few- here are some blogs I like. Most of them have posts that explain how to get started and some of the lingo you'll need to know to understand the posts.

Have fun!

Monday, November 2, 2009

So Eventful!

Halloween this year was a blast!

We spent our afternoon at the OSU vs UCLA Homecoming game and had AWESOME seats thanks to a friend that wasn’t using his season tickets.

Popcorn was enjoyed


A single UCLA fan with a seat in front of ours came very close to getting his ears flicked. There's a different section for your type- ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE STADIUM!

Emmie couldn't get enough of of her Dorothy costume. It was my first attempt at sewing clothing, so I was pretty excited that she liked. So much in fact, that she chose it over her favorite footy pajamas that night.

Our feeble attempt at the wizard, wicked witch, and Dorothy. At least Emmie looked authentic.

Our night was chased by some half-priced appetizers at Applebees, and of course, candy. Hope your Halloween was just as fun!