Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Tortellini Soup

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I made this recipe for the first time a few weeks ago, and we absolutely loved it. It is an adaptation of this recipe from Family Fun. My recipe is as follows,

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 medium carrot, peeled and diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 8 cups of chicken stock (I use bouillon and water. Use vegetable broth for vegetarian.)
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil (more if fresh)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon of garlic
  • 1/2 cup canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can of tomato sauce
  • salt to taste
  • 8 to 9 ounces fresh or frozen tortellini (I use cheese, of course.)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • Handful of baby spinach
  • Black pepper, to taste
  1. Heat the olive oil in a medium soup pot or large saucepan. Add the onion, celery, and carrot. Saute over moderate heat for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring often, until the onion is soft and translucent.
  2. Add the stock, basil, bay leaf, tomatoes, tomato sauce, garlic and salt to the pot. Increase the heat and bring the mixture to a low boil. Add the tortellini and bring the soup back to a low boil. Cook it for 2 minutes, then reduce the heat and let it simmer for 5 to 6 minutes longer. Gently stir in the parsley, spinach, and pepper during the last minute or so. Makes about 5 servings.

    Sunday, January 22, 2012

    The return of the coupon...

    We're preparing to go to Colorado in two weeks for my aunt's memorial service, and with that unexpected expense, we've REALLY got to be stretching every penny. I really have not had great success with coupons over the last several weeks, but this week was finally an exception. I only hit Hy Vee with my $45. I came out around $50 after tax, but I also got an almost $3 refund on an overage from last week. I saved about $12 with manufacturer coupons, and I also used a few store coupons for a total of another $10 or so. THAT is a success for me. Usually I stick much heavier to buying loss leaders, but I was very thankful to be able to do both this week. I also did a lot of filling in the gaps with simple items (black beans, cream cheese, bananas, tortillas) to make use of some of the things we already have in our pantry.

    Here is our meal plan for the week,

    Saturday - 100% whole wheat bagel thins / leftover pizza from last week / stuffed shells and salad

    Sunday - graham crackers and fruit / easy enchiladas and our favorite bean dip / Pei Wei as a special surprise from Daddy

    Monday - blueberries and yogurt / PBJ and apples / egg in the hole

    Tuesday - Banana cheerios / brown bag lunches / slow cooker black beans and rice

    Wednesday - bananas and yogurt / brown bag lunches / tortellini soup

    Thursday - Peanut Butter cheerios / brown bag lunches / homemade hashbrowns and eggs

    Friday - bagel thins / brown bag lunches / dinner out at my husband's work banquet

    We will be snacking on trail mix, crackers and cream cheese, pumpkin cranberry muffins and various other snacks.

    See more recipes at www.orgjunkie.com.

    Monday, January 16, 2012

    Groceries for a busy week...

    The last few weeks have been crazy busy. To add insult to injury, I was super sick with strep throat last Monday and Tuesday. Nothing like getting sick at the beginning of the week to derail everything I had planned! Not to mention we had a birth in the family on Tuesday and a death in the family on Saturday. Sometimes life just gets crazy!

    The above picture is from Hy-Vee where I did most of my shopping this week. I spent right around $40. I also spent around $10 at Hen House on blueberries, apples, graham crackers and a half gallon of ice cream to bribe my three year old that needed a splinter extraction.

    The only major meal event I have planned for tonight is homemade chicken noodle soup. I'm making a double batch to send to my sister in law's new family of 6 for dinner tomorrow night. I'm also sending a can of biscuits and a bag of salad. So, a part of our budget went to feeding an additional family this week. I've said this before, but I'm always amazed we are able to do ANYTHING for anyone else on $50 a week. I call it the loaves and fishes principle.

    Here is our meal plan for the week,

    Saturday - yogurt / leftover chili / dinner at my mom's (I took Icebox Boston Cream.)

    Sunday - graham crackers and fruit / surprise lunch out at Chipotle / corn dogs and salad

    Monday - blueberries and yogurt / PBJ and apples / chicken noodle soup and salad

    Tuesday - Banana cheerios / brown bag lunches / biscuit breakfast sandwiches

    Wednesday - bananas and yogurt / brown bag lunches / baked potato soup

    Thursday - Banana cheerios / brown bag lunches / egg in the hole and apples

    Friday - blueberries and yogurt / brown bag lunches / Little Caesars at ballet

    We will be snacking on trail mix, yogurt, crackers and cream cheese  and various fruits and veggies. Next week I'm hoping to have a chance to try out some new meals over the weekened!

    See more recipes at www.orgjunkie.com.

    Tuesday, January 10, 2012

    #1 Recipe of 2011, Amish Baked Oatmeal

    My #1 Recipe of 2011, by well over 1,000 page views over #2, was Amish Baked Oatmeal!


    In case you missed it, here is the complete rundown of my top 5 Recipes of 2011.