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finished red pepper pasta

 

This summer I bought 50 pounds of red bell peppers at the farmers market, and spent time dehydrating, stuffing, freezing, and roasting bell peppers. Fifty pounds of peppers sounds like a lot, but they really cook and dehydrate down quite a bit. I regret not roasting more peppers because we use them a lot.

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butternut squash mac

 

I was introduced to the concept of butternut squash macaroni and cheese by Martha Stewart. It was nice, but too bland. Fabulous idea though, to put butternut squash in mac and cheese. But her recipe calls to boil butternut squash, which doesn’t allow this vegetable to be all it can be. And she uses ricotta, which is rather expensive, and you can’t even tell it’s in there. Kind of a waste of a pricy ingredient.

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DIY Salt-Free Taco Seasoning

taco season

I have quite a collection of herbs and spices, so instead of buying preservative and salt-laden seasoning packs, I make my own. It’s frugal, and less expensive. And with taco seasoning, you never know if it’s going to end up being spicy. I love spice, but my kids don’t. I add salt while cooking the beef initially, before adding the seasoning. You can play around with the recipe according to your tastes, but there is my recipe for taco seasoning:

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Slow Cooker Pepper Steak

 

pepper2

 

For Christmas, my mom got me a Ninja 3-in-1 slow cooker. This is no ordinary slow cooker, it has stove top, oven, steam and slow cooker options. Not to mention this appliance has an automatic warming function, which means I can be away for the day without something overcooking. I can set a dish for 5 hours, and then it turns to warm. This really helps me, because modern slow cookers don’t cook very slowly, and I find being gone all day doesn’t work for many recipes.

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Broccoli Cheese Soup

Broccoli Cheese Soup

My sister is visiting for Christmas, and she is a vegetarian. Well, sort of a vegetarian. She eats bacon, but who can blame her? Bacon rules. Not only does she not eat meat, but she is a tad particular, so I’m always excited when I make something she loves. Tonight I made broccoli cheese soup, and she gave it a thumbs-up. My kids love it too, and so will yours.

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