Feb 20, 2006

Guest Blogger #10 - Frugal Weekly

My Guest Blogger today has THE most awesome blog! She's got so many tips on the frugal lifestyle... wonderful reading if you are trying to cut costs in your kitchen as well as elsewhere in you life. Please welcome Debbie from Frugal Weekly as my guest today.


The concept of being frugal in the kitchen not only saves you money, but also your health in the process. Some of the best budget management ideas involve cooking healthier and preserving the environment consequently.

As a woman on a tight budget I sincerely appreciate fugal living from all perspectives. A desire to save money, protect our natural resources and create a healthy lifestyle for my family. Believe it or not, the best way to maintain these goals is through frugal living.

Frugal living in the kitchen can take on many forms. As the guest blogger today, I will highlight one particular method of budgeting in the kitchen, vegetarianism. Now, I am not a true vegan or even a full time vegetarian, but we do limit our meat consumption to only a couple times a week. Meat in every form is an expensive ingredient in your menu. By cutting back, not only do you save money, but also control the impact to the overwhelmed meat industry and improve your health.

The best method of success in eliminating meat from your meals is to find some great recipes that are hearty, meat free and tasty for the whole family. While many cookbooks are available to help you, the following are two of my family’s favorites to get you started.

Zucchini Casserole
Excellent for a light lunch or dinner with a salad and bread. Similar to a quiche, but more flavorful and heartier.

3 Cups grated zucchini
4 beaten Eggs
1 Cup biscuit mix
1 Cup chopped onion
1/2 Cup fresh parsley or 1 tablespoon dried
2 cloves minced garlic
1/4 Cup softened butter
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 Cup your favorite grated cheese
1/2 tsp salt
Dash pepper

Mix all together in a large bowl. Bake at 350-degree oven in a heavily greased 8x8 pan for 45-50 minutes or until slightly golden on top.

Red Beans and Rice
Nothing is known to be more frugal than rice and beans. This recipe is a simple but tasty version of the classic.

Vegetable oil for the pan
1/2 Cup chopped onion
1/2 Cup chopped celery
1/2 Cup chopped green, red or yellow pepper
2 cans red beans or 3 cups home cooked version
1 12-ounce can tomato sauce
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp ground red pepper or cayenne depending on taste
1/4 tsp hot pepper sauce or serve on the side for young kids
3 Cups hot cooked rice

Coat large skillet or Dutch oven with vegetable oil and heat at medium-high until hot. Add onion, celery, green pepper, and garlic to pan. Cook 2-3 minutes until slightly tender. Add drained beans, tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, red pepper and pepper sauce if using. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for at least 15 minutes or up to 45 minutes. Serve bean mixture over rice with parsley and sliced red onions as garnish.


Debbie Vasen is a freelance writer, residing in the diverse state of Oregon. She writes articles and essays on a variety of subjects including money, parenting and work at home. As an active mother of two with a strong passion for all children, she has energetically created a large network of like-minded individuals. An avid information gatherer with advice to share, she enjoys spending her free time writing. Living in the moist but evergreen Pacific Northwest, there is many an opportunity for her to enjoy every aspect of the outdoors. Debbie left a high-power career in the retail business world, to work at home and be with her kids. Visit her blogs at www.mom-connect.blogspot.com or www.frugalweekly.blogspot.com.

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