Fab Food Friday Fotos: Chicken Fajita Bake, Breakfast Sausage-Egg Pizza, Easy Shrimp Puffs, Butterbeer Cookies, Cranberry Kale Salad, Elk Tacos, Gilded Blueberry Rhubarb Jam, Garlic Chilli Pasta with Bacon & Asparagus, Chocolate Chip Banana Bread, More Frugal Recipes « Frugal Café Blog Zone

Fab Food Friday Fotos: Chicken Fajita Bake, Breakfast Sausage-Egg Pizza, Easy Shrimp Puffs, Butterbeer Cookies, Cranberry Kale Salad, Elk Tacos, Gilded Blueberry Rhubarb Jam, Garlic Chilli Pasta with Bacon & Asparagus, Chocolate Chip Banana Bread, More Frugal Recipes

Posted By on October 2, 2015

“Instead of going out to dinner, buy good food. Cooking at home shows such affection. In a bad economy, it’s more important to make yourself feel good.”

~ Ina Garten, American cookbook author, Food Network TV host

Wise words, Ina.

If your family’s budget is strained (and whose isn’t these days?), making good nutritious food at home not only saves a significant amount of money, but you can’t put a price tag on the love, joy, and camaraderie shared with family and friends over a savory homemade meal. Ever so often, my husband and I reminisce over the homey, delicious dishes his mother made for our family dinner get-togethers. Sauerbraten, spaghetti with chicken, oyster dressing, baked ham with cloves, Pennsylvania Dutch pork chops and caraway kraut, homemade pies and cakes, her awesome “Goopy Chicken” dish — she’s been gone for two years now, but we still remember fondly those fabulous meals and desserts, remember the love and pride she put into making them. She was a wonderful woman and a wonderful cook.

God bless you, Nancy — we still miss you.

FOOD. GLORIOUS FOOD.

When they’re available, recipes and recipe links will accompany select “Fab Food Friday Fotos,” with a guarantee that at least one cheap-to-kmake recipe will always be included.

 

Chicken Fajita Bake | Photo credit: Julia Frost @ I Believe I Can Fry, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Chicken Fajita Bake | Photo credit: Julia Frost @ I Believe I Can Fry, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

A terrific, thrift-minded recipe for baked chicken fajita (pronounced fah-HEE-ta) is posted at I Believe I Can Fry. Webmistress/cook Julia Frost wrote this about her easy baked Mexican chicken dish:

I don’t know why I don’t do dishes like this more often – they’re easy, inexpensive and delicious! The last time I made something like this was when I made similar Chicken Fajitas about 2 years ago! Though that recipe is pretty easy, this is even more simple…

All you need is chicken, some sliced peppers and onions (I’ve even seen pre-sliced peppers and onions sold at the grocery store), some taco seasoning, and some pre-shredded Mexican cheese. I usually prefer to shred my own cheese, but in order to get that 4 cheese blend, it’s FAR easier to just buy the stuff in the bags. For what it’s worth, I prefer the Sargento “off the block” kind, as it seems to be the ‘least dusty’. Toss everything together, drizzle with a bit of oil, then bake – EASY!

I made my own taco seasoning, which is the same seasoning mix I use for taco salads and plain old beef tacos – I did this to avoid any sugars or cornstarch that can be in store-bought packages. However, feel free to use homemade, store-bought, etc!

 

When I think about making easy, quick appetizers or snack foods, shrimp puffs NEVER come to mind. Never.

But after perusing the recipe at Food Network, I’ll be changing my attitude. The key to the shrimp puffs’ quickness here is using one can of refrigerator biscuits. I’m adding this to my “must-try” list.

 

Italian Meatball Sandwich | Photo credit: Ginny, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Italian Meatball Sandwich | Photo credit: Ginny, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Photographer/cook Ginny shared her easy ground turkey recipe for making Italian meatball sandwiches:

Kind of a weird bun for a meatball sandwich, but it’s what we had in the house, so we went with it.

Turkey Meatball Recipe:

(If you never used turkey for meatballs before, I say go for it. The first time I ever made meatballs, I used turkey –it was also the first time I cooked with ground turkey — and it was so delicious, I think I’ve only made them with ground beef one time. & still, every time I make them, after Jonathan takes a bite, he asks me if it’s turkey or beef. The point is, after you add all the tastienss, you can’t really tell.)

Makes ~ 12 meatballs, depending on size.

Ingredients:

* 1 lb ground turkey
* 2/3 cup Italian bread crumbs
* 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
* 1 egg
* 3 cloves of garlic, minced
* 1 1/2 Tablespoons Italian Seasoning (if you don’t have it, just throw in some basil and oregano)
* 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1) Mash all the ingredients together with your hands – gross, right? Just do it – until all ingredients are combined & sticking together. If it’s too moist, add a bit more bread crumbs & cheese.

2) Use an ice cream scooper to scoop uniform balls of the mixture. Roll into balls with your hands, place in greased baking sheet/pan

3) Cover with foil and bake at 375 deg F for about 40 minutes. Remove foil for the last 10 minutes.

 

One Green Planet attempts to create the baffling flavor of Harry Potter butterbeer with these vegan sandwich cookies — the recipe is here.

 

Happy Teapot, Bankside, London | Photo credit: Paul Simpson, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Happy Teapot, Bankside, London | Photo credit: Paul Simpson, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

 

Brief summary of Crispy Oven Baked Asian Wings with Peanut Sauce recipe, via Blackberrybabe:

These lightened up Asian wings in peanut sauce will knock your socks off. Baked in the oven using a few special techniques, the skin comes out crispy, just like fried wings!

 

Apricots Stuffed with Tuna & Capers | Photo credit: Sunny Mama, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Apricots Stuffed with Tuna & Capers | Photo credit: Sunny Mama, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

You’ve gotta love a food/cooking website that has as its subtitle “Living the Champagne Lifestyle on a Lemonade Budget.” The webmistress of Hallo Sunny is Sunny Mommy (aka Sunny Mama) out of Amsterdam, so the body text and recipe for this tasty, unusual apricot snack are written in Dutch, but can be easily translated.

 

Dug up Some Garlic from My Garden in Caradan, Texas | Photo credit: Sandra, Flickr, Creative Commons, soem rights reserved

Dug up Some Garlic from My Garden in Caradan, Texas | Photo credit: Sandra, Flickr, Creative Commons, soem rights reserved

 

Super-easy recipe for making baked elk tacos is posted at Crush Kitchen.

 

Updated cocktail… Pop on over to Rachael Ray’s magazine website for the recipe for this Blood-Orange Old-Fashioned cocktail.

 

Vintage Neon Restaurant Sign, Tad's Chicken 'N Dumplings, Corbett, Oregon | Photo credit: Chris & Tina Pfeiffer, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Vintage Neon Restaurant Sign, Tad’s Chicken ‘N Dumplings, Corbett, Oregon | Photo credit: Chris & Tina Pfeiffer, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

 

I’ve never heard of massaging kale, but yes, I’ll definitely give it a whirl the next time I prepare the leafy stuff. The recipe and its “kale massage” intro for cranberry kale salad, via So Very Blessed, is from blogger, home cook, and marathon runner Becky, who provided this background info:

A friend and I were talking recently about kale (because who doesn’t talk about kale regularly with their friends?) and she was telling me that she just isn’t a fan. I get it. I didn’t used to like the stuff either! And then I discovered the secret – the kale massage.

Start with your bowl of kale and dig your hands in there, almost like you’re kneading dough. Rub the leaves in between your fingers and the leaves will slowly start to soften and turn a darker green.

It not only makes for a more pleasant texture, but it also cuts the bitterness, making it a much more lovely base for salads. Also, there are different kinds of kale. I prefer baby kale for salads since it’s more tender than other varieties.

And this salad has become one of my favorites. The night before I ran my first half marathon, I went to a restaurant and ordered this salad with a side of salmon. I almost didn’t order it because of the kale, but they didn’t have a lot of healthy options to choose from (and chicken fingers and fries before race day would not have worked out so well for me!).

Holy cow. It was one of the most delicious meals I have ever eaten! So, I pulled out my phone and recorded all of the ingredients so that I could remake it at home.

 

Gilded Blueberry Rhubarb Jam | Photo credit: jazzyjava, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Gilded Blueberry Rhubarb Jam | Photo credit: jazzyjava, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Check out What Smells So Good? for the recipe for making your own gilded blueberry rhubarb jam — fun, informative intro from photographer/cook/blogger jazzyjava:

Canning in the height of Summer is a bit of a catch-22, especially this year where we’ve had some ridiculously warm weeks. I was finally driven to drag out the beast of a water bath canner after having not one, but two bags of fruit leap out of the freezer onto the floor when I went to grab some bread. I had carefully prepped and measured peaches, plumcots, strawberries and mangoes as I picked them up from farmers markets or supermarket sales, and eventually the freezer just got too full – a fact which was accompanied by a somewhat insistent nagging poking from Mother Dearest to “please do something with all that stuff in the freezer!”. Given that I had bags of local wild blueberries (scored at an excellent price from the market) that I had IQF’ed recently and a seemingly neverending supply of rhubarb in the backyard (my stepfather bought two – yes, two – new plants this year to add to the three we already had), I figured bluebarb would be my first canning foray.

Of course, I could never just make blueberry-rhubarb jam. Not the traditional way. The first thing I did was choose a no-sugar-needed pectin as my thickener, allowing me to slash the sugar and allow the true fruity flavour of the berries to come through. I had a little jar of decadent, local honey in my pantry that I had bought from the Brickworks Farmers’ Market downtown and used that to add a flavourful, bitter-sweet note to the mixture, and completed the sweetness trifecta with a few packets of Truvia. For kicks (and because I was canning some of this for holiday gift giving), I sprinkled in some gold flakes, lending an opulence to the jars as they sat on the counter, cooling.

The two jars I didn’t process went into the fridge – where, upon being discovered by Mom and Grandma, they met an untimely demise on home baked bread. The only thing that made this better was a smear of creamy peanut butter underneath!

 

How-to Asian cooking video for Beef and Broccoli with Oyster Sauce is embedded in the tweet posted above.

 

Garlic Chilli Pasta with Bacon and Asparagus | Photo credit: CoconutRyo, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Garlic Chilli Pasta with Bacon and Asparagus | Photo credit: CoconutRyo, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

No recipe was provided for this simple,but delicious-looking garlic chili pasta dish with bacon and asparagus. The photo of it, however, looks fairly easy to duplicate without a recipe.

If you’re not comfortable with flat-out winging it, I found a few other recipes that, with a bit of tweaking and some ingredient substitutions, should be similar to the dish created by photographer/cook CoconutRyo. Check out Gimme Some Oven, Hotly Spiced, Good to Know, and Telegraph.

 

 

Chicken & Spinach  Soup with Fresh Pesto | Photo credit: psgreen01, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Chicken & Spinach Soup with Fresh Pesto | Photo credit: psgreen01, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Recipe encore from 2013photographer/cook psgreen01 used this recipe posted at Eating Well — here is the overview:

This fragrant, Italian-flavored soup takes advantage of quick-cooking ingredients—boneless, skinless chicken breast, bagged baby spinach and canned beans. It features a simple homemade basil pesto swirled in at the end to add a fresh herb flavor. If you are very pressed for time, you can substitute 3 to 4 tablespoons of a store-bought basil pesto.

 

This breakfast sausage-egg pizza looks SO good… recipe is available at MyRecipes.

 

Intro from the Tomato Wellness site’s recipe for Chile con Carne with Avocado Cream Sauce:

Eating healthy is such a priority for Americans these days. Don’t get me wrong, I love a Cronut as much as the next person. But since I (and many others) give into these indulgences; it is even more important to get to reap the benefits of healthy foods when it counts. Some foods have the amazing ability to boost your intake of certain nutrients when eating together. Take avocados and tomatoes for example. Tomatoes (and other orange/red vegetables) are loaded with beta-carotene and Vitamin A, an antioxidant that promotes eye health and reduced risk of developing cancer or heart disease. When tomatoes are paired with foods like avocados, your body’s ability to get all of the nutrients out of these foods, particularly vitamin A increases. And who doesn’t like these two foods together? Salsa and guacamole, Cobb salads, many healthy Mexican dishes are also great options. So, for the sake of your health (and a little self promotion as well), I present to you a delicious Chili con Carne Chili with an Avocado Cream Topping. Because food that’s good for you should taste good, too.

 

You’ll find the recipe for this fabulous chocolate chip banana bread posted at Yummly.

 

Vintage magazine ad, Alcoa Aluminum Wrap, with Butter-Barbecued Beef Loaves Recipe, McCall's, July 1965 (click twice to enlarge) | Photo credit: Vicki McClure Davidson, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Vintage magazine ad, Alcoa Aluminum Wrap, with Butter-Barbecued Beef Loaves Recipe, McCall’s, July 1965 (click twice to enlarge) | Photo credit: Vicki McClure Davidson, Flickr, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

 

Food photos selected and posted are credited and have Creative Commons-licensed content with some rights reserved for noncommercial purposes, unless otherwise noted.

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Past two months of Fab Food Friday Fotos posts:

Caramel Pound Cake, Kiam Peng, GF Artichoke Quiche, Black Bean Burgers, Summer Potato Salad, DIY Whiskey Jerky, Pork with Apples, Squash Risotto, Pumpkin Popcorn Balls, Lemon-Garlic Shrimp & Grits, Split Pea Soup, More Thrifty Recipes

Italian Sausage & Lentils with Potatoes, Pasta with Brussels Sprouts & Pancetta, One Pot Roast Italian Chicken, Creamed Zucchini, GF Almond Tea Bread, Avocado-Corn Salsa, "Skinny" Italian Chocolate Shake, Chinese-Style Eggplant, Rhubarb Butter, More Easy Recipes

Korean Keema, Eton Mess, Peanut Chicken Soba Noodles, Street Tacos Al Pastor, Happy Squirrel Bento, Chunky Gazpacho, Beer-Battered Fish & British Chips, Jalapeño Popper Chicken Breasts, Bean Soup, Corn Fritters & Roasted Tomatoes, More Thrifty Recipes

Thai-Style Watermelon Salad, Curry-Masala Lamb Burgers, Totoro Sesame Tarts, Pork Tenderloin & Tomato-Peach Compote, Oven-Roasted Broccoli, Chicken Wings, Black Magic Chocolate Cake, Zucchini "Hash Browns" & Eggs, More Fab Recipes

Vietnamese Chicken Wings with Lemongrass Brown Rice, Easy Spaghetti Pie, Slow-Cooker Cider Beef Stew, Nut-Hugging Teddie Bear Cookies, Ground Turkey Dishes, Shakshuka, Key Lime Pie, GF Fish Sticks, BBQ Chickpea Salad, More Frugal Recipes

Lemon-Orange Ice Cream, Roast Pork Neck, GF Sweet Potato & Lime Taquitos, Easy Cheesecake, Chicken Adobo, Quick Black Beans, Country Breakfast Pizza, Thai Veggie Stew, Bacon Nachos, Rachael Ray’s Dandan Noodles, More Frugal Recipes

Beef-Pork Meatballs, Cherry Cucumber Coolers, Fried Fish Tacos, GF Apricot Chocolate Chip Cookies, Sauerkraut Pork Casserole, Eggplant Toast, Chilli Chicken Pasta, Garlic Dill Zucchini Pickles, Swedish Salmon Tart, More Fab Recipes

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About the author

I'm a conservative frugalist. My priorities: Watchdogging the government, making sure our tax dollars are spent wisely, living within our budgets (at home and in Washington, DC), and adhering to our Constitution and the conservative principles upon which it was developed by our founding fathers. Also, loving God, my family, and my country. Be wise, be frugal. God bless America!      

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