Freeze Now, Use Later – Don’t Waste the Tomato Paste!

There are times I only need a little bit of tomato paste in my cooking.  So, what do I do with the rest?  I freeze the rest!  Why waste…freeze and use later 🙂

Here’s how:  I use ice tray (any ice tray would do).  This is a silicon one.  I scoop the tomato paste out of the can into the ice tray compartments,
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then I flatten the tomato paste with a spoon. image

I know it kinda looks messy, but that’s okay, it freezes beautifully 🙂image

Next, I wrap the ice tray with plastic wrap.image

I lay the tray flat inside the freezer.  I leave it overnight.image

All frozen! 🙂image

Next day, I take the tray out and unwrap it.  I place a cutting board on the counter and then twist the tray over it.  And, down falls out the frozen tomato paste!image

Looking good!image

I place them in a freezer bag.  I seal and label the bag, then I put it back in the freezer until I’m ready to use them.  I take out one or two or however many I need, and save the rest for later. image

When I cook meat or veggies, I throw a couple into the pan!  I love the taste it gives to my food.  Plus,  I love to not waste.  I feel good about it.  Freezing is a good thing! 🙂

Enjoy.

 

…thank you for visiting my blog…until next time 🙂

 

Freeze Banana Slices for Smoothie – 5 Easy Steps

 When bananas start to have brown spots like the ones you see in the picture below, you are left with two options:  1) Eat them as soon as possible, or 2) Freeze them.  Many people never think of freezing bananas, but I do it all the time.  Frozen bananas make the best smoothies.  Better freeze than throw away a good-looking banana:)

1.  I peel the banana and cut them into 8 slices.   I, then, arrange them flat side up in a single layer on the cutting board.  You can use a cookie sheet also.  

2.  I place them in the freezer for about 45 minutes.  They freeze nicely.

3.  Next, I place each individually frozen banana slices into a sandwich bag.    Freezing them individually, and then storing them in a bag keep these slices from sticking to each other.  

4.  Then I place the sandwich bag with frozen banana slices into another bag, a storage bag or freezer bag.   Just for extra protection!  I do this so that these banana slices won’t get freezer burn.  image

5.  And, that’s it!  I just throw in 2 to 3 frozen banana slices into the blender when I’m making my delicious smoothie.  Yum!

…thank you for visiting my blog…until next time:)

Dark Chocolate Covered Almonds – My Easy Recipes!

I really enjoyed making these.  They are fun to make and delicious to eat.
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I roasted almonds in the oven (I used my little toaster oven).  The aroma of roasting almonds is quite good:).  That also meant it was ready to be taken out of the oven.  So that’s what I did.  And, I set them aside to cool.

 Time to melt chocolate:

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Endangered Species Chocolate is what I used (the brown wrap one).  My daughter is an animal lover.  Her diet includes no animal products or by-products.  She is passionate about them and is determined to be their voice.   (I am making this for her.)

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Next step:  I started my double-boiler.  I heated enough water in the pot so that it wouldn’t touch the base of the second pot with chocolate pieces to be melted.

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I kept the heat on low because the chocolate melts fairly quickly.

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All melted! Looked rich & creamy!  I turned the heat off.

Next, I added almonds into the melted chocolate and stirred the chocolate to coat the almonds.

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Roasted almond & melted chocolate…irresistible!  I wanted to try one so badly.

I placed wax paper on a cookie sheet.  Then, I scooped out almonds from the pot and spread them in a single layer on the wax paper.  I got a spoon to start separating these guys.  After that, I placed these almonds in the fridge so that the chocolate around these almonds will solidify.

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They stayed in the fridge for about 15 minutes.

It was time to coat them with cocoa powder.  You don’t have to do this part, but the cocoa powder adds to the flavor.

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I mixed in a bit of raw cane sugar in the cocoa.

Then, I got the chocolate covered almonds from the fridge and dropped them in the cocoa powder mix;  I used a spoon to gently fold the cocoa powder over the chocolate covered almonds.

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Last thing I did was to place the almonds from the bowl into a colander.  I shook the colander to get excess cocoa off the almonds.  And, then I stored them in a plastic container.  All done!

My daughter will love this.  She will be coming home soon from the animal shelter…I’ll surprise her!  This is one of her favorites!  I’m glad I made these for her.  I feel good!

 

Serving size of almonds from http://www.livestrong.com:

The USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory says that 1 oz. of whole, shelled almond kernels contain 163 calories and about 14 g of fat.  They’re also a nutritious source of protein and fiber, with 6 g of protein and 3.5 g of fiber.

1 oz. is standard serving of almonds.  That’s equal to one handful or about 23 whole, shelled nuts.

Endangered Species Dark Chocolate Bar serving size:

!/2 a bar, calories: 250; total fat: 18 g; cholesterol: 0 mg; carb: 20 g; Fiber: 5 g; Protein: 4 g

My recipe:

1 – Endangered Species dark chocolate bar (use any brand you like)

1 – Cup Almond

2 – Tablespoon Nestle Toll House Cocoa Powder (use any brand you like)

1 – Tablespoon raw cane sugar (option: use white granulated sugar or powdered sugar)

  1.  Heat oven to 300 degrees.  Place almonds in a baking pan and bake for 10 – 12 minutes.  Take out of the oven, and let them cool.
  2. Place wax paper on a cookie sheet and set aside.  In a small bowl add cocoa powder and sugar and set aside.  Have a colander handy.  Have a storage container set aside also.
  3. Break chocolate bar into pieces, and melt in a double boiler.  (Please refer to pictures above).
  4. Add almonds and stir to coat.
  5. Scoop them out on the wax paper and gently spread them in a single layer.
  6. With a spoon separate the almonds from each other.
  7. Place the almonds in the fridge for the chocolate to solidify.
  8. Break the chocolate almond pieces…thin chocolate layer breaks apart quickly.
  9. Put all of the chocolate covered almonds into the cocoa powder sugar bowl.  With a spoon fold the cocoa powder mix to coat the chocolate covered almonds.
  10. Place all the cocoa powder coated chocolate covered almonds in the colander, and gently shake to get excess cocoa mix off them.
  11. Place these coated chocolate covered almonds in a storage container.

Enjoy!!

…thank you for visiting my blog…until next time:)

Spaghetti My Way – My Easy Recipes

 

This is what I’m cooking tonight for dinner.  Yummy!  One of my husband’s favorites.  High protein meal, undoubtedly.

I get all my ingredients set up.  Then I boil the spaghetti noodles per package.  I cool it under cold running water and set it aside.

In a large pot, I add oil and the ground beef.  I turn the heat to medium and start browning the ground beef.  I stir frequently to keep the ground beef crumbly.  While it is browning I add the onion and sliced garlic because I really don’t like the smell of ground beef cooking.  The  onion and garlic cooking along with the ground beef works for my olfactory systems:0)  I drain the meat in a colander if there’s fat.  Then, I start adding other ingredients.

I start by adding the spaghetti sauce…

Then, I add everything else – fresh parsley,  ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, water, salt and pepper.
  

I cook this mixture on medium-high until it starts to boil.  Then I turn the heat to medium-low and cover the pot.  I cook this for about 20 minutes.  At this point the mixture should not be bubbling-in-a-hurry, but simmering-in-calmness 🙂. Stir every so often to see if sauce is thickening.  Once it reaches desirable thickness cut the heat off.  The sauce is done!

Spaghetti is served:)  

I add salad and garlic toast as sides.

My husband loves this recipe.  He does not even order spaghetti out in a restaurant, ever!

 

Ingredient: (Serves approximately 6)

1 box spaghetti pasta – cook per box directions  (I freeze what I don’t use)

1 tablespoon – Canola oil

2 pounds – ground beef (option: you could use ground chicken or turkey)

1 large onion – peeled and chopped

3 to 4 cloves garlic – peeled and sliced

1 bunch – fresh parsley chopped (option: you can add 1-teaspoon of dry Italian Seasoning)

1 – 24 oz spaghetti sauce (I used Herb Garlic Psst Sauce from Kroger)

2 tablespoon – Worcestershire sauce

4 tablespoons – ketchup

1 tablespoon – sugar

1/4 cup – water

Salt and pepper to taste

Cooking Direction ( step by step):

  1. Boil pasta, drain and cool under cold tap water and set aside
  2. Add oil in a large pot.
  3. Add ground beef and start browning it for about 10 minutes on medium heat
  4. Keep stirring so the meat does not clump up, you want it crumbly
  5. Add chopped onion and garlic slices to the cooking ground beef
  6. Add chopped parsley, and stir to mix
  7. Drain fat (if there’s any) by dumping everything from the pot into a colander.
  8. Put drained mixture from the colander back into the pot
  9. Add spaghetti sauce, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, sugar, water, salt and pepper
  10. Stir to mix well
  11. Cook on medium-high heat until the mixture starts to boil.
  12. Cut heat down to medium-low, and cover the pot
  13. Cook for 20 minutes or until the sauce is to the consistency you like.  I like mine thick.  (Proof is in the photos:)).   Serve over cooked spaghetti.

 

Nutritional Information (approximate)

Spaghetti noodles:

Calories 200; Total Fat 1 g; Saturated Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 0 mg; Carbohydrate 42 g; Fiber 2 g; Sugar 2 g; Protein 7 g

Ground beef sauce:

Calories 334.67; Total Fat 15.96 g; Saturated Fat 6.07 g; Cholesterol 97.5 mg; Sodium 750 mg; Carbohydrate 14.43 g; Fiber 3 g; Sugar 9.76 g; Protein 31.94 g

…thanks for visiting my blog…until next time.

My Recipe: Buffalo Boneless Chicken Wing Balls 

These Buffalo Chicken Wing Balls are seriously yummy!  Sauces I used were Original Anchor Bar Wing Sauce and Tabasco sauce.  That’s it!

1. I chopped up chicken breast.  I chopped it when they were not thawed all the way, but still a bit frozen.  It’s super easy to cut and chop the meat when it’s not completely frozen.  Need a sharp knife for sure!  I, then, added the wing sauce and Tabasco sauce in the chicken, and marinated the chicken for an hour.

2. Then I filled an ice-cube tray with the marinated chicken and covered the tray with aluminum foil, and placed it in the freezer for an hour.  The chicken meat somewhat soldifies…let’s say semi frozen. Not rock solid!

3. After an hour, I took the ice-cube tray with the chicken out from the freezer, and unwrapped the foil .  I scooped out semi-frozen chicken balls one at a time and dropped them in the flour mix (recipe below).  Coated them well, shook off excess coating, and dropped them in heated oil.  Medium to low heat.  Fried 4 to 5 balls at a time.

      

4.  Fried them for 3-4 minutes until golden.  Put them on paper towel to soak oil.  Then for the grand finale…

  

5.  I dropped the fried chicken balls in the sauce mix, and gently stirred them in the sauce to coat well.  I arranged them on a plate and…

  

…It was time to eat them!  Delicious!

Ingredients for above recipe:

2 Chicken breast semi frozen, cut in tiny cubes (chopped)

1 Cup Original Anchor Bar Wing Sauce (use more if you want extra saucy wing balls)

1 Teaspoon Tabasco Sauce (optional). Use only if you want extra heat!

 Marinate for the chopped chicken breast:

4 Tablespoons Anchor Bar wing Sauce

1 Teaspoon Tabasco Sauce

Flour Mix:

1/2 Cup White Flour

1/2 Cup Corn Meal

1/2 Teaspoon ground black pepper

Mix all three ingredients and you have the flour mix.  I add no salt because the sauce has enough in it.

And there you have it!  It’s easy and yummy!!  These boneless wings are not as high in calories because the flour coating is not heavy as in store-bought frozen ones or the ones from the restaurants.  The coating is thin, you can actually see the pink chicken underneath before it’s fried.  Eaten fresh it’s light and crispy to taste!  I love this recipe…hope you will too.

…enjoy now! ..until next time.  Thank you for checking out my blog.