Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Homemade goodies--a double money-saver!

Alright--I'll admit it: the homemade spaghetti sauce totally did not deserve two posts...I'm sure anyone who makes their own sauce already as well as those who may have tried to gather some free ingredients must have been thinking "Come ON, already"

But, in case it hasn't come across yet, I love being in the kitchen. As weird as it might sound to those of you who know me, I LOVE food! I love baking treats (so much that I've even let my sister claim credit for my cookies when she gave them as a gift to her boyfriend!) and making full meals for my family from scratch. Yes, I'm clumsy and so I make a mess, but its fun! Which is why, to me, cooking is a double money-saver. Firstly, it prevents me from buying silly, over-priced junkfood that is full of unhealthy preservatives and covered in layers of destined-to-be-landfill-filling wrappers. And, secondly, its something to do! This is a biggie for me lately, because I've been doing the post-college/pre-gradschool jobhunt (one of the hardest things of my life...), and cooking definitely provides a much needed break from that.

This past weekend, I harvested the produce of my sole basil plant! I had grown it from seed, carefully tended and watered it in the spring, and then moved it outside after returning home from college. My reward? Pesto!!! Delicious, fresh, garlicky pesto! Not only was it rewarding for me as a reprive from the curse of my mother's black thumb, but it was frugal and semi-healthy. Ok, so pesto does include a comparatively great deal of olive oil and parmesan cheese and pinenuts, but these are healthy fats, with protein! So far, my family has enjoyed it on sandwiches and pasta. Also this past week, I've been experimenting with freezing cookie dough. After mixing everything together, I use my fantastic cookie scoop ($5.95 at Walmart!) to make perfect little balls of dough, which store perfectly in a tupperware in my freezer. Consequently, almost every night for the past week, my evening has ended with freshly baked cookies! I totally recommend this method for
everyone who loves cookies: moms with little kids who always want to 'help mommy', moms whose teenagers have to fend for themselves after school, young adults too busy to bake very often, and they make a great gift for anyone who may be baking-challenged! Voila! A bountiful supply of budget-friendly bites!

Look for more updates coming soon!


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  1. I love the frozen cookie dough idea. Are there some types of cookies which work better than others?

  2. Hi Dawn,
    Great question--the two most popular cookies in my house are definitely chocolate chip and oatmeal raisin. These both work really well to freeze, but I'm sure any drop cookie thats relatively firm would work (i.e. peanut butter, lemon cookies, or anything that's your favorite!)