Kitchen

How to Find the Perfect Recipe Book?

There are literally thousands perhaps even millions of different recipe books available in the world, so how do you pick the one or three that will be right for you?
pizza-296036_1280The easiest place to begin when choosing the perfect recipe book is by deciding on the particular cuisine, cooking style, or diet you and your family often cook within and/or want to switch to. Perhaps you are trying to incorporate a vegetable-based diet, or maybe you desire to go gluten free. Perhaps you are much simpler than that and just want a few different recipe books to help bring a more varied culture spin to your week-to-week or month-to-month meal planning. Whatever your culinary interest, be sure to choose one that will prove useful for years down the line. Do not buy a cookbook of nothing, but baking recipes if your family is not the type to eat multiple baked goods on at least a monthly to bi-monthly basis.
Ok so let us say your family is trying to do meatless Mondays, and you want to invest in a cookbook related to vegetarianism to give you some ideas for meal planning. The next step to finding the perfect cookbook is by finding a location that sells a variety of different books, though Amazon may have a large variation of cookbooks, but I find used bookstores to be much more appealing for this type of search. The reason I suggest taking your search to a used bookstore is that you are likely to find a greater variety of recipe books including ones that never quiet made it to Amazon. This variety will help assure to find the book that is going to be most helpful to you. Of course if you either A) Don’t have a used book store nearby or B) Just prefer the scrolling search of the internet no problem the rest of the suggestions I’m going to give will help you out just as much.
So you are at the store standing in front of the large mass of recipe books dedicated solely to vegetarian cuisine or book-23476_1280whatever theme you decided to follow or explore during this recipe book quest.
3 Things to Avoid:
1. Books that require the use of a certain kitchen tool i.e microwave cooking, crock-pot, one skillet meals ect. (If you are looking for quick meal suggestions, I recommend the search of these be done on the internet vs a cookbook every time.) For suggestions on recipe sites see my article 4 Recipe Inspiration Sites.
2. Books that are clearly from circa 1990 or later these books are filled with what we know today to be not so healthy ingredients i.e large portions of butter, and lard.
3. Be wary of books with one ingredient as the center point. Example Cooking With Cheese, you want any cookbook you get to include recipes filled with a variety of different ingredients cookbooks having a focus on one ingredient don’t end up being very useful in terms of long term use for a home kitchen.
3 Things to Look At:
recipe-312959_12801. When picking out the perfect cookbook, choose a book that has a variety of recipes, turn to the table of contents page check the number of chapters or sections make sure the book is offering a variety. One of my favorite recipe books entitled The Best Recipe Italian Classic by the Editors of Cook’s Illustrated Magazine has 14 chapters ranging from Antipasti to Fish and Shellfish. They also cover Fruit Desserts, Biscotti, Crostate, and Cakes. If you want a recipe book that is going to last you awhile I highly recommend one with multiple chapters.
2. Look to make sure the recipes are laid out in an easy to read fashion, are the ingredients lists obvious and separate from the directions? Do the recipes indicate the number of servings the recipe is designed to make? Is the font clear, readable, and large enough for you to read? Are the recipes spaced out well enough that you will not get lost while trying to read the steps in a hurry as you cook?
3. Finally, read through a few of the recipes turn to random pages throughout the different chapters of the book to determine if the recipes actually sound appetizing, I’ve made the mistake in the past of buying recipe books only to read through them and find that I did not like half of the recipes I found within. Be sure to purchase a book that’s recipes make you think tasty, yummy, or I can’t wait to get this book home so I can cook that.

Happy Recipe Book Hunting!!!

Advertisements
Employment, Motherhood

Time Doesn’t Wait on Dreams

travel-420011_1280I am taking a break from talking about food today to share more of a personal thought or realization. Every blogger knows that the act of blogging is itself a journey, a journey filled with highs, lows, and all around new experiences thoughts, ideas, and realizations. However, the choice to begin blogging is also usually the result of some life altering decision, experience, or choice. Some of us got into this activity after we realized that though we love to write we weren’t doing any writing excluding perhaps the one sentence idea that we would jot down planning to revisit later. In that instance we made a choice to start writing. Others of us made the decision to do it with the hope that one day we might be able to see some amount of success, just for doing an act that we love doing. Then of course you have those of us bloggers who experienced something in our life that showed us we won’t always have the chance to do this, at some point we won’t be able to create words, we won’t be able to come up with new ideas, and we won’t be here to keyboard-648447_1280even try.

My decision to begin blogging was a combination of all three in December of 2014 I learned that I was pregnant with my first child, after I had just made the decision to leave a job without having another as back up in the wings. It was my plan to find a new job that didn’t conflict so much with my husbands after all him and I only have one car between us and he was making more money at his job than I was at mine. So there was the life altering decision that would lead up to my being here. Despite being pregnant I spent six weeks of my time looking for a job that’s schedule did not conflict with my husbands and that paid better than the previous company I had been working for. This was a daunting task and left me at the end of six weeks feeling nothing but disappointment after all my husband had been able to locate a job within three days of leaving his previous one and prior to that had found the job he left within a two or three hour search. I was left with a choice to either A) Tough it out, and take my pregnant self on foot door to door trying to sell myself as a minimum wage employee despite my college educated background, or B) I needed to put forth the time and effort online creating a business and job for myself. The life altering experience of a new baby on the way sealed the fate for what my choice would be. I created a blog, and began researching freelance writing, locating jobs and slowly I was making money for my writing. Though it wasn’t near what I needed to be making in order for my family to have a sound future it was at the very least a start.

clock-439147_1280The first thing I love about pregnancy as unplanned and uncomfortable all of this has been is getting the chance to feel a beautiful life growing inside of me. The second is having the courage to follow my dreams and reach and achieve my goals. Even before becoming pregnant and jobless I had wanted to be a writer. In fact it is what I’ve wanted to do for the majority of my life. However, just like so many others I was daunted by the task of publication. There was no way I could abide by the stuffy rules of journalism to write for a paper or in my mind even a magazine. And the long wait of a book publication and the unknown return of the investment. I believed that I needed a day job while waiting to have any success as a writer. Well as being pregnant with a baby will teach you, time doesn’t wait for you to make your dreams come true. Instead, only you can make your dreams come true. I’m lucky to have been gifted with the patience to sit and write and research for hours at a time. I’m lucky to have a husband who is willing to work and figure out a way to make the bills work out every month. If I didn’t have these two things its likely that I would not have managed to get as far as I have in the last few months. As far as my current standing as a freelancer is concerned I’m having some relatively good success, I have two consistent gigs that I could potentially continue and grow with for the rest of my freelancing career. Plus a pending contract that would potentially provide me with a regular source of income (of course I’mwoman-446670_1280 trying not to hold my breath and count my chickens before they have hatched).

Being pregnant has opened my eyes to the immediate future, and making my dreams and goals a reality now rather than tomorrow. I want my son to know that no matter what you dream about doing with a lot of hard work and determination you can make it happen. I want his life to be filled with fun and adventure as well as many different experiences. I want him to feel and see the love of two parents who are willing to do whatever it take to make each others dreams come true. My husband has been with my through every step, he stood by me as I finished my college degree, and he is standing by me now as I slowly develop my career as a writer. One day it will be my turn to stand by him as he opens his own restaurant. Our son will see his parents dreams come true Daniel with his restaurant and me with my book on Barnes and Noble Book Shelves. In addition, our son will have the full embodiment of  that which only two parents who love and support each other as much as my husband and I do can give.

Time doesn’t wait when it comes to the achievement of dreams, tell me what dreams having you been waiting on to come true?

Kitchen

What’s in Season for Spring: 5 Must Try Recipe’s

A new season is just a couple of days away the northern hemisphere will officially swing into Spring this Friday March 20th and just as with any new season new vegetables and fruits go on sale. So which fruits and vegetables are in season during the next three months of Spring? Click here to find out.

Spring is definitely one of the most beautiful times of the year as the flowers come out to bloom, the weather is nice and cool, neither too cold or too hot (depending on exactly where you live that is). My favorite part of Spring is the blooming of the wild flowers along the highways and scattered across peoples yards. I love being able to finally open up my windows wide to let in a cool breeze, air out the house, and catch some natural light that has been long missed in the crazy cloudy gray months of winter. Yes Spring is definitely a refreshing renewal of all things…well…Fresh. Here are just Five of my favorite Spring time recipes complete with Spring time fruits and vegetables.

appetite-2038_1280

#1 Asparagus- I shared this recipe not that many weeks back and I must say as far as Spring Time goes this is one of my favorites!

Check out my amazing side dish/snack of baked Sea Salt Asparagus Here.

#2 Lettuce, Lettuce, Lettuce (I will be doing a full article just on this topic later in the season, but I must say I can’t get enough lettuces, and green leafies. Salads, are my go to in these Spring Time months. In fact, just last night I served myself a big bowl of salad made with Butter Lettuce (believe it or not there’s no actual butter involved) and a side of baked fish. Super delicious. My favorite way to make a salad?

One of my many salad experiments!
One of my many salad experiments!

Favorite lettuce (I like just about any and every leaf that I can happily eat raw), but my most favorite would have to be a combination of butter lettuce and the boxed SPRING Mix that you can get at most big box stores.

Chopped Red, Yellow, or Orange Bell of course!!!

English Cucumber Chopped

Handful of Cheese (Feta is my favorite though these days I’m using shredded American cheese)

Croutons

If all I’m eating is a salad for a meal then I also like to add some type of protein

Either 1/3rd can of Kidney or Black beans, Grilled Chicken, Sliced Portobello mushrooms, or 2 Deviled Eggs

Then my favorite dressing I really like Kraft’s Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette as well as their Red Pepper Vinaigrette

Broccoli Steak, I cook mine on a cast iron stove top grill!!
Broccoli Steak, I cook mine on a cast iron stove top grill!!

#3 Broccoli Steak

Growing up I was a “weird” kid and loved Broccoli in fact it was my favorite vegetable I could eat it all day long raw, steamed, or covered in cheese it didn’t much matter to me. I still love broccoli today, and during my four year stint as a vegetarian I learned of unique ways to turn my favorite vegetable into an awesome main course! Broccoli Steak is just like it sounds it’s a full steak of broccoli, super simple to make it’s nearly impossible to mess it up.

Step 1: Take a large full head of Fresh Broccoli, Cut in half lengthwise down the stem, you should on average be able to make about four Steaks from one head of broccoli.

Step 2: Place on hot grill, you may choose to baste the broccoli steaks with Panzo sauce (Next time your having sushi at a sushi restaurant just ask for a couple of little to go containers of this awesome sauce.). You can also just baste with butter salt and pepper or, you don’t really have to add seasoning at all if your like me and just love broccoli. The slight charring the steaks will receive from the grill will provide the broccoli with all the flavor it really needs.

Step 3: Once the grill marks are noticeable on both sides of the broccoli steaks it really shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes total to cook the steaks (and even that might be too long depending on what kind of heat you are using so keep an eye on them). Once fully cooked, plate and serve.

#4 Mango

This is how my Husband cuts my mango. He's got Knife Skills!!!
This is how my Husband cuts my mango. He’s got Knife Skills!!!

Personally I prefer to just chop these little devils up and eat them raw, there isn’t much I would do to change a Mango

however for some awesome Mango recipe’s try clicking here. Some of the most common uses for mango are in Mango salsa, but there are also some more creative ideas like Mango Blueberry Muffins with Coconut Streusel

Also you might think of adding them to a smoothie, or if you have enough turning them into Sherbert, YUM!!!

#5 Fennel Chicken

I love to do baked chicken in the oven and I enjoy getting creative with the seasonings, one of the yummiest recipes I’ve tried involved using Fennel, garlic, salt, and pepper. It was very delicious!!!

This is what Fennel looks like.
This is what Fennel looks like.

Have a Happy Spring!!! Please share what awesome recipes you enjoy during these three months of the year in the comments below.

Organizing

Spring Cleaning: Tips and Tricks to a fresh Start of the Year

It’s that time of year again, time to open the windows, let in the cool spring breeze, and air out the house from its long winter slumber. It’s also time to get the house back in order after months of new toys, great food, and hunkering down through the cold of winter. I have here a list of articles from around the web and my own blog to help you get started on your Spring Cleaning journey.

Deep Cleaning Your Kitchengloves-415390_1280

– New and improved with updated ideas!

Kitchen Organization: From Junk Drawer to Microwave Placement

– This article is perfect for anyone who finds their kitchen layout and counter space to be counter productive!!!

Spring Cleaning Checklist

-This mom doesn’t claim to have it all figured out, but she does have an awesome Spring Cleaning Checklist perfect for any mom with a toddler and a new born. Pregos over here might even be using it! I mean after all its not like getting on my hands and knees to scrub the oven was really going to be happening anytime in the next few months anyway.

For those looking to keep things in order all year round, check out this article by Whitney Coy. It breaks up your chores Daily, weekly, and monthly.

Stick to the Little Things

-This was a bad year for stomach bugs and the flu, I know my family was hit one a month between January and March, no fun. So if your still not ready for the top to bottom house cleaning that comes with Spring, at least make sure you cover these 10 things.

If this list wasn’t enough to get you started, then here is another fun reason to get your Spring Cleaning on. As you find dollar-163473_1280unwanted items or items that haven’t been used in years, you have the opportunity to make extra cash by A) Selling them in a garage/yard sale, B) Taking them to a resale shop that will give you cash or allow you to pick up new items from around the store, C) There is always the opportunity to sell on facebook or craigslist, and D) if worse comes to worse you can take everything to your local goodwill and redeem the voucher during next years tax season I usually get an extra $50 or so from my yearly donations of clothes, and house-hold items.

If you liked this article you may also like:

Clean Out Your Computer Day

Single Tasking Day

Keeping the House Clean During the Holidays

Surviving Life with a Baby Part 5: Chore Chart

Save

College Life

Thursday for Drinks: Buying Alcohol on a Budget

Spring Break is just around the corner and for some it might be here all ready. When planning your vacation fun you might be tempted to party hard and not think about the consequences the cost of the alcohol is going to bring you. And I’m not talking about DWI’s here, though please if you do choose to drink make sure you don’t drive. When you drink and drive you are not only putting yourself at risk, but you are putting others at risk as well. In fact when you drink and drive you are more likely to kill another person than you are yourself. So be smart.

Three things to remember when buying booze:

One: Know your limits, if your tripping over air after four beers then keep it at no more than four beers throughout the course of the whole day. This will one save you beer from day to day, two help to keep you from getting too hung over, and three keep you on a good buzz high throughout the day. Which honestly do you really want to be much beyond that anyway?

If you know how much alcohol you can handle you will know how much to buy for yourself that will last the week. If you can only drink four without getting smashed, and your planning a five day run of crazy than you don’t need anymore than 20 beers for the week. If five of you are in the party and lets say you all drink about the same amount, than 4 cases of beer should be more than enough to hold you over for the week. Be sure to buy in bulk and skip specs, and other liquor stores they will over charge you simply because they can. Go to your local grocery store such as Walmart, Costco, H.E.B, or Randals. You will save money in the long run if you do. a-glass-of-428315_1280

Not a beer drinker no problem. Walmart has excellent sales on wine, pick up a cheap $2.50 bottle of Pinot, believe it or not the flavor is almost on par with the popular Bella Sera brand. Also don’t be afraid to try out their reds if your more of a red drinker.

Again know how much you need for the week, and don’t over purchase. Stick to the less expensive brands, you might find that they surprise you.

Two: Get your friends to pitch in, if you are all going to drink the beer, shouldn’t you all pay for it? Collect five to ten dollars a person from everyone who’s drinking. This not only covers the alcohol it also can help with the cost of ice, and plastic cups. If your lucky you might even have enough change left over for a ping pong ball or two.

bar-463476_1280Three: Don’t spend the $3 and $4 a bottle at the bar, its much cheaper just to drink at home. If you must go out, before you do look into the local specials see what days and times bars in your area put different brews on discount. If you can get a $3 pitcher at 3pm go for it. However, if come 11pm the pitcher price goes up to $8 skip it, its not worth the monetary hangover you will find on your credit card statement later.

Wishing all of you a happy Thursday!

What are some of your alcohol money saving secrets? Comment below.

Kitchen, Organizing

How to Create a Gourmet Kitchen on a Budget?

When I say Gourmet Kitchen I don’t necessarily mean it the way they do on TLC. For me a gourmet kitchen isn’t about the big kitchen island or the ten burner stove. It also does not include white cabinets (in fact even if I meant it the way they do on TLC it wouldn’t involve white cabinets). Am I the only one who’s noticed the way in which white cabinets tend to get ridiculously dirty, especially if you do a lot of cooking in the kitchen? Anyway that will have to be a different article all together. Let me give you my definition of a gourmet kitchen. A gourmet kitchen is one that is easy to cook in and has all of your necessary tools on hand. This should be possible in even an apartment sized kitchen.

kitchen-563548_1280

So where do you begin? How do you create a gourmet kitchen on a little budget and with limited space.

First, you need to organize your kitchen and get an understanding of what utensils you have what they can be used for and what items you don’t have that could help you in broadening your cooking abilities. For ways of organizing your kitchen please see my article Kitchen Organization: From Junk Drawer to Microwave Placement. As far as understanding what items you are in need of consider a cooking style or trick you have always wanted to try, but have been unable to as a result of not having the right tools.

A few questions to ask yourself:

Do I have sharp non-serrated knives for cutting meats, vegetables, and cheeses?

Do I have pie dishes to cook my own pies at home?

Do I have baking pans for both square and round cakes?

Do I have at least a twelve cup baking pan for cupcakes and muffins?

Do I have at least 1 large pot in which to make large portions of soup or chili?

My family eats a lot of rice do I have a rice cooker?

Do I have a crock pot? Can Opener, strainer, food processor?

These are all examples of things that I’ve had to ask myself in terms of being able to make certain dishes, sometimes I had the necessary items, other times I did not. In fact there are still items I could really use around my kitchen. What’s on my kitchen wish list you might ask?

My Wish List

A strainer for making soup (I’m talking one with holes that are really small).

A large pot and I mean one that can hold a few gallons worth of material for larger soup portions.

Rice cooker

Crock Pot

Emulsifier

Food Thermometer

These are items that would really open up my ability to cook a wide variety of interesting items. As it is though I would consider my kitchen to be pretty Gourmet in that there are a lot of amazing things I am able to cook as a result of it. From my dehydrator to my wok there’s a lot of items I wouldn’t give up for the world. To see my kitchen must haves please click here.

So what your hearing is that you need some pretty cool gadgets in order to have a gourmet kitchen and your probably thinking this is beginning to sound expensive. However, it doesn’t have to be, some of these items can be picked up for cheap at garage sales, and thrift stores such as Goodwill and Army Surplus. Many of these items also go on sale for cheep at different big box stores like Walmart, Costco, and Target. Even H.E.B for those that live in Texas has amazing deals on kitchen items. Also if you have kitchen savvy friends see if they are planning to get rid of anything in exchange for something better. My husband and I got a lot of our stuff because friends and family either didn’t use it anymore or because they had updated to a newer model even though their current one still works.

kitchen-242083_1280

As far as that island goes, if your really searching for extra counter space in your home than think about purchasing a moveable island from your local department store, many of them also come with bar stools to provide extra seating for when guests come over. They fold away easily and work well as space savers.

Wishing you a happy How to Tuesday!!!

Social

Things You Should Know Before Inviting Anyone to Dinner

Many times when we show interest in a new person some of the first things we want to know about them are within the typical getting to know each other range of questioning. Some of the first getting to know you questions might be Whats your name? What do you do for a living? What do you like to do for fun? The basic what do we have in common questions. Now there is nothing wrong with these questions in fact they are very important questions to ask in the beginning of any relationship. However, what happens when you ask someone to your house for dinner and you have no idea about their diet.With the number of different dietary lifestyles that exist today and the number of different food allergies people can have this can be a major hindrance in the creating of a Rock Awesome meal for your blooming relationship. So I have for you the 9 questions you should ask before inviting anyone to your home for dinner.

Q1: Do you have any food allergies?

Q2: Do you follow a vegan or Vegetarian diet?

Q3: If yes to the previous question how do you define it do you eat fish, milk, or eggs?

Q4: Do you follow any other sort of diet like the Paleo diet or a Raw foods diet?

Q5: What is your favorite dish?

Q6: Is there anything you don’t like? For example I’m not a big fan of raw tomatoes.

Q7: Do you have any issues with certain types of textures?

Q8: Is fake sugar something that your okay with or is it something you avoid?

Q9: Is it ok for me to use alcohol while cooking or within the meal?

These questions are excellent ones to ask no matter who it is you are inviting over for dinner whether it being a special someone or a friend of your child (of course if your having a child over for dinner you may have better luck asking the parents these questions).

Did I leave any questions out? What questions do you think are important to ask someone who you are inviting over for dinner? Please feel free to leave a comment below.

Kitchen

Perfect Asparagus Recipe

This recipe is perfect as a side dish or snack, I love cooking up a batch of these to put as a side for spaghetti, burgers, and chicken. Super delicious I can’t get enough of this easy fabulous recipe.

Ingredients:

Asparagus

Sea Salt

Olive Oil

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit

Cut the fibrous ends off of the Asparagus typically they are slightly white at the end

Place on a baking sheet lay flat

Drizzle Olive Oil over the top of the Asparagus

Pick up the tray and move slight side to side allowing gravity to move the oil to so it covers as much of the asparagus as possible.

Sprinkle a thin layer of sea salt over the asparagus.

20150207_134325

Place in the oven.

Depending on how much asparagus you use I should take anywhere between 5-15 minutes to cook to a slight crisp.

How to tell if it’s done:

The ends will be crispy and a dark forest green in color.

You should also be able to hear the popping of the oil.

The main part of the stem will be slightly shriveled.

Kitchen

10 Ingredients Every Kitchen Should Keep In-Stock

They say the best way to saving money on groceries is to pre-plan your menu every week, however I don’t always know what I want to eat right now, much less in five days from now. I also tend to get overly focused and forget for long hours at a time that I’m supposed to be eating. This often brings about the need to whip up something tasty and delicious in my kitchen, many times without a recipe and without an idea of what sort recipe I could create with the randomness that I choose to purchase at the store most recently. It is for this reason that I always make sure to have certain ingredients on hand, because I know if I have them it doesn’t matter what crazy things I purchased at the store I will be able to make something that tastes amazing.  Here are my 10 ingredients for every do it yourself recipe and examples on how to use them.

Ingredient #1: Mushrooms portobello-235018_1280

I prefer the baby portobellos myself, these are a great ingredient to have when it comes to making soup, sandwiches, stir fry, taco filling and or for the topping on a salad. They pack in an extra protein punch wherever you need it most and they cook up quickly. My favorite mushroom recipe involves sauteing them in soy sauce with some dried oregano, garlic powder, and dried parsley. I then place them between to pieces of french bread with a little spring mix, salad dressing, cucumber slices, and a slice of mozzarella cheese of course I toast the bread and the cheese before applying the vegetables. Its super delicious.

Ingredient #2: Chicken

This ingredient isn’t usually very helpful when you are needing to make a meal quickly, however when the hour to begin cooking dinner comes around and you have absolutely no idea what to make it is always handy to be able to pull out some type of chicken. After all its a very versatile meat that can be used in over a thousand different ways.

Ingredient #3: Spaghetti Sauce

I always keep between 2 and three large cans of spaghetti sauce on hand at all times. There is of course the obvious way in which Spaghetti Sauce is used, in the quick cooking of spaghetti. For me Spaghetti sauce is also great to have around if you are wanting to make a tomato soup base, when I make spicy soup I generally always want it to have a tomato broth.

sweet-potato-534874_1280Ingredient #4: Potatoes (and sweet potatoes)

The spud is an ingenious ingredient to have, versatile it can be cut to make fries or hash-browns, used as soup and pie filling. Of course theirs the whole Baked Potato recipe as well just about anything will taste good when placed atop a steaming hot freshly baked potato.

Ingredient #5: Canned Beans

I really enjoy Kidney, and Black Beans they are easily topped on salads or mixed into Spaghetti for an extra protein kick. Getting them canned means the step of having to soak and then wait for them to cook is skipped. I also enjoy using the black beans on my tacos and taco salads.

As you May have noticed the majority of my ingredients have so far been Protein related, I assume this is left over from my four year stint as a vegetarian (minus the chicken of course that’s a new thing). For the next five ingredients I’m going to place more focus on the simple ingredients that get used on a regular bases in my house during the cooking process.

Ingredient #6: Onions

Whether its soup, stir fry, or something completely new every other recipe made in my kitchen it seems uses onions. This is a great tool for adding either sweet or spicy to your food of course it all depends on what kind of onion you use and how you choose to cook this ingenious ingredient.

Ingredient #7: Bell Pepperspaprika-319381_1280

In case you hadn’t figured it out already through the reading of my previous blog posts we go through a lot of colored peppers in my house. Above all others I will admit that these sweet yummy peppers are definitely my favorite vegetable. I enjoy putting them on salads, sandwiches, in stir fry, and on tacos. If I can find a way to include bell pepper I’m going to do it. Of course they also make a yummy snack, I will often cut one up just to eat it raw and with no dressing.

Ingredient #8: Ramen/ Shi-NumYun

This is more for my husband than myself, but on occasion this does come in handy especially for late night snacking or late evening dinners when no one really wants to cook. Daniel also enjoys mixing in an egg or shredded chicken. Of course anyone who  went to college or is in college knows that these “tasty” noodles can be used in a wide variety of ways.

Ingredient #9: Canned Green Beans

On the rare occasion that I should run out of tasty vegetables and my next shopping trip is a day or two out, I try and keep around a few different types of canned vegetables. Of course my favorite is Green Beans, because they not only work as a great side dish to any protein, but they are also very useful to have with a number of different recipes. For instance they are great additions to soup, and they can be turned into a very tasty casserole.

rice-498688_1280Ingredient #10 Rice

With a Korean Husband its hard not to have rice available in the house, as it tends to be his go to starch and side dish for many of our meals. Rice can be used in soup, stir fry, in casseroles, curry, and in a variety of other forms as well.

What ingredients do you keep on hand at all times share in the comments below.