The One with All the Food

Joe and I have been on our own in Charlottesville for four whole months now- wow!

From being poor newlyweds out in the world, we have learned that homemade food=the cheapest way to keep our bellies full.  I love cooking, baking, and trying new recipes… buuut that’s the last thing I want to do after a long day of labs and classes.  Who the heck decided grad students want to have class from 7-10 every Monday night or from 7-8:30 every Tuesday and Thursday?  Poor planning.  Why don’t people let me organize everything?  I would be so good at it.  I digress..

From my four whole months of experience making food that fits our wallets and our taste buds, here are some gems that I have found, thanks to Pinterest and a whole slew of cookbooks (specifically Betty Crocker, my idol).  Why would you be interested in recipes from a twenty-two-year-old grad student?  Because 1)they’re cheap, 2) they’re easy and 3) they’re probably really good.

Baked Chicken Taquitos:  Serves 3-4 (or 2 if you’re hungry), Preheat to 425; 3 oz cream cheese, 1/4 cup green salsa, 1 tbsp lime juice, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1 tsp chili powder, 1/2 tsp onion powder, 2 cloves minced garlic, 3 tbsp cilantro, 2 tbsp green onion, 2 cup shredded cooked chicken, 1 cup shredded Mexican cheese, 12 small flour or corn tortillas, kosher salt;  Mix everything except tortillas (duh), heat tortillas 2 or 3 at a time for 20 seconds in the microwave, spoon 2-3 tbsp of the mixture onto a tortilla and roll tightly, place on parchment lined baking sheet, making sure tortillas don’t touch, spray lightly with EVOO and sprinkle with salt, bake 15-20 minutes.  (If I am running low on time, I omit the cilantro and onions)

Baked Chicken Nuggets:  Serves 3-4, Preheat to 425; 1 lb chicken, cut, salt and pepper, 2 tsp EVOO, 8 tbsp Italian breadcrumbs, 2 tbsp shredded parmesan; Spray baking sheet, have a bowl of EVOO and salt and pepper, and another bowl with breadcrumbs and parmesan, cover chicken in EVOO, then toss in crumb mixture and spread on baking sheet, spray with EVOO, bake 8-10 minutes, flip and bake 4-5 more minutes

Cheddar Bay Biscuits:  Serves 3-4, Preheat to 400; 2 cups bisquick, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1 1/2 cup shredded cheddar, 2/3 cup milk, 2 tbsp butter, 1 tsp parsley, 1 tsp garlic salt; Line baking sheet with parchment paper, combine bisquick, garlic powder and cheese, add milk, drop onto baking sheet and bake 10 minutes, meanwhile melt butter in small bowl, stir in parsley and garlic salt, brush butter mixture onto biscuits after 10 mins of baking, then bake additional 4-5 minutes.

Baked Parmesan Fries:  Serves 3-4, Preheat to 425; 1 lb potatoes, 1 1/2 tbsp EVOO, 1/4 tsp thyme, 1/4 tsp oregano, 1/8 tsp rosemary, 1/4 tsp garlic powder, 1/4 tsp old bay, 2 tbsp grated parmesan; Wash and cut potatoes into fry-shaped slices, mix spices and cheese in gallon ziploc, toss with potatoes and EVOO, spread in single layer on foil-lined baking sheet, bake 30-40 minutes until tender.

Healthifried Salmon Cakes:  Serves 3-4; 1 can wild salmon, 1 lg egg, 1/4 cup bread crumbs, handful chopped onion and celery, 1 tsp each salt and pepper, 2 tbsp frying oil; combine all except oil, cook in skillet on medium heat in frying oil for 5 minutes the first side, and 2-3 minutes for the other side.

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