Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Black Beans and Rice

I can't even remember where I first saw this recipe, it was in my old roommate's cookbook collection and I copied it down without noting the source. I believe it was originally referred to as "Moors and Christians" rice. At any rate, it's a great and super-easy use for the black beans my hubby has become so fond of! I have been known to toss in some mexican shredded cheese, mostly because we are cheeseheads :)

Black Beans & Rice

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 med onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, diced
1 Tbsp chopped garlic
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp thyme
1 can black beans (or 1 1/2 cups cooked dried beans)
1 can diced tomatoes
1 cup uncooked rice
2 cups water (can also substitute chicken or vegetable stock if you like)
1/2 tsp Kosher salt
1/2 tsp white pepper


- Saute the onion and pepper in the olive oil with garlic, cumin and thyme just until the onions are translucent.
- Stir in beans, rice, tomatoes, water, salt and pepper. Heat to boiling.
- Reduce heat, cover and simmer until the rice is tender and most of the liquid is absorbed, about 20-25 minutes.

Total Cost:
Olive Oil - $0.08
Onion - $0.30
Pepper - $0.30
Garlic - $0.03
Black Beans - $0.25 (from dried)
Diced Tomatoes - $0.85
Rice - $0.20
Seasonings - appx $0.15

Grand Total: $2.16 for 4 servings!

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Sunday, July 19, 2009

Basic Pancake Mix

I found this on Recipezaar.com and I will never buy another boxed mix again. I had to make a few small adjustments to the original recipe, since we like our pancakes a little thicker, but you can easily adjust the milk or flour amounts to your liking. I find it lends itself VERY easily to add-ins as well!

The original author also mentioned that you can pre-mix the dry ingredients and either store or give away as jarred mix gifts...another great and frugal gift idea :)

Basic Pancake Mix


1 1/2 cups flour
2 Tbsp sugar (white or brown)
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup milk (increase to 1 1/4-1 1/2 cups if you like thinner pancakes)
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 Tbsp vegetable oil


In a large bowl, combine all dry ingredients.

Make a well in the center, and add the milk. Stir with a whisk until well blended and slightly thicker than your desired consistency.

Add eggs, vanilla, oil and any add-ins you like. Stir to combine well - you can add extra milk or flour at this point if you want to change the consistency at all.

Pour in 1/4 cup measures onto a hot griddle or pan. Cook until bubbly across the surface. Turn over and cook for an additional 45 seconds-1 minute. DO NOT TURN THEM AGAIN! (this makes pancakes rubbery!)

Total Cost:
Flour: $0.14
Sugar: $0.02
Baking Powder: $0.04
Salt: less than a penny
Milk: $0.12
Eggs: $0.24
Vanilla: $0.02
Oil: $0.06

Grand Total: $0.64 for about 8-10 large pancakes!

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