Wednesday, May 26, 2010

WFMW: Dry Peanut Butter Sandwiches, HubPages Writing Contest

It's "Works For Me Wednesday" at We Are That sure to check out the great ideas!

Quick Improv Tip, then I want to mention a food related writing contest over at HubPages.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches are a standby lunch in our house, particularly during busy days which involve outdoor work, garden care, and our latest project, getting a workout with our horse.  Únfortunately, sometimes we don't realize that we are out of jelly, until the peanut butter is already spread on the bread.  Honey is a great alternative to jelly, but if that's out, a plain peanut butter sandwich is a little dry.  On a whim, yesterday, I used pancake syrup.  I was pleasantly surprised that the flavors went together well.  That's the improv tip for the week, Peanut Butter and Syrup.  It spreads  well, you don't need much, and it's just enough to take that dry edge off the sandwich, which works for me.

On to the HubPages Contest...

HubPages is a writing community that allows users to post articles on a multitude of subjects.  Whereas blogging allows one to have a running theme based on a given area of interest, Hubs are independent articles, and need not be dependent on a reader's connection to the writer.  Further, HubPages offers a means of incorporating Google Adsense, Amazon Affiliate, Ebay Affiliate, and Kontera accounts, allowing a writer to earn royalties based on these programs.  It does take some research, and there is a learning curve, so don't expect overnight riches.  However, if you enjoy writing, this is another interesting venue.

Periodically, HubPages hosts writing contests, and is advertising a food related contest for the month of June.  Hubs must be written about the food related topic of the day, and submitted in the specified time frame.  Weekly prizes of $100 for the best hub of the week, and $100 for the "People's Choice" for the week, will be awarded over the 4 week contest.  Daily prizes of $50 will be awarded randomly to one of the individuals having published a hub in the given time frame.  The grand prize of $1000 will be awarded at the end of the contest, to the best of the 4 weekly winners for best hub.  Participation is open to members of HubPages, with some restrictions based on country of residence.  Further details are available here...there's time to create a HubPages account and get your feet wet in the realm of hubbing before the contest gets underway.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

WFMW: Extending Leftovers For Lunch

It's Works For Me Wednesday at We Are That Family.  
                                 Stop by for the latest hints from across the net.

Lunch time arrives, and as you prepare to fix PB&J sandwiches for the troops, you discover that the jar is nearly empty.  Egg sandwiches would work, but the eggs were used in a spinach-egg skillet breakfast prepared by your teenage future chef.  

Fortunately, you have lots of cheap spinach in the fridge, along with leftovers of last night's quick macaroni improv meal.  An extra can of spaghetti sauce, a few minutes in the microwave, and the saucy mac goes alongside the spinach salad....heavy on the salad, easy on the mac.  All 8 kids, and Macaroni Mom, eat to their satisfaction!  Salad anyone?  Gotta hide the peanut butter better so it tides me over til payday this week!  Spinach salad extends my leftovers, which works for the kids, and works for me!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

WFMW: Knorr Chicken Bouillon is a Timesaver

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A standard ingredients for many quick and easy soups and pasta dishes at our Improv kitchen is chicken bouillon powder, particularly Knorr.  Whether you are making Mexican Red Rice, Sopa Fideo, or Albondigas Style Soup, or just a simple chicken noodle soup with broth and angel hair pasta, Knorr's chicken bouillon is great to have on hand.  As much as I use it, I stock up with a huge (35.3 oz.) jar from Costco, which lasts me for 5-6 months for about $4.00.  Small jars, sold in the grocery store, run more than a dollar apiece, and don't last me more than a couple of weeks.  It's definitely worthwhile to get a big jar if you do a lot of improv meals. 

I find that the angel hair and chicken bouillon are a great alternative to Top Ramen, though, of course, it's not a regular meal in our home.  Add a couple of beaten eggs, and its an easy egg drop soup.  Or, drop whole raw eggs into the hot soup mixture, allow the eggs to poach, and serve the eggs in the chicken noodle soup mixture.  This is a popular, easy dinner for the kids.  There are also other varieties of Knorr Bouillon, including beef, tomato, and vegetable, which can be used for different flavors.  However, I haven't seen these at the warehouse store. 

Knorr Chicken Bouillon works for quick, tasty meals, which works for me.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

On the Road...Cheap Lunch, Minimal Mess.

We had a softball tournament in a small town this weekend.  It was last minute that we were sure we could go, being that a baseball double header at home had been on the slate, but was cancelled at the last minute.

Quickly packing the ice chest, I tossed in granola bars, graham crackers, a jar of peanut butter, a package of flour tortillas, and a butter knife, along with a bunch of bananas, napkins, and water bottles.  At the end of the first game, dh took it upon himself to make peanut butter wraps, surprising everyone with banana inside. The peels went nicely into the empty tortilla package, along with the knife, in order to avoid making a mess.  Everyone loved the treat, and we were all well satisfied.  An expected meal at a sandwich shop in the small town would have cost, easily, $50-75, but the $5 or so PB & B (Peanut Butter and Banana) tortillas were a hit! 

The improve strikes again!