recipes and more


Posted by Susan Saturday, September 20 2008 15:09:13

This recipe is for those who don't want all the preservatives and unnecesary additives in the store bought Salsa. The last time I checked the price of doing it myself (not including time and electricity) I discovered that my salsa is about one fourth the price of store bought. Of course you have to portion freeze what you aren't planning on eating, but it's worth it if you eat more than just a few jars a year.


8 cups/ 2 liters chopped tomatoes, fresh or canned. If you buy canned be sure to buy the super big cans to save money

3 onions

1 green bell pepper (capsicum)

1 red bell pepper (capsicum), roasted and peeled *

2 bulbs garlic, roasted *

5 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup / ½ dl jalapeños

1½ Tbls salt

3 Tbls brown sugar

1 tsp coriander

Finely chop everything adn let simmer on stove for approx 1½ hours (longer if you are using fresh tomatoes)

Then add:

6 Tbls vinegar

6 Tblslemon juice

3 bay leaves

Let simmer ½ hour more or until it is the right consistancy. Take out the bay leaves. Freeze in portioned freezer bags.


* To roast: Put red bell pepper and garlics as high as possible in the oven and heat to 400F / 200C. Roast for 20 min. Put bell pepper in a plastic bag (or in a bag with plastic over it) and let cool. It's okay if they blacken a bit and the bell pepper is much easier to peal if you have it air tight until it cools.

Taco SoupDinner tonight

Posted by Susan Saturday, September 20 2008 12:38:10

Taco Soup

2 lbs/ 900g ground meat (mom uses turkey, I use beef, use whatever you want)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 onion

1 package taco seasoning

2 cans chopped tomatoes

2 cups /5 dl broth

1 jar salsa

1 can corn

1 can kidney beans

Fry the meat, garlic and onion. Add everything else and simmer 1 hour. That's it!

Serve with tortilla chips, sour cream, grated cheese, salsa, black olives.... whatever else you can think of. Just think "taco".

I love this recipe but have changed it some from the original above. I use less meat and double the corn, kidney beans and possibly another can of tomatoes. I don't remember just now, but you can decide that for yourself when you make it.

This recipe is great for large gatherings such as moving parties.

Cream of Broccoli SoupDinner tonight

Posted by Susan Saturday, September 20 2008 12:26:55

Cream of Broccoli soup

4cups/1 liter Chicken broth

1 large bunch broccoli, chopped (3 cups/7½ dl)

½ cup/1 dl diced onion

1 bay leaf

1/4 tsp salt

dash pepper

1/4 cup/4 Tbls flour

½ cup/1,25 dl ham, diced

½ cup/1,26 heavy cream

Combine first 6 ingrediets, boil and simmer covered 30 min.

Take out half of veggies and broth, puree in mixer.

Combine again. Whisk in flour. Add ham and cream. Simmer 10-15 min or until desired consistancy.

Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes by Todd Wilbur
(I have 4 of his books and really enjoy them even if I can only use a few of the recipes but the difficulty in using his books is because I can't get all the ingredients here in Sweden)

WD-40Making life easier

Posted by Susan Friday, February 16 2007 22:59:05

USING WD-40 (I'm not sure, but 556 might be the same item)

Protects silver from tarnishing.

Cleans and lubricates guitar strings.

Gives floors that 'just-waxed' sheen without making it slippery.

Keeps flies off cows.

Restores and cleans chalkboards.

Removes lipstick stains.

Loosens stubborn zippers.

Untangles jewelry chains.

Removes stains from stainless steel sinks.

Removes dirt and grime from the barbecue grill.

Keeps ceramic/terra cotta garden pots from oxidizing.

Removes tomato stains from clothing.

Keeps glass shower doors free of water spots.

Camouflages scratches in ceramic and marble floors.

Keeps scissors working smoothly.

Lubricates noisy door hinges on vehicles and doors in homes.

Gives a children's play gym slide a shine for a super fast slide.

Lubricates gear shift and mower deck lever for ease of handling on
riding mowers.

Rids kids rocking chairs and swings of squeaky noises.

Lubricates tracks in sticking home windows and makes them easier to

Spraying an umbrella stem makes it easier to open and close.

Restores and cleans padded leather dashboards in vehicles, as well
as vinyl bumpers.

Restores and cleans roof racks on vehicles.

Lubricates and stops squeaks in electric fans.

Lubricates wheel sprockets on tricycles, wagons and bicycles for
easy handling.

Lubricates fan belts on washers and dryers and keeps them running

Keeps rust from forming on saws/saw blades, and other tools.

Removes splattered grease on stove.

Keeps bathroom mirror from fogging.

Lubricates prosthetic limbs.

Keeps pigeons off the balcony (they hate the smell).

Removes all traces of duct tape.

Folks even spray it on their arms, hands, and knees to relieve
arthritis pain.

Florida's favorite use is: "cleans and removes love bugs from grills
and bumpers".

The favorite use in the State of New York--WD-40 protects the Statue
of Liberty from the elements.

WD-40 attracts fish. Spray a LITTLE on live bait or lures and you
will be catching the big one in no time. Also it's a lot cheaper than the chemical attractants that are made for just that purpose. Keep in
mind though, using some chemical laced baits or lures for fishing are not allowed in some states.

Use it for fire ant bites. It takes the sting away immediately, and stops the itch.

WD-40 is great for removing crayon from walls. Spray on the mark and
wipe with a clean rag.

Also, if you've discovered that your teenage daughter has washed and
dried a tube of lipstick with a load of laundry, saturate the lipstick spots with WD-40 and re-wash. Presto! Lipstick is gone!

If you spray WD-40 on the distributor cap, it will displace the moisture and allow the car to start.

WD-40, long known for its ability to remove left-over tape mung
(sticky label tape), is also a lovely perfume and air freshener!

Sprayed liberally on every hinge in the house, it leaves that distinctive clean fresh scent for up to two days!

It removes black scuff marks from the kitchen floor!

Use WD-40 for those nasty tar and scuff marks on flooring. It doesn't seem to harm the finish and you won't have to scrub nearly as hard to get them off. Just remember to open some windows if you have a lot of marks.

Bug guts will eat away the finish on your car if not removed quickly! Use WD-40!

The applications appear to be endless!!

(Yes, this is from another email, but I checked it out and there is truth to most if not all of it)

Easier livingMaking life easier

Posted by Susan Friday, February 16 2007 21:31:46

Hints for easier living

Reheat Pizza
Heat up leftover pizza in a non-stick skillet on top of the stove, set heat to med-low and heat till warm. This keeps the crust crispy. No soggy micro pizza. I saw this on the cooking channel and it really works.

Easy Deviled Eggs
Put cooked egg yolks in a zip lock bag. Seal, mash till they are all broken up. Add remainder of ingredients, reseal, keep mashing it up mixing thoroughly, cut the tip of the baggy, squeeze mixture into egg. Just throw bag away when done easy clean up.

Expanding Frosting
When you buy a container of cake frosting from the store, whip it with your mixer for a few minutes. You can double it in size. You get to frost more cake/cupcakes with the same amount. You also eat less sugar/calories per serving. (even less if you skip the frosting!)

Reheating refrigerated bread
To warm biscuits, pancakes, or muffins that were refrigerated, place them in a microwave with a cup of water. The increased moisture will keep the food moist and help it reheat faster.

Newspaper weeds away
Start putting in your plants, work the nutrients in your soil. Wet newspapers: put layers around the plants overlapping as you go cover with mulch and forget about weeds. Weeds will get through some gardening plastic they will not get through wet newspapers.

Broken Glass
Use a dry cotton ball to pick up little broken glass pieces of glass -the fibers catch ones you can't see!

No More Mosquitoes
Place a dryer sheet in your pocket. It will keep the mosquitoes away.

Squirrel Away!
To keep squirrels from eating your plants sprinkle your plants with cayenne pepper. The cayenne pepper doesn't hurt the plant and the squirrels won't come near it.

Easier thank you
When you throw a bridal/baby shower, buy a pack of thank you cards for the guest of honor. During the party, pass out the envelopes and have everyone put their address on one. When the bride/new mom sends the thank-yous, they're all addressed!

If you purchase a new bike for your child, place their picture inside the handle bar before placing the grips on. If the bike is stolen and later recovered, remove the grip and there is your proof who owns the bike.

Flexible vacuum
To get something out of a heat register or under the fridge add an empty paper towel roll or empty gift wrap roll to your vacuum. It can be bent or flattened to get in narrow openings.

Reducing Static Cling
Pin a small safety pin to the seam of your slip and you will not have a clingy skirt or dress. Same thing works with slacks that cling when wearing panty hose. Place pin in seam of slacks and - voila - static is gone.

Measuring Cups
Before you pour sticky substances into a measuring cup, fill it with hot water. Dump out the hot water, but don't dry the cup. Next, add your
ingredient, such as peanut butter, and watch how easily it comes right out.

Foggy Windshield?
Hate foggy windshields? Buy a chalkboard eraser and keep it in the glove box of your car. When the windows fog, rub with the eraser! Works better
than a cloth!

Reopening envelope
If you seal an envelope and then realize you forgot to include something inside, just place your sealed envelope in the freezer for an hour or two.
Voila! It unseals easily.

Use your hair conditioner to shave your legs. It's a lot cheaper than shaving cream and leaves your legs really smooth. It's also a great way to use up the conditioner you bought but didn't like when you tried it in your hair...

Good-bye Fruit Flies
To get rid of pesky fruit flies, take a small glass fill it 1/2" with Apple Cider Vinegar and 2 drops of dishwashing liquid, mix well. You will find those flies drawn to the cup and gone forever!

Get Rid of Ants
Put small piles of cornmeal where you see ants. They eat it, take it "home," & can't digest it so it kills them. It may take a week or so, especially if it rains, but it works & you don't have to worry about pets or small children being harmed!

Take baby powder to the beach
Keep a small bottle of baby powder in your beach bag. When you're ready to leave the beach sprinkle yourself and kids with the powder and the sand will slide right off your skin. (Source unknown, it was from an email sent to me.)

Arroz con PolloDinner tonight

Posted by Susan Wednesday, February 14 2007 11:42:27

Arroz con pollo, or rice with chicken, is a classic Spanish one-pot meal.

1 cup uncooked rice (2½ dl)
1 can black beans, drained
1 can corn (1 cup frozen / 2½ dl)
6 (4oz each) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

½ cup chicken broth (1½ dl)
1 cup salsa (2½ dl)
1 cup marinara sauce (I used tomato sauce and added italian seasoning)
½ cup red bell pepper, sliced (1½ dl)
½ cup scallions, chopped (1½ dl)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro (1/4 cup = 4 Tbls) (I imagine 2-3 Tbls parsley would work too)
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp minced garlic
1 cup shredded cheese (2½ dl)

Spray 9x13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

Prepare the rice according to package directions. Spread the rice over the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Layer the beans, corn, and chicken over the rice and sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Set aside. In a large bowl combine the rest of the ingredients minus the cheese. Pour the mixture over the chicken. Sprinkle with cheese.

For dinner tonight... Preheat the oven to 350 F (175C). Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the interal temperature of the chicken breasts reaches 165F.

If you make a double and want to freeze half... Before baking, cover the dish with foil. Label, date, and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before cooking as directed above.

This recipe is from my new favorite cook book: Dream Dinners... Life Just Got Easier! By Stephanie Allen and Tina Kuna