Friday, August 24, 2012

An Easy Dinner Using Leftovers!

Tonight I created a yummy dish utilizing leftovers, a pantry staple and a few things picked fresh from the garden.  When I looked around tonight thinking about what to make for dinner I remembered I had about 11oz of ground beef in the freezer left over from homemade burgers earlier this week and a small amount of Italian sausage from making homemade pizza a few days ago.  I also a had a small amount of fresh picked grape tomatoes from the garden.  I got to thinking and instantly knew I could make a meat sauce.  I also knew I had a whole plethora of fresh herbs from the garden at my disposal.  Here is a quick and simple recipe.

The left overs I had were 11oz of lean ground beef and 1 1/2 Italian sausage links

On hand I had fresh genovese basil, oregano, greek oregano, thyme and garlic. I always try to use fresh herbs when possible.  Obviously if you dont have all or any, dry herbs can be used. 

In a saute pan I browned the ground beef in a little olive oil with fresh garlic.  When the beef was browned I I crumbled in the sausage.

Once all the meat was cooked I removed and drained the meat and put it aside in a bowl

At this point I put a pot of water on and once it boiled I added some rigatoni I had in the pantry.  Obviously a recipe like this can be altered in many ways and you can choose what ever kind of pasta you have or prefer.

After wiping the saute pan clean I added some Olive Oil, chopped fresh herbs, grape tomatoes and a little salt.  I sauteed them over a low heat until the skins of the tomatoes began to crack.  


Once the garlic began to brown and the tomato skins cracked, I added a can of tomato sauce puree. I added a dash of salt and a pinch of salt to taste as well as a dash of cracked red pepper flakes.  Using my wooden spatula I also applied pressure to the tomatoes to break them down a little further.  After that I added the meat to the sauce and allowed it to cook for a few minutes.

After the sauce began to simmer I removed it from the heat and used it to top off my rigatoni.  After adding a small amount of fresh Romano cheese on top I had a perfectly De-Lish dinner!


Have any other ideas for making a dish with these ingredients? 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

A Fresh Coat For $3.99!

I HATE white walls.  For me a house, apartment or condo with floor to ceiling white walls just doesn't work.  No amount of artwork, photos, trinkets or drapes can make the place feel homey.  When I moved into my new place I wasn't to excited to see bright white.. everywhere!  Before I moved in I painted the master bedroom and living room a neutral beige tone.  Instantly the whole place had a different feel.  I used the above mentioned accessories to pull it all together and without  painting all the rooms I was able to turn it into a home.
The only other down side was the back splash in the kitchen.  It was a horrible deep yellowish color that should be named "puke yellow".  At around 2am last night while organizing my kitchen I decided I really hated it and thought..why don't I just paint it?  While trying to save money after a big move it occurred to me that I still had half a bucket of beige paint. 

I was a little nervous because most of the back splash was wall, but there were two shelves made of pressed wood I'm guessing and covered in laminate.  Since I was awake last night when I had this idea I decided to stay up ten more minutes and tape it off.  This way in the morning I could paint.

After a quick trip to the store to buy a paintbrush I was in business.  Two coats later and a little dry time, I had a whole new kitchen.  A coat of paint can truly change something's appearance.  It can also give the space a whole new feeling.

Next time you want to make a change to a room think about what you have that you can utilize.  Since I had extra paint laying around the only thing I needed was the brush.  So for only $3.99 I was able to spruce up a kitchen I didn't particularly like.  Now I LOVE my new kitchen!

Here is a look at a room with half of the wall painted.  What a difference!

Any other ideas for making cheap improvements to your space?

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Your Next Breath Is Never Guarenteed!

“Your next breath is never guaranteed.  Stand up for what you believe in!”

I thought this the other day and wanted to post it on the Hungry For Living Facebook page.  It dawned on me though that I would be encouraging the people I disagree with to continue to feel a way that I believe is wrong.  But just because they don’t believe in the same things as me I cannot fault them.  Everyone is free to hold their own ideas about anything and everything in this world. It’s one of the benefits of having our own mind and a privilege to voice them in this country. 

I realize though that there is a difference.  If I choose to express my opinion and views on others I am spreading awareness on a topic I am passionate about.  When you berate, condemn, or ostracize someone else for their beliefs you are spreading hate.

I have never judged, beat, tortured, discriminated against, humiliated, persecuted or even murdered someone because their beliefs differed from mine.   We all have the right to grow, cultivate and form our own opinions.  No one is born to hate another individual, hate is learned.  It sickens me the way so many people take it upon themselves to judge how others live their lives.  Its irritating to see people hate how others live when it in no way impacts their own lives.  After all the progress we have made in following the mantra that all men (and woman) are created equal, you would think people would think twice before disregarding another human being.  You wouldn’t hate someone for voting differently from you, believing in a different religion or even choosing to dress differently than you, so why than can you not help but hate someone who loves differently than you.  

We all have a right to live our lives the way we want to, and that includes loving whoever you want to.  Just because it may not be the way you feel love should be does not give anyone the right to stop that love from happening.  These are rights everyone has and should not need to be voted on.  It’s hypocritical to take our god given rights and let others choose whether or not you deserve them.
People are up in arms right now about gay rights and whether homosexual couples should be allowed to marry.  Why not?  What will allowing two people in love to marry change for anyone else?

I myself have two moms. They are no different than any other couple and have a wonderful stable, loving marriage.  The thing is my two moms raised me to accept others and their beliefs.   No matter the color of their skin, religion, gender, economic background or sexual preference.  I do not discriminate against you because you may not agree with my opinions or if my family disgusts you and that’s the difference.  You may not agree with me but I would never hold that against you.  Think about that the next time you judge someone for something they cannot control.  Whether or not you agree with them why spend the time trying to take away their rights as a human being.

When I grow old I will look back on my life happily and know I enjoyed every moment to the fullest  Do you really want to look back and realize you wasted your life spreading hate and being angry over other people’s lives and forgetting to enjoy your own?  

What do you think?