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Sharing Spend Smart. Eat Smart. – With a Fellow Mama!


July 25, 2022 | Katy Moscoso

young child cooking

Christine kicked off our newest blog series in June by interviewing her mom, Betsy. It was fun to read about her mom’s food memories and her favorite recipes!

For the month of July, I decided to interview one of my good mama friends, Emily. Emily grew up in Iowa and she spent a lot of time in the kitchen baking and cooking with her mom. Emily and I met several years ago through my husband, Dustin. They were both serving on a work committee and realized that our daughters were a week apart in age! She and her husband welcomed their second daughter this past October. They are a busy family of four, so I thought it would be fun to get her perspective on meals!

I used similar questions that Christine used to interview her mom. Enjoy my friend’s perspective as a mom of two young kiddos!

  • What is your favorite food memory?
    Making decorated sugar cookies with my mom. From a very young age, I can remember making decorated sugar cookies at Christmas with her. My mom and my grandma took cake decorating classes at a local community college one winter and started using buttercream decorating while baking. I enjoy decorating sugar cookies and cakes (when I have time!) to build upon the skills and continue the hobby she sparked early on in my life.
  • What is a recipe that always makes you smile?
    Salmon linguine. My Dad isn’t a big fan of salmon, so my mom and I would make plans to make this dish when he was working nights or out with his friends fishing. It makes me smile because it was a fun recipe that my mom had found in a Reader’s Digest article and wanted to try. She knew her teenager would be more willing to try it than my dad 😊. To this day, it’s an easy go-to recipe that my family enjoys.
  • What is a go-to meal at your house?
    An easy meal for my 3-year-old would be making our own pizzas. We’ve made our own pizza crust, used whole-wheat/multigrain pita bread, naan bread, etc. and usually add our own toppings. We add a Caesar salad on the side, and it’s a simple way to engage her in cooking from start to finish. She also enjoys eating handfuls of turkey pepperoni and shredded cheese in-between!
  • What is a tip you have for trying new foods with young kiddos to prevent waste?
    I would suggest venturing out to a local farmers market; usually they have food stands with various items to try. Buying single items from the farmers market is one way to try something new without creating too much waste.
  • What tips can you share for eating well on a budget?
    Build a menu where you can utilize produce in multiple meals to prevent throwing spoiled produce away. I make a weekly/bi-weekly/monthly menu to help create a list to stick to while shopping. I also utilize an online grocery app to help compare prices before going to the store.
  • What Spend Smart. Eat Smart. recipes do you have on your next meal plan to try?
    I would love to try the Whole Wheat Pizza Crust, Carver Dip, and the Four Layer Supper!

I hope you enjoy reading about my friend’s food memories and can try some of her tips!


Katy Moscoso

Katy Moscoso is a Program Specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. As a new mom she is always on the lookout for easy, healthy recipes to prepare for her family.

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