Heating it up…Summer Barbecues
When barbecuing, you need to follow food safety rules and also cook meat to a temperature that will kill bacteria, if you want to avoid getting sick. Here are some rules I keep in mind:
Needs versus wants applies to food
Recently, I did an educational program on Spend Smart. Eat Smart. for employees at a local public health department. A dietitian in the group shared a way her family could save money on milk: “Get my family to drink more water and not always drink milk.” Some in the group seemed surprised that a dietitian would make that suggestion. What did she actually mean? Her point was that she wants her family members to drink the amount of milk they need nutritionally, but not necessarily more than that.
What kind of meat should I buy?
I really like to get questions from our Spend Smart blog readers. Here’s one about beef stew. Kay asks, “What cut of meat should you buy to make beef stew?” Good question. There are many ways to cook beef: broiling, pan-frying, stir-frying, grilling, roasting, braising and cooking in liquid. But some methods are better suited to some cuts than others. When you make stew you use both moisture and a long cooking time. This means you can use a less tender, usually less expensive cut from the front (chuck) or rear (round) of the animal—any cut from the chuck and round will work except top round. It is important to cook slowly with the lid on—whether in the oven, on top of the stove or in the crockpot.
Grilling Made Easy and Safe
According to a recent poll most of us think that cooking outdoors is easy, costs less, is more economical than dining out and encourages time outdoors.
CHOOSING THE PERFECT CUT
Ok, I admit it. Most of the time when planning a meal I start with the protein food. I think this is a carryover from growing up on a farm and having a freezer full of homegrown beef, pork and chicken to choose from. The type of meat and how it will be prepared (grilled, broiled, oven roasted, pot roasted, stewed, etc.) effects the rest of the meal. My mom taught us the importance of matching the cooking method to the cut of meat. I didn’t make the mistake of turning a great rump roast into a pot roast more than a couple times.
October is National Pork Month
The past couple of weeks when looking thru grocery ads, I’ve noticed some good deals on pork. This is likely related to this summer’s drought. With high feed costs, many farmers are selling their pigs so they don’t have to purchase so much feed. This means there is a lot of supply. However, in an ad this week, I noticed it said ‘Celebrate National Pork Month’. Therefore, many grocery stores are also likely putting pork on sale to highlight National Pork Month.
What is Cheaper: Turkey or Ham?
Thanksgiving is about 10 days away. Have you started to plan your dinner? The biggest expense of the meal will probably be the ham or turkey (or both) that you buy. The grocery ads are full of deals, like buy a ham and get a turkey free. Or buy $50 in groceries and get a $5 off coupon for your turkey. I was curious, so I stopped by 5 different stores to check out prices. I went to Hy-Vee, Fareway, Aldi, Dahls, and Wal-Mart.
Meatloaf… One of My Favorite Comfort Foods
Our feature this month is Mouth Watering Meatloaf which includes grated vegetables and a whole grain (oatmeal). It tastes so good, and it is healthy, providing great amounts of protein and Vitamin A.
Pork Loin Roast with Veggies
Roasted pork loin and vegetables is one of my “go to” recipes when I’m having family and friends over. It’s easy, it tastes wonderful and the preparation is done long before the guests come. I usually serve it with fresh or frozen fruit salad, rolls, and a fruit crisp since I am heating the oven.
Meat: How can we afford it for dinner?
Part 2: Spendsmart’s Top Ten Money Saving Meat Tips
Making the Most of a Hot Grill
It’s a beautiful time of year here in Iowa. That means I am cooking on the grill at least a couple of nights per week. I love the flavor of grilled food and it saves me from heating up the kitchen. Best of all, fewer dishes!
Shopping at the Meat Counter (Part 1)
When I step up to the meat counter at the grocery store, I get a little nervous. There are dozens of choices, a wide range of prices, and a smiling person waiting patiently on the other side of the counter. I do my best to come into this situation prepared, but it can still be nerve wracking. This week and next week, I am going to write a little bit about how I make decisions about what to buy at the meat counter when I go grocery shopping.