Cheater’s Broth

Better Than Bouillon

After many years of tossing unfinished cans and cartons of broth, I finally discovered the perfect substitute.  Better Than Bouillon broth bases are concentrated stocks made from real all-natural ingredients.  They come in various flavors with organic, vegetarian, reduced-sodium and kosher varieties.  The jars last a really long time in the fridge (I’ve never had to throw one out before using it up) and when you need some broth, all you have to do is mix the appropriate amount of base with hot water.

The varieties I have tried have all been rich and flavorful, and I’ve been able to find them in most grocery stores.  This is a definite time and money saver you should try for sure.

 

 

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Cheater’s Yeast

If you do any baking using yeast and haven’t tried this, you definitely should.  SAF Red Instant Yeast can be used in any recipe in place of active dry yeast and it eliminates the need for proofing or dissolving.  The substitution ratio is 1:1 so you don’t have to make any adjustments in measurements.  It’s simply stirred into the dry ingredients of the recipe.  I keep it in a canister in my refrigerator (for up to 6 months) and it has never failed me.  And even if you only bake yeast recipes occasionally, it can be stored in your freezer for a year or more.  Good stuff.

Great Stuff For Your Skin

I’d like to share with you two of my all-time favorite skin care products.  I’ve tried a ton of them, and these are two that I keep coming back to.  They’re from DHC, a catalog and online skincare company that sends out free samples in each catalog and with every order – that’s how I ended up trying these.

The Deep Cleansing Oil is a makeup remover and cleanser in one.  You rub in on your dry face and it takes off all your makeup – even waterproof mascara – and then rinses off with water.  It leaves your face feeling clean but not too dry.  Gotta love a multi-tasker!

Olive Virgin Oil is a very light oil you pat on your face after your moisturizer, which sinks in to make skin soft and smooth.  It doesn’t clog your pores, and actually helps to keep your skin hydrated throughout the day, especially in the dry winter weather.

Cheater’s Oatmeal

If you desire the whole goodness of steel cut oats, but are like me and just don’t have it together enough to plan your breakfast the night before, look for these the next time you’re at the grocery store.  McCann’s Quick and Easy Steel Cut Oats can be made in about 5 minutes.  I don’t know how it works, but it does.  Must be magic.

Try them is this delish Oatmeal Brulee recipe if you find them.  If you don’t, it’s just as delish with regular oats.

*The microwave instructions say to cook on high power, but mine boil over every time that way.  Medium power (50%) works for me, stirring half-way, then letting them sit 2-3 minutes before eating.

A Fresh Start

I believe there are two categories of cooks – those who cook so others can enjoy the food, and those who cook so they can enjoy the food.  I happen to fall into the second category, so my family and friends are often served creations from my kitchen which incorporate my favorite food groups:  cheese, bread, and potatoes (preferably french fried), and we almost never have the same thing twice.  I always thought this was the case in every household until I met my mother-in-law, who will not eat anything made with cheese, mayonnaise, milk, or processed meat products.  I discovered this at our wedding shower when she didn’t eat, even though there was creamy olive dip, cocktail hot dogs, cucumber sandwiches with cream cheese, and chicken salad.  However, she makes some of the best homemade macaroni and cheese, ham salad, and cheesecake.  Go figure.  She once asked me if there was any food I didn’t like…I was stumped. Continue reading