Way back in the early 1800s, the canning process revolutionized our ability to preserve food for when it wasn’t in plentiful supply. Today, with seasonal produce available year round, purchasing canned vegetables has become a thing of our mothers’ era: a bit suspect, with veggies nuked, cooked, and de-texturized beyond recognition.
We here at Savvy Central, make one exception to the "no canned goods" rule and that would be for: The Stewed Tomato. Wow. We love it. For a million reasons, beginning with taste, texture, color, ripeness (they’re even more ripe than a ripe Roma!) affordability, malleability, we could go on, and on and on. But we won’t.
Instead, we’re sharing our favorite two uses for The Stewed Tomato:
We featured this recipe last week in our Link Love but thought it deserved another look as a truly budget-friendly Valentine’s (or really Anytine’s) day gift that every savvy guy or gal would love. We can get pretty unapologetically addicted to Nutella, but add a peanut-buttery flavor infusion into the mix? Time to schedule an intervention.
Sometimes Valentine's Day can be a thrill, filled with surprises, fun, love and maybe even a little bah-chicka-bah-bah (lucky you!). Other times, you count the hours until it's over so you can forget the travesty that has become your love life. Whether you slice it, dice it or serve it up with chocolate sauce, our Savvy Seven Valentine's Day ideas will ensure it's a fun, fabulous, frugal and memorable one.
We freely admit to being waist watchers here at Savvy Central and look for any chance to save a calorie here and and a fat gram there. As we learned from our dear friend Valerie Orsoni at LeBootCamp: Every Bit Counts.
We're also not ones to throw good quality oil down the drain when the flavor of a dish is unlikely to suffer and will search high and low for alternatives to cooking with costly oils when other everyday items will serve just as well. Here are a few of our tried and true favorites. Generally speaking, these are cup for cup equivalents, i.e., 1/4 cup for 1/4 cup, but use your best judgement. If a dish or batter is looking too dry, add a little complementing liquid to moisten things up.
There are so many diets out there. SO many! And so many of them work, at least for a time. But old habits are hard to break. Inevitably, everyone puts it back on. This is why we love Weight Watchers. It doesn't tell you what you can't eat, because you can eat anything. What it does do is help you 'watch' what you eat, and therefore make better choices.
As the New Year gets underway, we recommend this simple but effective tip for keeping trim: take a little off the top. Now this may seem hard, but if applied at every meal it really works. Basically, just take a bit away. Eat a little less than you had planned on eating. Make it a game, even. Yummy chicken breast! Only eat 2/3. Baked potato? Eat 3/4. Piece of cake? Eat half.
This little, simple, non-gimmicky approach can help you shed pounds. Try it!
Nothing like a piping hot Pumpkin Spice Latte from you-know-where but nothing will put a dent in your wallet bigger than those Pumpkin Spice Lattes from you-know-where. Intrepid savvies around the web have figured out how to concoct their own PSLs giving us all that warm fuzzy feeling of enjoying the sweet life and saving big at the same time. Here are a few of our favorite ways to bring PSL goodness right home...
Recently we cooked a whole sea bass dinner for our husband and he loved it! We did too because it was fast and easy and looked and tasted as if Mr. Famous Chef did it for us. Now that’s savvy, here’s what we did!
- Buy 2 whole sea bass – scaled and gutted (but leave on head and tail)
- Place your fish on greaseproof paper for preparation
- Stuff the cavity with:
- Sliced, fresh garlic – about 1 each
- Fresh dill – about a teaspoon
- Sliced scallions – about a teaspoon
- ½ teaspoon of fresh butter (separate the butter into little bits and stuff in behind the herbs)
- A few thin slices of lemon
- Rub your fish with 1-tablespoon olive oil (we like lemon-infused)
- Shake on a bit of powdered garlic, sea salt and pepper (both sides)
- Place in a plastic storage bag to marinate for a few hours in the fridge
When it’s time to cook:
- Place both fish on ½ of a lightly oiled tray/pan
- Set a few slices of lemon on top of your fish, along with a scattering of fresh dill
- Set small, vine-ripe tomatoes (preferably on the vine) on the other half of the pan (sprinkle with sea salt and garlic powder)
- Place fish and tomatoes into pre-heated oven of 450 degrees F and remove in 15-20 minutes (the skin should be browned and crunchy)
- Place on white plates with the roasted tomatoes and you are good to go for your restaurant meal at home – just watch the bones!
Eggnog tastes so good, we think it’s the nutmeg that brings it to life. In many ways eggnog means it’s time for Christmas. But goodness gracious eggnog is fattening! Why is it that everything that tastes really, really good is so fattening?? Someone made a mistake when they organized this basic truth.
But we digress…
We scoured the Internet and found our favorite low-fat eggnog recipe on About.com. Try it out and tell us what you think!
This Low Fat Eggnog recipe has half the calories of traditional eggnog, making it a worthy treat for anyone concerned about their diet. There are many eggnog recipes to accommodate special diets, including a Low Carb Eggnog and a Vegan Eggnog.
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Yield: 4 Servings
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup fat-free egg substitute
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 cups fat-free evaporated milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup rum or brandy
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
1. Beat together egg, egg substitute and sugar.
2. Return mixture to stove and cook over low heat.
3. Stir constantly until thickened slightly and very steamy. Do not let eggnog boil.
4. Warm milk until it steams but does not boil.
5. Very gradually beat milk into eggs.
6. Stir in vanilla and chill thoroughly.
7. Stir in brandy or rum.
Pour into four glasses and sprinkle a touch of nutmeg on top of each serving.
Savvy Tip of the Week
Shop twice a year at the end of the winter and summer seasons and stock up on classic, quality pieces while they’re on sale.
What is 24/Savvy?
24/Savvy is about living the smartest, most creative life possible with whatever we’ve got on hand.
You're one step away from savvy living!