Eco-Cheap Cooking

Shawna Coronado's Pumpkin Harvest

Shawna Coronado's Pumpkin Harvest

Also, happy World Pasta Day!  Good grief, so much going on.  We better get right into

Penne with Basil and Pumpkin Bechamel

Wow…so let’s see…  This recipe is my #meatlessmonday post for Meatless Monday. 

It’s also the last of the 2009 Nude & Eco-Cheap Cooking recipes for this year (boo!  I know, I’m bummed.)  I’d team up with the awesome Shawna Coronado for any cooking challenge anywhere and I am going to miss all her delicious veggies.  Still, as winter touches the Midwest, all her nude (no chemicals) eco-friendly veggies are going away and without the veggies, it’s hard to feed a family of four for less then $10.50! 

But, if she’s up for it, I’m would love to see a 2010 Nude & Eco-Cheap Cooking Initiative!

Oh, and before I forget,  it’s also World Pasta Day, which can only be celebrated by eating pasta.  Which is how we get to this crazy recipe  I dreamed up.  Continue Reading

Shawna Coronado's Pumpkin Harvest

Shawna Coronado's Pumpkin Harvest

Yep, that’s right.  It’s another #meatlessmonday and another installment of the 2009 Nude & Echo-Cheap Cooking Initiative.  Today we’re making

Pumpkin Soup

If you’re not familiar with the 2009 Nude & Eco-Cheap Cooking Initiative, that’s where I take the delicious veggies grown by the always awesome Shawna Coronado and turn them into a meal for a family of four that costs less than $11.50.  Can I do it?

Yes I can with this easy, but delicious pumpkin soup.

I actually love pumpkin season.  I think it’s kind of a shame that it only seems to be popular for about two months.  Still, every year people go NUTS for pumpkins: pumpkin desserts, pumpkin soups, pumpkin coffee drinks, pumpkin pizza, and so on.  Then even before the Thanksgiving leftovers are done…BOOM… everyone’s on to peppermint or sugar cookies or some other Christmas phase.  Anyway, I’m ranting.

The good news is that for the next month or so we can continue to enjoy pumpkin recipes like this one.

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Broccoli and Eggplant

Broccoli and Eggplant

Okay, it’s #meatlessmonday again, which means it’s time to do right by yourself and the earth by going twenty-four short hours without meat.  Sound tough?  Not when you have

Eggplant Rollitini

I just love eggplant and I swear after this, so will you!

Also, you may have noticed, this is another fantasic 2009 Nude & Eco-Cheap Cooking Initiative recipe, wherein I take the delicious vegetables that Shawna Coronado has grown and make them into dinner for family of four for less than $11.50.  Sadly, because winter is here (feels like it never left did it??? :)) the growing season is almost over, so there won’t be many more of these in 2009.  But fear not, while the veggies keep coming, so will delicious, healthy dinners for less than $11.50.

With that being said, this particular recipe was inspired by Jasper’s here in Kansas City.  It was one of the dishes Chef fixed during the Best Meal I Ever Ate.   It was wonderful then and I just hope I can do it justice for less than $11.50!

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Shawna Coronado's Fall Harvest

Shawna Coronado's Fall Harvest

When Shawna Coronado sent me that image you see to your right and told me to make something with it for the 2009 Nude & Eco-Cheap Cooking Initiative, I got really excited.  See, I love pumpkin and I love to make savory meals out of it.  And I knew, knew I could make a delicious dish with it for only $11.50.

So today we’re making

Baked Rice In a Pumpkin

For only $7.00!

I hope you’re ready for this.  It’s easy to make and easy to clean up.  It’s delicious and it’s got the coolest serving presentation: bake the rice in the pumpkin, then serve it tableside in a pumpkin.  It’s like the snake meal from Indiana Jones, but it’s pumpkin.  And there’s no baby snakes.  But other than that, just like it.

Also cool is the fact that this is one of those recipes that you can experiment with to your heart’s content.  All you need to do is keep the proper ratio of water to rice and make sure the pumpkin bakes through and you are good to go.

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Shawna Coronado's Vegetable Harvest

Tonight, I am combining two fantastic traditions: #MeatlessMonday and the 2009 Nude & Eco-Cheap Cooking Initiative. #MeatlessMonday is my weekly commitment to show you a delicious way to eat meat-free once a week while the 2009 Nude & Eco-Cheap Cooking Initiative is where Shawna Coronado grows the vegetables and I turn them into a dinner for four for under $11.50.

#MeatlessMonday is all about getting more healthy fruits and vegetables into your life and what better way to do it than with produce fresh out of Shawna’s (or your) garden?  So maybe for this #meatlessmonday (or next), I hope you’re having:

Fried Zucchini Napoleons, Cucumber Salad, and Mashed Beets

Wow, that’s like a complete meal with sides and everything.  Look at me go! Continue Reading

eggplant curryOkay, we’re back for another delicious installment of the 2009 Nude & Eco-Cheap Cooking Initiative.  In case this is your first time, the walking gardening encyclopedia, Shawna Coronado, is (obviously) the gardening pro.  She grows veggies in her garden and then she sends them to me so I cook them.  This arrangement works out well since if we were relying on my green thumb to feed us, well, we’d be ordering a lot of take out.

Forunately, we’re not.  So to show off the fruits (well, vegetables) of Shawna’s labor, we’re making

Eggplant Green Curry

Shawna's July Bounty

Shawna's July Bounty

Why?  Well, because when Shawna gives you eggplant, you make curry.  It’s a rule.  Look it up. 

See, just yesterday she sent me the pic you see to your right.  There is so much in that picture I want to cook with, I hardly know what to do with myself.  But, first thing’s first.  When I saw that eggplant, I knew I wanted to cook it and eat it.  So I decided on eggplant curry.

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