Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Tasty Tuesday - Seven Layer Dip

I have been slow to blog over this year.  My posts seem to be far between.  I am trying to get more organized and figuring out when, where, and how often to blog and what about.  My life sometimes seems so boring that I don't have much to write about that would be of any interest to most people.  But then I thought about why I started blogging in the first place.  It was a way for me to share about my journey through grief and keep track of my family's progress throughout the years.

Since I started staying home this year, one of the things that I've been doing a lot more of is cooking at home.  There are many reasons for this, but the main one is to save money.  Eating out doesn't cost too much, but I have become somewhat of an expert at sticking to a budget with regards to groceries.  I have learned how to make the most of everything that is in my cabinets and also how to make every dollar stretch.  It is hard sometimes, and it isn't a perfect system.  I wish that I was an amazing couponer or that I could save even more, but I do what works for our family, and when I learn new money saving ideas, I try to see how they might just work out for us. 

Well, I wasn't planning on making this post about saving money or what I've found that helps save money in the grocery area, but it seems that whenever you talk about food, groceries go along with it.  Briefly, here is what I start with on a normal week.

I start out first by having a chore for each day of the week.  I usually do those chores while my daughter is sleeping.  Sometimes after lunch while she is either playing or watching a special show, I clean up after lunch and work on my chores before she takes a nap.  But, I start with picking a day to work on my menu for the following week or two weeks.  My first thing is to check what is in my cabinets, freezer, pantry, etc.  Sometimes, I make a double recipe of certain meals and freeze half of it to have another time while planning my menus.  I call this shopping at Mira's first before I decide what to make.  Then I go about the task of planning my menu.  There are lots of ideas from blogs, pinterest, recipe books, and recipes handed down from family and friends, as to where to look for meals to cook.  I can write more about that in another post later.

So, once I finish all of that, I make my list and head to the grocery store.  I can share more about where and how I use coupons and shop.  We really live off a small budget for groceries, and depending on different events that we have going on that month, I plan ahead a little and make other adjustments to the budget in other areas. 

Here is one of my favorite recipes that I have enjoyed lately.  Since being pregnant, I have had this meal a few times and love it.

Seven Layer Dip

You will need:
1 can refried beans
half packet of taco seasoning
1 pkg. cream cheese (softened)
2-3 avocados or guacamole
shredded cheese
black olives
tortilla chips


Combine half of the half of taco seasoning packet and cream cheese.  Make sure that all the seasoning is well blended.  Set aside.

Mix the rest of the taco seasoning and refried beans together.  Set aside.

I like to make my own guacamole, so I will tell you how I make it, but you could also just buy some to make it a little easier.  Pit and peel avocados.  Mash in a small bowl with a fork or spoon.  Add salsa, lemon juice, and salt to taste.  Continue mashing together until you get the texture you want.

Find a 9x13 casserole dish and layer everything in the following order.
     - Refried bean mixture
     - Cream cheese mixture
     - Guacamole
     - Salsa
     - Shredded lettuce
     - Cheese
     - Black olives ( I don't like these, so I skip this layer and add more cheese or diced tomatoes)

Cover and set aside in the fridge for a couple of hours before serving.  It is meant to be eaten cold, but you could heat it up too.

Get your favorite brand of tortilla chips and then dig in.  So yummy!!!  Enjoy!!!!

the Ehrlich's

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