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      Avatar for BiggerPiggyBankBiggerPiggyBank
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      Most frugal souls know that you can add yesterday’s leftover corn to
      today’s stew and no one will know or care that it’s not fresh from
      the can, but not everything is easy to disguise or reheat or
      incorporate into a stew!

      One of my favorites is mashed potatoes. Now, don’t laugh, but I
      sometimes make extra just so I’ll have them on hand for my favorite
      recipes – potato cakes and mashed potato salad. As a matter of face,
      mashed potatoes may very well be the world’s most frugal convenience
      food!

      Besides all that, potatoes are nutritious and satisfying.

      Mashed Potatoes Recipes
      Dinner Recipe

      Mashed Potato Recipes
      Savory mashed potato recipes. Garlic, ranch, sour cream, more.
      Even when the price fluctuates upward, they make a reasonably priced
      dish. They’re versatile, too, even when they’ve already been cooked
      and mashed.
      Potato cakes

      Potato cakes are rich and satisfying whether you make them for
      breakfast in the place of pancakes or for a side dish at dinner. The
      recipe is slightly different for each of them, though. If you want a
      dinner side dish, add three or four eggs to about a cup of leftover
      mashed potatoes, then add salt, and pepper if desired, and mix in
      enough flour to make a sticky dough that’s not too stiff to drop by
      tablespoons full into a skillet of medium hot fat. Fry the cakes
      until they’re golden brown on both sides and brush with butter.
      Serve while they’re still hot for the best flavor.

      (If you’re staying away from fried foods, you can bake this in a
      greased casserole at about 350 for thirty minutes or so – enough to
      cook the egg. Check it by inserting a knife in the center. It should
      come out clean.)

      The recipe for breakfast potato cakes: Use one or two eggs, and a
      heaping teaspoon of baking powder for each cup of potatoes, and stir
      well. Add enough flour to make a dough that’s still a little sticky
      but can be shaped with your hands. Fry the same as dinner cakes, and
      serve with butter and syrup, honey, jelly, jam, or molasses.

      ‘Twice Baked’ Potatoes

      Twice baked potatoes really aren’t baked twice, but they’re ‘cooked’
      twice. To make a similar casserole with mashed potatoes, add your
      choice of spices and top with cheese or crushed potato chips and
      bake long enough to heat through, around about 15 to 20 minutes.
      These two flavoring combinations are favorites:

      Sage with celery leaves and onion
      Oregano with caraway seed and garlic
      Grease a casserole dish and mix the seasonings into the potatoes
      well and either layer them with crushed (be frugal about it and save
      your bottom of the chip bag dregs for this) chips or grated cheese –
      whatever kind you have on hand. This is very frugal but your family
      will think it’s special.


      Making delicious dishes with leftover turkey
      So the turkey was good but it’s boring now… the pudding’s all gone
      and the olives are shriveling. It must be the week after
      Thanksgiving!
      What to do with that leftover turkey? You’ve had the traditional
      sliced turkey sandwiches and diced turkey soups, so what else is
      there?

      Plenty! Everyone has their favorite ways to use it, but here are
      some quick and inexpensive ways to get the very most from your
      leftover turkey.

      Barbecued turkey for open face sandwiches is simple to make. Shred
      or cut up leftover turkey and add your favorite barbecue sauce.
      Presto, it’s done.
      Turkey and noodles are made just the same as chicken and noodles.
      Cook the noodles and add turkey. You can add chicken boullion if
      necessary and vegetables if you like.
      Turkey salad: Add a cup or more of diced turkey meat to shredded
      lettuce, minced onion, shredded cheese and sliced black olives.

      Turkey Meatloaf Recipes

      Top with sour cream or ranch dressing.
      Don’t forget the turkey pot pie. Add leftover vegetables from the
      same feast if you have them, then add a half cup of water with a
      couple of teaspoons of corn starch dissolved in it, dump it all in a
      pie crust, top and bake until the crust is lightly browned.
      Turkey sandwich spread can be made in a food processor or blender.
      Add whatever suits you – pickles, onions, cheese, etc., to a cup of
      turkey and a tablespoon or more of mayonnaise or creamy salad
      dressing, then blend until it’s fairly smooth.
      But what if you’ve used all the “good meat”? If you’ve picked the
      best and biggest chunks of meat, you still have quite a bit of
      turkey left. It’s time to cook the carcass in a big pot. Break it in
      two if you need, cover with water and simmer for an hour or more,
      until the meat begins to fall off the bones. Cool and pick the meat
      off and portion it into containers for use right away or for the
      freezer. Strain the leftover liquid and freeze for using with the
      turkey later. Or you can freeze it with the turkey if you only
      intend to make casseroles or soups with it.

      Turkey is generally frugal meat anyway, but you can make it even
      more so by using it all. Get the absolute most from that turkey.


      The ultimate frugal recipe
      I’ve seen the cartoons, yes. And I’ve eaten a few bad meatloaves.
      I’ve even made a few myself. For the most part though, making a
      meatloaf is a great opportunity to use up leftovers, and make a
      pound of ground meat act like two pounds or more. It’s frugal, it’s
      good and it’s convenient.
      Meatloaves are basically mixtures of meat, binders and “fillers”.

      Meat
      Any meat can make a loaf. Tuna, ground beef, ground turkey or
      chicken, sausage… just about any ground or small chunked meat you
      have on hand. If you have meat in one large hunk, just dice it up,
      either by hand, or chunk it and put it in a food processor. It
      doesn’t have to be a certain consistency to work, but it needs to be
      in small pieces to mix well.

      Binder
      The binder is used to hold things together as they bake into a loaf.

      Meatloaf

      Usually whole eggs are used, but egg whites will work by themselves.
      Use one whole egg or just the white for each pound of meat as a
      general rule.
      Some meatloaves, particularly fish and poultry, use white sauce
      (flour, water and fat) to bind the ingredients. You can use whatever
      you prefer, or whatever is on hand.

      Filler
      Fillers are chopped or minced foods of many kinds that extend the
      meat and sometimes add their own flavor. There are three basic
      categories of fillers, and they’re usually all three used in a loaf.
      Cereals and grains consisting of:

      Pastas

      Whole grains like rice, wheat and barley (cooked)
      Cracker and bread crumbs
      These will absorb excess meat, sauce and binder liquids so the
      meatloaf won’t fall apart or be soupy.
      Vegetables

      Beans, peas and lentils, cooked
      Fresh, raw vegetables like shredded carrots, cabbage, and green
      peppers
      Preserved vegetables such as sliced olives and pickled anything
      Cooked, leftover vegetables that can include almost anything.
      This is true filler. It will expand the bulk of the meat
      accordingly, but some uncooked vegetables tend to shrink when
      cooked, so allow for that. Make sure all of it is minced or shredded
      to cook evenly.
      Sauces and spices

      Tomato sauce, steak sauce, white sauce, cheese sauce…
      Garlic, onions, chili powder, dill seed… just about any spice or
      seasoning you have on hand.
      Use spices and seasonings generously, and don’t be afraid to mix
      them! Poultry seasoning can be good with beef and chicken, and chili
      makes for a great chicken loaf.
      Fillers have two distinct purposes. One, as mentioned, is to absorb
      excess meat, sauce and binder liquids. The other is to extend the
      meat. That is, to make it go farther than it would by itself.

      When you make a meatloaf, make it with this in mind. Pastas,
      leftover vegetables, bottom of the box cereals (not the sugar coated
      kind!), leftover rice (seasoned or not), half a tomato, a bit of
      green pepper, shredded or crumbled cheese… they’re all fair game
      and they all can make a unique and very frugal meal.

      A little imagination, a few leftovers and a pound of ground beef and
      you can have a meal fit for company. Serve it plain or dress it up
      with gravy over it. Or slice and quickly fry the slices. Smother it
      with something else – mushrooms, cheese, onions.

      No one will ever know that it’s made with leftovers and throwaways!


      Frugal ways to deal with leftover candy
      It seems like every holiday from Halloween to Easter has been
      created (or maybe recreated) just for the candy companies. Even with
      small children in the house, it’s easy to wind up with an overload
      of all sorts of different candies – peppermint candy canes, milk
      chocolate bunnies, candy corn, and Valentine ‘conversation hearts’,
      to name a few.
      As we go from holiday to holiday, it’s frugal and sensible use the
      excess and ‘day after’ bargains of one holiday for the next. For
      instance, chop Halloween candy corn to decorate a cake for
      Thanksgiving, or use it whole to fill in a cornucopia. Christmas
      candy kisses, wrapped in gold and silver and red foil, can be used
      on Valentine’s Day. Save the green ones for St. Patrick’s day!
      Green, gold and silver are still appropriate for Easter or nearly
      any other holiday, so stock up on those, or save back some.

      Save small or unusually shaped candy to decorate cookies for any
      celebration, or for gingerbread houses next Christmas.

      Candy Wedding Favors
      Distinctive Candy Wedding Favors For Your Big Day!

      Gourmet Caramel Apples
      Soft or hard, it doesn’t matter as long as they’re not bigger than
      the cookie!
      Some real frugal tips:

      Use redhots to decorate Valentine cookies.
      Put chocolate coated peppermint patties in weak hot chocolate.
      Use crushed hard candies in place of colored sugar.
      Melt chocolate of the same type together and freeze to put in a mold
      later.
      If you really want to be frugal, save the different colored foil
      wrappers and ‘repackage’ your own homemade or recycled candy.
      I remember when growing up, we could never have envisioned a world
      where there was too much candy! Your young ones may very well feel
      the same way, but it’s not good to eat too much candy, either. One
      thing that will help, and it’s one of the cheapest things you can
      do, too, is to use a package of candies like Lifesavers or Rollos.
      Repackage them, one at a time, in recycled foil. It’s amazing how
      much more important each piece of candy seems to a child when its
      packaged alone.

      If you don’t have an excess of holiday candy, wait until a day after
      any given holiday and go get some! Candy that was ridiculously high
      priced in anticipation of holiday shoppers becomes excess baggage to
      the retailer, too, and he wants to get rid of them.

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