cooking with the cheapo (or is that cheapa?)

Here’s a little something I’m making for dinner either tonight or tomorrow or lunch or whenever.  It’s a rainy, dreary day here in the Chicago area, with temperatures in the mid-60’s so far and I doubt it will get up much higher.  Course, if the sun comes out we’ll all be living in a giant steam bath…

During the last great stock up on EE products at Jewel with those $`1 store coupons, I threw in a few (don’t quote me) bags of dried beans.  Canned beans are down and dirty and fast, but are way more expensive and usually contain lots of sodium.  If you have the time, go with dried.  Here you see two pounds of Great Northern Beans and two cans of EE diced tomatoes with green chiles, one large onion, two little tubs of Knorr Homestyle Stock (free at Dominicks last year) and three junior pub burgers.  I was calling this White Chili when Rachel pointed out that it wasn’t white if it contained beef – librarians can be so picky!  So let’s call this Integrated Chili ’cause it’s black and white.  Hard to calculate the cost, but certainly less than a buck, and that’s cause of tax.

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4 thoughts on “cooking with the cheapo (or is that cheapa?)

  1. Did you soak your beans overnight? I was reading in James McNair’s huge cookbook that adding tomatoes
    at the start of the cooking process slows down the
    cooking and he has you adding salt at the end–have
    not tried yet. Do not ask how many cookbooks I have–
    pushing 4 digits. Great source on ebay is the regional goodwill sellers-Portland,Orlando and DC are the best.

    • Ah yes, a cookbook pissing match! I actually eliminated (donated) a couple of shelves worth within the past six months – too many that were total bull. I love the How to Cook Everything and the Vegetarian version, the Mastering the Art of French Cooking (vol. 1 and 2) among others. For this dish, I soaked the beans for a couple of hours and then slow simmered with all the ingredients. I added the Knorr for the saltiness, so no additional salt. Let it simmer this morning for an additional couple of hours – makes the house smell nice and I’M HUNGRY!!! beat that, glade!

      • A year ago when we moved and I gave salvation army boxes full- so many
        cookbooks are total bs. With the exception of bobby flay most of the
        food tv stuff is awful. My favorite right now is Sunset’s 8 cookbooks in one volume–3.99 from ebay goodwill seller-even included shipping-I think it cost more to ship than what I paid.
        It took me 3 weeks to get through it
        Your creation looks fab- I cannot wait for cooler weather.

        • I like Alton Brown (is he even still on FoodTV?) because he explains the chemistry behind cooking & baking. Knowing why something happens is important because then you know what substitutions will work in the future. I also have two of his books.

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