To measure the goodness of life

To measure the goodness of life by its delights and pleasures and safety is to apply a false standard. The abundant life does not consist of a glut of luxury. It does not make itself content with commercially produced pleasure, the nightclub idea of what is a good time, mistaking it for joy and happiness. On the contrary, obedience to law, respect for others, mastery of self, joy in service--these constitute the abundant life.
Thomas S. Monson, "In Quest of the Abundant Life", Ensign, Mar. 1988, 2

Featured Recipes (on a College Budget)

So... We all know about the pumpkin pie. But what about these delicious treats? Enjoy!

Pumpkin Cheesecake

1 1/2 cups crushed gingersnap cookies
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
1/3 cup butter, melted

2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup white sugar, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). In a medium bowl, mix together the crushed gingersnap cookies, pecans, and butter. Press into the bottom, and about 1 inch up the sides of a 9 inch springform pan. Bake crust 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Set aside to cool.

In a medium bowl, mix together the cream cheese, 1/2 cup sugar, and vanilla just until smooth. Mix in eggs one at a time, blending well after each. Set aside 1 cup of the mixture. Blend 1/4 cup sugar, pumpkin, cinnamon, and nutmeg into the remaining mixture. Spread the pumpkin flavored batter into the crust, and drop the plain batter by spoonfuls onto the top. Swirl with a knife to create a marbled effect. (I piped the white mixture with a ziplock bag into a swirl effect instead)

Bake 55 minutes in the preheated oven, or until filling is set. Run a knife around the edge of the pan. Allow to cool before removing pan rim. Chill for at least 4 hours before serving.

Creamy Pumpkin Soup

Penne Pasta with Pumpkin and Italian Sausage
Rachel Ray

Creamy Broccoli and Cauliflower Soup from scratch.
Steam until fork-tender:
3 cup. fresh Broccoli, Cauliflower, and/or Brocco-flower (hybrid, looks like green cauli)
KEEP THE WATER left in the bottom of the pot

In a deep saucepan, brown:
1/2 c. chopped onion
2 Tb. oil/butter

Turn heat down, and add*:
2 packets/Tb of bouillon
1 1/2 c. powdered milk
3 Tb. flour (can sub. in pea flour or cornstarch
3 c. vegetable water or hot water
1/2 c. fresh parsley, or 3 Tb. dried parsley
4 oz. of 1/4in cubed mild, soft cheese (I just used the last bits of cheddar, Monterrey jack, or mozzarella)
Salt and black ground pepper to taste

*For best results, pour the vegetable water in a bowl/glass and whisk the powders to ensure no clumps.

Simmer and stir until all cheese is melted (about 5 min.). Serve hot, store covered for up to 3 days.
Bear, 2011

Rice Casserole
Serves 4 • 10 min Prep • Mixing bowl and Casserole dish 
Left overs, Four steps, 30 min. and you’ve got dinner for about $1!

In a large mixing bowl, stir together:
1 can of a creamy soup
1/2 can of water.
Chop 2 c. of leftover meats, vegetables, and fruit 
and fold into the soup mix.

In a greased baking dish, layer
 2 c. cooked rice with the casserole mix.

Bake, covered, at 350° F for 20-30 min. or until the casserole is thoroughly warmed.

Suggested Combinations: Orange Chicken and Broccoli with Cream of Chicken Lemon Pepper Chicken and Green Bean with Cream of Celery Roasted Chicken and Rosemary with Cream of Mushroom Beef Strips and Sauteed Onion (Dry Onion Soup Mix) with Cream of Mushroom Roast Pork with Cranberries with Cream of Celery Sage Chicken and Asparagus Tips with Cream of Chicken
Bear 2005

Lo Mein (low budget)

Two pans--loads of good vegis--and ramen!
In a large skillet or wok, saute your vegis (green onions, squash, carrots, celery, peppers, nuts, asparagus) in a little vegetable oil and soy sauce.  Steam the ramen (egg noodles) until soft, and toss in with vegis.  Can pour Teriyaki sauce, soy sauce, or sweet ginger sauce to your liking. 

Tropical Tort  
(you can use any combination of fruit on this though...)

What's on sale:
Strawberries, mangoes, kiwis, lemons

How to use them:

Shortbread Tart
Mix well:
1/2 c. shortening
2 c. flour
3/4 c sugar
1 Tb. vanilla extract
1 rind of lemon (set aside the fruit to be juiced later)

Add 1 tsp at a time milk until the dough scrapes clean from the sides and gathers around the paddle/beater into one ball.
Press into a tart pan, or the bottom of a 9x13 pan, or the bottom of a pie plate. Fork for steam vents. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 min. or until it is lightly golden around the edges and firm in the middle. Set on rack, in pan, to cool.

While Almond Frosting
Whip together:
1 c. shortening
1 Tb. almond extract
Mix in alternately:
1/3 lb. powdered sugar (1 c. at a time)
2 Tb. water (1 Tb. at a time)
Whip till fluffy. Refrigerate covered for 30 days.

Toss together:
2 firm-ripe kiwis, peeled and diced
1 firm-ripe mango, peeled and diced (do NOT eat core. cut away from the stiff core)
5-6 ripe strawberries, sliced
2 Tb (1 lemon) juice
Refrigerate covered for 3 days.

Lightly frost shortbread with the frosting and generously top with fruit. Enjoy!

Jess's Whole Bird Roast 

A whole chicken? Really....
Turkeys are good prices now too.

So, in a floured oven bag rest your clean bird.

Rub the outside with:
3 Tbl Olive Oil
3 Tb. Lemon juice (the juice of the lemon you grated if want a more citrus Greek bird)
2 minced garlic clove
1 Tb. crushed rosemary leaves

Stuff the inside with:
4 peeled garlic cloves
1 sliced lemon
2 rosemary sprigs

Cook as directed; remove sprigs, citrus, and cloves before serving.
You'll be surprised at how little the bird absorbs the garlic, but it flavors the skin marvelously. The olive oil will roast the bird to a rich carmel that any mother-in-law would be impressed at.

Jess's Meatloaf 

There's a meatloaf that is better than steak? You better believe it. And here it is:
Bacon wrapped, stuffed with Cheese and Onion
Serves: 4 • Prep: 20min • Cooking: 30-35 min • Oven: 400° F Requires: mixing bowl, glass baking dish or half baking sheet with parchment
In mixing bowl, mix the following thoroughly with your hands until the meat mixture can hold shape : 1 lb. raw hamburger
3⁄4 c. bread crumbs 3⁄4 ounce (1⁄2 package) of dry onion soup mix 3 Tbs. diced onion 2 eggs
On the parchment sheet or cutting board, pat down meat to form a rectangular patty. Layer the following on top: 2 ounces of Mozzarella Cheese, sliced thinly 2-3 strips of bacon.
Gently roll the patty to form a spiral of cheese and bacon. Garnish with remaining bacon (1-2 strips) and cheese. Lay in oiled glass pan or on top of parchment and baking sheet. NOTE: if you have to use foil, line the aluminum with cabbage or else the meat will stick to the foil will stick, tear, and be served with the meat. Cabbage won't change the flavor profile, or stick to the meat; so discard and don't serve.
Bake on the lowest rack for 30-35 min. at 400° For until the juices run yellow-clear and bubble.
PRICE BREAK-DOWN: $1.99 meat .30 egg .25 mix .20 bread .10 onion .30 cheese .90 bacon
total: $4.04 --- $1/person
Bread Crumbs:
Just so ya know.... BREADCRUMBS: This is what makes or breaks a meatloaf. For a more moist loaf, use less -- for a stiffer loaf, use more! You can purchase these in canisters (go for unseasoned), but can make your own.
For this recipe, simply crumble stale/dry bread: 3 slices, or 2 bread- sticks, or 6 crackers.

Lime Rice ** Food Storage Bazaar Recipe

1 ½ C     Long-grain Rice
¼ C      Lime Juice
½ C     White/Yellow Onion: Chopped Fine 
1 ¼ C     Chicken Broth
1 C     Water
½ Bunch  Cilantro: Coarsely chopped

Sauté Onion and Cilantro in ½ T vegetable oil
Add washed rice, sauté mix, lime juice, chicken broth, & water to pot or rice steamer 
Rice steamer: let it cook until it turns itself off  
Stove top: bring to a low boil, & allow the rice to cook until all the liquid has been absorbed or boiled off.  Fluff with a fork and serve hot.

Serves well with: 
Chicken           Beans       Shredded Pork/Beef
Wood, 2010

White Chili ***Legume Class Recipe
---a light, Coastal Mexican soup that uses the meat of peppers for a flavorful broth
serves: 6 time: 60 min.
1 broiler-fryer chicken chopped, or 2 skinless breasts chopped, or 4 canned chicken (drained)
3 c chicken broth
2 qts water
1 Tbl canola oil
2 large onions, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cans Cannelloni beans, drained
1/4 c lime juice
1 can (4oz) diced green chilies
1 small jalapeno chili, stemmed, seeded, and minced
1/4 c fresh cilantro
1 tsp dried oregano leaves
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 c (1/4 lb) shredded Mont. Jack cheese

Roma tomatoes, diced
Monterrey jack, shredded
ripe olives, sliced
cilantro leaves
ripe avocado, diced

Boil to boil broth, water, and meat; cover and let simmer until meat is cooked. (abt 15 min. for whole breasts)
Remove meat, set aside and tear/chop when slightly cooled.
Boil broth until reduced to 3 cups, set aside.
In large pot, Carmel onions and garlic in oil. Add broth, beans, lime juice, peppers, and spices. Simmer 15 min. (careful not to boil and burn fresh herbs). Stir in chicken and cheese.
Serve hot.
King, 1990

Curried Beans and Rice
2 c. long grain rice
4 c. water
1 tsp. salt
In a separate saucepan, caramelize
1/4 c finely chopped onion
1 Tbs butter
1/2 tsp garlic powder ( 1 finely diced clove)
1/2 tsp black ground pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1 (15 oz) kidney bean
2 bouillon cubes, crushed
1 1/2 cup. water
2 broken bay leaves (be sure to remove before serving, it's best just to snap them in half)
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. curry
Combine with rice and serve hot.  Serves 4.  
Great with Indian onion naan, pulled pork, or salmon cakes.
Bear, 2011

Legume Flour
Grind clean, dried beans, lentils, or split peas in wheat grinder into flour.  Store in plastic zip lock bags in freezer.  Will store at room temperature for up to 6  months.  Will bitter with age.  Uses: soup thickener, fry coat, dry soup mix, bread, muffins, etc.  
Missoula, Mt Stake, Missoula Home Storage Center, 2001  

Creamy 3 minute soups: White Bean
4 c. warm water, not hot
½ c bean flour
1 tsp chicken soup base (bouillon) 
1 Tbs carrot powder
1 tsp onion powder
½ tsp dried parsley

Mix with whisk to a boil; turn down and simmer to thicken.  Stir constantly.  Serves 4.
4 g protein/serving.
Missoula, Mt Stake, Missoula Home Storage Center, 2001  

Creamy 3 minute soups: Split Bean
4 c. warm water, not hot
½ c split pea flour
1 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp onion powder
1 Tbs carrot powder
¾ tsp thyme
2 tsp ham soup base (bouillon) 
¼ tsp celery salt -or-
1 tsp celery powder
Mix with whisk to a boil; turn down and simmer to thicken.  Stir constantly.  Serves 4.
2 g protein/serving.
Missoula, Mt Stake, Missoula Home Storage Center, 2001  

Creamy 3 minute soups: Lentil
4 c. warm water, not hot
1 ½ tsp onion powder
1 ½ tsp carrot powder
 6 Tbs lentil powder
 1 tsp dried parsley
 2 tsp ham soup base (bouillon) -or-
1 tsp chicken soup base (bouillon) 
Mix with whisk to a boil; turn down and simmer to thicken.  Stir constantly.  Serves 4.
4 g protein/serving.
Missoula, Mt Stake, Missoula Home Storage Center, 2001

"Cold Killer" Chicken Noodle Soup
Serves 8; 10 min. prep./20 min. cook
In a large soup pot, carmel/brown:
2 ribs of celery, diced
*2 carrots, peeled and diced (if fresh)
1 onion, peeled and diced
2 Tb. olive oil

Turn down heat and add:
2 qt. Water
4 chicken or vegi bouillon, crushed
1 Tbl. crushed rosemary
1 Tbl. dried thyme
1 Tbl. dried Basil
1 Tbl. dried Oregano
1/4 tsp. Cayenne pepper
4 skinless, boneless chicken Breasts diced
(you'll boil the meat to cook it more tender, but you could also use cooked meat as well)
*3 c. frozen vegi of your choice (peas, carrots, etc.)
3 c. short pasta

Simmer until pasta is al dente (abt 15 min.).
Excellent with fresh bread, crackers, and cheese.
Woolstenhulme, 2001

Deviled Eggs
Hard boil eggs (place 6 eggs in warm water, bring to a boil for 15 min.; place immediately in cold water to stop the cooking; crack and peel; slice in half; spoon out yoke into a bowl; make yoke and pipe it (or spoon it) back into the egg white --- good for 2 days refrigerated)
Salty and Savory:
6 hard boiled yokes
3 Tb mayo
1 1/2 tsp vinegar
1 tsp spicy brown mustard ( a "squirt")
1/2 tsp garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Sweet and Savory:
6 hard boiled yokes
3 Tb mayo
1 Tb sweet pickle relish
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp yellow mustard ( a "squirt")
1/2 tsp paprika

6 hard boiled yokes
3 Tb mayo
1 Tb garam masala
1 Tb curry
2 tsp garlic
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper


3 hrs before dinner, make a quick and easy pie crust:
1 c. shortening/lard
2 c. four
1 Tb. salt
(can add Parmesan or savory herbs into the pie crust as well).
Roll out and lay in a deep dish pie/quiche pan and fork vent holes for steam. Refrigerate for a few hours. (The cold fat/oil in a hot oven will keep the the flour layers, resulting in a flaky crust)
For the filling, about 1 hr before dinner:
Separate 6 eggs (keep yokes in a small bowl, and whites in a large bowl)
1.For yoke mixture, beat together:
6 yokes
1 tsp garlic
3 Tbs Parmesan cheese, grated
1 tsp basil
1 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper, ground
2.Whisk egg whites until stiff peaks form.
3. Fold in yoke mixture into the egg whites
4. In a greased pan (or skillet), layer in egg mixture with leftovers (whatever you like: ham, cheese, onions, peppers, asparagus, spinach, etc.).
5. Bake in 35 min. at 350 F. (or until golden and eggs are done in the middle).

Light Marinara with Tri-color Tortilinni

15 min., serves 6
Requires 1 frying pan, 1 sauce pan, 1 blender
In a med.-large frying pan, saute the following in 1 Tb. butter until aromatic and golden:
1/2 onion (purple, white, or yellow), peeled and sliced
1 pepper (half red and half green), cored and diced
1 tomato, seeded/squeezed and cubed

In a med. boiling pot, toss in hot salted water and
2 carrots, peeled and diced.
Boil for 30 sec. until tender on the outside

Screen out carrots (save the water!) and toss in a blender. Continue to boil the water for your
2 Packages of Tir-Color Tortillini, Cheese Filled (frozen food section of Lee's, 2 for $3). Boil and stir occasionally (while you blend in the next step), the pasta will be done when it floats. (2 min.)

Toss the carrots and sauteed mix into the blender. Add
1Tb. vegetable bouillon dissolved in 1/2 c. boiled water (From the tortillini)
1 small can of tomato paste
1/2 Tb. garlic powder
1 Tb. fresh basil, oregano, parsley, thyme (1tsp. dried)

Blend until desired consistency (we like ours a little chunky). Est. 30 sec.

Drain pasta and pour in marinara. Serve Immediately.

Great with vinegar oil and bread, green lettuce salads, fresh fruit, and sparkling drinks.

Salmon Cakes with lemon vinaigrette

Easy. Serves 4.

2 cans. salmon (or tuna, but not both)
2 slices of stale bread
2 eggs
1/4 c. chopped yellow, purple, or white onion
1/8 c. chopped chives or green onion
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper

Mix together with a fork and spoon in patties on med. high skillet of canola oil (1/2 c.). Turn once when edges are golden brown. Be careful the heat isn't too high; they're prone to burning. Serve immediately with drizzled vinaigrette over on a bed of salad greens, with steamed potatoes or green beans, or with corn on the cob. Delish!

1/2 juiced lemon
1 c. Olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
Whisk together before serving. Stores covered at room temperature for 3 months (no direct sunlight or extreme temperatures).

Panini Rosa

Salsa Rosa
2 tb mayo
2 tb tomato paste
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
salt and pepper to taste
whisk together and store covered, refrigerated, 3 weeks

2 slices of thick artisan or whole wheat bread, spread with Salsa Rosa
1 slice of mozzarella
1 slice of deli ham
1 paper thin slice of raw onion
1 Tb bacon, chopped

Dip outer sandwich sides in olive oil and press (panini, or stove grill) until golden brown, approx. 3 min. Great with green leaf salads, chips, or cold soup.

Spinach- Avocado Sandwich
1 pita
1/2 avocado, sliced
1/2 tomato, sliced
1/2 cup spinach, rinsed and whole
1 Tb Ranch dressing

Cut the pita open, spread with Ranch, and stuff with avocado, tomato and spinach.

3Cheese stuffed tomatoes
1 1/2 cup. ricotta (or about half a container)
1 c. shredded mozzarella
1/2 c. grated Parmesan
1 c. diced white (or yellow) onion
1 Tb. garlic salt
1 Tb. diced fresh parsley
2 Tb. diced fresh basil
1/2 Tb. salt and ground black pepper
3 eggs
Fork mash thoroughly to ensure an even spread of egg.

Slice off the stem end of 12 Roma Tomatoes, and spoon (core) out the seeds, juice, and ribbing. Be careful not to puncture the tomato sides.
Pour 2 Tb. olive oil into a glass pan and roll the tomato skins in oil to coat, coating the pan as you go. Stuff the tomatoes and set on side (or if you can, stand them on their blossom ends with the cheese facing up, side by side to fill the dish).
Bake at 350 F for 20 min. COVERED, or until the skins are roasted and start to peel away from the tomato flesh and the cheese is bubbling or golden brown.

Serve 2-3 tomatoes on a bed or salted or pesto pasta, or with marinara and long pasta with a green salad. Enjoy!


1-14 oz can of diced tomatoes
1 Tbs. Italian seasoning
1 bay leaf
I medium to small onion(diced)
2 Tbs. Olive oil
Sauté onions in olive oil and stir until onions are clear. Combine diced tomatoes, Italian seasoning and bay leaf and add to onions. Bring to a boil then allow to simmer on low heat for 10 min.  Remove Bay leaf before serving.

J Bear's Lasagna. 

Time: 75 min. Serves: 4

You'll need:one box (10 noodles) lasagna pastaMarinara:2 cans of diced tomatoes1/2 onion, chopped2 Tb. olive oil1/2 tsp dried basil (1 tsp minced fresh)1 tsp dried oregano (2 tsp minced fresh)1/2 tsp dried garlic (1 minced clove)1 tsp salt1 tsp ground black pepperCheese Mixture:1 c. shredded mozzarella1/2 c. shredded Parmesan1 c. ricotta cheese2 eggs1 tsp. garlic (1 minced clove)1 Tb. dried parsley (4 fresh sprigs minced)1 Tb. basil (2 Tb. minced fresh)1 tsp. salt1 tsp. ground black pepper2 cups chopped spinach2 Tb. finely minced onionBoil pasta in salted water until al dente (abt 15 min.).While pasta is boiling, (Red) caramelize chopped onion in olive oil (abt 5 min., stir occasionally). In a mixing bowl, (White) mix together all of the cheese mixture. The ricotta and eggs should add plenty of moisture to form a paste-like texture that is spreadable, but stiff. Return to sauteed onions, turn heat to med. -low and add the remaining marinara ingredients. Simmer for 5 min. (no boiling) and then drain liquid (tomato juice). Do not return to heat.Drain pasta and remove from heat.In an oiled 8x8 glass pan, layer pasta- red sauce-pasta-white mix-pasta-red sauce, etc. until you run out of ingredients; you should have 4-5 layers. Bake, covered, at 350 degrees for 40 min. or until a slight bubble/golden edges with melted cheese. Top with shredded mozzarella, basil, spinach, or marinara.
Bear, 2010