Friday, December 19, 2008

Your Money Ceiling

Sometimes saving money isn't about all those discounted prices on goods you "can't live without". Using coupons is good only for those who already have the appetite for the things they can be redeemed on.

If you suddenly found you were without money, all those decisions about which one and what color to buy of the latest gizmo would be laughable. It would be much easier to decide that it's impossible to buy, considering your current circumstances.

Ah, but you say, "I have a credit card, no problem". The fake money ceiling of credit makes you feel like the sky is the limit. In actuality, your real money ceiling is much lower, for some very very low. Nothing like realizing that it's right above your nose. You have no room to budge.

What I'm talking about makes sense to some of you. Then there are those of you who have been "playing the Pharaoh" in denial (the Nile). If you really live within your means (less than your income), then this makes total sense, does it not?

You've probably heard a famous person say "I've been fat and I've been slim...Slim is better." Well I say, "I've been in debt and I've been debt free...Debt free is much much better!" There's nothing like knowing that you owe no one...for anything. Your whole mindset changes and you can sleep at night.

I realized recently that after 4 months in the US with no work for my husband, that we may be in for more belt tightening. Times are tough for those out of work. I can relate.

What I challenge everyone to do is to reconsider the things you want and only consider those that you need. Who knows, maybe your situation will take a downturn before you know it. What are you going to do? Where's your emergency fund?

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Better Butter

Recently I attended a seminar based on a vegan diet that uses a high percentage of raw foods in their diet. I gleaned a few recipes that I'd like to share with you. This one is very tasty and one that most people would want a substitute for when going vegan. There is Earth Balance that I've used before, but this one is raw and can be made at home - two things I love!

This recipe is from "Eating Without Heating".

Better Butter

1/2 cup pine nuts
1 Tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon Udo's Oil (if available)
1/2 cup coconut oil

Blend all together except the coconut oil until smooth. Add more water if needed. Add the coconut oil and blend again. Chill in refrigerator or freezer.

For more kitchen tips, visit Tammy's Recipes.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Shannon's Raw Veggie Wrap and Raw Sweet Snack

Shannon's raw vegan food idea/recipe is a great veggie idea and a "cookie" idea. Thanks, Shannon.
Shannon said...
My favorite snack... I slice jicama, carrot, avocado, red pepper, and whatever other veggies I have on hand. Place in a bowl and sprinkle with grated ginger and sunflower seeds, and then squeeze half a lemon over it. Wrap it all up in butter lettuce leaves. Yum!
My other idea... is to stack a dried apricot with a whole, raw almond. The two eaten together is like a cookie!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Ginger Cinnamon Cookies

"These are vegan? They are really good!" This is something I hear when I make these cookies. They are soft and lend themselves to many variations. The original recipe called for molasses for the sweetener, which I have replaced with maple syrup. You could use other sweeteners as well, just adjust the recipe for the changes appropriately.

Ginger Cinnamon Cookies

1 1/2 cup maple syrup (or molasses)
1 cup (or less) oil
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 teaspoon (or more) ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoon (or more) ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon baking soda
4 cups wheat flour (or other whole grain, finely ground)

Mix ingredients well together. Dough will be soft. Chill dough for a few hours (can freeze dough for use anytime). Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Roll into walnut size balls and if desired can roll in additional cinnamon in a bowl (see photo of finished cookies made this way) before placing on ungreased cookie sheet. Leave about 2-3 inches between cookies - they will spread flat. Bake for about 10-12 minutes, or until done. Cool on paper bags cut open and laid flat.
If storing, put wax paper/parchment paper between cookies to keep them from sticking together.
Can replace a some of the oil with some ground walnuts or pecans. Can use coconut oil.

Don't forget to enter the giveaway if you live in the USA!

For more kitchen tips, visit Tammy's Recipes.