Aunt Margie’s Cranberry Salad, with a pragmatic twist.

For years decades, we’ve made something special for my dad for Thanksgiving and Christmas. It’s his sister’s recipe for Cranberry Salad. I remember making it as a kid, as do my sisters, but since we grew up and moved out, my mother – who fondly calls this dish “cranberry crap” – took over the job again.

This year, since my mother is in Arkansas, my father asked me if I would make it. Actually, my mother also asked me if I would make it for him and offered to give me the recipe. My father thought it would be nice if I called his sister, my Aunt Margie and ask her for it. I hadn’t spoken or seen my Aunt Margie in over ten years – not because of any problems, just logistics and lack of effort. It was a great impetus for renewing my relationship with my Aunt.

We easily fell into a very nice conversation and as she gave the me ingredients and instructions, I realized. My mother had a different version of this recipe. We had not been making my Aunt Margie’s Cranberry Salad all these years. I’ll explain and show photos as I go through the recipe.

2 bags of cranberries
2 apples (peeled and cored)
2 oranges
1 can of pineapple chunks (drained)
1 cup of sugar
walnuts to garnish


Wash the cranberries and discard stems and rotten berries.


Now here’s the pragmatic twist. My father delivered a hand grinder to me when he asked me to make this recipe. A hand. grinder. Serious flashback. I remember hand grinding the fruit and cranberries. Every. Year. What a mess. Cranberry juice everywhere. Seriously. A MESS. As soon as my sisters got old enough to use the grinder without losing a finger, I gladly passed the job to them. In their young naiveté, they thought it would be fun. By the time they realized it was a sticky and disgusting job, the cranberry crushing baton was completely out of my hands. When my mother took over again, I think she switched from hand grinder to blender. So over the years, the whole thing went from cranberry goo (in the grinder) to cranberry soup (in the blender).

Although resistant, I tested the grinder and my memory on the apples first. Yep. Just like old times. Applesauce anyone?



So I pulled out my handy dandy Oster chopper attachment.


And I tried again. MUCH better.


The red pieces in the applies are from the cranberries.

I chopped the cranberries, the apples and the pineapple using the “pulse” button on my chopper. Filling the container multiple times allowed me to chop in different . . . textures? Sizes? Basically, there are three different textures of cranberries and apples, ranging from finely chopped, medium chopped and barely chopped. I didn’t have to chop the pineapple very much since it started out in small chunks anyway.

That leaves the oranges. I made two changes which were a HUGE difference from how I made this as a kid. First, I zested the orange. We NEVER did that. NEVER. Didn’t even have a zester in the house growing up. I don’t own one now. I had to use a small grater. I got the sweetness and the taste, but not the texture. I’m buying a zester for next year.

The second difference with regard to the oranges? My Aunt Margie strongly emphasized removing the “white stuff” from the orange. It’s called the “pith” and while it is actually good for you, it tastes a little bitter. There are a few ways to remove the pith, but I just rolled the orange on the counter, peeled it and then cut away the white layer that remained. I also removed the inner white stuff – I’ve been calling it the “cartilage” of the orange. It’s hard and crunchy and bitter and it is THE reason I would never eat this cranberry salad. I hate that stuff. yuck.

Here’s the finished product sans the walnut garnish. I wasn’t serving any at the time of the photo and I didn’t want to waste the walnuts. I actually prefer pecans, myself. This can be made ahead and I’ve been told it freezes well too. Panara’s got nothing on my Aunt Margie.


My dad said he could tell the difference before he even tasted it, just from the way it looked. So could I. I tasted it, my younger sister tasted it, our dinner guests tried it – all with positive reactions. None of the kids would touch it. Big chickens. My dad took most of it home. I understand it’s great with vanilla ice cream.

I’m wondering, if I retain some of the fruit juice, heat it up and thicken it with cornstarch and stir it into the fruit mixture – would it make a good pie? I may test it next year in a Pillsbury pastry.

As always, I’m providing a print friendly version – CLICK HERE.

Find great recipes and helpful kitchen tips at Kitchen Tip Tuesdays hosted by Tammy’s Recipes!

And click on over to check out the recipes at Tempt My Tummy Tuesday hosted by Lisa at Blessed With Grace


FavoriteSon has been begging/nagging for days and Sunday night, FirstHusband finally made the long awaited jack-o-bread. It’s pumpkin bread made from our jack-o-lanterns.

First, PinkGirl scooped pumpkin guts on Halloween. (If you carve your jack-o-lanterns too early, you may want to use canned pumpkin.)


Then, the pumpkin gut fairy cleaned up.


FirstHusband/BestDaddy cut up the jack-o-lanterns the next day. (You’ve got to move fast on this, the inside of the second pumpkin started to rot the next day.)


Poor “Jack” was boiled like potatoes. [UPDATE: We now bake him at 350° until he’s tender.]


My copy of “The Tightwad Gazette” was opened to the wrinkliest page – the one with the highlighted pumpkin bread recipe.


FirstHusband did the honors.


And it appears I’m too slow with the camera.


A number of years ago, I insanely – and I do mean INSANELY – made four batches of pumpkin bread – from FOUR different recipes. It took me ALL day and I forgot to wear shoes, so my back and legs and feet were KILLING me when the last oven timer went off. But at the end of the day, the taste tests revealed the winner was a recipe from “The Tightwad Gazette” by Amy Dacyczyn (pronounced “decision”). The recipe is in the original book, page 127. There’s a The Tightwad Gazette II and a The Tightwad Gazette III. Now there’s even The Complete Tightwad Gazette

For a print friendly version in PDF, CLICK HERE.

Jack-O-Bread Ingredients

3 eggs
4 cups sugar (we use half brown sugar/half white sugar)*
1 cup oil
1 16oz can pumpkin (we use 16 oz of “Jack”)
5 cups flour (we use half wheat/half white flour)
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 Tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp allspice
1/2 Tbsp cloves or nutmeg
1 cup applesauce (we use sugar-free)

You can add:
1/2 to 1 cup chopped nuts
1 cup dates or raisins

*I’ve also made this with DiabetiSweet Sugar Substitute. They make DiabetiSweet Brown Sugar Substitute too!

Beat eggs.
Mix in sugar.
Mix in oil and pumpkin.
Combine dry ingredients and add to moist batter.
Mix in applesauce, nuts and raisins.

Grease and flour five 1 lb coffee cans. Fill with batter over 1/2 full.
(We use regular loaf pans.)

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

veggie box

I’m going to be a bum and combine my Kitchen Tip Tuesday post and my Works for Me Wednesday post into one.

Way back in May, in a post entitled “5 minute Panera Wannabe Salad,” I mentioned that I stored veggies pre-prepped and that I would post more on it someday. It is someday.

This idea was an accident. It was January of 2008. Mexican night. The table was covered with lots and lots of small bowls with “fixins” like diced tomatoes, shredded lettuce, chopped onions, diced red bell pepper and of course shredded cheese, salsa, queso and more. At cleanup time, we put everything into individual Rubbermaid containers and piled them in the fridge.

The next night, we had salad with dinner and pulled out all the little containers to add the fixins to our salad. At cleanup time, the lids went back on and everything went back into the fridge. THAT was easy! We liked the convenience so much we decided to add some other pre-prepped veggies into the mix for future salad building. Soon we had individual containers of (raw) broccoli florets, cauliflower florets, red, yellow and green diced bell peppers, scallions, carrots, mushrooms – we went all out.

The problem was that when we tried to get something from the fridge, these little individual containers would fall over and out onto the floor. (Is this the underwear principle at work or what?)

Here were the pros:

  • We liked that we didn’t have to prep veggies every time we wanted to eat them. Sure veggie prep took longer, but that’s because we were prepping about a week’s worth at a time! Far less than the cumulative time it took before – and we didn’t have to wash the Chop Wizard so often!
  • We were eating more fresh veggies because it was so flippin EASY.
  • The individual containers took up less room than un-prepped veggies because we were no longer storing the veggie parts we don’t eat.
  • Unlike shrink wrapped broccoli or a bag of bell peppers, the containers were STACKABLE.
  • With small, individual containers, we only grabbed the veggies we wanted. (I had originally considered a multi compartment veggie tray with a lid – but we would have to take the entire thing out even if we only wanted one thing. Besides. They were all round.)
  • The veggies were staying fresh longer because we were lining and layering the containers with dry paper towels. (Amazing discovery! Works great with mushrooms, lettuce and fresh spinach!)
  • We were no longer sacrificing still packaged but rotten veggies to the mold gods every week.
  • No more dry heaves while cleaning out the fridge. (The “what was this?” fridge cleaning game is rarely played in our house anymore.)

Now the cons:

  • We had to prep veggies. (Unfortunately, since we don’t want to pay for pre-prepped veggies, we weren’t going to get around this one.)
  • The individual containers were getting knocked over and falling out of the fridge way too easily.

There was a problem with our “system.”

So, as I mentioned, I shopped/researched what container solutions were available. I finally settled on an unused rectangular plastic box I happened to have. It was the perfect height and depth. I packed it with all the individual containers. Again. Perfect. It’s been working for nearly a year. We can either remove one or two containers or we can slide the box all the way out of the fridge like a drawer. The actual veggies and individual containers change all the time, but the are always stored in the veggie box. And yes. Those are actually oblong containers not square or rectangle, but they work in the veggie box, so they may stay.

We’ve also added two large rectangular containers to sit alongside the veggie box. One with a romaine mix and one with fresh spinach. The photos below only show one – we were out of romaine.

UPDATE: (Inspired by Endless Freebies comment below.)

The photos may be misleading. They only show one configuration of the box. We usually use the smallest containers we can and when space is needed for more veggies, we size down as we use the contents. And we have multiple sizes and shapes!

With regard to the box size – that was a process. (Like I said, The Underwear Principle at work!) We tried a smaller veggie box size, but we had a few problems:

1. When the depth of the box didn’t equal the depth of the fridge we had wasted space behind or in front of it. (Wasted space? Not on my watch.) We tried pushing the box to the back and using the extra space in front for other things, but we HATED moving the stuff to get to the box. Storing anything behind the box? We would forget about it and have to play the “What WAS that?” fridge game later.

2. We tried a shorter box and storing it on an adjustable shelf, but we had too many veggies and needed to stack. When we did, stuff fell out because the sides of the box were too short.

3. The day the above photo was taken, the veggie box wasn’t full. We didn’t have any onions or scallions and only one color bell pepper. Sometimes we have shredded carrots, asparagus, avocado, diced or sliced tomatoes, sliced zucchini or squash – LOTS of choices. So while a smaller box would have worked THAT day, it doesn’t work every day.

I eat a fair amount of salad and we use LOTS of spinach, so the big rectangular containers along the side work out the best for us. (We put fresh spinach in LOTS of things – especially omelets!)

I’m charging the camera battery right now, but later I’ll take another photo of TODAY’s configuration as a comparison.

Find more tips at Kitchen Tip Tuesday hosted by Tammy at Tammy’s Recipes
Check out more Works for Me Wednesday posts at Rocks in My Dryer, hosted by Shannon.

fruit stuffed pork roast

This is one of my favorite recipes. It takes a little more prep time than I usually like and about an hour to bake, but it is SO worth it!

I saw Paul James (aka “The Gardener Guy” on HGTV) prepare this on his cooking show (Home Grown Cooking) a few years ago and just had to try it. He called it “Fruit Stuffed Pork Roll” and the credits indicate the recipe was published in a book called “Classic Cooking With Pork: Over 100 Luscious Ways to Prepare the Other White Meat” by Philippe Molle in 1997, but Amazon shows it as “Classic Cooking With Pork: 100 Luscious Ways to Prepare Today’s Lean and Healthy Pork” and I didn’t see “Fruit Stuffed Pork Roll” in the table of contents, so it appears it was altered for the show. That is FINE with me. It turned out great!

We made two of these this weekend and I took some photos along the way. Check it out.

3-1/2 lb. boneless pork loin roast, trimmed of excess fat
Salt and pepper to taste
Ground coriander to taste
1-1/2 cups assorted dried fruits, any variety, diced
1/3 cup apricot preserves
1 tsp. fresh ginger, minced (I use ground)
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup chicken stock
3/4 cup heavy cream (I mix up non-dairy creamer according to the directions on the jar)
2 Tbs. whole-grain mustard (I use spicy brown mustard)
Butcher string

First “butterfly” the roast. When you butterfly a roast, it’s a little different than when you butterfly a single serving size of meat, like a chicken breast. This requires two cuts. I tried to show it in the photos.

Here’s the roast before any cuts at all.

Starting about one third the depth of the meat, the first cut was made from right to left – but NOT all the way through. Then the newly cut “flap” was opened to toward the left, like it was on a hinge.

A second cut was made from left to right, starting at the hinge. Again, stopping before cutting all the way through, the flap was folded to the right on the hinge. As you can probably tell, the thickness of each section is determined by these cuts. Just try to keep it relatively even.

Both sides of the meat are sprinkled with the salt, pepper and coriander.

The fruit, apricot preserves, ginger and red pepper flakes are mixed together.

And the mixture is spread over the meat.

The meat is rolled up, tied with string and placed in a lightly greased baking pan (I spray it with Pam).

The original recipe calls for it to be baked for 35 to 40 minutes, but I’ve always had to cook it about an hour. I just use a meat thermometer and bake until the internal temperature (away from the fruit) reaches 160 degrees.

The roast is removed from the dish and set aside while the wine is added to the baking dish and a wooden spoon is used to scrape bits stuck to the dish. (I have never understood the need for a wooden spoon.)

(I stopped here and refrigerated the roasts and the liquid because it was late. I’ll finish up tomorrow and take more photos.)

The liquid is added to a small saucepan with chicken stock and brought to a boil over medium-high heat. After a few minutes, the cream and mustard are added and stirred to blend. The sauce will thicken after about 2 to 3 minutes.

To serve, remove string and slice pork. Top with sauce.

Sooooo good!

Find more great tips and recipes over at Kitchen Tip Tuesdays at Tammy’s Recipes

sometimes, I buy what I hate.

I just can’t diet anymore. Can’t do it. All my life, I’ve been conscious of my weight. Whenever I’ve gone on a diet, it’s always been with a temporary mindset: “I’ll diet till I lose weight and then I won’t have to diet anymore.”

I need a more permanent solution. I need to change the way I eat. Not just temporarily, but for the long term. I need to teach my kids about health and nutrition – without warping their body image. I want to give every single person in my family the tools they need to make smart choices when it comes to the foods they eat.

To that end, I’ve been learning about nutrition and step by step, I’m incorporating what I’m learning into our family’s meals and snacks. I’ve also been sharing what I learn with my family, so we are ALL learning healthy, balanced eating habits together. When I say “we” I mean our entire family. Even 7 year old PinkGirl. We’ve been making small (but cumulative) changes in our eating habits for a few years now. It’s slow, but steady. Since we only incorporate one new change at a time, it’s been fairly painless. We also haven’t boycotted any particular foods, we just limit them if they are “less nutritious.”

Here are some of the microactions we’ve taken our our quest to eat better:

We Buy More Fruit and Make it Easy to Eat. Luckily, everyone in our family LOVES fruit. For the last few years, we’ve been buying MUCH more fruit. We tried blackberries for the first time last summer. (YUM) Some fruits are already easy to eat. Peel a banana, grab an apple, a nectarine, a bunch of grapes or a handful of cherries. Easy. But what about melon? One change we’ve made in our house is that we cut up melon and store it in Rubbermaid in the fridge. Now we don’t throw away a rotten melon two weeks after we bought it because no one took the time to cut it up. We actually EAT it because it’s ready to eat.

We Read Labels. We limit sodium, hydrogenated fats and especially high fructose corn syrup (which is in more foods than I ever thought possible). High fructose corn syrup can spike your blood sugar before you even swallow the food that contains it (well, almost). It’s even in bread. Even in “wheat” bread. We’ve learned that when the label on a loaf of bread says it contains “enriched” flour, it’s really just “brown” bread, not whole wheat bread. After reading e v e r y single label on e v e r y different kind of bread, we finally settled on Nature’s Own 100% Whole Wheat.

As we began reading labels, we began putting different things in our grocery cart. We now buy low sugar ketchup, Smart Balance peanut butter and margarine, Smucker’s Sugar Free Jam, and Barilla Multi-Grain Pasta. We make No-Pudge brownies (SO Good!). We’ve always made chocolate milk with Ovaltine instead of Hershey’s and most of the time, we have hummus and non-fat yogurt in the fridge. Juice? Only Tropicana Healthy Kids (1/2 cup serving) and a few boxes of Juicy Juice which we only use for emergency hypoglycemic melt-downs (quickly followed by a complex carb). Soda? Not so much.

We Eat More Lean Meats. We’re always on the lookout for tasty recipes. When we do eat ground beef, we buy 97% lean and rinse with hot water it in the sink to watch most of that leftover 3% fat go down the garbage disposal.

We Buy More Whole Grains. This one is easy. When we made the switch whole grains, nobody really noticed.

We Buy More Fresh and Frozen Veggies. We used to buy mostly canned veggies, and while we still do buy some, we buy a LOT more fresh produce than we used to buy. We’re working on making veggies more enticing for FavoriteSon. He would prefer to devour an entire pan of whole grain couscous or black beans and rice. His favorite is his dad’s special paella. Poor kid, he has no idea his dad adds pureed veggies to his favorite food.

So, all this said . . . I also allow “junk food” in the house.

I want to teach my kids balance. I remember how I responded to total restriction of junk food as a kid. I snuck food. Eventually, I even snuck food when I was the one restricting myself. I don’t want to risk the same reaction with my kids. I figure, there’s junk food in the world and I want them to make good choices all by themselves. I want to teach them about nutrition and give them the power to make their own choices (FirstHusband and I have veto power). My greatest victory so far? BOTH kids – after begging for a Chick-fil-A milkshakes – THREW THEM AWAY without drinking the entire thing. I asked them both, “Why?”

PinkGirl: “I’m full.”

FavoriteSon: “I don’t want anymore.”

YES!!!! It’s working!

So, the kids are allowed some junk food – IF they also eat the healthy food I ask them to eat. When they do eat junk food, they are required to stick to the suggested serving sizes and are limited as to how many times they can eat junk food in a day. Sometimes, like today, they don’t even ask for any “junk.” Sometimes they have it once in a day. Sometimes twice. Very, very rarely, three times in one day.

What do I consider junk food? Cereal for breakfast. Chips with lunch. Cookies for dessert. Candy. That kind of thing.

But I am their mother. And I’ve struggled with my weight for years. So, while teaching them (and myself) balance and allowing some treats, how do I make sure that when they go to get these treats, they will actually still be in the pantry? How do I make sure that I, myself, don’t treat myself in a moment of thoughtless munching? I remove temptation.

When I do buy junk food, I buy what I hate.

Here’ are some kid favorites that don’t tempt me one little bit:

Ranch flavored Doritos
Funions (oops. Spelled Funyuns)
Chewy Chips Ahoy (but I LOVE the regular Chips Ahoy)
Rainbow Chips Ahoy
Basically anything MILK chocolate (but I LOVE dark chocolate)
Easy Mac
Chef BoyRDee anything
Tom’s brand oven baked “Hot Fries”

You get the idea. Sometimes, I buy what I hate.

Check out more ideas and recipes over at Kitchen Tip Tuesdays hosted by Tammy at Tammy’s Recipes.

5 minute MorningStar burrito lunch

This is one of my favorite quick lunches.

1 or 2 MorningStar Veggie Patties (depending on how hungry you are)
2 flour tortillas
1 t0 2 tbsp Hummus (my favorite is Sabra Supremely Spicy)
1 oz shredded cheese (my favorite is Cracker Barrel 2% Sharp White Cheddar)
a handful of shredded lettuce (or fresh spinach)

On a small microwavable plate, nuke the MorningStar Patties for 1 minute.
Lay two tortillas side by side on a large microwavable plate.
Spread Hummus on each tortilla.
Add the shredded cheese.
Remove the cooked patties from microwave, cut into pieces and place on top of shredded cheese.
If desired, nuke for about 15 seconds to melt the cheese.
Add the lettuce and roll the tortillas.

The last time I made these, I took some photos. Take a look!

5 minute MorningStar Burritos5 minute MorningStar Burritos Before

5 minute MorningStar Burritos Done!

These photos show the Tomato and Basil Pizza Burger, but I my favorite is the MorningStar Black Bean patties. Use different flavors of hummus and cheese too. There are so many more combinations!

Click HERE for a print friendly version in PDF!

Check out more recipes and ideas at Kitchen Tip Tuesdays hosted by Tammy’s Recipes!

favorite banana bread

banana breadMy kids LOVE this! (and have been nagging me to bake some for two days.)

1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2 large)
1/2 cup sugar (I use half brown sugar)
1/3 cup liquid vegetable oil margarine (I use Smart Balance margarine)
2 egg whites
1/3 cup skim milk
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour (I use half whole wheat flour)
1 cup Quaker Oat Bran cereal, uncooked
2 teaspoons backing powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Heat oven to 350.
Spray loaf pan with cooking spray or oil lightly.
Combine bananas, sugar, margarine, egg whites and milk and mix well.
In a separate bowl, combine flour, oat bran, baking powder and baking soda.
Slowly pour dry ingredients into the banana mixture and stir just until moistened.
Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake at 55 to 60 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Cool 10 minutes in the pan; remove to wire rack.
Cool completely.

Nutritional Info: (for 1/16 of a loaf)
(before my modifications to the recipe)
Calories 130
Protein 3 g
Carbohydrate 20 g
Fat 4 g
Fiber 1 g

Another tip? When bananas start to get soft in our house, I toss them into the freezer, skin and all. Then, when I make banana bread, I put the frozen bananas in a bowl and fill it with warm water a few times. When the bananas are thawed, I tear off the tip of the skin and “squeeze” the banana out like toothpaste. PERFECT for making banana bread and no wasted bananas!

I almost always make three or four loaves at one time. The mess is already there, the ingredients are already out and the oven is already hot – so why not? It freezes VERY well, sliced or whole!

Our favorite way to eat it? Sliced, topped with “spray butter” and warmed in the microwave for 15 to 30 seconds.

Click HERE for a Print friendly PDF Version

Check out more great ideas at Kitchen Tip Tuesdays hosted by Tammy’s Recipes!

5 minute onions in a flash (freeze)

Life’s a little busy this week, so I’m going to combine my posts for Kitchen Tip Tuesdays and Works for Me Wednesdays .

I mentioned before – I LOVE my Vidalia Chop Wizard! Last time I showcased this wonderful little gadget, someone commented that they were surprised that it could handle tougher veggies, like onions and carrots, so I thought I’d show how the chop wizard handles onions. Notice that I’m using the smaller chopping grate this time and check out the time on the little red clock.

5 minutes onions before

5 minute onions after

Again, I PROMISE you – I did NOT touch that little red clock! I just LOVE this thing! Chopped onions really are a breeze!

But you probably noticed I didn’t finish all three onions. I actually filled up the chop wizard and had to stop to complete my “onion chopping ritual,” so I thought I’d go ahead and include it in this post as well. I usually chop onions in bulk to freeze, but I only had three today. Here’s what I do:

I chop all the onions I’ve got, either using the chop wizard OR, when I’m really in a hurry, I use my Oster food processor attachment. (I have a 1990 Oster Kitchen Center, but for smaller jobs, I keep my 2003 Oster blender on the counter because it takes most of the same attachments. Isn’t it cool that the attachments are interchangeable?) Anyway, I had an extra 5 minutes today and I really prefer the onions chopped in nice little squares – they’re just prettier than the shredded onion that the food processor produces.

Oster Food Processor Attachment

Then, I lay out the chopped onions on a large metal cookie sheet for flash freezing. Flash freezing refers to the freezing technique where you lay out something individually, best on a metal cookie sheet (it gets colder much faster than a cutting board), and freeze it quickly. It keeps the food from sticking together in a big frozen ball of goo. REALLY great for freezing any kind of berry!

flash freeze prep

flash freezing onions

Then, I sit here for about a half an hour and write this post. (besides, I need my coffee.) I usually leave the onions in longer because I forget about them. If you can leave them for an hour or two, that’s actually better. I once left them in overnight with no problems. At a minimum, you want ice crystals to form.

Reading Spot

When the onions are frozen, I move them from the cookie sheet into something better for freezer storage, such as a Ziploc bag. I stack the bags in the freezer and because they are flat, they take up very little space. (I was going to include a photo of the frozen onions on the cookie sheet, but you can’t see the ice crystals, so it just looks the same as the pre-frozen cookie sheet photo.)

onion stack

Later, when a recipe calls for onion, I’m ready! They defrost really fast! I leave the bag on the counter for a few minutes and when I take the slab of onion out of the the Ziploc, it just crumbles.

It Works for Me!

Check out more great ideas at Kitchen Tip Tuesdays hosted by Tammy’s Recipes!
Find even MORE ideas at Works for Me Wednedays hosted by Rocks in My Dryer!

Don’t forget to enter this week’s clean sweep(stakes)!

5 minute veggie chop

I LOVE my Vidalia Chop Wizard!

I love any gadget that makes my life easier and speeds up a job! I got a beautiful ceramic knife for Christmas two years ago and I used to dice red, yellow and orange peppers by hand. Not anymore! Check out the time on the little red clock.

I PROMISE you – I did NOT touch that little red clock! I just LOVE this thing! Chopped onions are a breeze!

Mine has two blade sizes, so you can dice even smaller than what you see in these pictures. And it’s DISHWASHER SAFE! The best $20 I spent last year! (and, no. I didn’t get paid to write this – I just really like it.)

Find more ideas over at Works for Me Wednesday, hosted by Mary at Giving Up on Perfect.

Works for Me Wednesday posts prior to January 2015 are archived at We Are THAT Family

Works for Me Wednesday posts prior to February 2009 are archived at Rocks In My Dryer