Playing Around with my Doritos.

Playing Around with my Doritos.

 

So I showed the new boyfriend a few things on Facebook, mainly Cooking Panda.  We went through a few dozen videos and decided we really need to try a few of them. We settled on Dorito Lasagna (shown in the video above, in all it’s delicious glory).

Not gonna lie, we were a little…….. scared shitless at first. We picked up all the ingredients (canned chilli, Doritos, cheese, and tortillas) Thursday night after work, and set to throwing this all together last night.

Honestly, it was a little scary. Like, “Hey, here’s some perfectly good foods! Lets smash some Dorito chips onto them, smother this thing in cheese, and throw it in the oven and hope it doesn’t catch fire!”

Seriously though, this recipe is totally easy. It’s just layering chilli, chips, cheese, tortillas, and then the chilli, chips, and cheese again. Aside from the possibility of turning into a burning, melting ball of cheese, there’s not much to screw up in this recipe.

And it was damn yummy!

But the best part of this is that last night, he was on his second helping before bed, we sat around and talked about ways to change this up a bit. Maybe some spicy Doritos, taco meat, and salsa? Or ground beef, some sauteed veggies, and a Cool Ranch/Nacho blend?  Basically, you can throw together any combinations you can think of, with any flavour of Doritos you want!

Except dill pickle flavour. Fuck that noise! Who the hell decided “These cheesy nacho chips here are great. But you know what would make them better? Getting rid of the cheese and flavouring them with a fucking pickle!”

So, Sunshine, give this recipe a try with your own unique flair. And let me know how it works out! I am dying to try this one over and over again!

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Slow Cooker Three Cheese Macaroni and Cheese

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It’s beautiful, isn’t it? Something as simple as macaroni and cheese can be so basic, and so fancy. Some days, when you can’t even muster up the strength or will to make yourself a whole meal, that box of store brand macaroni and cheese that costs a whole fifty cents just screams out to you. When you’re out for dinner with your friends, the mac’n’cheese screams to you from the menu (it sure is a noisy pasta). You know it’s not the boxed stuff you make at home, and a part of you wants to try it. Maybe sometimes, when you’re feeling fancy, you throw you mac’n’cheese in the oven with some bread crumbs on top, to make it look like the restaurant version.

No matter how or when you eat it, macaroni and cheese is one of the ultimate comfort foods. It’s just one of those things that people crave when it’s cold, or they’re feeling down, or they just really want cheese. So why not make a rich, gooey mac’n’cheese in your crock pot, so it’s ready for you when you get home?

Here’s the recipe I found on Fake Ginger. This site, by the way, has some great slow cooker recipes on it, including one for Crockpot Candy that I am definitely going to have to try!

Ingredients

12 oz dry elbow macaroni
1 cup gruyere cheese, shredded
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
10 slices American cheese, chopped
1 (12 ounce) can evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)

Instructions

  1. Spray the inside of the slow cooker bowl with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In the bowl of the slow cooker, combine the macaroni, cheeses, evaporated milk and skim milk. Stir until combined and the macaroni is almost completely covered by liquid and cheese. Cover and cook on low for 1½ hours.
  3. After 1½ hours, the cheese should be melted and the macaroni should be cooked. Fold and stir in the dry mustard, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper. Make sure to stir well to make sure all the macaroni is coated with cheesy goodness.

Now, a few tips for everyone.

  • don’t panic if you can’t find gruyere, or it’s too damn expensive for you. It’s a cheese commonly used in fondues, and can be hard to come by in a lot of stores. Swiss and Monterey Jack are also great fondue cheeses that melt very well, and are much easier to come by. They even sell store brand bricks of it in many larger grocery stores.
  • I don’t know who decided that elbow macaroni is the be-all and end-all of macaronis to eat with cheese. I like to find what’s cheap and cute, and use that. Fusilli is great because the shape holds the cheese well, and it’s name is fun to say. Bowtie pasta is just fun to eat any time, same with wagon wheel. And you can always get a cheap package of spaghetti and use that.
  • I like to add veggies to my meals, just to pretend I’m eating healthy. If you can find it cheap, cauliflower is great in pasta and cheese dishes (it’s damn expensive right now though, so I’m not using that). Broccoli is also great, and you can get big frozen bags of it cheap when it’s on sale. I’ve also used canned corn and peas and the past, and it turned out great.
  • if you use frozen veggies, thaw them completely before throwing them in. For canned veggies, drain ALL the liquid from the can before dumping it in. You don’t want any water in this recipe!
  • play around with meat if you want. I like to add hot dogs to my regular mac’n’cheese, and like to buy the “good” hot dogs when they’re on sale (the all beef, name brand, 5 per pack because they’re huge things ones). Chop or slice them up and throw them in there for a “fancy” mac’n’cheese with hot dogs!

Well, this post is making me hungry now, and there’s a box of dollar store fifty cent mac’n’cheese in the cupboard calling my name. Have fun in the kitchen, sunshine!

Loaded Broccoli and Cheese Soup

When you’re on a budget, soups are easy. Have some veggies that are going bad soon? Throw them in a soup! Ramen on sale? Make some soup! 

So, this here is a recipe for a delicious cream soup. Most of the ingredients can be found at any local grocery store. Here’s a few tips for students, or anyone on a budget or living without a car (meaning you have to carry all your groceries home while you walk).

  • Yes, it’s cheap to buy potatoes by the bag. But what if you know you won’t eat that many potatoes before they go bad? Thanks to one of my current roommates, I’ve seen the fruit-fly-filled-mess left behind when good potatoes go bad. Many grocery stores sell individual potatoes, or very small bags. This is great for those who don’t want to waste food, and for those who don’t have a vehicle to transport their groceries in. I mean, who wants to lug around a 10lbs bag of potatoes on top of all their other shopping?
  • Another option is canned potatoes. I always buy a few cans when they go on sale, and keep them in my cupboard. You can buy them pre-diced, cutting down on prep time. And they’re good for so many things (have some leftover chicken sent home with you from your folks? Throw it in the oven with a can of potatoes, a few baby carrots, cheap olive oil…… it’s to die for!).
  • Again, do you really need to buy a big bag of carrots? As much as I love them, I know I won’t eat a whole bag (and I’m accident prone. Vegetable peelers are not my friend). You can grab cheap bags of baby carrots to use instead. You won’t get the big slices of carrots seen in the picture above, but you won’t have as much leftover produce either. I can usually find them for about $1.50 a bag, and they’re great for cooking.
  • Broccoli goes bad so quickly sometimes. If you have the freezer space, grab some frozen broccoli when it’s on sale. Just let it thaw a while as not to water down the soup.
  • Again, buying a giant bag of flour is very economical. But what if you can’t lug that giant bag home, or you can’t afford to buy an entire giant bag right now? Most bulk stores or bulk grocery sections have flour. You can buy small bags for next to nothing. When you only need 1/3 of a cup, why buy 15lbs?
  • This also works with most spices. If it’s something you use all the time, like salt or pepper, it might be worth it to grab a big container, or get it at the dollar store. But how often do you use garlic powder, or onion powder, or any other spice? If the answer is “probably just when I make this one specific recipe”, then get very small quantities from the bulk foods store. Some spices can be close to $10 for a decent sized jar. Let’s face it, we don’t always have $10 to spend on a random spice!

So, have fun trying out this soup! I just grabbed some clearance canned potatoes and on-sale frozen broccoli last weekend, so I will be making this as soon as the weather gets chilly again!