Tried And True Family Favorites For Dinner


Pizza. Show me a kid who doesn’t love pizza and I’ll show you a weirdo. It’s everyones go-to party food. Problem is, take out or delivery can cost an arm and a leg, especially for a family as big as ours. And those frozen pre-made pizzas tend to taste like crap. Especially once you have had a bite of real homemade pizza.
This is the recipe our family had been using for years. my kids LOVE to help make it. It’s easy and relatively cheap. It’s not quite from-scratch. I’ve yet to begin making my own jarred tomato sauces or cheese. (frankly, I’ll never be able to make my own cheeses. Ain’t no one got time fo’ dat.)

Dough ingredients:
1 package active dry yeast (or 2 1/2 tsp from a jar)
3/4 cup warm water
1/2 tsp sugar &1/2 tsp salt
2 TBSP oil (I prefer olive)
2 cups flour
dissolve yeast in warm water. Stir in sugar, salt, oil, and 1 3/4 cup flour.
Knead until dough is elastic and smooth, adding flour as needed. (this takes about 5 minutes)

Divide dough in half. Pat each half into a 10-inch circle on a pizza pan, pizza stone or cookie sheet. (pan should be lightly greased)
1 can of your choice pizza sauce.
dried oregano, basil and garlic
1-2 bags of shredded mozzarella cheese (depends hwo much cheese you prefer)
any meats, veggies, etc… you enjoy on your pizza. πŸ™‚
With a spoon, spread a layer of sauce onto each dough half. If you prefer a crust , do not spread sauce all the way to the edges. Sprinkle a bit of your seasonings over the sauce.
Sprinkle half of your cheese over each pizza, then add your toppings, then layer the remaining cheese on top of it all.
Bake at 425 degrees for 15-20 minutes (until crust is golden brown and cheese in bubble.
Serve with a salad and you have a full meal. πŸ™‚ And kids, even little ones can help with the salad too! Tossing in cucumber slices, tearing lettuce, etc…
This pizza dough can also be made into calzones. πŸ™‚ Simply divide into smaller portions, put a couple spoon fulls of sauce onto a half of each circle, add your toppings and seasonings and cheese and fold over to form a pocket. Use a fork to seal edges. Bake until crust is golden brown. πŸ™‚
This one requires a side dish of cornbread to make it a very filling, satisfying, cold-weather dinner. πŸ™‚
1 bag of dried bean soup mix.
1 ham steak, cubed OR 1 lb leftover chicken shredded off the bone OR 1 lb Italian sausage, sliced
1 small onion, diced
2 cups shredded cabbage or fresh spinach leaves or kale
2 carrots, chopped
2 tomatoes, diced
1 small bell pepper (green), diced
2 cloves fresh garlic
3 potatoes, cubes

Cajun seasoning mix:
(adjust according to preference. Our family like sit a bit spicier than some)
3 tsp salt, 2 TBS oregano, 1 TBSP paprika, 2 TBSP cayenne pepper, 1 TBSP black pepper
splash of hot sauce (if preferred.)

Soak your beans overnight in a large pot.
Drain and rinse beans (rinsing them cuts way down on the gassiness factor of ingesting beans)
Simmer in a large pot or large crockpot with all ingredients. the longer you simmer, the more flavorful the soup will be and the better your house will smell. πŸ™‚ I usually let mine simmer about 4-6 hours on the stovetop.

feel free to top this with a bit of shredded cheese and a splash of hot sauce or a dollop of sour cream. Yum!

Breakfast Spaghetti
This one is a great breakfast for dinner dish, served with some fresh fruit for dessert. πŸ˜‰ I make it often for breakfast as well though.
1 box any style pasta noodles. (eventuallyI plan on making my own pasta. But right now I still use boxed.)
1 lb bacon, chopped OR 1 roll sausage, crumbles OR 1 lb diced ham OR 1 lb vegetarian meat substitute
1/2 red bell pepper, 1/2 green bell pepper, diced
1/4 onion, diced
8-10 eggs, scrambled in a bit of milk
cheese. Lots and lots of shredded cheddar
salt and pepper to taste

Cook pasta according to directions on box.
Drain pasta and put in casserole dish or baking pan (greased) Sprinkle veggies and meat/meat substitute over pasta. Mix in a bit. Pour eggs over top. Top with cheese.
Bake at 350 until cheese is bubbly and eggs are set. (15-20 minutes usually)
(I sometimes will add black beans to this to add a bit more protein. Toss in a bit of salsa and its a mexican-themed meal. πŸ™‚ )


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