About Products Selected

This site is designed with brand new cooks in mind. Because of that you will see a lot of items linked here. For an experienced cook it is easy to recognize what the difference between a pot, a sauce pan, a casserole, etc. means. But if you are brand new to the cooking from scratch idea it can be confusing. All products linked are meant to give you a clear idea of what kinds of items I am referring to. These items linked also represent brands that I am familiar with, that I have found to be high quality and I find them to be fairly priced and long lasting for regular use.

For pots and pans I prefer the quality of Circulon brand above higher priced brands and their longevity above lower priced brands. For glass bowls and bake ware I prefer Pyrex. For low priced kitchen ware I prefer Norpro. For smaller quantities of dried goods I prefer Bob's Red Mill, which I can find at all of my local stores. For larger quantities I prefer ordering from Barry Farm. I often use the bulk section at my stores as well. While it is certainly less expensive to make stock at home, it is far more convenient to purchase it. I like Pacific Natural Foods and Imagine Foods low sodium broths. These suggestions are designed to make your food preparation easier and affordable. You'll also be able to accurately duplicate the recipes on this site and the meals seen on Frugal Feeds Videos. Look for all of these products and kitchen items at your local stores or click on the links and it will take you to where you can buy them online. (Although many of the items will cost more with shipping than they will if you can find them at your local store).

Friday, June 19, 2009

Frugal Feeds | Delicious French Toast Sandwiches

Now that you have the hang of French Toast, lets take it past breakfast. First up, keep the custard dip on the sweet side. But, instead of serving with powdered sugar or syrup, add a slice of lean ham and a slice of Gruyere between the still hot French Toast, or place a slice of each on the open sandwich and broil briefly to warm. This is your basic sweet Monte Cristo.

Now, lets change it up. This time, when you make the custard dip, don't add brown sugar or vanilla. Prepare the French Toast as usual on the griddle. When all are cooked, remove from griddle and turn griddle down to low. Spread a slice of lean ham with mustard and place a slice of low fat cheese on top. Place the ham/mustard/cheese on a slice of the French Toast and top with another slice of French Toast. Place back on the griddle. Put a lid over it and cook until the cheese is melted--less than five minutes. This is Croque-Monsieur.

You have two basic recipes here. Do them a few times and then try making them your own.

For the Monte Cristo try adding any of these to the sandwich--turkey, low fat breakfast sausage, different low fat cheeses, fat free cream cheese, cranberry sauce, preserves, no meat, several lean meats, a fried egg, apple slices, pear slices, cooked berries, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, allspice, or a sweet mustard.

For the Croque-Monsieur try adding any of these to the custard dip--grated cheese, different mustards (without vinegar or lemon in them or the custard will curdle) or powdered mustard, different herbs, different spices, some beer or some white wine. Or just prepare it as it is and add different lean meats, low fat cheeses, A-1 sauce, Worcestershire sauce, tomatoes, grilled onions, grilled peppers or sauteed mushrooms to the cooked French Toast slices.

So, you have a lot of variations now available to you. Lets think this through. You go to your kitchen and you have some stinky cheese, some dried up ham slices, stale bread, an egg and some milk. Sounds pretty depressing for lunch--but if you make a custard dip, dip your bread, cook it, put the stinky cheese on first, then the ham, top with another slice of French toast, cover with a lid and let it steam under that lid for less than 5 minutes you will have a delicious sandwich from things that you would have normally thrown away.

So, next time you see a tablespoon of preserves in the jar, now you have a plan for it. That bit of sauteed veggies that isn't enough for a whole dish? Make a Croque-Monsieur. The great thing about these sandwiches is that you can make different sandwiches for each member of your family, have each serving look similar, and be using up small amounts of odd leftovers--and they will thank you for such a fabulously yummy meal. :0)

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