Shop Cheap

Sharing the best prices on groceries and other stuff in the Sacramento region.

December 31, 2009
Ring in the New Year with the "Best of '09"

Before we move on to a new year and a new decade, researcher Sheila Kern went back into the Shop Cheap Kitchen and put together a "Best Of '09" recipe list. And guess what....some of our favorite things are on sale this week. London broil at both Safeway and Raley's. Avocado (check out the Classic Guacamole recipe) is really a bargain at Safeway and Save Mart. Enjoy and Happy New Year!

Parmesan-Crusted Tilapia

From www.rachelraymag.com

Every Day with Rachael Ray October 2006

Ingredients

3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

2 teaspoons paprika

1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley

4 tilapia fillets (about 1 pound total)

1 lemon, cut into wedges

Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling

Salt and freshly ground pepper

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400º. In a shallow dish, combine the cheese with the paprika and parsley and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle the fish with olive oil and dredge in the cheese mixture. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake until the fish is opaque in the thickest part, 10 to 12 minutes. Serve the fish with the lemon wedges.

Sweet and Spicy London Broil

From www.foodnetwork.com

Ingredients

1 flank steak (about 1 3/4 pound)

3 T. extra-virgin olive oil

2 T. sweet paprika

2 T. light brown sugar

1 T. kosher salt

2 t. chili powder

1 lime, zested

Directions

Preheat a broiler to high. Bring the steaks to room temperature about 20 minutes before cooking.

Mix the olive oil, paprika, sugar, chili powder, salt, chili powder, and zest in a bowl to make a paste. Rub the spice mixture all over the steak. Broil until just charred and crispy on top, about 6 minutes on 1 side. Flip the steak and cook until beginning to char, about 6 minutes more or until rare and temperature registers 115 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. Place the steak on a cutting board and let rest, tented with foil for about 10 minutes. Slice across the grain and serve.

Blueberry-Lemon Poundcake

From www.molliekatzen.com

Yield 1 large cake (12-16 servings)

Ingredients

Nonstick spray for the pan

1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

3 cups sugar

2 teaspoons grated lemon zest

6 large eggs

4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups blueberries --fresh, or frozen (NOT defrosted)

3/4 cup milk

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 1/2 teaspoons lemon extract

Optional Powdered sugar for the top

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously spray the interior of a standard-size tube pan or bundt pan with nonstick spray.

2. Add the sugar to the softened butter, and beat with an electric mixer at high speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the lemon zest.

3. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each.

4. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a second bowl. Stir in the blueberries.

5. Mix together the milk, lemon juice, and extracts. Add the dry and wet mixtures alternately to the butter mixture, beginning and ending with the dry mix. (dry- wet- dry-wet-dry). Stir gently from the bottom of the bowl after each addition - just enough to blend. Try not to overmix and also try to avoid crushing too many of the blueberries in the process.

6. Spread the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a sharp knife inserted all the way into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool for at least 20 minutes in the pan, then rap the pan sharply and invert the cake onto a plate. Cool completely before slicing. If desired, sprinkle the powdered sugar on top of cake.

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

From www.foodnetwork.com

Serves: 24 frosted cupcakes

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cocoa powder

1 1/2 cups vegetable oil

1 cup buttermilk, room temperature

2 large eggs, room temperature

2 tablespoons red food coloring

1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:

1 pound cream cheese, softened

2 sticks butter, softened

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar

Chopped pecans and fresh raspberries or strawberries, for garnish

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Line 2 (12-cup) muffin pans with cupcake papers.

In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder. In a large bowl gently beat together the oil, buttermilk, eggs, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla with a handheld electric mixer. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the wet and mix until smooth and thoroughly combined.

Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake tins about 2/3 filled. Bake in oven for about 20 to 22 minutes, turning the pans once, half way through. Test the cupcakes with a toothpick for doneness. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:

In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla together until smooth. Add the sugar and on low speed, beat until incorporated. Increase the speed to high and mix until very light and fluffy.

Garnish with chopped pecans and a fresh raspberry or strawberry.

Chicken Cacciatore & Pasta

From www.campbellkitchen.com

Serves: 4

Chicken stock is the secret to creating a simmering tomato sauce that seasons the chicken, vegetables and pasta shells in this skillet supper.

Ingredients

1 tbsp. vegetable oil

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts halves OR 8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs

1 3/4 cups Swanson's Chicken Stock

1 tsp. dried oregano leaves, crushed

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes

1 small green pepper, cut into 2-inch-long strips (about 1 cup)

1 medium onion, cut into wedges

1/4 tsp. ground black pepper

2 1/2 cups uncooked medium shell-shaped pasta

Directions

Heat the oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook for 10 minutes or until it's well browned on both sides.

Stir the stock, oregano, garlic powder, tomatoes, green pepper, onion and black pepper in the skillet and heat to a boil. Stir in the pasta. Reduce the heat to low. Cover and cook for 15 minutes or until the pasta is tender.

Rosemary Garlic Cross Rib Roast

From www.raleys.com

Servings: 6-8

Ingredients

1 (3- to 4-lb.) cross rib roast

1 tbsp. minced garlic

1 tbsp. minced fresh rosemary

1/2 tsp. black pepper

Salt to taste

2 to 3 tbsp. red wine

Directions

Prep time: 15 to 20 minutes

Cook time: 1-1/2 to 2 hours

Preheat oven to 325°F. Place meat in a shallow roasting pan and rub garlic and

rosemary over all surfaces. Sprinkle with pepper, then salt. Insert meat

thermometer into center of roast. Bake uncovered until internal temperature

reaches 140°F for rare or 145°F for medium rare, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Let

stand for 10 minutes before carving. Remove meat from pan and place pan

juices in a small saucepan. Add wine and simmer over low heat for 5 minutes.

Serve wine sauce over sliced meat.

Classic Guacamole

From www.avocado.org (California Avocado Commission)

Serves 8

Ingredients

4 ripe Fresh California avocados, seeded and peeled

2 Tbsp lemon juice

1 clove garlic, crushed

1 tomato, finely chopped

1/4 Cup finely chopped onion

1/4 tsp ground cumin

3 drops hot pepper sauce

Tortilla chips

Instructions

Using a fork, coarsely mash avocado with lemon juice and garlic.

Stir in remaining ingredients to blend.

Garnish as desired and serve with tortilla chips.

Grilled Marinated London Broil

From www.epicurious.com

Gourmet | May 1994

Yield: Serves 6

Can be prepared in 45 minutes or less but requires additional unattended time.

Ingredients

For marinade

4 large garlic cloves, minced

4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

3 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled

1 teaspoon dried basil, crumbled

1 teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled

1/2 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes

2/3 cup olive oil

2-to-2 1/2 pound London broil

Preparation

Make marinade:

In a bowl whisk together marinade ingredients until combined well.

Put London broil in a large resealable plastic bag and pour marinade over it. Seal bag, pressing out excess air, and set in a shallow dish. Marinate meat, chilled, turning bag once or twice, overnight.

Grill meat, marinade discarded, on an oiled rack set about 4 inches over glowing coals, turning each once, 9 to 10 minutes on each side, or until it registers 135°F. to 140°F., on a meat thermometer for medium-rare meat. (Alternatively, meat may be broiled.) Transfer meat to a cutting board and let stand 10 minutes. Cut meat diagonally across the grain into thin slices.

Honey-Dijon Ham

Put your slow cooker to work making a moist, irresistible ham. Serve some now, and if you like, freeze the rest for another day.

From www.pillsbury.com

Makes: 12 servings

Ingredients

1 bone-in cooked ham (5 lb)

1/3 cup apple juice

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

Directions

In 4- to 6-quart slow cooker, place ham. Add apple juice. In small bowl, mix brown sugar, honey and mustard. Spread mixture over ham.

Cover; cook on Low heat setting 6 to 8 hours.

Remove ham from slow cooker. Cut ham into slices; place on serving platter.

Sweet Potato Gratin

From www.foodnetwork.com

Yield 8 servings

Ingredients

1 tablespoon butter, plus 6 tablespoons, chilled and cut into small cubes

1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground ginger or 1 tablespoon fresh ginger

Pinch freshly grated nutmeg

Salt and white pepper

1 (12-ounce) can crushed pineapple with juice

4 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/8-inch pieces

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Use one tablespoon of butter to grease a 9 by 13-inch baking or gratin dish. Mix together orange juice, brown sugar, and spices, then add pineapple. Layer slices of sweet potatoes in the dish, then dot with butter. Top with pineapple mixture. Season each layer with salt and pepper. Repeat this process until all sweet potatoes are used up, ending with pineapple mixture.

Bake in oven for 40 to 45 minutes until sweet potatoes are tender when a pairing knife is inserted. Baste gratin with excess juices every 10 minutes. The top should be bubbly and brown. If the top gets too brown or starts to burn, cover with aluminum foil and continue cooking until sweet potatoes are done.

Broccoli Salad

From www.southernfood.about.com

Serves 4 to 6

Ingredients:

5 cups fresh broccoli florets

1/2 cup raisins

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/2 cup cooked, crumbled bacon

1/4 cup of red onion, chopped

1 cup of frozen peas, thawed

Dressing:

1 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons vinegar

1/2 cup sugar

Preparation:

Combine broccoli florets, raisins, sunflower seeds, crumbled bacon, chopped onion, and peas in a large serving bowl. In a separate bowl or large cup, whisk together mayonnaise, vinegar and sugar. Add dressing to the salad and toss to mix well; chill thoroughly before serving.

Easy Double Chocolate Chip Brownies

From www.verybestbaking.com

Yield: 24 brownies

Ingredients:

2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) Nestle Toll House Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels, divided

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine, cut into pieces

3 large eggs

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 cup chopped nuts

Directions:

PREHEAT oven to 350° F. Grease a 13 x 9-inch baking pan.

MELT 1 cup morsels and butter in large, heavy-duty saucepan over low heat; stir until smooth. Remove from heat. Stir in eggs. Stir in flour, sugar, vanilla extract and baking soda. Stir in remaining morsels and nuts. Spread into prepared baking pan.

BAKE for 18 to 22 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out slightly sticky. Cool completely in pan on wire rack.

Southwestern Slaw

From www.foodnetwork.com

2005, Ellie Krieger, All rights reserved

Show: Healthy Appetite with Ellie Krieger Episode: Super Suppers

Yield 10 cups/12 servings

Ingredients

1 medium jicama, sliced into thin strips (about 3 cups)

1/4 head red cabbage, thinly sliced (about 5 cups)

1 red onion, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)

1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup lowfat buttermilk

1 tablespoon lime juice

Salt and pepper

Directions

In a large bowl, toss together the jicama, cabbage, onion, and cilantro. In a small bowl whisk together the mayonnaise, buttermilk, lime juice, salt and pepper. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss to combine.

Blueberry Crisp with Cinnamon-Streusel Topping

From www.epicurious.com

Bon Appetit | August 1999

Yield: Serves 8-10

Ingredients

7 6-ounce baskets fresh blueberries (about 8 cups)

3/4 cup plus 6 tablespoons sugar

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour

1 cup finely chopped walnuts

6 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted, cooled

Whipped cream

Directions

Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine 2 1/2 cups blueberries and 3/4 cup sugar in large saucepan. Cook over low heat until berries soften and release their juices, stirring frequently, about 8 minutes. Mix in remaining blueberries. Transfer mixture to 13 x 9 x 2-inch glass baking dish.

Mix flour, walnuts, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt and remaining 6 tablespoons sugar in large bowl to blend. Gradually add cooled melted butter, mixing with fork until small moist clumps form. Sprinkle streusel over berries.

Bake until topping is crisp and golden and filling is bubbling, about 45 minutes. Cool slightly. Serve with whipped cream.

Chicken Smothered in Peanut Sauce

Adapted www.recipezaar.com

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 onion, chopped

4 chicken breasts

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon paprika

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained and juices reserved

3 tablespoons peanut butter

1/4 cup packed fresh cilantro

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

hot cooked brown rice or cooked barley

Directions

Coat a large skillet with nonstick spray and warm over med-high heat.

Add the onion and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes, or til softened.

Add the chicken to the skillet and cook 3-4 minutes on each side or til browned.

Meanwhile in a blender combine the reserved tomato juice, salt, paprika, pepper, peanut butter, cilantro, garlic, and red-pepper flakes.

Blend til smooth.

Pour over the chicken and add the tomatoes.

Bring to a boil over high heat.

Reduced heat to low, cover, and simmer for 25 minutes. Serve over rice or barley.

Apple-Cherry Pork Chops

From www.tasteofhome.com

Servings: 2

Ingredients

2 boneless pork loin chops (1/2 inch thick and 5 ounces each)

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon olive oil

2/3 cup apple juice

1 small apple, sliced

2 tablespoons dried cherries or cranberries

2 tablespoons chopped onion

1 teaspoon cornstarch

1 tablespoon cold water

Directions

Sprinkle pork chops with thyme and salt. In a large skillet, cook pork in oil for 3-4 minutes on each side or until juices run clear. Remove and keep warm.

In the same skillet, combine the apple juice, apple, cherries and onion. Bring to a boil. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and water until smooth; stir into skillet. Cook and stir for 1-2 minutes or until thickened. Spoon over pork chops.

Brownie Pizza Recipe

From www.southernfood.about.com

Ingredients

1 package brownie mix (21-ounce)

2 tablespoons flour

1/3 cup water

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 egg

1/2 cup chocolate chips

1/2 cup candy coated peanut butter candies

1 cup mini marshmallows

1/2 cup butterscotch ice cream topping

Directions

Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a 12-inch pizza pan with cooking spray.

In a large mixing bowl, combine brownie mix, flour, water, oil, and egg. Beat with a wooden spoon for about 1 minute. Stir in chocolate chips. Spread batter in the pan and sprinkle with the candy coated peanut butter candies. Bake for about 18 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove and immediately sprinkle with marshmallows. Cool for 15 to 20 minutes then drizzle with caramel or butterscotch ice cream topping. Slice into wedges when cool.

Moist Pumpkin Spice Muffins (With Cream Cheese Frosting)

From www.thepioneerwoman.com

Yield: 12 muffins

Ingredients

Muffins:

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces

1 heaping cup pumpkin puree (fresh or canned)

1/2 cup evaporated milk

1 egg

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

1/2 cup golden raisins (optional!)

2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Generously grease 12 muffin tins.

Sift flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt. Cut in butter with two knives or a pastry blender until all incorporated. In a separate bowl, mix together pumpkin, evaporated milk, egg, and vanilla. Pour pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture. Add raisins. Fold gently until mixture is just combined. Pour into greased muffin pan--batter hardly ever fills all twelve unless you keep it down to 1/2 full. Sprinkle generous amounts of cinnamon-sugar over the top of each unbaked muffin.

Bake for 25 minutes. Allow to cool in pan for 15 minutes, then remove and allow to cool. Ice with cream cheese frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

1/4 cup softened butter

4 ounces cream cheese

1/2 pound powdered sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Mix all ingredients on high until soft and whipped. Spread onto completely cooled muffins, or place into a large pastry bag with a large star tip and go crazy!

Store in fridge, as icing will soften at room temperature.

Carrot Souffle With Pecan Topping

From www.nyt.com

Yield: 6 - 8 servings

Ingredients

1 stick unsalted butter or pareve margarine, melted; plus 6 tablespoons softened; and more for greasing pan

2 pounds carrots, peeled

1 cup flour

1 cup sugar

1 teaspoon salt

4 large eggs

1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1 cup toasted chopped pecans

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 7-by-11-inch casserole. In a large pot bring 8 cups water to a boil, add carrots and cook about 20 minutes, until carrots are soft. Drain and place carrots in a food processor with melted butter or margarine, 1/2 cup flour, the sugar, salt and eggs. Puree. Spoon carrot mixture into casserole.

To make topping, place softened butter or margarine, brown sugar, remaining 1/2 cup flour and pecans in a small bowl. Mix with your fingers. Sprinkle evenly over carrot mixture. Bake for about 45 minutes or until top is browned. Serve.

Oatmeal Buttermilk Blueberry Pancakes

From www.nyt.com

Yield: one dozen pancakes

Ingredients

1/2 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup low-fat milk

1 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 tablespoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 tablespoons canola oil

1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Directions

1. Combine the milk and rolled oats in a bowl, and set aside.

2. Sift together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and salt.

3. In another bowl, whisk the eggs, then add the buttermilk and whisk together. Then whisk in the vanilla extract and the oil.

4. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and quickly whisk together. Do not overbeat; a few lumps are okay. Fold in the oats and milk. Let sit for one hour, or refrigerate overnight.

5. If necessary, spray the hot griddle with pan spray. Drop by 3 to 4 tablespoons onto the hot griddle. Place six or seven blueberries on each pancake. Cook until bubbles begin to break through, two to three minutes. Turn and cook for about 30 seconds to a minute on the other side, or until nicely browned. Remove from the heat, and continue until all of the batter is used up.

6. Serve hot with a small amount of butter and maple syrup.

Advance preparation: You can keep these, well wrapped, in the refrigerator for a few days, or freeze for up to a few months.

Holiday Brunch Casserole Recipe

From www.tasteofhome.com

Yield: 12 servings

Ingredients

4 cups frozen shredded hash brown potatoes

1 pound bulk pork sausage, cooked and drained

1/2 pound sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled

1 medium green pepper, chopped

2 cups (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese, divided

1 green onion, chopped

1 cup reduced-fat biscuit/baking mix

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 eggs

3 cups milk

Directions

In a large bowl, combine the hash browns, sausage, bacon, green pepper, 1 cup cheese and onion. Transfer to a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish.

In another bowl, whisk the biscuit mix, salt, eggs and milk; pour over the top. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Bake, uncovered, at 375° for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting.

December 29, 2009
Say Auld Lang Syne to 2009

It's been a good year, shoppers. Lots of good deals at our local grocery stores and some prices that haven't changed in a year. The Shop Cheap archives show London broil at $1.97lb at Raley's this time last year. And guess what? It's the same price this year.

So let's close out 2009 with good food, good friends and good prices.

First stop, Save Mart where you can get fresh Dungeness crab for $2.99lb. Don't want crab for New Year's? How about spiral sliced ham for $1.97lb or boneless skinless chicken breasts for $1.77lb in the max pak. Standing rib roast is $4.77 a pound - if you want to splurge.

Along with that crab, there's lots of other seafood on sale. Cooked salad shrimp is $3.99lb; fresh Atlantic salamon fillets are $5.99lb and fresh Pacific oysters are 69-cents each.

There's a special on Johnsonville sausage for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. With each sausage purchase, you get something free. Eggs at breakfast; mustard for lunch and spaghetti for dinner.

A 10lb bag of Russet potatoes is 97 cents and avocados are 47 cents each. Other produce items include BOGO berries; pears for 97-cents a pound and squash for 97-cents a pound, too.

Looking to slim down in the new year? Dannon Light & Fit yogurt is 50 cents a carton and Sunnyside Farms cottage cheese is $3.39 for a 32oz. carton.

If you need a push getting into the spirit of the season, go to www.Raleys.com from noon to 1 p.m. on Wednesday for Wine and Dine with the Spirited Alyssa Lulie. She will give you tips on wine and food pairings plus "mocktail" recipes. Alyssa is Something Extra managing editor and drinks expert for the Raley's chain.

Raley's also has that London broil that's priced the same as last year - $1.97lb. They also have boneless skinless chicken at $1.97lb and BOGO Prospector's slow cooked ribs in the deli.

There's a Special K special with cereals, crackers and cereal bars at $1.99 each when you buy four. Nature's Pride bread is $1.99 a loaf; Freschetta pizza is $3.99 and a case of Arrowhead drinking water is $3.33. Martinelli's sparkling cider is $1.99 a bottle and 12 packs of 7-UP and other selected soda is buy 2, get 3 free.

For the dieters, Sunnyside Farms yogurt is 50 cents a container; Smart Ones Weight Watchers meals are $1.75 when you buy 6 with coupon and Good Earth teas are $2.50 a box.

Mission Tortilla chips are $1.99 a bag; Doritos or Ruffles are $1.99 when you buy 3; and Cheez-It or Wheatable crackers are $1.69 a box.

A 5lb box of Clementines is $5.99; zucchini squash is 99-cents a pound and cucumbers are 50-cents each.

Nob Hill Trading Co. bread for two is BOGO; Raley's Take & Bake pizza is 2/$10 and Nob Hill Trading Co. dip is 2/$7.

Let's head over to Safeway where you can stock up on BOGO Dungeness crab. Works out to $3.50 a pound, a little more than Save Mart at $2.99lb. Safeway also has London broil at $1.79lb - that's less than a year ago. Fresh pork spareribs are $1.67lb. You can start your meal with BOGO bagged salads - Fresh Express or Eating Right - and topped off with avocado for 67-cents each.

If you plan on eating just soda chips, Safeway has a deal for you. Buy 3-12 packs of Pepsi or Dew for $9.99 and get two bags of Tostitos free. Hillshire Farm Lit'l Smokies or smokes sausage are 2/$5; Safeway Signature Cafe pizza is $5 for the family size and packaged catering trays are $6.99 each when you buy 2. Arrowhead water is $3.99 a case.

Clip-worthy coupons include Northern bath tissue or Brawny paper towels for $5.99; Joy dish detergent for $1.99; Lucerne ice cream for $1.99 and Go-Gurt for $1.99, too.

If you want to ring out the old with a little chocolate, check out the artisan Mousse Cakes in the bakery. And just to even things out, there's sweet mangos for $1; Pears for $1 a pound and BOGO bags of Eating Right sugar snap peas.

Come back on Thursday as we give you the best recipes of 2009 from the Shop Cheap Kitchen..

.

December 23, 2009
Santa wants breakfast

By this time, you've got to be way past what you are serving for your main holiday meal. The grocery stores know that so that's why they keep the same sales for two weeks. What you might not have decided on is Christmas Breakfast. That's way more fun that the big dinner at night. With that in mind, Sheila Kern did her research and came up with wonderful breakfast recipes. Enjoy and Happy Holidays.

Oatmeal Buttermilk Blueberry Pancakes

From www.nyt.com

Yield: one dozen pancakes

Ingredients

1/2 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup low-fat milk

1 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 tablespoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 tablespoons canola oil

1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Directions

1. Combine the milk and rolled oats in a bowl, and set aside.

2. Sift together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and salt.

3. In another bowl, whisk the eggs, then add the buttermilk and whisk together. Then whisk in the vanilla extract and the oil.

4. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and quickly whisk together. Do not overbeat; a few lumps are okay. Fold in the oats and milk. Let sit for one hour, or refrigerate overnight.

5. If necessary, spray the hot griddle with pan spray. Drop by 3 to 4 tablespoons onto the hot griddle. Place six or seven blueberries on each pancake. Cook until bubbles begin to break through, two to three minutes. Turn and cook for about 30 seconds to a minute on the other side, or until nicely browned. Remove from the heat, and continue until all of the batter is used up.

6. Serve hot with a small amount of butter and maple syrup.

Advance preparation: You can keep these, well wrapped, in the refrigerator for a few days, or freeze for up to a few months.

Gingerbread Pancakes

From www.thepioneerwoman.com

Servings: 2

Ingredients

1 1/2 cup All-purpose Flour

1/2 cups Packed Dark Brown Sugar

1/2 Tablespoons Baking Powder

3/4 teaspoons Baking Soda

1/2 teaspoons Salt

1/2 teaspoons Ground Cinnamon

1/2 teaspoons Ground Ginger

â…› teaspoons Ground Nutmeg

1/4 teaspoons Ground Cloves

1/2 cups Water

1/2 cups Brewed Coffee, Room Temperature Or Cold

2 whole Large Eggs

1/4 cups (1/2 Stick) Melted, Cooled Butter

â…› cups Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice

Directions

Whisk together flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices in a bowl. Whisk together water, coffee, eggs, butter, and lemon juice in a large bowl. Add flour mixture and whisk until just combined. Let stand 15 minutes (batter will thicken).

Brush a griddle or 12-inch non-stick skillet with oil and butter, heat over moderate heat until hot but not smoking.

Working in batches of 3 or 4, pour 1/4 cup batter per pancake onto hot griddle and cook until bubbles appear on surface and undersides are lightly browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Flip pancakes with a spatula and cook until cooked through and edges are lightly browned, 1 to 2 minutes more. Transfer to a platter and loosely cover with foil to keep warm. Brush griddle with oil between batches.

Holiday Brunch Casserole Recipe

From www.tasteofhome.com

Yield: 12 servings

Ingredients

4 cups frozen shredded hash brown potatoes

1 pound bulk pork sausage, cooked and drained

1/2 pound sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled

1 medium green pepper, chopped

2 cups (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese, divided

1 green onion, chopped

1 cup reduced-fat biscuit/baking mix

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 eggs

3 cups milk

Directions

In a large bowl, combine the hash browns, sausage, bacon, green pepper, 1 cup cheese and onion. Transfer to a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish.

In another bowl, whisk the biscuit mix, salt, eggs and milk; pour over the top. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Bake, uncovered, at 375° for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting.

Baked Gruyere and Sausage Omelet

From www.foodnetwork.com

Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis, 2008

Show: Giada at Home Episode: Breakfast for Dinner

Ingredients

Butter, for greasing baking dish

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 small onion, diced

1/2 pound mild turkey sausage, casings removed

8 large eggs

1/3 cup whole milk

1 teaspoon kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 red bell pepper, diced

1 1/2 cups (4 ounces) grated Gruyere cheese

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly butter an 8 by 8-inch baking dish.

Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the sausage and cook until brown, about 5 minutes. Set the pan aside to cool.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, salt and pepper, to taste, until smooth, about 20 seconds. Add the red bell pepper, 1 cup of Gruyere cheese and 1/4 cup of parsley. Stir in the onion mixture. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown.

Cut the baked omelet into wedges and sprinkle with remaining parsley before serving.

Cook's Note: To make individual servings, divide the batter between 4 buttered 8-ounce ramekins. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes.

Breakfast Pizza

From www.cooks.com

Ingredients

1 lb. bulk pork sausage

8 oz. pkg. refrigerator crescent rolls

1 c. frozen, loose pack hash brown potatoes,

thawed or shredded potatoes

1 c. shredded sharp cheese, Swiss or Monterey Jack

2 tbsp. Parmesan cheese

5 eggs

1/4 c. milk

1/2 tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. pepper

Dash Worcestershire sauce

Directions

Brown sausage and drain. Separate rolls into 8 triangles. Place on ungreased 12 inch pizza pan with points toward center. Press over bottom and up sides to form crust. Sprinkle with potatoes and sausage. Top with cheese. In bowl, beat eggs, milk, salt, pepper and sauce. Pour over potatoes and sausage. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and bake in 375 degree oven for 25 to 30 minutes. Great for that holiday breakfast.

December 17, 2009
Don't fret over the office potluck!

The office potluck, the neighborhood gathering or just something different for the family, recipe researcher Sheila Kern has come up with ideas for all of the above. Enjoy and Happy Holidays!

Taco Salad

From www.eatingwell.com

EatingWell: June/July 2006

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

1/2 cup prepared salsa

1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream

1 teaspoon canola oil

1 medium onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 pound 93%-lean ground turkey

2 large plum tomatoes, diced

1 14-ounce can kidney beans, rinsed

2 teaspoons ground cumin

2 teaspoons chili powder

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

8 cups shredded romaine lettuce

1/2 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

Directions

Combine salsa and sour cream in a large bowl.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add turkey and cook, stirring often and crumbling with a wooden spoon, until cooked through, about 5 minutes.

Add tomatoes, beans, cumin and chili powder; cook, stirring, until the tomatoes begin to break down, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, stir in cilantro and 1/4 cup of the salsa mixture.

Add lettuce to the remaining salsa mixture in the bowl; toss to coat. To serve, divide the lettuce among 4 plates, top with the turkey mixture and sprinkle with cheese.

12-Hour Salad Recipe

From www.tasteofhome.com

Yield: 12 servings

Ingredients

8 cups torn salad greens

1-1/2 cups chopped celery

2 medium green peppers, chopped

1 medium red onion, chopped

1 package (10 ounces) frozen peas, thawed

1 cup mayonnaise

1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream

3 tablespoons sugar

1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese

1/2 pound sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled

Directions

Place salad greens in a 3-qt. bowl or 13-in. x 9-in. dish. Top with layers of celery, green peppers, onion and peas; do not toss.

In a bowl, combine the mayonnaise, sour cream and sugar; spread over vegetables. Sprinkle with cheese and bacon. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Crunchy Orange Chicken Salad

From www.verybestbaking.com

Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt (optional)

2/3 cup (5 fl.-oz. can) CARNATION Evaporated Milk

1/3 cup orange juice

1 large egg, well beaten

3 cups cooked, chopped, boneless, skinless chicken breast meat

3 stalks large celery, thinly sliced

3/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

2 tablespoons sliced green onion

1 can (11 oz.) Mandarin oranges, drained

1/2 head lettuce leaves (optional)

Directions

Combine sugar, flour and salt in medium, heavy-duty saucepan; gradually stir in evaporated milk, orange juice and egg. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until dressing just comes to a boil and begins to thicken. Remove from heat. Cover; refrigerate until cool.

Combine chicken, celery, nuts, dressing and green onion in large bowl. Gently stir in oranges. Cover; refrigerate for 2 hours. Serve over lettuce.

 Note: For a lower-fat version of this recipe, substitute CARNATION Evaporated Fat Free Milk for Evaporated Milk.

Crunchy Broccoli Salad

From www.ehow.com

Ingredients

1 bunch uncooked, chopped broccoli florets

1/2 cup cooked, crumbled bacon

1/2 cup cashew pieces, unsalted

1/2 cup golden raisins

1/4 cup chopped red onion

1 cup mayonnaise (for dressing)

1/3 cup sugar (for dressing)

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (for dressing)

Directions

Mix broccoli, bacon, cashews, raisins and onions in large mixing bowl. Set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine dressing ingredients: mayonnaise, sugar, and apple cider vinegar. Toss salad with dressing and place in refrigerator for 10 minutes, allowing flavors to merge. Serve chilled.

Sweet Pumpkin Dip

From www.verybestbaking.com

Yield: 15 servings

Serve this luscious dip with a tray of gingersnaps, vanilla wafers or lemon wafers. Trim the crusts from white bread, spread this mixture on to create delicate party sandwiches and cut out with cookie cutters.

Ingredients

2 pkgs. (8 oz. each) cream cheese, softened

1 can (15 oz.) LIBBY'S 100% Pure Pumpkin

2 cups sifted powdered sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground ginger

Directions:

Beat cream cheese and pumpkin in large mixer bowl until smooth. Add sugar, cinnamon and ginger; mix thoroughly. Cover; refrigerate for 1 hour. Serve with fresh fruit, bite-size cinnamon graham crackers, gingersnap cookies, toasted mini-bagels, toast slices, muffins and/or English muffins.

 Note: For a lower-fat version of this recipe, substitute light cream cheese  for cream cheese.

Artichoke Dip With Roasted Red Peppers

From www.southernfood.about.com

Ingredients

1 cup mayonnaise

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 can or jar (12 to 14 ounces) artichoke hearts, drained, not marinated

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1/8 teaspoon onion powder, optional

1/4 cup minced roasted red pepper

Directions

Combine all ingredients; spread in a pie plate or shallow 1-quart baking dish. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Serve cold or heat in the oven for about 10 minutes at 350°. Don't reheat in the microwave or dip might separate.

Enchilada Casserole

From www.ortega.com

Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients

1 pound lean ground beef

1 cup (1 small) chopped peeled onion

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

2 cans (10-oz.) ORTEGA Enchilada Sauce

1 can (2 1/2-oz.) sliced ripe olives, divided

10 (6-inch) corn tortillas, cut in half, divided

2 cups (8-oz.) shredded cheddar cheese, divided

Directions

Preheat oven to 375º F. Grease bottom of 9-inch-square baking dish.

Combine beef, onion and garlic in large skillet. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, for 4 to 5 minutes or until beef is no longer pink.

Stir in enchilada sauce and 1/4 cup olives. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low; cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 8 minutes.

Layer half of tortillas on bottom of prepared baking dish. Cover with half of beef mixture; sprinkle with 1 cup cheese. Repeat layers; cover.

Bake for 20 minutes. Uncover; bake for additional 5 minutes or until bubbly and cheese is melted. Sprinkle with remaining olives and green onions.

Potluck Chicken Casserole

From www.allrecipes.com

Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients

1/2 cup chopped fresh mushrooms

3 tablespoons finely chopped onion

2 garlic cloves, minced

4 tablespoons butter, divided

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 1/4 cups milk

3/4 cup mayonnaise

4 cups cubed cooked chicken

3 cups cooked long-grain rice

1 cup chopped celery

1 cup frozen peas, thawed

1 (2 ounce) jar diced pimientos, drained

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

3/4 cup coarsely crushed cornflakes

Directions

In a saucepan over medium heat, saute mushrooms, onion and garlic in 3 tablespoons butter until tender. Stir in flour until thoroughly combined. Gradually add milk; bring to a boil. Cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened and bubbly.

Remove from the heat; stir in mayonnaise until smooth. Add chicken, rice, celery, peas, pimientos, lemon juice, salt and pepper; mix well. Spoon into an ungreased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish. Melt remaining butter; toss with cornflakes. Sprinkle over casserole. Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees F for 30-35 minutes or until bubbly.

Tortellini Spinach Casserole

From www.cbsnews.com

Yield: 12 servings.

Ingredients

2 packages (10 ounces each) frozen cheese tortellini

1 pound sliced fresh mushrooms

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon onion powder

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/2 cup butter, divided

1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk

1 block (8 ounces) brick cheese, cubed

3 packages (10 ounces each) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry

2 cups (8 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Directions

Cook tortellini according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute the mushrooms, garlic powder, onion powder and pepper in 1/4 cup butter until mushrooms are tender. Remove and keep warm.

In the same skillet, combine milk and remaining butter. Bring to a gentle boil; stir in brick cheese. Cook and stir until smooth. Drain tortellini; place in a large bowl. Stir in the mushroom mixture and spinach. Add cheese sauce and toss to coat.

Transfer to a greased 3-qt. baking dish; sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Cover and bake at 350° for 15 minutes. Uncover; bake 5-10 minutes longer or until heated through and cheese is melted.

Emeril's Carrot Souffle

From www.abcnews.go.com

From the kitchen of Emeril Lagasse

Servings: over 8

Ingredients

1/2 tablespoon vegetable oil

3 pounds carrots, peeled and chopped

6 large eggs

2 cups packed light brown sugar

1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature (2 sticks)

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup milk

1/4 cup fresh orange juice

1 tablespoon orange zest

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg

Pinch salt

Topping

1 cup packed light brown sugar

1 cup pecans, chopped

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (1/2 stick)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13-inch casserole with the oil and set aside.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add the carrots and cook until they are tender, about 15 minutes; drain. Combine the carrots with the remaining ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared casserole.

Combine the brown sugar, pecans, flour, and butter in a medium bowl. Stir to blend. Scatter the mixture over the top of the casserole and bake until the topping is lightly browned, about 55 minutes to 1 hour. Serve hot.

December 15, 2009
The elves will be hungry

We've got to get down to business today because the sales you see in the Wednesday ads aren't likely to change before Christmas. But holiday store hours will.

For example:

Raley's will be open until midnight through Dec. 23. They close at 7 p.m. on Christmas Eve and will remain closed on Christmas Day.

At Safeway and Save Mart, the individual stores will set their own hours. Select stores will be open on Christmas Day - you'll just have to check where you shop.

Now, about those sales! A few highlights: Save Mart has a Master Cut premium turkey (16-24 pounds) for only $9.99. Raley's has fresh pineapple for $1.97 each and Safeway has its hickory smoked whole ham for 97-cents a pound.

Even Walmart is getting into the act with an insert that features "Christmas dinner for a family of 8 for under $30. More on that later.

Here's the rundown, starting with Save Mart: In addition to that Master Cut bird, they have Foster Farms All Natural Turkey for $1.39lb. The Diestel Ranch free range birds are $1.99lb. Cook's smoked ham portions (heat and serve) are 69-cents a pound and standing rib roast is $4.77lb. Fresh Dungeness crab is $3.99lb and Master Catch white shrimp are $3.99lb.

In produce, fresh green beans are 67-cents a pound; extra large avocados are 2/$3 and celery is 79-cents each. Navel oranges are 39-cents a pound; berries are 2/$5 and a bag of Clementines is $3.97.

Pepsi products are 5/$5 for a 2-liter jug (must buy 5); Martinelli's sparkling cider is $2 a bottle and Crystal Geyser sparkling mineral water is $1 a bottle. A case of Aquafina drinking water is $3.99 and a 12-pack of Lipton Iced Tea is $4.99.

Nabisco Crackers are $1.88 a box; Fritos or Cheetos are $1.99 and General Mills cereals are $1.49 a box (when you buy three).

Here's a deal: Buy any four of the following and get a free dozen eggs: Betty Crocker Brownie, cookie or muffin mix; Gold Medal flour or Betty Crocker Frosting.

In the cold case, Daisy sour cream is 2/$3; Sunnyside Farms butter is 2/$4; Pillsbury Grands!, Crescent rolls or Cinnamon rolls are $1.69 and ready to bake cookies are 2/$5.

And if you like to stuff the stockings with Gallo salame chubs, they are 2/$7!

Heading over to Raley's, you can pick up a spiral sliced ham for $1.47lb to go with that fresh pineapple at $1.97 each. Raley's Sutter sirloin roast is $2.97lb; their fresh turkey is $1.29lb and pork loin roast is $2.97lb.

In produce, berries are BOGO; green beans are 97-cents a pound; large fujis are $1.27lb and a 5-pound bag of potatoes is $1.97. Navel oranges are 57-cents a pound; Brussels sprouts are 99-cents a pound; sliced mushrooms are 2/$4 and sweet onions are 79-cents a pound.

R.W. Knudsen sparkling cider is $1.50 a bottle; Martinelli's is $1.99; 2-liter jugs of Pepsi or 7-UP are 99-cents each and Crystal Geyser sparkling minderal water is 99-cents.

If you need quick snacks, Michelina's meals are $1 each; a box of Jose Ole taquitos, quesadillas or mini tacos are $3.99; and Nabisco crackers are $1.79 when you buy 4 boxes.

Raley's bakery items are always yummy. For the holidays, they are offering a Triple Delight Cake for $9.99; and $5 off the Nob Hill Trading Co. Ultimate Cake. Fresh Fruit Tarts are $12.99; cheesecakes are $9.99 and holiday pies are $3.97 each when you buy 4.

There's still time to order your entire holiday meal from Raley's. The offerings include a Nob Hill Trading Co. fire glazed spiral sliced ham for $39.99; Holiday Rack of Lamb dinner for $79.99; Butternut squash ravioli dinner for $59.99 and the traditional turkey dinner for $99.99.

Safeway has a few tricks in the shopping cart, including the "Free item each day" coupon promotion. Only downside to the free stuff is the fine print: Minimum $20 purchase required for coupon. That means to get 12 items for free, you will spend $240. Think I'm going to be a little selective on this one.

But they do have lots of deals worth mentioning. If you're doing beef for the holiday, Rancher's Reserve ribeye roast is $4.88lb; whole tri-tip roast is $2.77lb  and cross rib roast is $2.99lb. Fresh turkey is $1.29lb; spiral sliced ham is $1.67lb and whole pork shoulder blade roast is 87-cents a pound.

In produce, fresh pineapple is $1.99; O Organics baby salad blends are BOGO as are GreenLine green beans. Pears and apples are 99-cents a pound; mangos are $1 each; berries are 2/$6 and jumbo pomegranates are 2/$5.

12-packs of soda are $2.48 each; a case of Safeway Refreshe water is $2.99; Tropicana OJ is $2.49 (when you buy 2); Martinelli's Sparkling Cider is $1.99 a bottle and Ocean Spray cranberry juice cocktail is $1.98.

Froot Loops and Apple Jacks are $1.49 a box (when you buy 4); Kellogg's Corn Flakes are 99 cents (must buy 4); and Dole Pineapple Chunks are $1 a can. The BOGOs are plentiful...Oscar Mayer bacon or Jimmy Dean sausage rolls; Tyson breaded chicken; Johnsonville smokes sausage; Lays potato chips; Ken's salad dressing; Oroweat breads and Thomas' bagels or English muffins; Stove Top stuffing; and Lucerne Whipped Cream (aerosol).

In the bakery, a cheesecake platter is $9.99; New York style cheesecake is $7.99 and the infamous holiday fruitcake is $4.49.

If you're doing something different on Christmas but have a craving for turkey, the $5 Friday special is Oven Roasted Turkey Breast.

Now, for that Walmart offfering. The $30 dinner includes spiral cut half ham; Del Monte green beans and corn (67-cents a can);  dinner rolls (75-cents); Russet potatoes ($2 a bag) and a 10-inch pumpkin pie for $5. Other items worth mentioning include Paula Deen pies for $7.50; frozen shrimp ring with cocktail sauce for $5 and frozen bone-in turkey breast for $1.42 a pound.

Come back on Thursday when we share the best office potluck recipes from the Shop Cheap kitchen. 

 .

December 9, 2009
Sweet stuff to share

During the holidays it's fun to have treats around the house and at work. It's also fun to make sweet things to give to neighbors and friends. That's why recipe researcher Sheila Kern put together this list of treats that you can make for yourself or share with others. Enjoy!

Crispy Chocolate Almond Sticks

From www.thepioneerwoman.com

Ingredients

Very thin, plain Italian breadsticks

1 cup meltable chocolate wafers or chocolate bark

2 heaping tablespoons Nutella

1/2 cup very finely chopped almonds or other nuts

Directions

Melt chocolate with Nutella and stir together. Add nuts and stir. Break breadsticks in half and dip the broken half in the chocolate/almond mixture, being careful to coat. Lay on waxed paper and sprinkle with extra nuts. Allow to set before serving.

Mexican Wedding Cakes

From www.epicurious.com

Bon Appetit | May 2003

Yield: Makes about 4 dozen

Ingredients

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature

2 cups powdered sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 cups all purpose flour

1 cup pecans, toasted, coarsely ground

1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions

Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until light and fluffy. Add 1/2 cup powdered sugar and vanilla; beat until well blended. Beat in flour, then pecans. Divide dough in half; form each half into ball. Wrap separately in plastic; chill until cold, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Whisk remaining 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar and cinnamon in pie dish to blend. Set cinnamon sugar aside.

Working with half of chilled dough, roll dough by 2 teaspoonfuls between palms into balls. Arrange balls on heavy large baking sheet, spacing 1/2 inch apart. Bake cookies until golden brown on bottom and just pale golden on top, about 18 minutes. Cool cookies 5 minutes on baking sheet. Gently toss warm cookies in cinnamon sugar to coat completely. Transfer coated cookies to rack and cool completely. Repeat procedure with remaining half of dough. (Cookies can be prepared 2 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature; reserve remaining cinnamon sugar.)

Sift remaining cinnamon sugar over cookies and serve.

Toffee Bars

From www.bhg.com

Makes 36 bars

Ingredients

1/2 cup butter, softened

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/8 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup semisweet chocolate pieces

1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

1/3 cup chocolate-covered toffee pieces

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the brown sugar, egg, and vanilla. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl. Beat in flour and salt until combined.

Spread dough evenly in an ungreased 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Bake for about 15 minutes or until edges begin to brown and surface is dry. Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle with chocolate pieces. Let stand about 2 minutes or until chocolate is softened; spread evenly. Sprinkle with nuts and toffee pieces. Let cool in pan on wire rack 30 minutes. Cut into bars.

Cinnamon-Chocolate Meringues

From www.eatingwell.com

EatingWell: March/April 2007

Yield: 80 (1 1/2-inch) cookies

Ingredients

3 large egg whites, at room temperature (see Tip)

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, plus 1 tablespoon for garnish (optional)

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Directions

Separate one egg at a time into a small bowl, letting the white fall into the bowl and discarding the yolk. If there's any trace of yolk in the white, discard the white and start over. If it's yolk-free, transfer to a clean medium mixing bowl. Repeat with the remaining 2 eggs.

Add cream of tartar to the whites and beat with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Slowly add sugar, about 1 tablespoon at a time, until all the sugar has been added. Continue beating until the whites are stiff and glossy. Add vanilla and beat for 30 seconds more. Sift 3 tablespoons cocoa powder and cinnamon over the meringue. Use a rubber spatula to gently fold them in along with the chocolate chips until combined; do not overmix.

Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven; preheat to 200°F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Place a small amount of the meringue under each corner of the paper to secure it to the pan. Fill a 1-quart sealable plastic bag (or pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain tip) with the meringue. Seal the bag almost completely, leaving a small opening for air to escape from the top as you squeeze. Snip off one corner of the bag with scissors, making a 3/4-inch-wide opening. Fold the top of the bag over a few times, then gently push the meringue down to the snipped corner. Working with the bag perpendicular to the baking sheet, pipe the meringue into 1 1/2-inch-diameter cookies, spacing them about 1/2 inch apart.

Bake the cookies until dry and crisp throughout, about 1 1/2 hours. Transfer the pans to wire racks and let the cookies cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes. Sift 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder over the baked meringues for garnish, if desired.

Tips & Notes

Make Ahead Tip: Cookies can be held at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month. If stored meringues are chewy, bake at 200°F for about 10 minutes to restore their original crisp texture.

Tip: To get the most volume from beaten egg whites, it's best to start with whites at room temperature. Submerge them in their shells in a bowl of lukewarm (not hot) water for about 5 minutes before using.

GINGERBREAD BISCOTTI

From www.landolakes.com

Yield: 36 biscotti

Biscotti Ingredients

1/2 cup Land O Lakes Butter, softened

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1 tablespoon ground ginger

3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon cloves

2 Land O Lakes All-Natural Eggs

3 tablespoons mild molasses

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 cup mini real semi-sweet chocolate chips, if desired

Coating Ingredients

6 ounces vanilla-flavored candy coating (almond bark), chopped

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions

Heat oven to 350°F. Combine butter, sugar, brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves in large bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until well mixed. Add eggs; continue beating until well mixed. Add molasses; continue beating until well mixed. Reduce speed to low; add flour and baking powder. Beat until well mixed. Stir in mini chocolate chips, if desired.

Divide dough in half. Shape each half into 12-inch log on lightly floured surface. Place logs 3 inches apart onto lightly greased large cookie sheet. Flatten logs slightly.

Bake for 22 to 25 minutes or until tops are cracked and logs are golden brown. Remove from oven; cool 15 minutes on cookie sheet. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.

Carefully place logs onto cutting surface. Cut into 1/2-inch diagonal slices with serrated knife. Place, cut-side down, onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Return to oven. Bake 9 minutes; turn slices. Continue baking for 5 to 7 minutes or until cookies are dry and crisp. Cool completely.

Place candy coating into small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on HIGH (100% power) 1 minute; stir. Continue microwaving, stirring every 15 seconds, until melted and smooth. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon.

Place cookies onto waxed paper; drizzle with melted candy coating. Let set at room temperature until coating is firm (about 30 minutes).

Recipe Tip

Line cookie sheet with parchment paper for easy cleanup.

Recipe Tip:

Use dark molasses, if you prefer a more intense flavor.

Orange Spice Molasses Cookies

From www.eatingwell.com

From EatingWell: November/December 2009

Yield: 40 cookies

Ingredients

Rolling Sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 tablespoon freshly grated orange zest

Cookie Dough

1 1/2 cups rolled oats

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar

2 tablespoons freshly grated orange zest

1/2 cup light or dark molasses

7 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce

1 large egg yolk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 1/4 cups whole-wheat flour

Directions

Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray or line with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat.

To prepare the rolling sugar: Pulse 1/2 cup granulated sugar and 1 tablespoon orange zest in a food processor until well combined. Place in a shallow dish and set aside.

To prepare cookie dough: Grind oats in a blender until they look like a fine powder, 1 to 2 minutes, scraping the sides as needed.

Beat butter and 1/3 cup granulated sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high speed for 5 minutes. Add brown sugar and 2 tablespoons orange zest and beat another 2 minutes. Add molasses, applesauce, egg yolk, vanilla, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, allspice, pepper and salt; beat on medium-high until incorporated, about 30 seconds, scraping down the bowl and beaters as needed.

Turn the mixer to medium and slowly add the ground oats. Scrape down the bowl; with the mixer on medium, slowly add whole-wheat flour. (The dough will be moderately sticky.)

Using a slightly rounded tablespoon of dough, roll into balls, then roll in the rolling sugar to coat. (If necessary, wet your fingers to help roll without sticking.) The zest will make the mixture slightly wet and it will clump; lightly brush off the excess so that just a thin coat is on the cookie. Place cookies about 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheet.

Bake the cookies in batches until the edges are set and the tops are cracked, but the centers are still soft and puffy, about 10 minutes.

Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for 8 minutes. Serve warm or cool on a wire rack.

Tips & Notes

Make Ahead Tip: Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

December 8, 2009
It's better eat those fruits and veggies

Last week was so much fun. All that crab. All those coupons. This week, not so much. We do have an abundance of fruit and veggies. It might be kind of boring but at least it's healthy.

If you want apples - Braeburn or Fujis - go to Saveway where they are 79-cents a pound.

Craving avocado? Go to Raley's or Safeway where they are $1 each.

And for some Clementines, go to Save Mart for the Cuties where they are $3.97 for a 5-lb. box.

Here's the skinny on the rest of the sales.

Starting at Save Mart where you can get New York steak for $3.47 a pound. Foster Farms chicken breasts are BOBO. King crab legs are $6.99 a pound; boneless beef chuck roast is $1.88lb. There's a coupon for 12-packs of soda - buy 2, get 2 free. Crystal Geyser spring water is $3.33 a case.Oroweat breads are $2.29 a loaf and Ortega taco shells are $1.99 a box.

In the bakery and deli, a traditional Boston cake is $5.99; turnovers are 2/$5 and chicken tenders are $4.99 a pound.

And produce is where you will find some of your best buys. Fresh cucumbers are 3/99 cents; Fresh Express bagged spinach is 99 cents and extra large avocados are 2/$3. Most varieties of apples are 99 cents a pound; berries are 2/$5 and red, white or yellow onions are 69 cents a pound.

Safeway has shop-worthy deals on boneless top sirloin steak for $2.67 a pound; Eating Right boneless, skinless chicken breasts for $1.97lb and whole pork shoulder roast for 87 cents a pound. Lucerene shredded or chunk cheese is $1.49. And if you didn't get your fill of seafood last week, cooked shrimpmeat (sold in a 2lb bag) is $3.99lb.

In addition to the apples, Safeway has broccoli for 79 cents a pound and Texas Ruby Red grapefruit 3/99 cents. Large avocados are $1 each, zucchini and onions are $1 a pound. Fresh eggplant is also $1.

Honey Bunches of Oats is $1.99 a box; 2-liter 7-UP and A&W is 88 cents each; Arrowhead water is $3.99 a case. Safeway has coupons for Pillsbury cookie dough ($1.99); a 4-quart container of Dairy Glen ice cream ($3.99);  and Dawn or Ivory dish shoap ($2.49). There's a Mix & Match special on Barilla or Classico pasta sauce ($1.99 a jar when you buy 3 or more); Barilla pasta for $1; fresh ground beef $2.49lb and Italian sausage for $2.99 a package.

The Friday only $5 special is 8-piece Signature Cafe fried or all natural roasted chicken.

Raley's is bringing back the crab for another week at $2.99 a pound (still an excellent price). Chuck or cross rib roast is $2.47lb; and if you are making homemade chowder, fresh Venus clams are $2.99lb.

A case of Crystal Geyser spring water is $3.99; Chex cereal is $1.50 a box when you buy 3 and 12-packs of Coke are buy 2, get 2 free. 2-liter Coke is 88 cents each when you buy 4. Ragu pasta sauce is 99 cents a jar and Golden Grain pasta is 99 cents a pound.

Raley's has a wide variety of holiday dinners from rack of lamb for $79.99 to the Fiesta Tamale dinner for $39.99. In between, there's the usual turkey and a new maple glazed ham dinner for $59.99. Most are complete dinners. If you order online, you save $5.

In produce, the best deals are on the avocados for $1 each and the 3lb bag of Clementines for $3.99.  In the deli, you can get an 8-piece chicken dinner for $5.99 and a 16-inch Take & Bake cheese pizza for $6.99.

That's kind of it for this week. The holiday push will shift into high gear next week. In the meantime, come back on Thursday as we begin our holiday recipe offerings. First off, holiday cookies. Then on Dec. 16, recipes for the office potluck. On Dec. 23, we'll have everything you need for your Christmas breakfast.

 

December 7, 2009
We were shelling out for crab this weekend

Sacramentans went hog wild for crab over the weekend. You'd think it was Black Friday all over again the way shoppers lined up at one Raley's on Douglas Boulevard Saturday morning. They were standing out front - coupons in hand - when the doors opened at 6 a.m.

About 7 hours later, the store had sold all 1,000 pounds of crab that it received that day. But Raley's wasn't the only place you could satisfy your crab craving. Granted, the 50% off online coupon made the price $2.50 a pound at Raley's/BelAir. But Save Mart advertised crab for $2.99 a pound in Saturday's paper and Safeway was selling the stuff for $3.99 a pound on Saturday and Sunday.

Shop Cheap scored big over the weekend, having shopped at Raley's on Friday night and earning two $1 off coupons. Loaded down with the $1 off store coupons and the freshly printed coupons for 50% off crab; BOGO bakery artisan bread and another coupon for Fresh Express salads, dinner cost $12.09. Love it when even the checker is surprised that I got two crabs, two fresh-baked loaves of bread, Romaine lettuce and two avocado for just $12.09!

December 2, 2009
Live chats and cioppino

Before we get started with the recipes for this week, we wanted to share something from Amy Davis at Raley's. Every Tuesday at noon in the month of December, Raley's is hosting a live web chat that focuses on the holidays. We missed the deadline for the first one, but here's what you can expect for the next four Tuesdays.

Dec. 8: Party not prep with Chef Evelyn Millate.

Dec. 15: Appetizers on a dime with Something Extra's Food Editors.

Dec. 22: Last minute holiday Q&A with the Holiday Solution Squad.

Dec. 29: Wine and Dine with the spirited Alyssa Lulie.

To participate in the chat, go to www.raleys.com for instructions.

Now, those recipes. Researcher Sheila Kern comes through again with ideas for mango salad (the fruit is on sale this week); tri-tip ($2.97 a pound at Raley's) and crab cioppino (get it this weekend at Safeway and Raley's). Enjoy!

Mango Salad Recipe

From www.grouprecipes.com

Servings: 6

Ingredients

3 large firm but ripe mangos, peeled, pitted and cubed

1/2 cup 1/2 inch diced jicama

1/4 cup 1/2 inch diced red or yellow bell pepper

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

3 tablespoons brown sugar

3 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

Directions

Lightly stir together all ingredients in a medium bowl. Salad may be served immediately or covered and refrigerated for several hours.

Mango Caprese Salad

From www.mango.org

Serves: 6

Ingredients

3 large, ripe mangos, peeled, pitted and sliced

8 ounce fresh mozzarella cheese sliced

3 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

3 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Snipped fresh basil

Crusty toasted baguette slices

Directions

Place sliced mango on a platter, alternating with slices of mozzarella. Drizzle with lemon juice and oil and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with basil and serve with baguette slices.

Mango Yogurt Parfaits

From www.mango.org (National Mango Board)

Serves: 6

Ingredients

2 large ripe mangos, peeled, pitted and cubed

3 cup low fat vanilla yogurt

6 tablespoon low fat granola

Directions

Puree 1 mango and spoon equal amounts into 6 clear plastic cups. Top each with 1/4 cup yogurt. Spoon cubed mango over the top, saving a few pieces for garnish. Top with remaining 1/4 cup yogurt and reserved mango. (Recipe may be made ahead at this point. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.) Top each serving with a tablespoon of granola just before serving.

Serving Tips: Make ahead and keep refrigerated.

Hoisin-Marinated Tri-Tip Roast Recipe

From www.chow.com

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

1/4 cup hoisin sauce

2 teaspoons minced ginger

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

2 tablespoons soy sauce

Heaping 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 (2-pound) tri-tip roast

1 tablespoon olive oil

Directions

Stir together hoisin, ginger, garlic, vinegar, soy sauce, and pepper until well blended. Rub marinade all over roast, coating it well. Place in a glass baking dish, cover, and allow to marinate in the refrigerator at least 8 hours, but preferably overnight.

Remove tri-tip from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Heat oven to 375°F. Blot roast dry with paper towels to remove some of the excess marinade.

Heat olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Sear roast for about 2 minutes per side or until nicely browned. Transfer roast to a small roasting pan or baking dish and place in the oven. Cook until roast reaches an internal temperature of 125°F for medium rare, about 20 to 22 minutes.

Remove roast from the oven and cover loosely with foil. Let rest for 15 minutes before carving. Slice tri-tip across the grain and serve.

Slow Cooked Tri-Tip Roast With Vegetables

From www.southernfood.about.com

Serves: 6

Ingredients

Rub Paste Mixture:

2 tablespoons chili powder

1/2 teaspoon chipotle chile powder

1/2 teaspoon dried leaf oregano

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon onion powder

Dash cayenne pepper

Dash cayenne pepper

Dash ground black pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

---

1 tri-tip beef roast, about 3 to 4 pounds

---

Vegetables:

2 to 2 1/2 pounds medium potatoes, quartered or cut in 1 to 2-inch chunks

1 large onion, cut in wedges

4 large carrots, quartered or halved lengthwise and cut into 1 to 2-inch pieces

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes

1 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary

1/2 teaspoon dried leaf oregano or basil

1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed

Dash dried tarragon

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

Directions

Combine rub ingredients; rub the roast all over and put in a food storage bag. Refrigerate and let marinate for 1 hour or overnight.

Put potatoes, onion, and carrots in a 6 to 7-quart slow cooker. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oils and add the parsley, rosemary, oregano or basil, dill, tarragon, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Toss to coat thoroughly. Place the roast on the vegetables. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours, or on HIGH for 4 to 5 hours.

Cioppino

From www.marthastewart.com

Serves 6 to 8

Ingredients

1/4 cup olive oil

1 large onion (2 1/2 cups), coarsely chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced (2 1/2 tablespoons)

2 1/2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves

2 teaspoons dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes

1 dried bay leaf

1 can (35 ounces) whole tomatoes with juice, crushed

1 1/4 cups dry white wine

1 cup bottled clam juice

1 1/4 cups water

2 pounds king crab legs (or Dungeness crab legs), cut into 2-inch chunks

24 littleneck clams, scrubbed well

1 pound skinless firm white fish fillets, such as red snapper, bass, or halibut, cut into bite-size pieces

1 1/4 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Sourdough bread, for serving (optional)

Directions

Heat olive oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add onion and garlic. Cook until the onion is translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in thyme, oregano, red pepper, and bay leaf.

Add tomatoes and their liquid, the wine, clam juice, and water, and bring to a simmer.

Add crab and clams, cover, simmering until the crab shells turn bright pink and the clam shells open, about 10 minutes. Season fish and shrimp with salt and pepper, and add to the pot. Cover, and simmer until the fish is opaque and the shrimp turn pink and begin to curl, 2 to 3 minutes.

Remove pot from heat. Stir in parsley. Taste and adjust for seasoning. Serve with sourdough bread, if desired.

Sardine Factory Cioppino

From www.find.myrecipes.com

Sunset, JANUARY 2002

Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 cup chopped onion (5 oz.)

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 cups dry white wine

1 pound firm-ripe tomatoes, rinsed and chopped, or 1 can (14 1/2 oz.) diced tomatoes

1/2 cup tomato paste

2 tablespoons minced fresh basil leaves or 2 teaspoons dried basil

1/2 teaspoon pepper

Salt

1 pound firm, white-fleshed fish such as halibut

1/2 pound (26 to 30 per lb.) shelled, defined shrimp

1/2 pound scallops (1 1/2 in. wide)

1 cooked Dungeness crab (2 lb.), cleaned and cracked

1 1/2 pounds clams in shells (1 to 1 1/2 in. wide), suitable for steaming

1/4 cup chopped parsley

1 loaf (1 lb.) crusty bread

Lemon wedges

Directions

1. Pour olive oil into a 5- to 6-quart pan over medium-high heat; when hot, add onion and garlic and stir often until onion is limp, 3 to 5 minutes. Add wine, tomatoes (with their juice if canned), tomato paste, basil, and pepper; bring mixture to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat and simmer, stirring often, for 10 minutes. Add salt to taste.

2. Meanwhile, rinse and drain fish, shrimp, scallops, and crab; cut fish into 1- to 2-inch pieces. Scrub clams. Gently stir fish, shrimp, scallops, and clams into tomato broth; cover and simmer just until fish, shrimp, and scallops are opaque but still moist-looking in center of thickest part (cut to test) and clams have popped open, 7 to 9 minutes. Discard any clams that don't open. Add crab and press gently to immerse in broth; cover and cook just until hot, 2 to 3 minutes.

3. Ladle cioppino into wide bowls and sprinkle with parsley. Serve with bread and lemon wedges.

December 1, 2009
It's OK to be crabby this week

Well, that was fun! If you're like me, the Thanksgiving turkey is only a memory and it's time to move on. But we're kind of in limbo this week. T-Day is so last week but we still have a ways to go before the Christmas season shifts into high gear.

That said, it's a perfect week for the delicacy that is fresh Dungeness crab. Both Safeway and Raley's have it on sale this Saturday and Sunday.

In addition to pretty decent prices, get ready for some gimmicks to keep us out of the mall and in the grocery store. Safeway is offering a $10 reward card when you accumulate $250 in purchases on your Club Card. Raley's has 50% off crab on Saturday and Sunday but you must print your coupon from raleys.com. And most stores are offering coupons for $5 off their party trays.

Here's the deals this week:

Safeway has Saturday and Sunday specials including the Dungeness crab for $3.99lb; and teen-ager favorites the All-American sub sandwich for $5.99; Doritos for $1.69; 2-liter Pepsi or 7-UP for 69-cents each and Post Fruity Pebbles or Honey Bunches of Oats for $1.47.

Their Rancher's Reserve New York strip steak, assorted pork loin chops and chicken leg quarters are 50% off. Jumbo raw shrimp are $4.99 a pound when you buy a 2-pound bag.

Coupons worth clipping include Lucerne large eggs $1.49 for 18; Hostess treats, Wonder and Nature's Pride breads for $1.99; Safeway select pizza for $2.99 and Glade candles for $1.49.

In the BOGO category there's Eating Right salad blends; raspberries, blueberries or blackberries; Cheez-It crackers or Keebler cookies; Tyson breaded chicken nuggets and Cara Mia marinated artichoke hearts.

In produce, mangoes are $1 each; crisp apples are $1.49lb and navel oranges are 49-cents a pound.

If you can still handle poultry, the $5 Friday special is whole roasted chicken.

Over at Raley's, you need to sign up at www.raleys.com to gain access to the crab coupon. Getting e-mail alerts from Raley's was definitely worth it last weekend when they offered $25 off grocery purchases of $100 or more. Stuff you don't need a special coupon for include Raley's Black Angus tri tip roast for $2.97lb and premium ground beef at $1.67lb.

If you are looking to stock up on soda, 12-packs of 7-UP are buy 2, get 3 free. That works out to $2.35 a pack. In the cereal category, Post varieties are $1.50 a box when you buy 4 and Colgate toothpaste is BOGO. Minute Maid OJ is $2 a half-gallon; Sunnyside cottage cheese is $1.99 and non-dairy creamer is $1.99.

In produce, pomegranates are 2/$3; blackberries and raspberries are BOGO; Fresh Express garden salads are 99 cents a bag; and cucumbers are 2/$1. If you like Raley's Nob Hill gourmet soups, they are 3/$12. Add a bread bowl for 99-cents.

Save Mart has a great deal on Post cereal, but you have to buy 6 boxes to get the sale price of $1.33 each. And you can't beat their price on mangoes - 3/99 cents. If you're in the mood for chicken, Whole Foster Farms birds are only 77-cents a pound. Sunnyside Farms boneless, skinless chicken breasts in the Max Pak are $1.99lb; fresh spareribs are $1.79lb and London broil is $1.99lb.

Gallon jugs of Crystal Geyser Spring water are 88-cents each; a case of Arrowhead Spring water is $3.99 and Nestle hot cocoa mix is BOGO.

In produce, avocados are $1 each; red delicious apples are 79-cents a pound; Driscoll's berries are 2/$5 and fresh eggplant is 99-cents each. If your family just loves, "Pigs in a Blanket" during the holidays, check out the recipe on the back page of the Save Mart ad. These little piggies come with a twist - cranberry sauce and dijon mustard.

And when your finish your grocery shopping, you can pick up a Douglas Fir Christmas tree for $19.99.

Come back on Thursday for a cioppino recipe to go with that Dungeness crab.



About Shop Cheap

Pam Dinsmore is The Bee's Community Affairs Director. When she's not working, she's shopping. The goal of this blog is to help you save time and money at the grocery store. She's pretty good at it but she can't do it alone. That's where you come in, sharing your tips and secret methods for saving money. You can either respond to the blog or email her at pdinsmore@sacbee.com

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