Shop Cheap

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

March 30, 2011
You'll score with these recipes

Whether it's the Majors, Triple A or Little League, these recipes go well with any kind of baseball. Recipe researcher Sheila Kern - who's in a league of her own - compiled a list that includes hot dogs, burgers, brats, potato salad and a delicious tri-tip sandwich. Enjoy!

Hot Dog Melts


Recipe by Wolfgang Puck

Servings: 6


1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons mayonnaise

1/4 cup sour cream

1/4 cup drained prepared horseradish

1/4 cup Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon minced shallots

1 tablespoon minced chives

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Salt and freshly ground pepper

6 slices Gruyere cheese (3 ounces)

6 all-beef hot dogs, slit lengthwise

6 thin slices of lean bacon

6 hot dog buns


Preheat the oven to 425°. In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, sour cream, horseradish, mustard, honey, shallots, chives and lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.

Place a slice of cheese in the center of each splayed hot dog, breaking the slice if necessary to fit it in. Wrap a slice of bacon around each hot dog and secure it with toothpicks.

Arrange the hot dogs on a rimmed baking sheet and bake in the upper third of the oven until the bacon is crisp, about 12 minutes. Place each hot dog in a bun and serve, passing the horseradish sauce on the side.

Hot Dogs New England


Serves 4


6 Hot Dogs

2 (1 pound) cans pork and beans

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce

2 tablespoons brown sugar

2 tablespoons molasses

Juice 1/2 lemon

1/4 teaspoon thyme

2 large onions


Cut hot dogs in half lengthwise. Mix baked beans with Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, brown sugar, molasses, lemon juice and thyme. Slice onions and separate into rings. Mix lightly with the beans. Bake, covered, in a 375° oven for 1/2 hour. Place hot dog halves on top of beans for another 1/2 hour, uncovered, in the oven. Serve very hot with tomato wedges and buttered water crackers.

Pigs in Blankets


Yields: 60 pieces


2 sheet(s) frozen pastry dough, thawed

12 all-beef hot dogs

1 large egg

1/4 teaspoon salt

Poppy seeds, for garnish


Preheat oven to 425°F. On a lightly floured surface, roll 1 puff pastry dough sheet into a 12- by 14-inch rectangle. Cut rectangle in half lengthwise, then cut each half into 3 equal pieces for a total of 6 pastry pieces. Repeat with second pastry.

Pat hot dogs dry with paper towels and pierce each several times with a fork. In a small bowl, whisk together egg and salt for egg wash. Roll each hot dog in 1 puff pastry piece, then seal with some egg wash.

Place pastry-wrapped hot dogs on parchment-lined baking sheets and lightly brush with remaining egg wash; sprinkle with poppy seeds. Bake until puffed and golden, about 20 minutes. Slice each pastry-wrapped hot dog into 5 sections and serve warm with spicy mustard, if desired.

Brat Crustini


Makes 10 servings


1/2 cup olive oil

1 Tbsp. minced garlic

1 pkg. (19.76 oz.) Johnsonville Brats

1 loaf (1 lb.) French bread, cut into 1/2 in. slices

2 1/2 cups Havarti Dill cheese, shredded


Combine olive oil and garlic; let stand 15 minutes.

Preheat grill to medium-low. Grill brats according to package directions. Cut into 1/2-in. slices.

Brush olive oil mixture over both sides of bread. Grill for 30-60 seconds on each side or until lightly toasted.

Place bread on foil. Top with brat slices and cheese. Return to the grill. Cover and grill for 2 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Smokey Joes


Makes 6 servings


1 pkg. (19.76 oz.) Johnsonville Brats

2 tsp. olive oil

1 small onion, sliced

1 cup mushrooms, sliced

1 1/4 cup barbecue sauce

6 kaiser rolls, split

12 green pepper rings

1 cup coleslaw


Remove brats from casing and brown in skillet. Drain and reserve.

Heat oil in medium saucepan. Add onion and cook 2-3 minutes.

Add mushrooms and cook an additional 2-3 minutes

Add sausage and barbecue sauce, simmer 5-8 minutes or until hot.

Spoon sausage mixture onto bottom half of each kaiser roll and top with pepper rings, coleslaw and top halves of rolls.

Easy Sausage Pizza



1 12 in. pre-baked Italian bread shell crust

1 cup pizza sauce

1 1/4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided

1/2 lb. Johnsonville Italian Sausage Links

1/2 cup green pepper, chopped


Prepare Italian Sausage Links per package directions.

Coin slice and reserve.

Spread sauce over crust; sprinkle with 1 cup cheese.

Add Italian Sausage slices and green pepper.

Top with the remaining cheese.

Bake according to crust package directions or until sausage is no longer pink and cheese is melted.

Rigatoni a la You!


Makes 6 servings


1 pkg. (19.76 oz.) Johnsonville Italian Mild Sausage Links, grilled and coin-sliced

1 pkg. (12 oz.) uncooked rigatoni pasta

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 medium red pepper, thinly sliced

1 medium yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 medium onion, thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 can (28 oz.) diced tomatoes with Italian herbs

grated Parmesan cheese


Cook sausage according to package directions, keep warm.

Cook the rigatoni according to directions, keep warm.

In a large pan, place olive oil and garlic, saute lightly for 30 seconds.

Add peppers and cook until crisp tender.

Combine cooked sausage and pasta sauce with peppers and heat until warm.

At this point you may mix with the pasta or serve separately. Top with fresh parsley. Serve warm.

Southern Potato Salad


Servings: 4


4 potatoes

4 eggs

1/2 stalk celery, chopped

1/4 cup sweet relish

1 clove garlic, minced

2 tablespoons prepared mustard

1/2 cup mayonnaise

Salt and pepper to taste


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes; drain and chop.

Place eggs in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring water to a boil; cover, remove from heat, and let eggs stand in hot water for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from hot water; peel and chop.

In a large bowl, combine the potatoes, eggs, celery, sweet relish, garlic, mustard, mayonnaise and salt and pepper. Gently mix together and serve warm.

Lebanese Potato Salad


Makes 8 servings, about 2/3 cup each


2 pounds russet potatoes, (about 3 medium)

1/4 cup lemon juice

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

4 scallions, thinly sliced

1/4 cup chopped fresh mint


Place potatoes in a large saucepan or Dutch oven and cover with lightly salted water. Bring to a boil and cook until tender, 25 to 30 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water. Transfer to a cutting board. Let cool for 20 minutes. Cut the cooled potatoes into 1/2-inch pieces.

Whisk lemon juice, oil, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the potatoes and toss to coat.

Just before serving, add scallions and mint to the salad and toss gently.

Tri-Tip Sandwiches with Horseradish Spread


Makes 6 servings


1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 tbsp. prepared horseradish

1 tsp. fresh lemon juice

2 cups baby arugula, rinsed and patted dry

2 tbsp. olive oil

12 slices sheepherder's French bread

2 lb. cooked Raley's Black Angus Beef tri-tip,

thinly sliced

8 slices provolone cheese

1 large tomato, sliced

1/2 lb. Parmigiano-Reggiano, shaved with a

vegetable peeler


In a small bowl, combine mayonnaise, horseradish and lemon juice. Whisk to blend. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. In a medium bowl, toss arugula with olive oil. Generously spread each slice of bread with horseradish mayonnaise. Top 6 of the slices with tri-tip, Provolone, tomato, arugula and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Top with remaining bread. Cut each sandwich in half and serve.

Mini Man Burgers


Yield: 8 burgers


1/2 teaspoon onion powder

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 pound ground chuck

8 (3-inch) buns or rolls, split in half

2 to 3 tablespoons mayonnaise


Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F. Preheat a griddle to 350 degrees F.

Combine the onion powder, garlic powder, pepper, and salt in a small bowl. Set aside.

Line a jellyroll or sheet pan with parchment paper, and place the ground chuck in the middle of the pan. Cover the meat with a large sheet of plastic wrap. Roll meat with a rolling pin until it covers the surface of the pan; it should be very thin. Remove the plastic wrap, and sprinkle the meat with the seasoning mixture. Fold the meat in half, from side to side, using the parchment paper. Use a pizza wheel to cut the meat into 8 even squares.

Wrap the buns in foil and place in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes. Meanwhile, place the burgers on the griddle and cook for 2 to 3 minutes per side.

Remove the buns from the oven. Spread a small amount of mayonnaise on each bun and top with the burger and any other condiments, as desired. Serve immediately.

Juiciest Hamburgers Ever


Servings: 8


2 pounds ground beef

1 egg, beaten

3/4 cup dry bread crumbs

3 tablespoons evaporated milk

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 cloves garlic, minced


Preheat grill for high heat.

In a large bowl, mix the ground beef, egg, bread crumbs, evaporated milk, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne pepper, and garlic using your hands. Form the mixture into 8 hamburger patties.

Lightly oil the grill grate. Grill patties 5 minutes per side, or until well done.

Salsa Quemada (Roasted Tomato Salsa)


Makes 2 1/2 cups


5 large Roma tomatoes, whole, not cored or cut in any way

1 serrano or jalapeno chile

2 cloves garlic, skin on

1/4 cup minced white onion

1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

1/2 bunch cilantro


1. Make sure your kitchen is well ventilated. Put a piece of aluminum foil in a heavy saute pan (preferably cast iron) and set it over medium-high heat. Place the whole tomatoes, chile, and garlic cloves in the pan and dry-roast them on all sides until well charred and soft. The garlic and chiles will be done quickly; the tomatoes may take 10 minutes or longer to cook.

2. Peel the garlic and stem the chile. Place the tomatoes, garlic, and chile in a food processor with the onion, salt, and cilantro. Pulse until the salsa is smooth and taste for seasoning. The salsa will keep, refrigerated, for several days. Reseason before use.


March 29, 2011
It's time to play ball, shoppers

Nothing says spring like hearing the crack of the bat on the ball, signaling the end of a dreadful winter. Who doesn't love the smell of freshly mowed grass and hope for another winning season? Spring also brings more grillin' and chillin' with friends and neighbors. There's also a noticeable change in the supermarket offerings. This week is a good example.

Raley's is telling us to "Fire up the grill" and earn some "Grand slam savings." Giddyup!

First off, Raley's has tri tip for $2.97lb;  pork spareribs for $1.97lb and premium ground beef for $2.58lb. Ball Park franks are $2 a package; buns are $1.58 and Giants or A's branded peanuts are $1.50 a bag. To help with the BBQ, Kingsford charcoal is $6.99 for a 16.6 pound bag.

In produce, hot house tomatoes are $1.50lb; oranges are 47-cents a pound and broccoli is 97-cents a pound. Large cauliflower is $2 and mangoes are 77-cents each.

Quaker (rice) Quakes are $1 a bag; Clif bars are $1 each and a 3lb bag of organic apples is $2.49. A case of Arrowhead spring water is $3.99 and Minute Maid lemonade or punch is $1.50 a carton. Michelina's entrees are $1 each.

Over at Safeway, you can earn $10 off your next shopping trip by spending $75 this week. They have a 4-day sale (Friday-Monday) that features Johnsonville brats or Italian sausage for $3.49 a pack; Golden Grain pasta for 88-cents; personal-size watermelon for $2.99 and a 32oz package of cheese for $5.99.

Kellogg's cereals are $1.88 a box and frozen waffles are $1.88 (with coupon).

The soda & cracker special is kind of fun. Buy 2-12 packs of Coke and you'll get two more free, plus two boxes of Nabisco snack crackers. 2-liter jugs of 7-UP and Pepsi are 88-cents and an 8-oz bag of pistachios are $2.99.

Safeway is pushing its "Well and Good" nutritional items. This week it's Chobani Greek yogurt for $1; Mountain High yogurt in the 32oz carton for $2.50 and $5.99 for a bag of Jennie-O turkey burgers.

If you're planning for game day, lean ground beef is $3.99lb; Bar S jumbo franks are $1 a package and Oscar Mayer lunchmeats are BOGO. Safeway buns are $1.29. Deli counter potato salad is $3.99 for a large container. Dennison's Chili is BOGO.

In produce, asparagus is 97-cents a pound; fresh green beans are 99-cents a pound and zucchini or yellow neck squash is $1.49lb. Oranges are 39-cents a pound.

Langers cranberry drink is BOGO; Aquafina or Arrowhead is $3.50 a case; Safeway refreshe soda is 3/$2 and Safeway pickles are BOGO.

The Friday Only $5 special includes 8-piece chicken; Hormel pork tenderloins; a 3-lb container of strawberries and pineapple upside down pie!

Shop Cheap's favorite deal of the week can be found at Save Mart. Green onions, radishes or cilantro for 20-cents a bunch. Other favorites: boneless, skinless chicken breasts for $1.99lb; lean ground beef or $1.99lb and BOGO London Broil. In produce - after you load up on the green onions and cilantro - grab some Iceberg lettuce for 97-cents a head; a 5lb bag of Fuji or Gala apples for $3.97 and tangerines for 79-cents a pound.

Bohemian Hearth bread is $1.99 a loaf. You can earn $5 off your next shopping trip when you purchase $20 worth of Kraft products. That $20 will add up quickly because the items include Nabisco crackers for $1.99 a box; cheeses for $2.50 and Crystal Light for $2.

Barilla pasta or S&W Tomatoes are $1 each;  and Melita coffee filters are BOGO.

In the coupon section, Lunchables are 99-cents; Coffee-Mate creamer is $1.99 and Hormel Compleats meals are BOGO.

Come back on Thursday for Game Day recipes from the Shop Cheap kitchen. 


March 24, 2011
Our recipes match what's on sale

Rain or shine, Shop Cheap recipe researcher Sheila Kern is ready with ideas for you to stretch your shopping dollar with items that are on sale. This week, it's ground turkey (BOGO at Safeway); Newman's pasta sauce (Save Mart and Raley's) and Nestle chocolate chips (Safeway)...just to name a few. Enjoy!

5 Spice Turkey Noodle Bowls


Makes 6 servings


2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil

1 (20-ounce) package JENNIE-O TURKEY STORE® extra lean ground turkey breast

2 teaspoons Chinese Five Spice Powder, divided

8 ounces fresh button or shitake mushrooms, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic

1 (32-ounce) package reduced sodium and fat free chicken broth

2 tablespoons sweet chili sauce

8 ounces whole wheat Udon noodles or whole wheat spaghetti

1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh green onions


In a large saucepan, heat 1 teaspoon oil over medium-high heat. Add ground turkey and cook and break apart until lightly browned and cooked through, about 8 minutes. Stir 1 teaspoon of the Chinese Five Spice Powder into the turkey. Remove turkey from the pan and set aside. In the same saucepan, in the remaining oil, cook the mushrooms until softened and the liquid has evaporated. Add fresh garlic and remaining Chinese Five Spice Powder. Cook and stir for 1-2 minutes or until garlic is softened and the spices are fragrant. Add chicken broth, cooked turkey and sweet chili sauce to the saucepan. Cook over medium heat until warmed through, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare noodles as package directs, omitting any salt and oil. To serve, place 3/4 cup of noodles into each of 6 bowls. Ladle 1 cup of soup into each bowl and sprinkle with green onions to garnish.

Turkey Wild Rice Soup


Makes 7 servings


1 ( 20-ounce) package JENNIE-O TURKEY STORE Extra Lean Ground Turkey

1 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped carrot

6 cups water

6 teaspoons HERB-OX Chicken Flavored Bouillon Granules

1/2 cup uncooked wild rice, rinsed

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/2 cup flour

2 cups milk


In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, crumble ground turkey. Stir in onion and carrots. Cook and stir over medium-high heat three to five minutes or until turkey is lightly browned. Stir in water, bouillon, wild rice, cranberries, poultry seasoning, thyme and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Cover and simmer 45-55 minutes or until rice is tender. Place flour in a small bowl. Gradually add milk, blending until smooth. Stir flour mixture into soup. Cook and stir over medium heat until soup bubbles and thickens slightly.

Caramelized Onion and Apple Pizza


Servings: 4


One refrigerated uncooked pizza crust

1 cup Newman's Own Sockarooni Pasta Sauce

10 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, shredded or sliced

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 green apple, cored and cut into thin slices

1 onion, thinly sliced

2 Italian sausages, casings removed


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Unroll the pizza crust over a greased round pizza pan. Press to fit.

Blend 1 cup Sockarooni sauce in blender for 10 seconds. Pour sauce over the pizza crust, spreading evenly. Leave a 1 inch border around all edges. Sprinkle cheese over the pasta sauce.

Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook apple and onion, stirring constantly, for 12-15 minutes or until caramelized. Set aside. Cook sausages in same pan, breaking up into small crumbles. Cook until browned, about 5 minutes.

Scatter cooked apple, onion, and sausage over cheese. Place pizza in oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, until crust is lightly browned. Let cool for 10 minutes before cutting and serving.

Cheesy Baked Ziti


Servings: 8


1 box ziti or rigatoni pasta

1 carton whole milk ricotta cheese

1 pound shredded part skim mozzarella cheese

1 cup grated Parmesan/Romano cheese mixture plus extra for topping

1 egg

1 tsp each dried basil

1 tsp dried oregano

dash dried thyme

fresh ground pepper and salt to taste

3-4 cups Newman's Own Marinara Sauce, plus extra for passing


Boil pasta until just barely al dente. Drain and rinse. In a large bowl, mix cheeses, egg and herbs. Stir in pasta and enough sauce to bind it all together (about 2 cups or more according to your taste).

In a 13 x 9 baking dish, spoon 1/2 cup pasta sauce in bottom and spread to coat bottom of pan. Scoop pasta and cheese mixture into prepared pan, top with another 1/2 cup sauce and parmesan cheese.

Cover and bake at 350 for 20 minutes till heated through, remove cover and heat another 10 minutes or until bubbly around edges. Remove and let sit 10 minutes.

Serve with additional sauce, salad and garlic breadsticks.

Zucchini Salad with Shaved Parmesan


Makes 6 servings


1 medium lemon

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 pounds small zucchini, cut into lengthwise slices about 1/2 inch thick

1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted (see Tips)

1/3 cup thinly shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese (see Tips)


Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Remove the peel from lemon with a vegetable peeler, making sure not to include any white pith. (Reserve the lemon.) Cut the peel into thin slivers. Add to the boiling water and cook until soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool.

Squeeze the juice from the lemon into a small bowl. Add oil, pepper and salt and whisk to combine. Set aside.

Preheat grill to medium-high or place a grill pan over medium-high heat until hot.

Oil the grill rack (see Tips) or the grill pan. Grill zucchini slices, turning once, until tender, 6 to 8 minutes.

Arrange the zucchini on a platter and drizzle with the reserved lemon dressing. Serve sprinkled with almonds, cheese and the lemon peel.

Tips & Notes

Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 4, cover and refrigerate the zucchini, lemon peel and dressing for up to 1 day. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Tips: To toast sliced or chopped nuts, place in a small dry skillet and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant and lightly browned, 2 to 4 minutes.

Use a vegetable peeler to shave thin curls or slivers off a block of hard cheese like Parmigiano-Reggiano.

To oil a grill rack, oil a folded paper towel, hold it with tongs and rub it over the rack. (Do not use cooking spray on a hot grill.)

Orzo with Zucchini, Tomatoes, and Goat Cheese


Cooking Light, March 2003

Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 1 1/3 cups)


1 (16-ounce) package orzo (rice-shaped pasta)

1 tablespoon olive oil, divided

2 medium zucchini, quartered lengthwise and thinly sliced

1 garlic clove, minced

1/4 cup minced fresh parsley

1 teaspoon minced fresh or 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes with garlic and oregano

1 (7-ounce) jar roasted red bell peppers, drained and diced

1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled goat cheese


Cook the pasta in a Dutch oven according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain, and toss with 2 teaspoons olive oil.

Heat 1 teaspoon oil in pan over medium heat. Add zucchini; cook 7 minutes, stirring frequently. Add garlic; cook 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in parsley and next 5 ingredients (parsley through bell peppers). Cook 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Remove from heat; stir in pasta and cheeses.

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread



2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup mashed ripe banana (2 to 3 medium)

1/2 cup shortening

2 eggs

1 cup HERSHEY'S Mini Chips Semi-Sweet Chocolate

1/2 cup chopped walnuts


1 Heat oven to 350°F. Grease bottom only of 9x5-inch loaf pan.

2 Combine all ingredients except small chocolate chips and walnuts in large bowl; blend well on medium speed of mixer. Stir in small chocolate chips and walnuts. Pour batter into prepared pan.

3 Bake 60 to 65 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pan. Cool completely on wire rack. 1 loaf (18 servings)

VARIATION: HERSHEY'S Milk Chocolate Chips. HERSHEY'S SPECIAL DARK Chocolate Chips or HERSHEY'S Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips may be substituted for small chocolate chips.

Bananas Foster II


Servings: 4


1/4 cup butter

2/3 cup dark brown sugar

3 1/2 tablespoons rum

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3 bananas, peeled and sliced lengthwise and crosswise

1/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts

1 pint vanilla ice cream


In a large, deep skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in sugar, rum, vanilla and cinnamon. When mixture begins to bubble, place bananas and walnuts in pan. Cook until bananas are hot, 1 to 2 minutes. Serve at once over vanilla ice cream.

Blackberry Crumb Bars


Makes 16 bars


6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, and 1/2 cup (1 stick), room temperature, plus more for pan

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for pan

1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup confectioners' sugar

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 large eggs

2 containers (5 ounces each) blackberries


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8-inch square baking pan. Line bottom with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on two sides; butter and flour paper, tapping out excess.

Make topping: In a medium bowl, whisk together melted butter, brown sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; add 1 cup flour, and mix with a fork until large moist crumbs form. Refrigerate topping until ready to use.

In a medium bowl, whisk together remaining 3/4 cup flour, baking powder, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt; set aside. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat room-temperature butter, confectioners' sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy; add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Reduce speed to low; mix in flour mixture. Spread batter evenly in pan; sprinkle with blackberries, then chilled topping.

Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs attached, 40 to 45 minutes. Cool completely in pan. Using paper overhang, lift cake onto a work surface; cut into 16 squares.

Blackberry Sauce for Chicken or Pork Medallions


Makes about 1 cup

Serve this flavorful blackberry sauce with grilled or broiled chicken or sauteed pork medallions.


1 1/2 cups blackberries

1 tablespoon butter

1/2 cup minced onion

1/2 cup Cabernet or other dry red wine

1 tablespoon lemon juice

3 to 4 tablespoons blackberry jam or preserves, seedless

1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon salt

whole blackberries for garnish, optional


Put blackberries in food processor or blender and puree. Put the berries through a fine mesh strainer into a small bowl. Set aside.

Heat butter in a small sauté pan or saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onions and sauté, stirring occasionally, until tender and light yellow in color, about 10 minutes. Add the red wine and lemon juice. Bring to a boil; lower heat and simmer until reduced by about 1/2. Combine the blackberry pulp, jam or preserves, pepper, and salt; add to the wine mixture. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

Cantaloupe Chicken-Orzo Salad


Servings: 4


1/2 cup uncooked orzo pasta

1 snack-size cup (4 ounces) pineapple tidbits

1/2 cup fat-free mayonnaise

1/3 cup fat-free plain yogurt

4 teaspoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon minced fresh mint

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

1 teaspoon honey

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

2 cups cubed cooked chicken breast

1/2 cup chopped celery

1/3 cup chopped sweet red pepper

1/4 cup chopped green onions

1 small cantaloupe, quartered and seeded

1/4 cup unsalted cashews


Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, drain pineapple, reserving juice; set pineapple aside. In a small bowl, whisk the mayonnaise, yogurt, lemon juice, mint, lemon peel, honey, salt, pepper and pineapple juice until smooth.

Drain pasta and rinse in cold water. Place in a large bowl; add the chicken, celery, red pepper, onions and pineapple. Add mayonnaise mixture and toss to coat. Serve on cantaloupe wedges. Sprinkle with cashews.

Cantaloupe Salad with Lime, Mint, and Ginger


Bon Appétit | July 2006

Makes 4 to 6 servings


1 cantaloupe, halved, seeded, peeled

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

2 teaspoons grated lime peel

2 tablespoons sugar

2 1/2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger

2 teaspoons honey


Cut cantaloupe into 3/4- to 1-inch cubes (about 5 cups) and place in large bowl. Add lime juice, mint, and lime peel; toss to blend. Mix in sugar, ginger, and honey. Refrigerate salad until ready to serve, stirring occasionally, up to 3 hours.

Upside-Down Cinnamon-Apple Coffee Cake


Makes 8 servings


1 1/2 cups chopped peeled apples

1 (12.4-oz.) can Pillsbury Refrigerated Cinnamon Rolls with Icing

1/2 cup pecan halves or pieces

2 tablespoons margarine or butter, melted

1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar

2 tablespoons corn syrup


Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 9-inch glass pie pan with nonstick cooking spray. Spread 1 cup of the apples in sprayed pan.

Separate dough into 8 rolls. Cut each roll into quarters; place in large bowl. Add remaining 1/2 cup apples and pecans.

In small bowl, combine margarine, brown sugar and corn syrup; mix well. Add brown sugar mixture to dough mixture; toss gently to combine. Spoon mixture over apples in pan.

Bake at 350°F. for 28 to 38 minutes or until deep golden brown. Cool 5 minutes. Invert onto serving platter.

Remove lid from icing. Microwave icing on HIGH for 10 to 15 seconds or until of drizzling consistency. Drizzle over warm coffee cake. Serve warm.

Ultimate Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies


Yields: 48 cookies


4 cups (two 12-oz. pkgs.) NESTLE TOLL HOUSE Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels, divided

2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened

1 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 large eggs


Preheat oven to 375° F.

Melt 2 cups morsels in small, heavy-duty saucepan over low heat; stir until smooth. Remove from heat.

Combine flour, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. Beat butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in melted chocolate. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in remaining 2 cups morsels. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.

Bake for 8 to 9 minutes or until cookies are puffed. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.


March 23, 2011
Save Mart has a deal on blackberries

My Save Mart ad arrived special delivery today. And it was worth the wait for the deal on blackberries alone. Buy one container, get 2 free! You can use the berries to top the Dannon Light&Fit yogurt at 10/$5. And for the calorie conscious, Smart Ones frozen meals and desserts are $1.88 each.

The 3-day weekend sale includes Fuji apples for 37-cents a pound; Progresso soups for 99-cents a can and Kellogg's cereal for $1.49 a box.

Petite sirloin steaks are $2.99 a pound and Master Cut premium country style pork ribs are $1.67lb.

In produce, baby lemons are 10/$1; oranges are 69-cents a pound and pears are 97-cents a pound.

Newman's pasta sauce is $2 a jar; Ronzoni pasta is $1 a box. Thomas' English muffins and Oroweat Italian bread are both $2. La Tortilla Factory flour tortillas are $1.69 a package.

Sunny Select products are on sale. Ketchup is 99-cents; peanut butter is $1.99 and preserves, marmalade or jam is $1.99.

Minute Maid OJ is $2.50 and Eggo waffles are $2 a box. In the bakery, fresh baguettes are 99-cents.

In coupon country, Hillshire Farm smoked sausage is $1.99; a dozen extra-large eggs are $1.79 and Jennie-O turkey bacon is $1.69.

Come back Thursday for recipes from the Shop Cheap kitchen.

March 22, 2011
So much shopping, so little time

Shop Cheap's got to make it quick today because she's busy as a, well, a bee, a Sacramento Bee. So much to do, so little time. The mayor's press conference on Sacramento's 3rd Grade Reading initiative in the morning; an arts funding symposium panel in the afternoon. And on top of all that, Shop Cheap only has Raley's and Safeway ads to work from. Will catch up with Save Mart later on Wednesay.

Here's what we like this week:

Safeway has a 4-day sale, Friday-Monday, that features BOGO Jennie-O ground turkey; a 5bl box of Clementines for $4.99; Starbucks coffee for $6.99 and Doritos chips 3/$5. They are also featuring breakfast foods this week. An 18-pack of large eggs is $2.50; Hormel Black Label sliced ham is $3.99 and Thomas' English muffins are $2 a pack. Minute Maid OJ is $2.50 and a big tin of Yuban or Maxwell House coffee is $7.99.

Pork chops are $1.99lb; Foster Farms whole chickens are 99-cents a pound and Rancher's Reserve pot roast is $1.99lb. New York style Italian sausages are $3.49 a pack; and the Signature Cafe lasagne family meal is $6.99.

In produce, broccoli crowns are 49-cents a pound; yellow onions are 99-cents a pound and red or large russet potatoes are 99-cents a pound. Kiwi fruit is 3/$1; Ruby Red grapefruit is 2/$1; Gala apples are 49-cents a pound and cantaloupe is 29-cents a pound.

A case of Nestle drinking water is $3.50; 12-packs of Pepsi or 7-UP are buy 2, get 3 free; and a 6-pack of Pepsi in 16.9oz bottles is 4/$10.

Lean Cuisine frozen meals are $1.88; and Lucerne shredded or chunk cheese is 2/$4.

There's a 10 items for $10 promotion that includes: Clif Bars, S&W beans; Filone breads in the bakery; Rosarita refries and toothpaste. Now, that's variety.

If you're clipping, Kingsford charcoal is $3.99; Lucerne butter is $2.99 and All detergent or Snuggle softener is $3.49.

If you are going to do some baking this weekend, Nestle baking morsels are $2.49 a bag; Safeway cooking oil is $2.49 and Pillsbury cake or brownie mix is 79-cents.

The $5 Friday only specials include Signature Cafe whole roasted chicken; a 3-lb container of strawberries adn the Artisan Bistro cake - white with strawberry filling.

Over at Raley's, fresh blackberries are BOGO; a 3lb. bag of clementines are $2.97 and Fuji apples are 97-cents a pound. Bananas are 68-cents a pound; zucchini squash is $1.47lb. Special K cereal is $1.99 a box when you buy 4. A case of Crystal Geyser is $3.29 and a 12-pack of Coke is $2.99 when you buy 2 or more. R Everyday apple juice is $1.99 and a gallon of Minute Maid OJ is $5.98.

Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are $1.97lb; Jennie-O ground turkey or Italian sausage links are $3.99.

Sunnyside Farms butter is $2.98lb; French bread in the bakery is $1.88 a loaf and Newman's Own pasta sauce is 2/$5. Tostitos scoops are $1.99; Rojo's salsa is 2/$5.

Skinny Cow ice cream treats are $3.99 a box.

Colgate toothpaste is 99-cents and Era 2X laundry detergent is $2.99.

Come back on Thursday for something special from the Shop Cheap recipe file.

March 17, 2011
Recipes for St. Pat's Day and beyond

Today, recipe researcher Sheila O'Kern offers a couple of last-minute ideas for what to do with left-over corned beef - or what to make if you were out celebrating and still want a St. Patrick's Day meal over the weekend. Also, if you missed our Shop Cheap recipes just for St. Patrick's day, check out last week's column at

Once you are done being green, we have a couple chicken and beef recipes for you, too. Enjoy!

Corned Beef Hash


From EatingWell: March 1998

Makes 4 servings


2 teaspoons canola oil

1 large onion, chopped

4 cups diced cooked potatoes, or frozen hash-brown potatoes

1 cup chopped lean corned beef brisket, (4 ounces, see Tip)

1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste

4 large eggs


In a large cast-iron skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until it starts to brown, 5 to 8 minutes. Add potatoes and cook, stirring, until they brown in spots and become crusty, about 8 minutes more. Stir in corned beef and broth and cook, scraping up any browned bits, until liquid is absorbed, 5 to 8 minutes. Add parsley and season with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, fill a large skillet with 2 inches salted water and bring to a gentle simmer. Break eggs, one at a time, onto a saucer and slide into the simmering water. Poach eggs until set to desired firmness, 4 to 5 minutes.

Divide hash among 4 plates. Place eggs on top of hash.

Corned Beef Sandwich Melt





corned beef


finely minced onion

sliced Swiss cheese


Place slices of roast beef on buttered bread slices. Spread with mustard and sprinkle minced onions over the spread. Top with sliced Swiss cheese then broil until cheese is melted.

Corned Beef Biscuit Sandwiches


Makes 2 sandwiches


2 Pillsbury Grands! frozen Southern Style Biscuits (from 25-oz bag)

2 oz thinly sliced cooked corned beef, coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons finely shredded Swiss cheese

2 teaspoons Thousand Island dressing

1 teaspoon butter or margarine, melted

1/8 teaspoon caraway seed


Heat oven to 375°F. Place biscuits on microwavable plate. Microwave uncovered on Medium (50%) 45 to 50 seconds, turning over halfway through microwave time. (Biscuits should still be cold for easier handling.)

On lightly floured surface, roll or press each biscuit into 5-inch round. Place half of corned beef on half of 1 biscuit round, 1/2 inch from edge. Top with 1 tablespoon cheese and 1 teaspoon dressing. Repeat with remaining biscuit round. Carefully fold to enclose filling. Press edges to seal.

Brush tops of biscuits with butter; sprinkle with caraway seed. Bake 14 to 16 minutes or until golden brown.

Pillsbury Oven Baked biscuits are individually frozen and packaged in a freezer bag. Just take out the number you need; tuck the rest back into the freezer to bake another day.

Sauteed Chicken Breasts with Creamy Chive Sauce


EatingWell: December 2005/January 2006

Makes 4 servings


4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, (about 1 pound), trimmed of fat

1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, divided

3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

2 large shallots, finely chopped

1/2 cup dry white wine

1 14-ounce can reduced-sodium chicken broth

1/3 cup reduced-fat sour cream

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1/2 cup chopped chives, (about 1 bunch)


Place chicken between sheets of plastic wrap and pound with a meat mallet or heavy skillet until flattened to an even thickness, about 1/2 inch. Season both sides of the chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Place 1/4 cup flour in a shallow glass baking dish and dredge the chicken in it. Discard the excess flour.

Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate, cover and keep warm.

Heat the remaining 1 teaspoon oil in the pan over medium-high heat. Add shallots and cook, stirring constantly and scraping up any browned bits, until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 tablespoon flour; stir to coat. Add wine, broth and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt; bring to a boil, stirring often.

Return the chicken and any accumulated juices to the pan, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until heated through and no longer pink in the center, about 6 minutes. Stir in sour cream and mustard until smooth; turn the chicken to coat with the sauce. Stir in chives and serve immediately.

Oven Fried Chicken


Recipe courtesy Paula Deen

Show: Paula's Best Dishes Episode: Dine with the Deens

Yield: 4 servings


2 cups Panko bread crumbs

1 cup grated Parmesan

4 tablespoons olive oil, divided

2 tablespoons freshly minced thyme leaves

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons water

2 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/4 -inch thickness


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Place a cooling rack over pan and spray rack with nonstick cooking spray.

Herbed pot roast with vegetables


Makes 6 servings


4 lb. beef arm, blade or cross rib pot roast or boneless chuck eye or shoulder roast

1 1/2 tsp. snipped fresh or 1/2 tsp. dried marjoram

1 tsp. snipped fresh or 1/4 tsp. dried basil

1 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. pepper

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1/4 c. apple cider

1/4 c. water

5 med. carrots, cut into 2 inch pieces

4 med. turnips, cut into fourths or red potatoes

1 med. onion, cut into fourths

1 c. 1 inch pieces celery

1 green bell pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces

2 tbsp. snipped fresh parsley


Trim excess fat from beef roast. Rub Dutch oven with fat. Cook beef over medium heat about 10 minutes or until brown. Sprinkle with marjoram, basil, salt, pepper and garlic; add cider and water. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer 1 1/2 hours. Add vegetables, parsley and, if necessary, 1/4 cup water. Cover and simmer about 45 minutes or until vegetables and beef are tender.

NOTE: Meat improves in flavor and texture if it's prepared a day in advance, refrigerate overnight, reheated and sliced.

Dijon Herb Cross Rib Roast


Makes 8 to 10 servings


1 (6-lb.) USDA Choice Beef cross rib roast

1/2 cup Dijon mustard

2 tbsp. butter, softened

1 tbsp. coarse black pepper

1/2 tbsp. each: basil, rosemary, sage and thyme


Preheat oven to 350ºF. Place roast, fat side up, in

a large shallow baking pan. Stir together the

remaining ingredients and spread over the top

and sides of roast. Insert an oven-proof meat

thermometer so the tip is in the center of the roast.

Cook for 2 to 3 hours or until meat thermometer

reaches 135°F for medium-rare or 150°F for

medium. Remove from oven and let stand for 10

minutes before carving.

Fresh Green Beans, One Way



1 lb green beans

1 cup chopped onion

2 cloves garlic

1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper

2 tablespoons bacon grease (can substitute 1 T butter and 1 T olive oil)

1 cup chicken broth

1/2 to 1 teaspoon kosher salt (can substitute regular table salt; use 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon)

Ground black pepper


Snap the stem ends of green beans, or cut them off in a big bunch with a knife if you'd like. Just don't tell Granny. Melt bacon grease in a skillet over medium low heat. Add garlic and onions and cook for a minute. Then add green beans and cook for a minute until beans turn bright green. Add the chicken broth, chopped red pepper, salt, and black pepper. Turn heat to low and cover with a lid, leaving lid cracked to allow steam to escape. Cook for 20 to 30 minutes or until liquid evaporates and beans are fairly soft, yet still a bit crisp. You can add more chicken broth during the cooking process, but don't be afraid to let it all cook away so the onions and peppers can caramelize.

Roasted Green Beans with Fresh Garlic


Bon Appétit | February 2006

Makes 6 servings


1 pound green beans, trimmed

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 garlic cloves, minced


Preheat oven to 450°F. Toss green beans with olive oil on large rimmed baking sheet. Roast until browned and almost tender, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle beans with garlic, salt, and pepper; toss to combine. Continue roasting until beans are tender, about 2 minutes longer. Transfer to bowl.

Citrus Pound Cake with Blood Orange Sauce


Cooking Light, November 2006

Yield: 16 servings (serving size: 1 cake slice and 1 tablespoon sauce)



Cooking spray

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (about 10 ounces)

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 3/4 cups sugar, divided

10 tablespoon butter, softened

1/2 cup (4 ounces) Neufchâtel cheese, softened

1 teaspoon grated lemon rind

1 teaspoon grated orange rind

3 large eggs

1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk

1/4 cup fresh orange juice

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

3 large egg whites


2 cups fresh blood orange juice (about 12 oranges)

2/3 cup sugar


Preheat oven to 325°.

To prepare cake, coat a 10-inch tube pan with cooking spray; dust with 1 tablespoon flour. Set aside. Lightly spoon 2 1/4 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt; stir well with a whisk.

Combine 1 1/2 cups sugar, butter, and cheese in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 7 minutes). Add rinds; beat well. Add 3 large eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine buttermilk, 1/4 cup orange juice, and lemon juice. Add flour mixture and buttermilk mixture alternately to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture.

Place egg whites in a medium bowl. Beat with a mixer at high speed until soft peaks form, using clean, dry beaters. Add remaining 1/4 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until stiff peaks form. Gently fold one-third of egg white mixture into batter, and fold in remaining egg white mixture. Spoon batter into prepared pan.

Bake at 325° for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove cake from pan; cool completely on a wire rack.

To prepare sauce, combine the blood orange juice and 2/3 cup sugar in a large, heavy saucepan; bring to a boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat, and simmer until reduced to 1 cup (about 30 minutes). Serve sauce with cake.

Blood Orange Vinaigrette


Makes 4 servings


2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

1/4 cup blood orange juice

2/3 cup olive oil

1/2 clove garlic, crushed and finely chopped

1 tablespoon finely chopped shallots

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh parsley

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh chives


Place all ingredients in a jar and shake until the dressing is well blended. Alternately, you can vigorously whisk the ingredients in a small bowl until they are completed incorporated together.

Strawberry Sherbet


EatingWell: May/June 2009

Makes 8 servings, 1/2 cup each


2 cups chopped fresh or frozen (not thawed) strawberries , (about 10 ounces), divided

1/2 cup sugar

2 1/2 cups nonfat or low-fat buttermilk

1/2 cup half-and-half

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Pinch of salt


Combine 1 cup berries and sugar in a small bowl and let sit, stirring occasionally until the sugar has begun to dissolve, about 10 minutes. Transfer the berry mixture to a food processor or blender and process until smooth.

Meanwhile, combine buttermilk, half-and-half, lemon juice, vanilla and salt in a medium bowl. Press the strawberry mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into the bowl. Stir, cover and chill for at least 2 hours or up to 1 day.

Whisk the sherbet mixture and pour into the canister of an ice cream maker. Freeze according to manufacturer's directions. During the last 5 minutes of freezing, add the remaining 1 cup chopped berries. If necessary, place the sherbet in the freezer to firm up before serving. (If the sherbet becomes very hard in the freezer, soften it in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes before scooping.)

Tips & Notes

Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 2 up to 1 day ahead. Freeze sherbet in an airtight container for up to 4 days. | Equipment: Ice cream maker

Strawberry Watercress Salad

From (California Strawberry Commission)

Makes 8 servings


1/2 cup each grapefruit juice and orange juice

1/4 cup fresh lime juice

1/4 cup honey

Dash salt

2 pint baskets fresh California strawberries, stemmed

2 avocados, pitted, peeled and cut into wedges

1 cup stemmed seedless grapes

2 bunches watercress, trimmed


In large bowl mix citrus juice, honey and salt to blend. Add strawberries, avocados and grapes; toss. Cover and marinate in refrigerator 1 hour. To serve, arrange watercress and fruits on eight salad plates. Serve with Brie or blue cheese, and crackers.


March 15, 2011
Save some green on St. Patrick's Day

Nothing like a little last-minute shopping to get you in the spirt for St. Patrick's Day. Decent prices help lift the spirt, too. So for all of you who waited until today - or even tomorrow - to get your corned beef, have not fear. There's plenty of brisket, cabbage, potatoes and carrots to go 'round.

Safeway's 2-day sale (Wednesday and Thursday) has corned beef for $1.79lb. If you want a better cut, it's going to cost you $2.69lb. Cabbage is 39-cents a pound and don't forget the Irish soda bread in the bakery for $3.29. Don't forget the rye bread for leftovers. Oroweat is $2.99 a loaf. Once you've shopped the 2-day sale, there's a 4-day sale - Friday to Monday. That includes Kraft Mac&Cheese for 75-cents; Bumble Bee tuna for 50 cents and Oreos or Honey Maid graham crackers for $1.99. 12-packs of Coke are buy 2, get 2 free. That's $12.58 for 48 cans or 26-cents a can. Nathan's beef sausage is BOGO and a Signature Cafe Family pizza is $5.99. If you like pistachios, an 8-oz. bag is $2.99.

Other stuff we like at Safeway: Boneless, skinless chicken breasts for $1.99lb; Rancher's Reserve trimmed tri-tip for $3.99lb and BOGO Farmer John sliced bacon. Green seedless grapes are 79-cents a pound; tomatoes on the vine are $1.49lb; and green onions are 50-cents a bunch. Post cereals are $1.99 a box.

In the coupon category, Dole juice blends are $1.99; Welch's grape juice is $2.49; Skippy peanut butter or Welch's Grape Squeeze are $1.49 and Kellogg's mini-wheats are $1.99.

The Friday only $5 specials are: 8-piece chicken or 5-piece fish in the deli; waterfront BISTRO large cooked shrimp and Lemon Bistro Cake.

Raley's has a 2-day St. Pat's sale as well. Their cut of corned beef - rounds or brisket flats - is $2.77lb; baby potatoes are $2.50 a bag. Irish Soda Bread was advertised last week so check your bakery.

Good prices on Raley's produce. Berries are BOGO; green beans are $1.47lb; limes are 4/$1 and blood oranges are 97-cents a pound. Pistachios are a penny more - $3 a bag. If you're clippin', Aquafina water is $2.99 a case; 12-packs of 7-UP are $2.99 and 2-liter Pepsi or Dr. Pepper is 89-cents.

Thomas' English muffins are $2 a pack; a 32-oz. container of Mountain High yoghurt is $2.50; Eggo waffles or French toast are $2 a box; and Skippy peanut butter is $1.49 at Raley's, too.

Michelina's frozen entrees are 89-cents each and Ore-Ida potatoes are $3 a bag.

If you want a Shenson's corned beef, head to Save Mart. The brisket cut with a spice packet is $2.17lb. A 5-lb. bag of potatoes is $2.49 and fresh green beans are $1.97lb.

Save Mart is advertising a 3-day sale (Friday-Sunday), which includes Rotisserie chicken for $5.99; green onions, radishes or cilantro - 4/$1 and fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies 2/$5.

Boneless cross rib roast is $1.99lb; pork butt roast is $1.69lb. and Foster Farms fresh chicken breasts are BOGO.

Strawberries are BOGO; blueberries and blackberries are $2.99 a basket.

S&W beans are 79-cents a can; Hunts diced tomatoes are $1 a can and Sunny Select pasta sauce is $1.49 a jar. Sunny Select pasta is 89-cents a package. Sun Chips an Lay's chips are $2.50 a bag; Sunnyside Farms bread is $1.50 a loaf. The back-page coupons include $1 off a loaf of La Brea bread in the bakery; Minute Maid punch for 88-cents and Aidells smoked chicken sausage links for $3.99.

Come back Thursday to see what's cooking in the Shop Cheap Kitchen.  

March 8, 2011
Recipe researcher to the rescue

Shop Cheap is coming to you with a heavy heart this week, having lost two people who meant the world to her. Thankfully, recipe researcher Sheila Kern was able to come to the rescue, providing everyone with ideas for the upcoming St. Patrick's Day celebration. Thanks, Sheila and thanks to everyone else for understanding.

Irish Soda Bread I


Yield: 2 loaves


4 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup white sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 eggs

1 pint sour cream

1 cup raisins


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease two 8x4 inch loaf pans.

Mix the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add the eggs, sour cream and raisins and mix until just combined. Distribute batter evenly between the two pans.

Bake loaves at 325 degrees F (165 degrees C) for 1 hour.

Whole-Wheat Irish Soda Bread


From EatingWell: April/May 2005

Yield: 2-pound loaf (12 slices)


2 cups whole-wheat flour

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

2 1/4 cups buttermilk


Preheat oven to 450°F. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray and sprinkle with a little flour.

Whisk whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.

Make a well in the center and pour in buttermilk. Using one hand, stir in full circles (starting in the center of the bowl working toward the outside of the bowl) until all the flour is incorporated. The dough should be soft but not too wet and sticky. When it all comes together, in a matter of seconds, turn it out onto a well-floured surface. Clean dough off your hand.

Pat and roll the dough gently with floury hands, just enough to tidy it up and give it a round shape. Flip over and flatten slightly to about 2 inches. Transfer the loaf to the prepared baking sheet. Mark with a deep cross using a serrated knife and prick each of the four quadrants.

Bake the bread for 20 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 400° and continue to bake until the loaf is brown on top and sounds hollow when tapped, 30 to 35 minutes more. Transfer the loaf to a wire rack and let cool for about 30 minutes.

Mini Walnut Soda Breads


Bon Appetit | October 1999

Yield: makes 6 breads


2 cups whole wheat flour

1 cup unbleached all purpose flour

1/4 cup (packed) dark brown sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1 cup walnuts, toasted, chopped

1 cup chilled buttermilk

1 large egg

2 tablespoons mild-flavored (light) molasses


Preheat oven to 375°F. Lightly flour large baking sheet. Whisk first 5 ingredients in large bowl to blend well. Add butter and rub in with fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal. Mix in toasted, chopped walnuts. Whisk buttermilk, egg and molasses in small bowl to blend. Gradually add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture, stirring until medium-firm dough forms. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface. Knead until dough comes together, about 6 turns. Flatten dough into disk. Cut into 6 wedges. Shape each wedge into ball. Place on prepared sheet, spacing evenly apart. Flatten each to 3-inch round. Using sharp knife, cut shallow X in top of each round.

Bake breads until golden and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Transfer to rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup


Cooking Light, March 2007

Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 1 1/3 cups)


2 tablespoons butter, divided

2 1/2 cups diced peeled baking potato (about 14 ounces)

1 cup diced onion (about 4 ounces)

1/2 teaspoon salt, divided

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided

3 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

2 cups water

3 tablespoons water

8 cups thinly sliced savoy cabbage (about 1 pound)

1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves


Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add potato, onion, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cover and cook 6 minutes. Add broth and 2 cups water; bring to a boil. Cook 10 minutes or until potato is tender.

Combine 3 tablespoons water and remaining 1 tablespoon butter in a large Dutch oven; bring to a simmer. Add cabbage and thyme. Cover and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Place half of potato mixture in blender. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth. Pour into a large bowl. Repeat procedure with remaining potato mixture. Add potato mixture to cabbage mixture; cook over medium-low heat until thoroughly heated.



Serves 4

1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes

1 savoy cabbage, trimmed, pale-green leaves finely shredded (4 cups)

1 leek, pale-green and white parts only, cut into 1/2-inch dice

1 cup milk

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

Coarse salt


Preheat broiler. Peel and quarter potatoes, and place in a medium saucepan; add enough cold water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until tender when pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes. Drain potatoes and return to saucepan. Mash with a potato masher or pass through a ricer; cover pan to keep warm.

Meanwhile, in another saucepan, combine cabbage, leek, milk, 2 tablespoons butter, and nutmeg; season with salt. Cover, and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until cabbage and leek is soft but not browned, about 15 minutes. Stir into potatoes.

Spread mixture in an 8-inch square baking dish. Make a small well in the center, and place under the broiler until lightly browned on top, about 5 minutes.

Remove from broiler. Place remaining 2 tablespoons butter in well. Serve immediately, spooning melted butter from well onto each serving, if desired.

Corned Beef Hash


From EatingWell: March 1998

Makes 4 servings


2 teaspoons canola oil

1 large onion, chopped

4 cups diced cooked potatoes, or frozen hash-brown potatoes

1 cup chopped lean corned beef brisket, (4 ounces, see Tip)

1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste

4 large eggs


In a large cast-iron skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until it starts to brown, 5 to 8 minutes. Add potatoes and cook, stirring, until they brown in spots and become crusty, about 8 minutes more. Stir in corned beef and broth and cook, scraping up any browned bits, until liquid is absorbed, 5 to 8 minutes. Add parsley and season with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, fill a large skillet with 2 inches salted water and bring to a gentle simmer. Break eggs, one at a time, onto a saucer and slide into the simmering water. Poach eggs until set to desired firmness, 4 to 5 minutes.

Divide hash among 4 plates. Place eggs on top of hash.

Lamb Stew with Spring Vegetables


Serves 6


1/4 cup all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

2 pounds lamb stew meat, cut into 2-inch chunks

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 cup white wine

2 sprigs rosemary

2 sprigs oregano

2 cups baby carrots, halved

2 cups small new red potatoes, halved

1 cup fresh English peas or frozen green peas, thawed

1/4 cup chopped green onions


Combine flour, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add lamb and toss to coat well. Heat oil in a large heavy pot over medium high heat. Working in batches if needed, add lamb and brown on all sides. Add 11/2 cups water, wine, rosemary and oregano. Stir to combine and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 1 hour.

Stir in carrots and potatoes. Cover and continue to simmer for another hour. Stir in the peas. Simmer another 5 to 10 minutes or until peas are just cooked through. Remove and discard stems from rosemary and oregano.

Ladle stew into bowls and garnish with green onions. Serve immediately.

Corned Beef and Cabbage


Makes 6 servings


1 medium onion, cut into wedges

4 medium potatoes, peeled and quartered

1 pound baby carrots

3 cups water

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 bay leaf

2 tablespoons sugar

2 tablespoons cider vinegar

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 (3 pound) corned beef brisket with spice packet, cut in half

1 small head cabbage, cut into wedges


Place the onion, potatoes and carrots in a 5-qt. slow cooker. Combine water, garlic, bay leaf, sugar, vinegar, pepper and contents of spice packet; pour over vegetables. Top with brisket and cabbage. Cover and cook on low for 8-9 hours or until meat and vegetables are tender. Remove bay leaf before serving.

Irish Potato Candy


Yield 5 dozen


1/4 cup butter, softened

1/2 (8 ounce) package cream cheese

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 cups confectioners' sugar

2 1/2 cups flaked coconut

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon


In a medium bowl, beat the butter and cream cheese together until smooth. Add the vanilla and confectioners' sugar; beat until smooth. Using your hands if necessary, mix in the coconut. Roll into balls or potato shapes, and roll in the cinnamon. Place onto a cookie sheet and chill to set. If desired, roll potatoes in cinnamon again for darker color.

St. Patrick's Day Cupcakes


Makes 1 1/2 dozen


1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour

2/3 cup sugar

1 package (3.4 ounces) instant pistachio pudding mix

2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 eggs

1-1/2 cups milk

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips

1 cup cream cheese frosting

Green sprinkles and/or chocolate jimmies


In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, pudding mix, baking powder and salt. In another bowl, combine the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Stir into dry ingredients until combined. Fold in chocolate chips.

Fill foil or paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake at 375° for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely. Frost and decorate as desired.

March 3, 2011
Recipes reflect what's on sale

The queen of recipe research, Sheila Kern, has come up with a bounty of tasty dishes that go easy on the budget - but make the family and guests feel like royalty. There's everything from peach gelato to Crock Pot BBQ Tri Tip. Enjoy

Avocado and Grapefruit Salad with Yogurt Dressing


Makes 4 Avocado and Grapefruit Salads


1/2 cup plain yogurt

1 tsp lemon juice

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp water

salt to taste

pinch of cayenne

1 bunch arugula, washed and stemmed

2 pink grapefruit, peeled and sectioned

2 ripe avocado, pitted, peeled, and sliced

1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

wedge of Parmesan cheese

fresh ground black pepper to taste

blackberries (optional)


In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt, lemon juice, olive oil, water, salt, and cayenne. Set aside until needed.

Divide the arugula on to 4 chilled plates. Top each plate with the grapefruit and avocado. Using a potato peeler, peel thin slices of cheese off the wedge of Parmesan (about 4-5 thin slices per salad. Drizzle over the yogurt dressing, and sprinkle over the pine nuts. Finish each salad with a light grind of fresh ground black pepper, and top with a fresh blackberry if desired. Serve immediately.

Fresh Peach Salsa


Southern Living, August 2006

Yield: Makes about 4 cups



1 large sweet onion, chopped

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced

1/4 cup sugar

2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger

2 tablespoons olive oil

6 large firm peaches, peeled and chopped

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro


Saute first 4 ingredients in hot oil in a large skillet over medium heat 5 minutes or until onion is tender. Stir in peaches and remaining ingredients, and cook, stirring gently, 5 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 2 days.

Peach gelato


Servings: 6 to 8


3 pounds peaches, peeled and pitted

1/4 cup sugar, or more, to taste

1/2 cup mascarpone or yogurt


1. Cut the peaches into very small pieces. The smaller you cut them, the faster they will freeze and the finer the final texture will be. Arrange the peach pieces in a single layer on a rimmed cookie sheet and freeze solid, about 2 hours.

2. Put the frozen peach pieces in a food processor with the sugar and grind briefly. Add the mascarpone and pulse until the mixture is smooth.

3. Empty the food processor into a small container and freeze again, 20 to 30 minutes, before serving. If the ice cream freezes solid, simply process it briefly again before serving.

Strawberries with Balsamic Vinegar



One  quart strawberries, rinsed, hulled and sliced

1/2 pint blackberries or blueberries, optional

1/4 cup sugar, or more to taste

1 teaspoon high-quality balsamic vinegar, or more to taste

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Chopped fresh mint leaves for garnish, optional


1. Toss strawberries and other berries, if using, with the 1/4 cup sugar, and let sit for 10 minutes or longer. Do not refrigerate.

2. Sprinkle with the vinegar; toss gently, then taste and add more sugar or vinegar if necessary. Sprinkle with the pepper, toss again, and serve, garnished with the mint, if you like. Spoon into a glass or bowl, and serve next to cookies or a piece of cake.

Tuna and White Bean Salad


Yield: Makes 2 servings; can be doubled


1 6-ounce can solid white tuna packed in oil

Extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1/3 cup chopped red onion

3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

4 teaspoons chopped fresh sage or 1 teaspoon dried sage leaves

1 15- to 16-ounce can cannellini (white kidney beans), drained well


Drain oil from tuna into medium bowl. Add enough olive oil to measure 3 tablespoons total; whisk in vinegar. Add onion, parsley and sage. Mix in beans and tuna. Season with salt and pepper.

Crock Pot Barbecued Tri Tip


Makes 6 to 8 servings


2 lb. Raley's Black Angus Beef tri tip


1 large onion, peeled and sliced

3/4 cup prepared barbecue sauce

2 tbsp. cider vinegar

1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

1/2 tsp. chili powder

1/4 tsp. black pepper


Trim all visible fat from meat and place in crock pot; top with onion slices. Combine remaining ingredients in a small bowl; pour over meat. Cover and cook on HIGH for 4 hours or on LOW for 8 to 10 hours. Remove meat from crock pot and cut into thick slices. Spoon onions and sauce over meat.

Lemon Chicken Stir-Fry


 4 servings, about 1 1/2 cups each


1 lemon

1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth

3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce

2 teaspoons cornstarch

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces

10 ounces mushrooms, halved or quartered

1 cup diagonally sliced carrots, (1/4 inch thick)

2 cups snow peas, (6 ounces), stems and strings removed

1 bunch scallions, cut into 1-inch pieces, white and green parts divided

1 tablespoon chopped garlic


Grate 1 teaspoon lemon zest and set aside. Juice the lemon and whisk 3 tablespoons of the juice with broth, soy sauce and cornstarch in a small bowl.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, until just cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate with tongs. Add mushrooms and carrots to the pan and cook until the carrots are just tender, about 5 minutes. Add snow peas, scallion whites, garlic and the reserved lemon zest. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds. Whisk the broth mixture and add to the pan; cook, stirring, until thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add scallion greens and the chicken and any accumulated juices; cook, stirring, until heated through, 1 to 2 minutes.


March 1, 2011
You can Shop Cheap and still eat like a King!

It's not going to cost you a King's ransom to pay for groceries this week. And don't worry, Shop Cheap isn't going to Anaheim because all of the best bargains are right here in town. Here's what we like this week.

Save Mart has been doing a lot more advertising lately. On billboards, on TV and the Wednesday insert in The Bee. This week they are thinking ahead to Spring cleaning with a special wrap that lists everything from a 100 ounce jug of Tide for $9.99 to Clorox wipes 2/$4. There's even a coupon to save $3 when you spend $10 on cleaning products.

Once the house is clean, it's time for dinner so how about Foster Farms whole chicken for 88-cents a pound? Both Fresh Pacific snapper and cooked shrimp meat are $3.99lb. San Luis sourdough bread is $2.99 a loaf; Fuji apples are 37-cents a pound and Michelina's frozen entrees are 88-cents each. Their Fri.-Sun. sale includes mangoes 3/99-cents; party wings for $3.99lb and Sargento shredded cheese 2/$4.

Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are $1.99lb and lean ground beef is $2.99lb. In produce Nature Sweet cherry tomatoes are BOGO; berries are 2/$5 and fresh peaches from Chile are $1.97lb.

Buy 4 boxes of Nature Valley granola bars and save $4. (Works out to $1.69 a box). Same with Special K crackers, Wheatables and Cheez-Its - buy 4 and save $4. General Mills cereals are $1.99 a box; a case of Arrowhead or Nestle drinking water is $3.33 and Langers juice cocktail is $1.99 a jug.

Back page coupons include Farmer John sausage links for 79-cents; Oscar Mayer Lunchables for $1.99; $1 off Artisan breads and Sunny D for 99-cents.

Safeway has some sales worth mentioning. First, boneless, skinless chicken breasts for $1.67lb; avocado for $1 and broccoli for 99-cents a bunch. Their 4-day sale (Friday-Monday) includes Star Kist solid white tuna packed in water for 88-cents; chicken tenders in the deli for $3.99 and Oscar Mayer deli creations for 99-cents.

Safeway butter top breads are BOGO; Nabisco snack crackers are BOGO, too. Safeway breakfast breads are $1.49 a loaf; bakery cinammon rolls are $1.99 and Angel Food Cake is $1.99 (with coupon). Jennie-O ground turkey breast and Oscar Mayer meat franks are BOGO in the meat dept.

There's a sale in the frozen food aisle because March is frozen food month! First, you can save $5 when you spend $15 on items like Ore-Ida potatoes, Eggo waffles; Lean Cuisine entrees; Steamfresh veggies and Skinny Cow ice cream treats or Nestle Drumsticks.

If you've been wanting to try Greek yogurt, now's the time. A carton of the Athenos brand is 99-cents. A case of Arrowhead water is $3.50; 2-liter Pepsi is 88-cents and Safeway Clear sparkling water or refreshe sodas are 3/$2. Golden grain pasta is $1; and Keebler cookies are $1.99.

In produce, Texas red grapefruit is 2/$1; Braeburn or Fuji apples are 79-cents a pound; peaches, nectarines and plums are $1.99lb. Yellow onions are 99-cents a pound.

There's plenty to be clippin' - Simply Potatoes are $1.29; Safeway apple juice is $1.49; Ragu pasta sauce is 99-cents; a Signature Cafe sandwich is $3.99 and Kozy Shak pudding is $1.99. In the supply category, Safeway Advanced detergent is $5.99; Colgate toothpaste is $1.99 and Lysol wipes are $1.49.

The $5 Friday only specials include Signature Cafe homestyle meatloaf;; Tony Roma's ribs and Raspberry Almond cake in the Bakery.

Before we pull the cart into Raley's, we wanted to mention their new Family Table App on Facebook. Ashley Zepernick, Raley's communications specialist, wrote to tell us about this useful app that makes meal planning a little easier. It offers shoppers meal ideas using items on sale in Raley's stores. (Hey, that's kind of like what we do!) The app also gives shoppers the ability to share recipes with friends, print shopping lists and check out Raley' for even more info. If you want more information on the Family Table, go to

Now back to the business of shopping at Raley's. In the produce aisle, we're stocking up on red seedless grapes for 97-cents a pound; strawberries, blueberries and blackberries are all BOGO and Texas Ruby grapefruit is 2/$1. Apples and pears are 97-cents a pound; yellow onions are 67-cents a pound and a 3lb. bag of Fujis is only $2.97. A 5lb. bag of potatoes is 97-cents.

Boneless tri tip is $2.77lb; La Tortilla Factory corn tortillas are 99-cents a pack and Rosarita refries are 99-cents a can. Skinny Cow treats are $3.99; Michelinas entrees are $1 each; Campbell's tomato or chicken noodle soups are 69-cents a can and Egg Beaters are $2.50 a container.

That's about it for this week. Come back on Thursday for bargain recipes that are fit for a King!

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

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