Thank you for visiting my blog; it is an exciting venture for me and I hope this will become a forum for moms and homemakers of all types to share stories, frustrations, and triumphs. There will be recipes, pictures of my latest and greatest soap creations, and anything I think will be interesting to Enthusiastic Homemakers.....

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Grumpy Mama Creamy Pasta; or How to Feed a Tribe for $6.00

A few days ago, one of my favorite bloggers, Brittany at VaVoomVintage posted a recipe for Grouchy Girl Pie after a grouchy day. I had a very, very grumpy day today; where I started to think there was no way I could accomplish all the things I set out to do. I was very grumpy on the way to pick up my older boys, and then I decided to "get over myself" and just do what I had to do. I came home with a plan; after giving my boys their daily chore assignments and having no idea what to make for dinner; I decided to fall back on one of my "easy dinners" that just happens to be a very thrifty meal to make. Today I just happened to have about 1/2 cup of white wine that my husband poured me last night and I fell asleep before drinking, so rather than throw it out, I decided to add it to my recipe; but I normally make non-alcoholic pasta, so just substitute more milk for the wine in this recipe. As always, I'm a very "throw it in" cook, so these are my best estimates of what I use! And this makes a huge amount;  I will feed six people (plus Elvis, indirectly) with this and have leftovers for a lunch or two or three. I weighed the pot after I was finished; over 10 pounds!

Creamy Pasta in a Pinch

20 oz dried rotini or a similar shape pasta
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast
2-3 cloves garlic
3-4 marinated artichoke hearts
1/4 cup butter or olive oil (or a combo)
2 cups milk
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (the cheap stuff)
1/2 cup white wine
Your favorite seasonings, basil, oregano, or an Italian blend

The first thing I do is set a pot of water on the stove to boil, then I oil a glass pan, add the chicken breasts, salt and pepper them and put them in a 425 degree oven to bake. Then I chop the garlic while the butter and/or olive oil is heating up in a skillet. I add the garlic and saute briefly. I add the flour, stir to make a roux, then add the wine and/or milk gradually while mixing with a wire whisk. Stir until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat, add chopped artichokes, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper to taste, seasonings. By this time the pasta should be ready and the chicken should be cooked. Drain the pasta, return to the pan, add the sauce, chop up the chicken and add that as well. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Simple!

I also serve this with a loaf of my home baked bread which I posted a recipe for earlier, salad mix, and broccoli or asparagus. Here's how I break down the cost:

Pasta $1.50
Chicken $2.00 (I have three freezers and only buy chicken if it's $2 or less)
Garlic, Seasonings, Oil, butter, and flour .25
White wine (doesn't count because it was re purposed)
Milk .25
Parmesan .50
Artichoke Hearts .10 (I got a great deal on a jar of artichokes, and just used a small amount)
Homemade Bread and one stick of butter (my boys like butter!) .75
Salad Greens .40
Asparagus .25

I may have under-or-over estimated a few of these things, but I think it all comes out in the wash; so I've managed to feed my hungry family for $6.00!

And it's delicious!


  1. A delicious treat and all for just $6.00. Now thats recession proof cooking !

  2. It's one of my most inexpensive dinners; and it makes a TON; we have enough left over for a big side dish for another meal, or several lunches!