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Column: More tales of a cashier’s life

April 1, 2015

I share readers’ emails and experiences in the checkout lane often in this column, and I also enjoy featuring insights and experiences from the people across the counter from us in our stores — our cashiers: “Dear Jill, I have been a cashier for three years, and I have to disagree with the premise that Read More

Nicoise salad for spring

GRILLED ARCTIC CHAR AND NICOISE SALAD Servings: Makes 4 servings Preparation time: 15 minutes Cooking time: for vegetables: 24 minutes: for char: 4 minutes INGREDIENTS 1 pound small red potatoes 1/2 pound thin green beans (haricots verts) 4 (5-ounce) skinless Arctic char fillets 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper 2 tablespoons unsalted chicken broth Read More

Column: What do you want?

March 25, 2015

Now that those New Year’s resolutions are either gaining traction or falling apart, it may be time to decide just what real changes you should ponder making to your diet. And I do mean ponder. Think about what you want for yourself, how you want to look, what means so much to you that you Read More

Wow dinner guests with quinoa stuffed bell peppers

QUINOA-STUFFED BELL PEPPERS Servings: Makes 6 halves Preparation time: 20 minutes Cooking time: 50 to 65 minutes, plus quinoa INGREDIENTS 1 1/2 cups quinoa 1 tablespoon canola oil 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped 3 cloves garlic, crushed 1 cup whole pitted black olives, sliced 1/4 cup raisins 1/4 cup chopped walnuts Coarse salt and pepper Read More

Column: Readers share coupon frustrations

No matter how my readers manage, organize and use their coupons, they continue to be frustrated by some elements of the process: “Dear Jill, I’m old school — I use paper coupons that I cut from the newspaper. I’ve been seeing coupons that are oversized — far wider than the norm. These do not fit Read More

Column: Growing season

March 18, 2015

We just returned from a visit to Asheville, North Carolina, to see our son and his family. They moved last October and we were missing the grandkids. Asheville is one of the nicest places to visit in North Carolina and, other than the beaches, offers a way of life that has some benefits. Restaurants are Read More

Column: The increased cost of ‘greeting’

If you’ve gone shopping for a birthday, anniversary or greeting card recently, you may have had a bit of sticker shock in the aisles of your favorite store. Not long ago, I was trying to pick out the perfect birthday card for a family member, and after finding one with the perfect message; I flipped Read More

The perfect recipe for that other white meat

GARLIC HERB ROAST PORK Servings: Makes 7 servings (3 ounces cooked weight) Preparation time: 10 minutes Cooking time: about 30 minutes; standing time: 10 minutes INGREDIENTS 1 (2-pound) boneless pork loin center roast 4 cloves garlic, crushed 2 teaspoons coarse salt 1 tablespoon minced fresh sage (or 2 teaspoons dried) 2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary Read More

Column: Saving recipes

March 11, 2015

When you come across a great recipe, take good care of it and it will bring you years of pleasure. These days a recipe collection assumes so many forms — magazine clippings, handwritten cards, printouts from the computer. Saving your favorite recipes in an organized system is worth the effort, so you’ll always have them Read More

Green Ombre Cupcakes

By Susan Nicholson Universal Uclick GREEN OMBRE CUPCAKES Prepare 1 (2-layer size) box white cake mix as directed on package using whole eggs. Stir in 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract. Divide batter evenly into 2 bowls. Stir 3/4 teaspoon green food color into one bowl, tinting to dark green. Stir 15 drops into second bowl Read More

Column: How to get the sale price

A few weeks ago I shared some of my strategies for “stalking the sale” – knowing when a potential seasonal deal may appear and being prepared to go to the store to take advantage of it. It’s something I do each January to swoop up great deals on toys on clearance during the just-passed Christmas Read More

The right tool for the job

March 4, 2015

I’ve written columns before about how much easier the right tool makes the job. Usually I’m talking about painting, building trellises or working with cement or some other outside chore. This time it is about how the right knife makes prep work easier when cooking. With the right knife in hand every cooking experience will Read More

Chili-rubbed pork chops with pineapple salsa

By Susan Nicholson Universal Uclick CHILI-RUBBED PORK CHOPS WITH PINEAPPLE SALSA   Makes 4 servings Preparation time: 15 minutes Cooking time: 20 minutes   INGREDIENTS 1 tablespoon chili powder 1 1/2 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder 3/4 teaspoon onion powder 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt 4 boneless pork loin chops, 3/4-inch thick, Read More

Column: Readers blast cheapskates

We all want to save a buck, right? Some people (myself included!) have completely embraced a money-saving lifestyle. I love getting the most for my money, but I don’t consider myself to be a “cheapskate” per se. My moneysaving habits would not lead me to resort to anything I consider to be unethical, fraudulent or Read More

Column: Go guilt free with lettuce

February 25, 2015

Have you noticed how many people who order a sandwich these days order it without the bread or bun? Those high-carbed cradles of goodness seem superfluous. That is why I’ve always loved these lettuce-leaved wraps. No guilt-ridden carbs to worry over, just the savory Asian seasonings that make chicken easy to cook and glorious to Read More

Considered wealthy? Sometimes it is a matter of perspective

Jill Cataldo In a recent column, I was discussing our household’s budget and mentioned that I do not consider our family “wealthy.” Several readers wrote to correct me and encourage me to consider a different appreciation of that term. “Dear Jill, I am not the type to write in response to articles, but your statement Read More

A fresh look at a vegetable staple: Carrot salad satisfies with flavor

By Susan Nicholson Universal Uclick Fresh carrot salad In a medium bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, 1 clove minced garlic, 3/4 teaspoon ground coriander, 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika, 1/2 fresh red jalapeno pepper (seeded and very thinly sliced) and 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt. Toss Read More

Column: Stalking the sales with help

February 18, 2015

Jill Cataldo is a coupon workshop instructor, writer and mother of three. Thanks to social media and couponing blogs, tracking when products are likely to go on sale has become remarkably easy. When you’ve got many pairs of eyes shopping in the same stores, the news that a favorite chain has just dropped a popular Read More

Potatoes O’Brien: An easy side dish that sets the tone for a special meal

By Susan Nicholson Universal Uclick Dutch yellow Potatoes O’Brien Heat 2 tablespoons butter in a large nonstick skillet on medium. Add 1 pound diced Dutch yellow potatoes, 1/3 cup diced green bell pepper, 1/3 cup diced red bell pepper and 1/3 cup diced yellow bell pepper, 1 medium diced sweet onion, 2 cloves minced garlic, 1/2 Read More

Column: No more midnight snacking

Until a few years ago there was little scientific evidence to suggest that midnight snacking wasn’t a good idea. New studies show that mice prevented from eating at all hours avoided obesity and metabolic problems — even if their diet was sometimes less that healthy. Researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in San Read More

Column: New warnings in fine print

February 11, 2015

Jill Cataldo is a coupon workshop instructor, writer and mother of three. Do you read the fine print on coupons? Manufacturers and retailers expect you to, though the fine print isn’t always the easiest text to read or understand. It’s called the “fine print” for a reason — some of it nearly requires magnification to Read More

Valentines Day sweets for your sweet

By Susan Nicholson Universal Uclick CHERRY PIE CUPS Servings: Makes 12 cups Preparation time: 10 minutes Cooking time: 14 to 18 minutes INGREDIENTS 2 refrigerated pie crusts (from 2-crust box), softened as directed 1 (21-ounce) can light cherry pie filling Heat oven to 425 degrees. Unroll crusts on work surface. With 3 1/2- or 4-inch Read More

Column: Marinating basics

Marinades contain oil, an acid such as vinegar, lemon juice or tomato juice, and seasonings. Marinate covered food in the refrigerator for a period of time to add extra flavor. • Use glass, stainless steel, plastic or disposable aluminum bowls or pans to marinate foods. Do not use untreated aluminum pans, as they react to Read More

Column: Be wary of online reviews

February 4, 2015

Jill Cataldo is a coupon workshop instructor, writer and mother of three. When you’re shopping online, do you read product reviews before you buy? A 2013 study conducted by Dimensional Research notes that 90 percent of shoppers surveyed felt that reading positive product reviews influenced their purchasing decisions. Eighty-six percent of the same shoppers reported Read More

Chocolate shortbread bar: A tender, rich, short pastry far more than the sum of its parts

By Susan Nicholson Universal Uclick CHOCOLATE SHORTBREAD BARS Servings: Makes 24 bars Preparation time: 20 minutes Cooking time: about 25 minutes INGREDIENTS 1 cup softened butter 1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed 1 egg yolk 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/2 teaspoon orange zest 1/4 teaspoon almond extract 2 cups flour cup chopped toasted almonds, Read More

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