Brown Sugar Syrup | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Brown Sugar Syrup

Brown Sugar Syrup | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Are you one of those people who is super organized and plans your meals efficiently and knows exactly what you’re going to eat for the next month? Do you have everything perfectly organized in your cupboards? Do you have a machine to make labels for all of your canisters and Costco-esque stockpiles of everything in your garage? Can I move in with you?

Since we moved to Scotland, I’ve been trying to get my head around not being able to walk around the corner to the grocery store every day. I get my groceries delivered, and that’s super awesome, but if I plan poorly or run out of something unexpectedly, I’m screwed. It’s a lot of pressure.

Brown Sugar Syrup | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Luckily, I found an awesome recipe to make my own brown sugar syrup from ingredients that I usually have in my kitchen. No more maple syrup emergencies. You can make your own delicious pancake syrup on your stove. It takes a few minutes to cook down and become sticky and thick, but your don’t really have to do anything. Just drop a few basic ingredients into a pan and let it bubble away over low heat while you get on with the rest of breakfast.

This syrup is bright and deep and buttery. I love it on a gorgeous crispy waffle. Some bacon couldn’t really go wrong here, either.

Brown Sugar Syrup | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Don’t let anything get in the way of the breakfast of your dreams. Make your own Brown Sugar Syrup and be happy.

Brown Sugar
Brown Sugar Syrup comes together quickly with ingredients you have on hand for a perfectly sweet breakfast.
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Prep Time
2 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
2 min
Cook Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. 3/4 cup brown sugar
  2. 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) butter
  3. 1/8 cup orange juice
  4. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  5. Pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. Add all ingredients to a small sauce pan over low heat. Whisk to combine as the butter melts. Allow the mixture to come to a bubble and cook for about 15 minutes until it becomes thick and syrupy. Just keep half an eye on it as you don't want it to burn.
  2. Take the pan off the heat and allow it to cool for at least 10 minutes so you don't burn your face off on molten sugar.
  3. Serve warm and save any extra leftovers in an airtight container for up to five days.
Adapted from Homemade Decadence by Joy Wilson
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/
20 Awesome Breakfast Recipes

20 Awesome Breakfast Recipes

20 Awesome Breakfast Recipes

 Breakfast is almost certainly my favorite meal, though I rarely actually get to enjoy breakfast throughout the week. Maybe it’s the anticipation of a relaxing weekend that makes breakfast seem so special. Or maybe it’s just that you can eat really outrageous things in the morning, and for some reason, no one seems to mind. I’ve been pondering throwing a brunch party for ages, so I thought I’d share some of the most popular breakfast recipes from my site. Let’s go.

Muffins

Caramel Butterscotch Muffins

Breakfast doesn’t always have to be elaborate. Sometimes some juice and an awesome muffin can put a huge smile on your face. Any of these would also be great for a buffet style breakfast party of to have around the kitchen when you have house guests.

Double Chocolate Muffins

Caramel Butterscotch Muffins

Toffee Muffins

Chocolate Banana Muffins

Blueberry Jam Muffins

Pancakes

Greek Yogurt Pancakes | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

My family practically worshiped pancakes when we were growing up. My dad making pancakes for everyone is one of our most memorable family rituals. I still love pancakes of all kinds. Here are a few favorites.

Pumpkin Pancakes

Buttermilk Pancakes

Whole Wheat Pancakes

Greek Yogurt Pancakes

Bacon Pancakes

More of the Sweet Stuff

Croissant French Toast with Maple Bacon Whipped Cream | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

I always have a hard time choosing between sweet and savoury at breakfast, but I almost always end up going for the sweet option. Here are a few more things to start your day with a sugar rush.

Peanut Butter & Jelly French Toast

Croissant French Toast with Maple Bacon Cream

Dutch Baby Bunny

Nutella Fairy Toast

The Savoury Option

Cayenne Candied Bacon | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Though sweet tends to be my first choice, there are plenty of savoury breakfast options I adore, especially if there are eggs and bacon involved. 

Sky High Breakfast Pizza

Full English Breakfast (American Style)

Sausage Egg & Cheese Biscuit with Apple Butter

Breakfast Burger

Cholesterol Sandwich

Cayenne Candied Bacon

Have fun eating all the breakfast, kids. It’s gonna be awesome.

Spicy Potato Cakes | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Spicy Potato Cakes

Spicy Potato Cakes | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

My mission to be motivated is already losing steam in a serious way. I’m currently experiencing a massive yawn approximately every 20 seconds, but I only have 58 things on my to do list for work tomorrow, so maybe I’m starting to get a handle on this after all. Maybe I can start kicking ass again soon. Now I just have to keep the job long enough to make it my… Okay, maybe I’m getting carried away. This is what happens when you wake up at 5:30 am in a dead panic about room bookings and paperwork.

This is why comfort food is my jam. Carbs and constant complaining are the only things that soothe my anxiety. Only one of those things is something that other people also enjoy. This is why I never make you salad. Imagine if you had to read my nonstop whining AND eat kale? It just wouldn’t work.

Spicy Potato Cakes | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

I am massively in love with mashed potatoes. So much so that we hardly ever have leftovers. But on those rare occasions when you just can’t manage another bite, I’ve got the perfect breakfast solution. Spicy Potato Cakes.

These are a bit messy to make. At least, I haven’t yet figured out how to make them without getting covered in mash. It’s totally worth it, though. The potato cakes get a nice crusty exterior while the inside stays creamy. There’s a bit of crunch from the green onions and some fire from the chopped chili. We topped ours with some sour cream mixed with a dash of scorpion pepper sauce for some extra awesome heat. And kids, do not, under any circumstances, forget to put an egg on it.

Spicy Potato Cakes | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

If you’re staring down the barrel of a long week, just keep daydreaming about the luxurious breakfast you’re going to eat at the weekend. Make sure it includes Spicy Potato Cakes. It’s gonna be awesome.

Spicy Potato Cakes
Yields 6
Spicy Potato Cakes turn leftover mashed potatoes into a fiery breakfast of awesomeness.
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. Approximately 2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
  2. 1 egg, lightly beaten
  3. 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  4. 1 red chili, chopped (remove the seeds if you want to decrease the heat)
  5. Approximately 2 tablespoons flour for dusting
  6. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  7. Sour cream and hot sauce, optional
  8. 1 egg per person for frying, only optional if you're a maniac
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, stir together the mashed potatoes, egg, green onion, and chili until well combined.
  2. Put a large skillet over medium heat and add the oil. Allow the pan to heat up while you make the cakes.
  3. Use a large scoop to scoop out the potato mixture. I drop it into my hand to pat it flat then dust the top with flour and carefully place the flour side down into the hot pan. Then sprinkle the top with a bit more flour and repeat with the remaining potato mixture. You may have to cook your potato cakes in batches depending on the size of your pan and your potato cakes. I was able to make about six. And yes, I had mashed potato all over my hands.
  4. Cook each potato cake about five minutes a side or until it's as brown and crispy on the outside as you'd like. Gently flip your potato cake and cook for another five minutes on the second side. Remove to a plate and top your cake with a drizzle of sour cream and hot sauce, then top with an over easy egg with a delightfully runny yolk.
Adapted from Kitchen by Nigella Lawson
Adapted from Kitchen by Nigella Lawson
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/
Maple Bacon Pancake Syrup | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Maple Bacon Pancake Syrup

Maple Bacon Pancake Syrup | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Can I just tell you how excited I am to have a working oven again? Three weeks, guys! Three weeks of not being able to bake anything! I feel like I’ve been reconnected with a long lost friend, or I’ve gotten a cast removed or something. Part of me was missing, and now it’s back. 

Also, the sun has been shining on a relatively consistent basis, including the two days I found myself having to hike through the woods with a couple of teenagers. The sun is glorious, and I’m loving it. More more more!

I made you something really indulgent today. This Maple Bacon Pancake Syrup is hard core awesome. It’s salty and sweet and dangerously hard to stop eating.

Maple Bacon Pancake Syrup | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

There is absolutely nothing complicated about making this, but you do have to commit some time to mindless stirring. We’re whisking a whole stick of butter into maple syrup, and you need to add it slowly to get the fat from the butter to incorporate with the liquid beautifully. It’s just some lazy, early morning whisking. No biggie.

Also, in true cheapo fashion, I didn’t use pure maple syrup for this. I’m sure if you can afford it, it would improve the experience. I don’t have that kind of money. Use whatever maple flavored syrup you prefer. If you happen to have some, you can add a dash of maple extract to the pot to intensify the flavor.

Maple Bacon Pancake Syrup | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

All that’s left to do is cook of your favorite buttermilk pancakes, and feast! The sun is shining, you’ve got Maple Bacon Pancake Syrup, and all is right with the world.

Maple Bacon Pancake Syrup
Serves 4
Maple Bacon Pancake Syrup is salty, sweet, and dangerously hard to stop eating.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. 7 slices smoked bacon
  2. 1/2 cup maple syrup or maple flavored syrup
  3. 4 ounces butter
  4. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  5. 1/4 teaspoon maple extract (optional)
  6. Pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 375 F (190 C) and line a baking sheet with foil.
  2. Lay your bacon out on the baking sheet and cook the bacon in the oven for about 15 minutes or until it's as crispy as you'd like. Remove the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate.
  3. While your bacon is cooking, add the maple syrup to a small sauce pan and put it over low heat. Add the butter to the maple syrup in small chunks, whisking each chunk until it's completely melted before adding the next one. You will have a smooth emulsion once all the butter is whisked in.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in vanilla extract, maple extract, and salt.
  5. Once the bacon is ready, chop it up into half-inch pieces or smaller and add it to the syrup.
  6. Spoon this awesomeness over your favorite pancakes or waffles and just try to stop smiling.
Adapted from Homemade Decadence by Joy Wilson
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/
20 Awesome Cheesy Recipes

20 Awesome Cheesy Recipes

20 Awesome Cheesy Recipes

Cheese might be my best friend. It’s so comforting and inviting, and it’s always there for me when I need it. Few things make me smile like cheese does. Maybe we should start dating. My husband might object.

Okay, enough of this nonsense. Let’s get to that list of 20 totally awesome cheesy recipes.

I made this Chicken Parmesan recently, and it was just as awesome as I remembered it to be. 

Mexican Spinach Dip is a little bit spicy and a whole lot cheesy. Everyone knows the cheese is the best part of Mexican food anyway.

Holiday Brie from Awesome on 20

You should really bring this Holiday Brie to the table any time of year.

Smoky and sweet, a Fig Jam and Smoked Gouda Grilled Cheese is everything.

Garlic Mac & Cheese is so much better than the box and with hardly any extra effort. 

We have every kind of mac and cheese, this one with Cheez-Its is pretty rad.

Kalua Pig Mac and Cheese is almost as awesome with regular pulled pork, in case you can’t get to Hawaii.

Jalapeno Cream Cheese Stuffed Burgers | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Jalapeno Cream Cheese Stuffed Burgers have cheese on the inside and the outside. That’s how I roll.

Have a party just so you can serve Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers.

Super Fast Faux Pizza is a quick dinner dream.

If you live in Hawaii long, you have to give in and eat Spam eventually, so you should probably have it with Spam Mac and Cheese.

Cheesy Meatball Sliders from Awesome on 20

This Cheesy Meatball Slider situation is exactly where you want to be.

Make this Sky High Breakfast Pizza if you want to never stop eating.

Jalapeno Popper Dip for when one popper isn’t enough, aka always.

Mexican Mac and Cheese has peppers and chicken and cheese and cheese and cheese.

Goat Cheese Crostini with Macadamia Nuts & Honey | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Pretend to be sophisticated by making Goat Cheese Crostini with Macadamia Nuts and Honey. There should maybe be some sparkling wine involved.

Get all your friends together, share some germs and eat White Cheddar Fondue while drinking lots and lots of wine. So good.

My absolute favorite of all time has got to be Swiss and Bacon Dip. You simply must.

Cranberry Brie Bites | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Cranberry Brie Bites taste amazing and they’re awfully pretty.

If you’ve never had Twice Baked Potatoes, you haven’t really lived.

Is that enough cheese for you? If you said no, I’m going to pretend I didn’t hear you. We can shame jog tomorrow. Let’s live, love, and eat cheese while we can.

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