Well I am officially off for the summer and after a long winter of working, it's a welcomed change here on the farm! Since we couldn't hit the zoo like I originally wanted to (mostly because we only have one car but also because even though it's May 1 it still feels like February around here!) Jack and I decided to bake. There's cleaning to be done, the house needs organizing...but when I realized he'd been sitting on my bed all morning with the laptop in his face I decided we needed to do an actual physical activity. The cleaning and organizing can wait.
With the farmer out truck hunting and princess down for her nap, it was the perfect time to do a project with my little man. We decided after surveying the supplies in the pantry to make cupcakes. And it dawned on me that my couponing has gotten the best of me. I love baking and it wasn't abnormal for me to have things like cocoa powder, evaporated milk, heavy cream and other baking/cooking necessities on hand at all times. But since I've started couponing, about a year ago now, I am much less likely to have certain things on hand. It made me chuckle because going through my pantry and fridge to find ingredients to make frosting I thought that most couponers would totally identify with me. But I was able to make a few minor substitutions for the ingredients in the recipe for frosting and I made one heck of an awesome chocolate frosting - couponer style!
All the recipes I found needed cocoa powder- but who buys that stuff just to have? Not this girl. But there was an awesome deal on Nestle Toll House chocolate chips at Target not that long ago - came out to like $1.05 per bag - STOCK UP PRICE!! So no cocoa powder at the farm, but plenty of chocolate chips to go around! That got me thinking, so I googled chocolate chip frosting and sure enough a recipe popped up. But it called for cream. Generally I would just sub milk in this situation but I am also currently out of milk - just waiting for the farmer to return so I can run to the store, actually. However, as an avid couponer I always have like 15 bottles of Coffee-Mate creamer on hand, because they're like always free...and when they're free how can you resist from buying an absurd amount? (*NOTE* I do give them to friends and family, I don't just hoard coffee creamer, FYI) But I have like 4 bottles in the fridge, one of which is "Sweet Cream" flavor...which sounds perfect for frosting, no? I'm sure French Vanilla would have worked great too.
So anyways...I gathered my couponed supplies and I made this awesome chocolate frosting:
1/2 c (1 stick) Salted Sweet Cream Butter
1/2 c Sweet Cream Coffee Mate creamer
2 tsp Vanilla
1 1/2 c Sugar
1 c Milk Chocolate Chips
In a saucepan bring butter, cream and sugar to a boil. Pour over chocolate chips, add vanilla and beat until cool.
That was it. It was so easy and super yummy! And I almost ALWAYS have those things on hand. That recipe was enough to frost 12 cupcakes and an 8" round...with some left over.
And for those of you who got stuck at FREE Coffee Creamer...check out this or go here. I learned everything I know about couponing from a friend on Facebook, coupon groups and coupon blogs. It's really much, much easier than you think and has saved my family TONS of money! I mean I have not paid more than $5 per pack of diapers for princess - and $5 is high, I usually pay closer to $2-3 per pack. I also got some for FREE, I have a large stock pile of diapers and wipes and it has saved us TONS in comparison to what we spent when Jack was in diapers. Diapers were the reason I started couponing. Now I never pay for things like, shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste, body wash, razors, cereal, and coffee creamer. Ha, but seriously. I don't. I even taught a coupon class at church once, and it was a huge success, I think I might do it again. We'll see how ambitious I feel while I'm not working this summer.
Ok, so that turned into a whole separate subject. Anyways...here's to summer and lots more fun projects with my kiddos. AAaaaaannnndd here's to summer actually showing up. Gah!
From the cold and dreary farm,
The Farmer's Extreme Couponing Wife