Annie Oeth is a veteran journalist and former features editor at The Clarion-Ledger. She has written a new cookbook called Living on Love: Cooking When You’re Short on Time and Cash. She writes from a Southern point of view, injecting humor into her writing.

This cookbook is for individuals who neither have an unlimited budget for food nor the time to prepare elaborate meals for themselves or their family.

I have enjoyed sampling her recipes and putting “my own spin on them,” as she says.

Annie says that food is one of life’s greatest pleasures, and sharing a delicious meal with those you love is something that should be savored.

You can purchase her cookbook at


Symphony Brownies 1SYMPHONY BROWNIES

  • 2 boxes brownie mix, (Your favorite brand and type, plus ingredients needed to prepare two batches.)
  • 2 Symphony Almond Toffee Candy Bars
  • Powdered Confectioner’s Sugar

Prepare brownie mixes according to directions. Pour half of brownie batter into 9”x13” pan that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.

Take Symphony bars, which are milk chocolate bars with almonds and toffee, and break apart.
Lay pieces across top of brownie batter, and cover with second batch of brownie batter.

Bake according to brownie mix package directions.

Serves: 8 to 10

Cost: $10

Taco Salad 1TACO SALAD

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 envelope taco seasoning
  • 1 head Iceberg lettuce
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained
  • 1 1 /2 cups Cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 /2 red onion, chopped
  • Crushed Doritos to taste
  • Catalina salad dressing, to taste

Brown ground beef in a skillet, crumbling the meat as it cooks. Drain fat. Add taco seasoning with 3 /4 water and follow package directions. Set aside to allow meat to cool while you prepare the rest of the salad.

Rinse and tear Iceberg lettuce into bite-size pieces.

Toss with drained beans, chopped tomato, chopped red onion and grated cheese.

Toss in seasoned beef. Crumble Doritos and sprinkle on salad, and toss with Catalina dressing.

Serve on plates or in salad bowls.

Cost: $12


Strawberry Smoothies 1STRAWBERRY SMOOTHIES

  • 1 container strawberry fat-free yogurt
  • 1 1 /2 cups skim milk
  • 1 cup strawberries, fresh or frozen
  • 1 banana, sliced

Put all ingredients in a blender and blend on high until smooth. (I have also made this with a food processor with good results.)

Pour into two glasses and serve immediately.

Cost: $3