It's hard to believe summer is almost over and it's time to head back to fall classes. My college courses start during the second week of August, which means that I am going to juggle work on a part-time basis and four courses in school. Just thinking about how busy I'm going to be those first few weeks while Julius and I get used to the new routine, makes me want to hyperventilate. But the back to class season is also very exciting because it's another year of learning for Julius and myself.
Since it's going to be such a busy and expensive time, I have to look for ways to save both time and money. One area where it's easy enough to do both is during our weekday meal times. I could always eat at school or out but as a student and mom am always careful with how much I spend on eating out. That's something that we save for the weekend and during the week I come home to eat with my son and then head back to class. Because time is of the essence, I keep my pantry stocked with products that can help me save time. One of my easy recipes is one that I will share with you today using two of my go-to items which I purchase at Walmart.
Pace Salsa is one of those items we ALWAYS have at home. It's one of the most versatile products in my kitchen that adds that extra kick to my snacking and cooking. It's a perfect topper to almost any meal and it also adds flavor and spice as an ingredient in my simple recipes. Today I made a cold pasta and veggie salad and added Pace for that Mexican spiciness that all of our dishes have.
Spicy Cold Pasta & Veggies
1 box rotini pasta
2 medium tomatoes
1 large head of broccoli
2 tbsp salt (or to taste)
1/2 cup cotija cheese grated
1/4 cup Pace Sauce
2tbsp olive oil
Cook pasta in the usual manner, while in a separate pot put water to boil then add broccoli for quick 30 seconds. We are not cooking the broccoli, just taking the raw edge off. Pour broccoli into colander and pour cold water over it to stop cooking.
Cut tomatoes and put all of the ingredients into a large dish along with the queso cotija, and Pace Sauce. The quantity of Pace Sauce depends on how spicy you like to eat, I kept mine moderately spicy. You can serve this pasta at room temperature of refrigerate which is great on a hot day.
V8 + Energy is a good alternative to the can of pop or iced coffee that I usually grab if I don't come home for lunch. I love the fruit flavor and because it's powered by natural green tea, it gives me the boost of energy I need to finish of the rest of the day while being yummy.
Having lunch at home once the back to school season begins really is a time saver for me and it saves me a ton of money! Plus that's extra time I can spend with my son on a really busy day or if he's with his dad I can sit down and enjoy some time off to myself.