Thursday, January 16, 2014

Bare Bones Meals -- Starting Out

Welcome back! So you've decided to take the Pantry Challenge for a few weeks, and make your meals out of what you can find in the pantry...
     and the freezer...
         and the refrigerator.

Good for you! 

Before you can make much progress, though, you have to know:

    What you've got to work with.

That's the start: take some time to look.

    Root through the cupboards, mentally grouping veggies, sauces, fruit,starches,  meats and prepared meals. (It wouldn't hurt to group them on the shelves this way, either. Take a minute to wipe down the shelves with cleaner before you re-place them.)

    Now do the same through the freezer. Think about what you already found in the cupboards. Think about combinations. (For example: would that can of mushroom soup combine with the can of tuna, the bag of noodles...and the frozen peas in the freezer? Of course it would - and tastily, too.)

    Finally, go through the refrigerator. Clean out the crisper. While it's soaking, chop all the veggies there in chunks (for stews and soups) or strips (for appetizers and snacking). Put them in bags, or ice water.
    Do the same with any fruit you find; slice it for snacking (then store in water with a little lemon juice) -- or chop it for a crisp. (More on this in a bit.) Apples are lovely, cooked overnight on low in a crockpot -- the resulting applesauce will be a good sop if you're sick. (Or serve it over ice cream, sprinkled with chopped almonds -- yum.)

Start with a soup -- one of the ones from our soup series, or a mix of your available chopped veggies. (Add a few chicken bouillon cubes, a handful of rice or noodles, salt and pepper -- plus a beaten egg at the very last, a few minutes before you serve it. The soup will be very good.)
     Add a few biscuits or some banana bread, and you're on the road to more good, homemade food --

and saving money!

This food's going to cost peanuts! (P.S. Don't tell charley the dog I'm here.)

No comments:

Post a Comment