I’m quite happy with what I’ve been able to eat over the last week or so. My student loan for this term ran out a week ago, so I decided that obviously the thing I could stop buying should be food. (Obviously. *rolls eyes*) This was partly due to the fact I finish for the term at the end of next week, and partly due to the fact that I know I have items in the cupboards that I would never dream of using whilst there was immediatley accessible items in the fridge.
For example, if I were to have pasta, on a regular basis I’d be eating pasta and pesto. It’s quick, and it’s easy. I don’t have to think about it. I just cook some pasta, and add a spoonful of pesto. I like it. I’ll eat it for several meals in a row if I have to. But of course, my pesto has ran out. So I go for my pasta back-up; tomato, mixed dried herbs and onion. Only I have no onions or tomato. At last I remember that I have tinned tuna, but alas… no mayonnaise! What was I to do? In the end I tried something simple that I’d never made before; pasta, olive oil, tinned tuna, and lemon juice. And you know what? It was really, really nice. I’ll be having it again.
The point here is that had I not banned myself from buying my regular fridge items, I’d have never thought to venture more into my storecupboard items. The lemon juice hadn’t been used in ages.
In a similar fashion, there were two other meals I’ve had in the last week that I’ve really enjoyed, made out of items in my cupboard. The first was an experiment on bean burgers, which I have never read a recipe for. I had a tin of red kidney beans in the cupboard, and a third of a tin of leftover baked beans in the fridge. I combined these with a small chopped onion, salt, pepper, flour, egg, and either chili flakes or cayenne pepper (can’t quite remember which, think it was probably the cayenne though). Spooned it into a frying pan, browned on both sides, et voila. It was really tasty. I will have to try making it again next term so I can work out quantities needed. Only quarm with the name “bean burger” – it wasn’t burger shaped.
Finally, the other night I had my own version of tinned saussage and beans – NOT tinned saussage and beans.
To start with, I fried three saussages in a very small amount of oil (two to go in this, and one to put in the fridge for the next day). Whilst they were frying (I know, I know, it’s unhealthy. But I don’t trust the grills at university, and I didn’t want to wait an hour for them to cook in the oven), I heated the haricot beans (tinned in water) in a pan along with a birds eye chili, chopped finely, with only half of the seeds included. When the saussages were cooked, I removed them from the pan and placed to one side. After draining the beans, I placed them in the frying pan to coat in the sausage oil, getting any flavour that might be there. I also added ground cumin, and quite a bit of tomato purée (the thick stuff in the tube). I then sliced the saussages into little pieces, and added them to the bean mix, stirring it all until it was thoroughly mixed.
The only thing I would try to improve next time is the dryness of the beans – when they were drained, all the liquid left. So the only ‘wetness’ there was came from the oil and the fairly dry tomato purée.
So those were my memorable meals from my storecupboard adventure. Unfortunatly, I did have to venture out to the supermarket yesterday to stock up on a little fresh food, mainly vegetables and milk, but it did mean more ingredients to play with for dinner. Tonight’s plan? Rice with trout and onions done in sesame oil. Will it taste good? I have no idea. But I had a trout sandwich last night, and as much as I LOVE fresh fish sandwiches, the small amount of bread I have has to last me a week.