Wednesday, April 3, 2013

'Use It or Lose It' Cooking

On Monday I went through my cabinets and fridge and threw out a bunch of crap!  Snacks and plain old junk that until that morning I didn't want to waste, but I wasn't ready to eat it either.  I was hanging onto it just in case, God forbid, I ran out of food I guess.  I also had to take a good look at some of the winter hoard I was treating the same way.  A couple of butternut squashes that I bought when I didn't need them out of fear of needing them and not having them....again, in case they disappeared off the face of the earth!  The almost moldy purple Japanese yams that didn't taste as good as I remembered, so there they sat in case of an emergency!  I think I am ready to stop buying food I don't need or can use within a few days time.

The grocery store is just so intoxicating sometimes!  So much affordable luxury and designer foods!  But really, I can, and should, only eat so much and i'm getting better and better all the time about not overbuying.

Still left with plenty of food, early this morning I decided to use some of it, or lose it!  We all need to make a list of meals/dishes that we can cook using all the week's leftover veggies and other stuff sitting around on the kitchen counter or pantry!  Since I've been making meat pies, this is my contribution for the day!

Yes, I could have made a pastry crust and, let me tell you, I wanted to!  But those yams and butternuts were crying out to be saved from next weeks trash!  So in Shepard's pie fashion I topped my meat filling with a Garnet yam and butternut mash.  The potato and squash took 2 minutes to steam in the pressure cooker with 1/4 c rich beef broth (more about that in a sec), into the food processor they went with 2tbl butter and seasoned with salt, anh oh yes, the chives I bought last week for something else that I never got around to using!

I made the meat filling with the leftover beef stock from the neck bones/meat I cooked in the beer and coffee sauce. It came out super rich because of all of the bones and already seasoned from the Montreal spices that were in it.  I defrosted, in the microwave, 1lb of ground beef from the freezer, browned it in a large pan, pushed it to the side and added;

5 mushrooms
10 brussels
1 lg carrot
4 celery stalks
and 1 lg onion

When onion was translucent and veggies were starting to get soft I added 2 tbl flour (cook off the raw flour smell, 2 minutes) add 2 - 3 c. stock.  Bring to a boil, lower heat and cook for about 5-10 minutes while making topping.

Pour meat filling into casserole or pie dish and spoon mashed veg over top.  Spread with spatula and bake 20-30 minutes until filling starts to bubble through topping.

I forgot Mark is not a big fan of sweet potato/yams argh!  So I guess I'll have to make another with either a pastry top, or try the mashed cauliflower again.  The only thing is I used up every last veg in the fridge!  I do have some peas and corn in the freezer, and I always have onions!

What are some other meals you make out of anything and everything left over?

1 comment:

Maribel said...

this looks fantastic!!!!!!!!!!!