Sunday, December 30, 2007

I am the leftover queen.

After waaay too much time in a car, and a whole lot of rich food (shortbread.. not just for breakfast anymore), it's nice to get back to our house and our fridge and vaguely normal eating. (Yes, eggnog in coffee is normal. Move along, nothing to see here.) Not only do we have odd tidbits in the fridge leftover from quick meal preps, but we've got bits and pieces left over from various party dishes. Oh yes, and December's budget got absolutely shattered. I mean so badly shattered it's a fine mist. *sigh* We really didn't plan for Christmas very well, and we really really didn't plan for the flat tire on the highway that became two new tires halfway through the 6 hr drive on Boxing Day. (Okay, so perhaps we did plan for that. The emergency fund has enough to cover the tires and I'd call an unrepairable flat qualifies as what the EF is there for.) Sooooo, there's no room for groceries. Fortunately we've got a well stocked fridge, freezer and pantry. And it's the 30th. If you're going to be out of money for the month, doing it with plenty of stores with only a couple of days left in the month is a good place to be.

It does, however, mean that I'm bound and determined that those leftovers in the fridge shall not be wasted. Cause.. yeah.. nothing like watching your budget hemmorage to make you have a rush of ultra frugal moments. Some diced tomatoes, some roast beef, a roasted potato, a couple roasted carrots, some baked barley.. this sounds like either stew, soup or curry. Which, really, all amounts to about the same thing. Stew is thick soup, and curry is a stew with different spices served on rice. All three are excellent ways to use up the little bit of this and that which seem to be the bane of the back of the fridge. I'll also use bits and pieces into a quiche or baked egg dish. (The difference? For me.. quiche has a pie crust, baked egg dish does not.)

Beef and tomato and gravy with a damp day and a cold I'm pretending I dont have.. that screams soup to me. So in it all went into a pot together. Beef chopped up fine, potato, carrot, tomatoes, a few healthy (okay gravy can't be called healthy.. how about generous) spoonfuls of gravy, a handful of frozen peas, a handful of frozen corn, the 8 frozen green beans forgotten at the back of the freezer, some dried mushrooms, the plastic pot of baked barley.. some water to top it up, a healthy dollop of worchestershire sauce and beef broth concentrate.. simmer 'til yummy. :) Perfect!

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