Waste not, want for nothing

So there appears to be a recession going on at the moment and it’s probably world-wide, if you believe what you hear in the media. I read an article last week that suggested it isn’t technically a recession. My understanding of the description was that the term ‘recession’ is only applied when two consecutive quarters have been in a downturn. Apparently, this quarter has shown a very small growth. Hey ho.

Petrol is higher than ever in price, and food is still soaring. It isn’t a nightmare yet, but it is aspiring to be so.

The best way to approach it seems to be to pull in the belt and make the most of everything.

There’s an old saying “waste not, want not”, and it seems to work. If you waste nothing, you never run out. Using up leftovers can be a real chore but there’s something immoral in throwing out food that’s perfectly fine. (Homemade food is often more attractive for longer, because it isn’t full of fillers and thickeners).

There’s always the freezer of course, but if you can stand having variations of the same dish over a couple of days (even three), that is just as pennywise, and maybe more satisfying. It’s easier to control by not making too much in the first place  but it’s still possible to be creative.

Tonight’s Example:

Bolognese sauce with 300g beef mince from Steadmans Butchers in Kirkby (about £3.30).

1st incarnation: pasta bake – 3 handfuls of large pasta shells (lumaconi) cooked and mixed with 3 big spoonfuls of bolognese & placed in a baking dish (preheat oven on 180 deg C). A few dollops of soft cheese (preferably Ricotta but mine was Philly-style) on the top, a grating of cheddar, followed by a layer of parmesan and herbs. Bake for about 20-30mins until browned on top.

2nd use: pasta bake in the microwave & fresh salad

3rd version: mince (still bolognese) and baked new spuds with broccoli and peas.

4th and final tastiness (two nights later as had a break from mince): added a chopped, tiny chilli and snipped in a handful of coriander stalks.

before cooking - baked sweetcorn on the cob

Corn on the cob in the oven with just Maldon and olive oil.

 

Just the additions of a homemade flour tortilla and a fresh, chopped salsa of peppers, onions, tomato, jalapeno and coriander are enough to turn the same mince into a completely different meal.

corn with chilli bol and salsa

 

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About Sakina Murdock

Greedy, creative, gregarious bird, writing from the bonny northern hills of Cumbria's Eden. There's a lot of soul in this place and the inspiration to create is everywhere, even on the bleakest days. Soulfood. Don't just subsist.
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2 Responses to Waste not, want for nothing

  1. I hear that phrase, “Waste not, want not” several times a day. Every drop of sauce or drippings or juice from our meals is saved and reused many times over. I am told that it adds flavor to future dishes. Any parts of the vegetables that can not be used are thrown out in the yard for the deer. Any bread or baked goods that have gone stale are frozen and later used in a variety of bread puddings. These, only a few examples. Cherie, my roommate, is Genius in the kitchen!
    -Cindy

    • I honestly live my life by it, I absolutely HATE waste, but sometimes it still happens, and then I feel a bit bad. Cherie sounds wicked! I’m in awe! That’s the best kind of cooking there is. In a world where people buy ready prepared meals and call it cooking; real home cooking is so much about dealing with potential waste and getting the most out of it.

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