We’re going to be away for a couple of days, so I’m Using Stuff Up. Aldi had some smoked salmon at half price last week, so I bought a pack. About 2/3rds went into a pasta dish, and the rest was still in the fridge. As was about half a bag of baby spinach.
I won’t tell you how to make an omelette – you’ll all have your own way, and anyway, I’m not very good at them 🙂 But I made a 4-egg omelette, scattered the salmon, spinach and about a quarter of an Aldi goat’s cheese over the mix, folded it, and we scoffed it. And it was dead good.
About 410 calories, as far as I can tell.
Two fat leeks, a bit wrinkled, looked accusingly at me every time I opened the fridge. There was also about 1/4 of a bag spinach left, and some rather elderly eggs.
I trimmed and washed the leeks, and sliced them up, then sauted slowly in olive oil and butter; threw in some fresh thyme part way through. I was going to do some garlic, but I forgot! I shredded some spinach, and when the leeks were softened, I hurled in the spinach and turned the heat off.
Made some pastry with 6oz of wholewheat flour, 2oz of Trex, and 1oz of margarine, rolled it out and lined a rectangular flan tin (such a useful thing – much easier for serving than a round one). I beat three eggs with a dash of milk and some seasoning (I’d normally use cream, but we didn’t have any in). Poured the veg mix into the pastry case, then poured the egg mix on top.
Then, with what I will describe as a flash of genius, I crumbled half a pack of goat’s cheese that was lurking at the back of the fridge and sprinkled it on the top. Into the oven for about 25 minute at 200 in a fan oven. It really was lovely.
I did another stuffed chicken breast on Sunday evening – this time with blue cheese, chopped sage, shallot and some walnut oil. I was going to add pine nuts, but we seemed to have run out, which is very bad planning, I know.
It was delicious – accompanied by steamed new potatoes and asparagus. But I should have used more sage. And it only occurred to me yesterday that it would probably have been far more successful, and much easier to stuff, had I beaten the chicken flat first with my trusty meat hammer, so I shall do that next time.
Next time won’t be far away, as when I sent Pete up to the CoOp to get the chicken, they had a stack on special offer as it was approaching its sell-by date, so there are six more in the freezer.
Last night’s supper was cauliflower cheese, accompanied by potatoes roasted in duck fat.
Not especially “reactive”, but a lovely meal concocted out of things we had. I’m not going to tell you how to make a cheese sauce, because I don’t weigh or measure anything – I’ve been making it too long for that.
But add some grain mustard to the sauce mix for a bit of bite, and sprinkle some breadcrumbs on the dish before it goes into the oven (this is why I don’t like bread thrown away!). The potatoes were parboiled, then roasted in duck fat (which keeps forever, as far as I can see, in a bowl in the fridge).
So you can make a really lovely meal out of a few bobs’ worth of veg and a bit of cheese and stuff. And no meat, so cheaper, and kinder to the environment according to the UN.
I love “bitsa” cooking – just open the fridge and see what needs eating.
And last night, what needed eating was some veg and some cheese. This was ridiculously quick and easy.
Divide the broccoli and cauliflower into smallish florets. Put them in a pan with a couple of inches of water and salt, bring to a boil, cover, and simmer/steam for about – oh – 7 minutes.
In the meantime, finely chop an onion – feel free to use a food processor – and sauté it gently in some olive oil, in a deepish frying pan, until it’s soft. While that’s all happening, crumble some blue cheese. I used stilton, because we had some that needed using up, but anything would do. And cook some pasta; we had tagliatelle.
When everything is done, drain the veg, drain the pasta, hurl them in the pan, add the cheese and stir it round.
Took about 15 minutes from going into the kitchen to hitting the plate – fast food!
I bought a big lump of Stilton for the festive table. It’s untouched.
www.stiltoncheese.com looks very useful.