My fashionista friend M’e is also a great cook (among her many talents which make me think I want to be like her whenever I grow up).
Not so much. In fact, one memorable summer M’e and I sublet a room in a fraternity house. We were poor college students, so we kept a tight budget. “Tight budget” to her meant that she had steak only once that summer. “Tight budget” to me meant I made “suicide rice” – that is, rice with whatever I happened to have on hand. M’e put her foot down at partaking of my pickle-relish-and-rice invention.
But I digress.
This week’s culinary creations were Soon-to-Expire Soup and You-Call-That-“Tuna Casserole”?. (Note: Foreboding lends a distinctive ambiance to budget cooking!)
I bought a soon-to-expire pint of mixed celery, “baby” carrots, onion, and small red potatoes for less than $2. I cut the celery and potatoes a little smaller and tossed them in the little slow cooker always standing on the counter. I added leftover chili, a tablespoon of minced garlic, and about a cup of water. I added bit of salt, pepper, and spices. I let it simmer all day. Late in the afternoon I added 1/4 cup of rice because the soup looked too watery for my taste.
It was a hearty dish that tasted even better the next day… and the next.
I prepared whole-wheat udon noodles. Then I added generous pinches of freshly-grated Asiago cheese, some pre-seasoned lemon tuna, a little chopped green onion, and steamed Brussel sprouts, quartered. The lemony flavor mixed with the strong taste of B-sprouts and cheese, so it needed no sauce.
A fun freezer-find: raw cranberries. Boiled in a mix of water and cherry juice, they cracked and softened. I added a little stevia and oila! dessert and breakfast.