Monday, September 29, 2014

Inside My Fridge - September 29, 2014

Hurrah! I cleaned out the fridge!

I've got a pot of beans in the back, and I think I'm going to try some red bean hummus. I've become a bean convert after reading (and subsequently purchasing) An Everlasting Meal; cooking them with Tamar Adler's method and mindset yields an abundance of blessings, for both palate and soul.

It's a busy week, but I think we're in good shape. In the foil packs are leftover chicken ( which I am planing to freeze for easy chicken-noodle soup on the first chilly/rainy day) and country ribs (which I can't eat so spouse will probably take for lunch). We've got plenty of fruit (there are still local-ish peaches here, but they're going fast), cucumbers, squash, tons of yellow peppers from my dad, two pints of yogurt and a little half-pint of almond pesto. You can see some homemade sauerkraut on the top shelf; I've been making an active effort to consume more fermented items, and find that this crunchy kraut is great on a sandwich!

Also (not pictured) I have my first butternut and acorn squash, though I know I'll pick up several more at our last Farmer's Market. I'm thinking to do soup with white beans for the acorn squash, and probably roast the butternut and toss with pasta and the rest of that leftover chicken. I also have a few Brandywines I need to pick before the critters get to them and one gorgeous eggplant that will probably have to become Eggplant Parmesan.

I really love Eggplant Parm, but if no one else was enthusiastic about it, I'd probably make that dish once during the growing season, and just roast or sauté the eggplant the rest of the time (which the kids will eat, but not much and not with gusto). This will be the third time this summer for me to make this dish, and it's because...well, who could say "no" to a 6-year-old who begs for eggplant? Not me!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Inside My Fridge - August 15, 2014

Inside My Fridge

Why do I share pictures of what's inside my fridge? Well, as I said on my first post on the subject (four years ago), I initially planned for this to be a weekly series. In America, where children routinely go hungry each day, we throw away almost half of our food. It boggles the mind. 

Frugality is not just about "not buying stuff" or "not spending money," but about using what we have, using it all. To that end, a weekly cleaning and assessment of the fridge ensures that we find items before they go bad, so that we can use them up. The weekly "Inside My Fridge" picture was meant to be a vehicle for me for refrigerator cleaning, and some meal planning. If you click on the "Inside My Fridge" tab at the top of this blog, however, you'll see that I quickly abandoned the weekly commitment.

I didn't clean my fridge pre-picture, but I have a pretty good idea of what's in most of the fridge right now. The majority of those tomatoes will go into a sauce for pizza tonight. Pizza is also the plan for the chunks of fresh mozzarella in the jar by the peanut butter, and for the roasted zucchini slices in the jar to the left of the basket of oranges. I ran out of containers, so my cantaloupe is covered with plastic wrap; I'm happy to report that plastic wrap is used rarely in our home these days.

I've been experimenting with sourdough lately, so you can see my jar up yeast up there on the top shelf, next to a "mixed berry" homemade yogurt. The white crock is full of yogurt to strain/flavor tomorrow. Today, I'm making pickles with cucumbers, and with onions/peppers!

If you haven't seen a fridge picture in a while, send me a challenge! Post on my Facebook page Becky's Favorite Things: and ask me to post a picture....right now!, or post your own there if you're feelin' froggy.

And if you find refrigerators as fascinating as I do, you'll enjoy visiting my initial inspiration for the "Inside My Fridge" project, Mark Menjivar's "You Are What You Eat" project (warning: his pictures are much more professional than mine!).

Monday, July 28, 2014

My Neighbor's Garden: tomato in the flowerbed

Edible Landscaping
My very first post on this blog was about planting edible landscaping, and my first foray into that endeavor was putting squash into my flowerbeds. In the four years since, I've gradually been digging up and planting my only prime, full-sun space...which is the front yard. 

Now, I live in a rural/suburban area, and several of my neighbors have always had gardens. But this year, I've seen all sorts of wonderful edibles springing up in front of people's houses, and I decided I want to start sharing some of them. The house above is one I pass by daily, when I take my dog for a walk. Sometimes I chat with an older gentleman who has a morning cigarette on his porch. There are always lovely flowers/bulbs blooming here, and it's always a treat to pass by. This year, I was really pleased to see a few tomato plants keeping the flowers company (you can spot a few ripe ones if you look closely!).

Keep it growing folks!