October 15, 2012

Recipe Game Time

When Tice was still in Colorado and I was home alone for a week I decided to take a look through our freezer to see what sort of stuff I had forgotten we had in there.  I found some Italian sausage meatballs, some pasta sauce, and some green curry chicken.  All I had to do was cook some pasta and some rice and I was able to eat off of the pasta and curry for days!  That then got me to thinking, what else could I make with the items already in our fridge, pantry, and freezer?  I made some simple rules so that this game didn’t vanish after a meal or two.  Here are the rules I came up with:
I can purchase one item per dish to help round it out, i.e. lettuce to make a salad
Double points if what I purchase for one recipe can also be used at the one item needed for another
I only have $30 a week to spend on any additional items I need to purchase.  The $30 also needs to cover weekly necessities such as milk.
So far I have been playing this game for exactly one day and have made the following:
Pumpkin Scones with Spiced Glaze
I used the following recipe, via Pinterest.  I had all of the necessary ingredients in the house
Chicken thighs with Grandma’s Noodles
Items Needed:
Water (Check)
Chicken Thighs (Check)
Chicken Bouillon Cubes- 4 of them (Check)
Grandma’s Brand Egg Noodles (Check)
Flour (Check)
Season Salt (Check)
I started with a large pot of boiling water, 6 cups, then added the bouillon cubes.  I let the bouillon dissolve, slide in the two chicken thighs and then added the noodles which I had lightly tossed in a couple tablespoons of flour. Finally I tossed in a small amount of season salt and let the mixture cook for 3o minutes.  Once the mixture was cooked I pulled out the chicken thighs and shred them with my fingers and then tossed them back in.  Typically my mom served this thick stew over mashed potatoes so I used $4.47 to purchase russet potatoes and a gallon of milk. 
And for dinner I made,

Sun Dried Tomato Ravioli with Garlic Toast:
Items Needed:
Mozzarella (I used a stick of string cheese and cut them into small disks, one disk for each ravioli- Check)
Romano Cheese (Check)
Wonton Disks (Check)
Sun Dried Tomatoes (Check)
Egg (Check)
Balsamic Vinegar (Check)
Water (Check)
Salt (Check)
Garlic (Check)
Chiabata Rolls (Check)
I began by laying out all of the wonton disks of pasta, I gave each of us five ravioli each so I laid out 20 disks.  Then I chopped up the string cheese, the sun dried tomatoes, grated some of the Romano cheese and divided them each into small piles.  Then I whisked together an egg and some water to create an egg wash.  I filled every other disk with a small amount of tomatoes, Romano cheese, and a piece of mozzarella.  Once the filling was complete I brushed the egg wash around every disk and then sealed each ravioli together with a fork.  Once they were sealed I placed them in salted, boiling water and cooked them until they rose to the top of the boiling water.  For a sauce I took about a ¼ cup of balsamic vinegar and placed it in a large non-stick pan and placed it over medium low heat to reduce.  The vinegar turned into this thick syrup which I then drizzled over the tops of the ravioli.  I also served garlic toast on the side, which was super simple to make.  I just sliced two chibatta rolls in half, toasted them in our toaster and as soon as they were toasted, rubbed them with a clove of fresh garlic.  Tice and I both through that they were delish!
On my docket for the remainder of the week I plan on cooking the following:
  1. Homemade Soft Pretzels with Warm Beer Fondue- I need to double check but I think I need yeast as well as 2% Cheddar/Colby blend cheese.  If that is the case I will be considering the pretzels one item and the fondue another so that I am not breaking my rule of only one new item to complete.
  2. Korean Beef over Jasmine Rice (I need green onions)
  3. Bacon Butternut Squash Risotto (Need to purchase bacon)
  4. Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole (May need to purchase Swiss cheese)
  5. Semi Homemade French Onion Soup (I need onions and Swiss cheese but I am already purchasing the swiss cheese for the casserole so I'm good to go!)
Let me know- would this be something you would consider trying?  How long do you think you could make it without having to purchase more then one item per meal?