Posts Tagged ‘pantry’

Waiting Games: Rounds 2 & 3

September 17, 2009

For those of you wondering how the pantry raid challenge is going thus far… I would have to answer, “why,¬†deliciously.

Round 2 (Tuesday): roasted red potatoes and turkey chili for one.

Chili: 1 cup cooked turkey, remaining 3/4 can diced tomatoes, 1 orange bell pepper, 1/2 can dark red kidney beans and 1/10 onion (really, this is ridiculous now, but required for Round 3 below).

Potatoes: Six red potatoes, salt, pepper, dried thyme, extra virgin olive oil

Cook: Combine chopped onions, bell pepper, red pepper flakes, salt and 2 tbs chili powder in small pot and cook over medium heat until soft, about 5-7 mins. Add tomatoes and kidney beans, reducing heat to med-low. Cover and simmer 10 minutes, adding water as needed. While chili cooks down, slice red potatoes into thin disks and toss with extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper and dried thyme. Spread over foiled baking sheet and roast at 450 degrees, 15 minutes. In last five minutes, add cooked ground turkey to chili along with remaining chili powder and simmer until warmed through. Serve over 1/2 roasted potatoes.

Round 3 (Wednesday): Pizza Panino

[because without gooey mozzarella cheese, it just isn’t pizza]

Ingredients: 1 whole wheat mini pizza crust, 3 tbs diced canned tomatoes, frozen spinach (thawed), 1/10 yellow onion, 1/2 bell pepper, 1/2 cup cooked ground turkey.

Cook: Sautee onion and bell pepper over medium-high heat until slightly caramelized; set aside. Oil nonstick grill pan and heat over medium. Cut pizza crust in half and top with above ingredients, as well as pinch of salt, pepper and dried oregano. Place panino on grill pan, top with second half of pizza crust and heavy pot lid (note: you can also just use a panini press if you have one). Leave alone to cook 2-3 mins until crust develops nice grill marks. Carefully remove from grill pan, flip panino and replace on other side, pressing down with weight of pot lid. Mangia!

***I must admit, after this last meal I’m starting to feel a little twinge of self-doubt. The options are starting to grow rather thin for my challenge of dinnertime variety. I’m down to 1 can diced tomatoes, 1/2 bell pepper, 1/2 bag frozen spinach, 3/4 box of rotini pasta, and about 2 cups of ground turkey – and not one, but two more meals to go.

Hmmm, perhaps I was too lofty in my goal…?

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Waiting Games: Round 1

September 16, 2009

(Monday): Whole wheat pasta with spinach, turkey, tomato and red pepper flakes. Straightforward enough – brown ground turkey in pan with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper while rotini cooks. Set aside. Strain 1/4 can diced tomatoes and add to small nonstick pan with 1 cup cooked turkey, red pepper flakes and frozen spinach until warmed through. Top over cooked pasta and add olive oil and pasta water to moisten.

Round 1 – DONE.

Anyone care to make this interesting?

Waiting Games

September 15, 2009

The week before any prolonged absence is always excruciatingly drawn out. Good news, on the one hand, for procrastinators like me who keep checklists largely unaccounted for until the frenzied hours just before their suggested airline check-in time. On the flipside, there’s only so much a girl can do to occupy the stretch of time between preparation and departure before being caught in a sort of limbo, the empty blur between anticipation and the practical present. At the moment, I’m staring blankly at a small pile accumulating near the doorway to my room – two swimsuits, a pair of sneakers, passport and travel-sized shampoo bottles – all of which destined to be ¬†crammed into a suitcase with the rest of my month-long supply closet; but with a whole four days still left to go, I can’t fully commit to compartmentalizing workweek from vacation just yet.

It’s the same kitchen conundrum, as well: buying groceries for one is tricky enough, and just how far leftovers will push chemical boundaries over a two-week hiatus is not an experiment I’m willing to test. But girl cannot live on dry cereal alone.

With this in mind, I’ve decided to initiate a little contest called ‘let’s see how long christie can subsist with only a handful of ingredients pilfered from the pantry cabinet.’

The challenge: produce FIVE genuine weeknight meals without a single grocery store stopover. I’m not promising culinary genius here, people – entries will be judged on nutrition and stomach-filling quotient. Points for creativity are all bonus.

The players: 2 cans diced tomatoes, 1 lb whole-wheat rotini pasta, 2 orange bell peppers, 1/5 yellow onion (seriously?), 1 can kidney beans, 6 [undersized] red potatoes, 1 frozen wheat pizza crust, 1 lb ground turkey, 1 package frozen spinach (okay, not from the cabinet, but the ONLY frozen food item in this list). Spice cabinet condiments are all within bounds.

Let the games begin.