Saturday, August 20, 2011

Cleaning Out the Crisper

Here's an example of what a vegan makes to feed herself and all the omnivores with whom she resides. I had already thrown together a tuna, noodle and cheese casserole with frozen organic mixed veggies for the omnis. In trying to get inspiration for vegan food, I opened the 'fridge and began pawing through the crisper. I was sad to find a rotten, forgotten bunch of watercress and a couple of moldy halves of lemons which I donated to the "round file" as my husband calls it (the trashcan). Pawing deeper still, I happily encountered an unopened carton of mushrooms and half a cabbage, all still in fine shape despite the fact that I couldn't really remember when I had purchased them or what I had done with the other half of the cabbage.

I am going to get organized -- I really am now that the kids are back at school. This first week was mostly a catch-up on backed-up laundry, bills and untended issues such as "maybe it's time again to consider another refi" -- 3.25% anyone?? The whole thing makes me begin to twitch, but it must be addressed. I digress . . .

This week I vow to clean out the refrigerators and pantry, and with the knowledge of what is there already, will strive to proactively plan some menus rather than just throwing what looks pretty into my shopping cart.

But the other day, prior to the big Salinas pantry clean-up, I just needed to salvage whatever still contained nutritive properties. I warmed up the rest of the sourdough bread (I know -- I've got to stop eating that white bread -- I will, this was the last bit of it!) and made two sautees -- shallot, mushroom and white bean with lots of earth balance, and cabbage and leeks with shoyu and the juice of half a lemon (fresh, not moldy!).

Beans on bread are really satisfying and shockingly delicious. That's what my main course was, with the cabbage mixture on the side, and the omnis ate the tuna casserole with my vegan food as their sides. The husband particularly liked the cabbage, which he deemed, "an investment in tomorrow," I know he means that quite literally, which is probably too much information.

After the meal, when the bread was finally all gone, I decided to reinvent the mushroom melange again.   Stay tuned to see its next incarnation. Waste not, want not!