WIAW 143 – December!

WIAW 143 - December

I have been writing What I Ate Wednesday posts for three years, now!

From that first post:

 I thought it might be a good way to illustrate the way I cook and eat. Soups and leftovers for lunch all winter, salads all summer. Food I’ve cooked turning up in different ways – yes, that’s last week’s pot roast – or, this week, turkey – shredded into the beans… And for me, it will be fun to look back and say “Oh, right, that’s what I did that time – I liked it!” (Or I didn’t like it… you’ll probably see a few of the “Well, it wasn’t bad…” meals I might not normally write about…)

And that is, indeed, the way it has worked.

For me, it has been a way to show you more or less typical meals, to see what I eat (and how that has or has not changed – sometimes I look back and wonder why I stopped this or if I really eat that as often as it seems.) Occasionally it’s a way to show you something I’m working on.

For you – well, enough of you do read it that it must be interesting! Yes, this is how to use those burger crumbles, oh, maybe that would be a nice combination for dinner, maybe you’re even interested in the weather in New York City?

So now, it’s December and we have yet to go down to freezing. Weird… (The northern suburbs have had a touch of snow – not us.) I know it is winter because it is dark by 5:00, but that’s about it… I should really try to get some snow boots anyhow (the zipper is jamming on my old ones) but it’s hard to convince myself that I’ll need them!

What I Ate

WIAW 143 - December

And… I made muffins, again. These finished up this batch of corn muffin mix – I’m about to launch into gingerbread season (I will convince myself it’s December!) and the muffins, and eventually waffles I made last year. I got some protein powder again for my shakes – used almond milk and orange juice, this time. And I have no idea why that coffee looks like hot chocolate – it is coffee, though I’m drinking it darker than I used to.

WIAW 143 - December

Lunch was a leftover pork chop (cut up to heat quickly) and mashed potatoes. And the last tomato… sigh… I won’t get a good fresh tomato for another seven months, though I can’t really complain – I don’t usually eat the last in December! You will start seeing canned tomatoes in quite a few dishes, though. I think they are much better than the poor pink balls I see in stores around here.

WIAW 143 - December

Well, in fact, dinner. OK, I’d seen the Stuffed Spaghetti Squash idea on Pinterest and in other blogs. Most of the ones I had were too big for two, but this one was just right, and it made an easy dinner – I tossed some of those burger crumbles and a cube of frozen basil into a pot with a can of diced tomatoes to heat up while I cut, cleaned, and microwaved a spaghetti squash. Dinner in maybe 20 minutes?

Peppers, I should have remembered hot peppers… This year we got surprisingly few hot peppers (in the past there have been plenty, but most people didn’t want much. We cleaned up, but I guess the farmer decided to pull back…) but on the very last day we got a pile of dried red peppers! Each one is large enough for a whole soup pot, so I’ll probably crush at least some of them – watch for this to be the Year of the Red Pepper Flakes!

So I guess this is an anniversary waltz, and a thank you and shout out to Jenn at Peas and Crayons who started this party in the first place! (Though her own life has moved on… A toddler will do that.)

WIAW 143 - December

 

WIAW 142

Between holidays, migraines, and the last of the CSA, I’ve been distracted…

WIAW 142

We have a dozen squash. Well, not any more – about half have been roasted, pureed, and frozen, but I still have the rest, along with five cabbages. The freezer is packed… roasted peppers, and frozen herbs, and sauteed celery and onion and mirepoix… Several gallon bags of the green muffins, all that squash, and more!

WIAW 142

So – cut to the food. I had some breakfast sausage for Thanksgiving, and have enjoyed the rest of it since. (It always seems a treat to me!) So sausage and eggs, and corn muffins. I bet you thought I’d forgotten how to make muffins… with this grits kick I’ve been on. Honestly, grits is easier, first thing in the morning – but I do enjoy muffins, and finally made another batch of my mix (to make cornbread stuffing) so I will bake them in the morning… so they’ll turn up again.

WIAW 142

I have to get my act together on lunch. I’m not sure why it suddenly feels complicated – possibly because we’re coming out of salad season but I haven’t really felt like soup… so now I’m trying to pull together grain bowls. When I have all the ingredients I can assemble one in minutes – and that’s supposed to be one of my strengths – but that overstuffed freezer means I’ve had less cooked meat and such on hand then usual. But organizing it, I found green beans hiding in the back, which really should be eaten – so I combined them with some chick peas. I had cooked an extra couple of pork hops a day or two earlier, so ate some of that, and added a touch of the sauce they’d cooked in. All over brown rice… fast and easy.

WIAW 142

Gluten free pasta has been an issue for me. We like pasta firmer than I’ve been able to get with rice pasta. We found that corn pasta can work, but it’s not sold in any store convenient to us. Every once in a while we grab some when we have a chance, and then carefully horde it… and I just found that I did have another pound tucked away behind some canisters. I had also just made the Burger Crumbles I wrote about, and had been planning to use them for dinner. And then I had the migraine hit just as I was about to cook – so Rich got to do his thing. A mix of turkey and tofu crumbles, a jar of supermarket sauce, and ziti – dinner in the time it took to cook the pasta, while I sat down and took my meds. And that’s what it’s all about…

So, Jenn’s WIAW party is at Laura’s today… Come join us, see what other people are eating! (I love getting ideas – like grain bowls, for example – from other people.)

 

WIAW 142

 

Home Cooked Burger Crumbles

Precook meat or veggie crumbles to keep in the freezer for easy meals on a busy day!

Precook meat or veggie crumbles to keep in the freezer for easy meals on a busy day!

See, the thing is, I wasn’t even sure what to call this… I mean, it’s barely a recipe, you can make it with any kind of ground meat or none at all (see the tofu version below) it’s really an ingredient for other recipes… Rich suggested Burger, as burgers have transcended ingredients but still convey the idea of ground meat or a substitute, so I’m going with that. Continue reading

WIAW 141

WIAW 141

So there we go – I launched my first – free – E-Course!

Modular Meals: Saving Time in the Holidays. It’s a stripped down version of the planning for meals concept I follow, using more commercial products than I usually eat, because we’re coming into the crazy season and who has time to do much cooking? But we all start somewhere…  And, speaking of starting, this is a start for me, and it went off without – well… with a very minor hitch that I caught and corrected immediately. Continue reading