Friday, October 31, 2008

Hot & Hearty "Pantry" Meal

Our dinner last night was a blessing. I didn’t know what I would fix until I threw this together! I know many prefer cooking this way because it can keep things from being boring but I am a planner… big time. I like knowing ahead of time what we’ll be eating with few exceptions. I mean, there are many times when I’ll decide to bake something out of the blue or make something new but my meals are not by the seat of my pants. Smile.

Anyway, our food budget has been pretty tight and the last time I purchased groceries was October 3rd from Sam’s. They’ve held out very well but we were getting low enough to get creative and I was just… not there.

Well, I pulled the left over spaghetti and sauce from our fridge. Did I already mention finding some mozzarella in the freezer I had forgotten I stashed? I grabbed a bag of that and greased a 9 X 13 baking dish. I emptied the bag of spaghetti, sprinkled some cheese, and covered with sauce. The sauce was too thick and there wasn’t enough to cover so I borrowed an idea I grew up watching my mom use and added some hot water. Perfect consistency and it covered the pasta completely. I covered all with the rest of the cheese and baked at 350 degrees for 35 minutes. It looked really delicious and tasted it and I served it with a Romaine salad. I found the lettuce in the fridge and it looked too plain by itself so I grabbed the last bit of Feta cheese from our container and sprinkled it on. We topped it with Ranch Lauren made the day before (added a bit of water to this as well) and some balsamic vinegar. Very satisfying meal!

I like the part of the following quote speaking of using "every wholesome article of food" but am certainly not implying anyone who might chance upon reading this is ignorant if they don't. Just a note so you know :)

“It may be safely averred that good cookery is the best and truest economy, turning to full account every wholesome article of food, and converting into palatable meals what the ignorant either render uneatable or throw away in disdain.”Eliza Acton, Modern Cookery for Private Families (1845)

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