LHL readers, please welcome Cindy and thanks to her for this great guest post!
Tonight we had garbage stew for supper. Sounds yummy, right? Actually it was quite tasty and paired very well with a fresh loaf of honey oat bread from the bread machine.
I picked up a handy tip in one of the many “How to Reduce Your Grocery Budget” articles and books I have thumbed through. Place a glass jar with a lid in your freezer and whenever you have just a spoonful of leftover vegetables, broth, soup, gravy, meat or just about anything that goes well together, put them in the jar instead of in a container in the fridge to grow mold and be thrown out in a month (if you’re good about cleaning your fridge regularly). In our house, there’s always a bit of something, especially vegetables, which never get taken back out of the fridge and eaten. Main dishes become someone’s next-day lunch, but no one remembers to grab the bit of peas or corn that was served with that main dish. I always felt guilty throwing those bits away, so the idea of having a free meal at the end of a month or two was pretty appealing.
When I make my stew, I start with water and bouillon cubes, throw in a couple cubed potatoes and carrots, some chopped onion and garlic and whatever is in the garbage jar. Sometimes I have some leftover taco meat or a piece of roast in the fridge to add to it. After the raw veggies get soft, I taste test and add some seasonings (N’Orleans Cajun, onion powder, garlic powder, pepper, salt, whatever suits me). It never turns out quite the same twice, but it almost always is a hit, especially when served with fresh bread on a cool evening. And the best part is, I have a very inexpensive meal to stretch a tight budget week and don’t have to feel bad about wasting food.
Do you make “Garbage Soup”? What’s your frugal go-to meal?