Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Switching The Menu Plan

I don't usually photograph food, but here we are. 

firmly in the "tastes better than it looks" category

Yesterday I finally got round to using up some of the veg I brought home with me the other week. It was a cool morning so I thought a spot of cooking was probably a good idea. A few things have meant changes to the menu plan, but because the plan is built around the pantry it means it's easy to be flexible. In this case we had to change to make the best of the fresh things we had in, sometimes we adapt due to changes in schedule. So, this week we're having chilli instead of shepherdess pie, lentil curry rather than dhal, and pasties with soup rather than pasties with potatoes. 

This is what I had - 

2 leeks
5 potatoes
a small turnip
a squash
7 mushrooms
loads of onions
half a celeriac
half a cauli
7 sprouts
2 peppers

I made soup from some of the squash, a leek, onions and the celeriac, along with some lentils and stuff from the pantry. I made a nice big chilli with the rest of the squash, onion, mushrooms, and a pepper. I stuck the veg in the oven then when it was starting to look nice added some spicy chutney, tomatoes, stock, spices, a few lentils and two tins of beans, left it in the oven while I cooked the nut roast and that was that. The cauli, turnip, two spuds and the sprouts went with a nut roast, gravy and frozen peas for last night's tea (roast was planned for Sunday but everything had been pushed along a day as we didn't have tea on Friday). 

The other leeks and mushrooms will go with some butterbeans and a mustardy sauce for the freezer. Finally the other spuds, onion and some frozen peas and sweetcorn will be made into pasties with some puff pastry we have in the freezer and some spices so we have something to take with the soup when we go to Workington on Friday night. We have bread in the freezer so we'll take that too. 

Dan turned up last night with 4 fresh chillies, someone in his office had left a tub of them for people to take home, so he did! They'll be useful for the easy everyday lentil curry from Anjum's Indian Vegetarian Feast book. the only fresh ingredients are onions and chillies (and most of the time I use dried chilli instead), the rest is pantry stuff.

After all this I'll still have a yellow pepper and some onions, plus some peas and sweetcorn in the freezer. I think we'll go shopping for fresh stuff on Monday or Tuesday with just a stop off tomorrow for bunny greens, hair gel and milk. 


  1. Your stew looks very appetizing - just like things we eat - I love Autumn / winter stews full of root veg and beans. I have been making Nut Roast for a few days now but it is not something I can make easily and quickly after work and it keeps getting moved on a day!

    1. Thanks. I know the feeling, I put something off last month for about three weeks until I had no choice but to cook it as it was all I had in. The stew was very nice, we had it with rice last night, we're having it with a jacket potato tonight, and there's another portion for the freezer, so I'm very happy.

      By the way, I commented on your last post but forgot to change the name from my old wordpress one, so the comment by one hour glass is me!

  2. I did wonder! And sorry to hear about your friend - you really do lose more in a fire I would think as in a flood it usually only everything low down. It has taught me to keep anything precious high up on a shelf and never leave anything lying around on the floor just in case.

    1. Yes, we've never had such a terrible thing happen but I do keep our computer back up in one of the bedrooms so it's on a different floor to the computer and things like that.

      I think the water from the fire being extinguished did almost as much damage as the smoke. I really feel for her, I was amazed when she nipped into the shop how many of the other staff said they didn't have contents insurance either. Scary.

  3. PS I like the idea of the rice one night and jackets the next - I have done this with curry before but not tried it with stew type meals. In fact we sometimes have the 2nd night of curry with taco shells instead of rice - a bit of a mix of countries but tastes good.

    1. I do that too. A packet of tortillas or tacos are enough for two meals but we don't always want exactly the same thing so I switch it up. I will never claim to be an authentic cook!

      We don't mind eating leftovers, Dan always says as long as there's something to eat he's not bothered at all, but I like to vary things a little bit just to prevent boredom.

  4. That looks really tasty to me. Note to self, use more beans, they are the forgotten heroes in my veggie kitchen (unless we're talking baked beans!).

    1. Thanks. I avoided beans for years, now I wish I'd started eating them sooner. They're just so quick and easy.