Thursday, December 8, 2011

Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard 12/8/11

Well it is time again to recap what came out of the cupboard and what went in this week.  I am afraid there has been more coming out than going in.

Thursday night was an experimental night with a new recipe.  Szechwan Chicken Stir fry over rice.  Some of the $.87 red pepper went into it.  It is hard to put a price on this as there was so much of a little of this and a little of that but I would guesstimate no more than $3.00 and it will reappear later.
Friday night was baked pork chops with my stove top stuffing and homemade Condensed Cream Soup.  Fried corn with red pepper.  Cost $3

Stuffing Mix
Enough stale but not dry bread to make 18C of cubes
(about 18-20 slices of bread cut into 1/4" cubes)
6 T dried parsley
2 1/2 tsp poultry seasoning
2 tsp crumbled sage
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1tsp dried thyme
Place all but bread in food processor and process until power.  A spice grinder will do the same.
Mix seasoning and bread cubes to coat all the cubes evenly
Spread on a cookie sheet and allow to dry completely.
to make there are 2 ways with fresh celery and onions or with dried
If fresh
sweat 1/2 C chopped celery and 1/4 C chopped onion in 5T butter until translucent in a sauce pan
Add 1 1/2C chicken stock to pan, bring to a boil stir in 4 C of bread cubes, remove from heat, cover and let set 5minutes.  Fluff with a fork and serve.
If Dry
Add 1 1/2 C of chicken stock and 5T of butter to a sauce pan add 2T dried celery and 1T dried onion to pan, bring to a boil and let boil 2 minutes.  Add cubes as above.

Condensed cream of Mushroom Soup
4-5 slices of dried muchrooms
Pour 1 Cup of boiling water over mushrooms and allow to steep 1/2 hour
Remove mushrooms and chop
Place 1/3 of soup mix in a pan
Be sure you still have 1 C of mushroom stock.  If not add water to make 1 C
Slowly stir stock into soup mix and cook over medium heat until thick  Add chopped mushrooms
To Assemble
Brown pork chops, lay out in a baking pan, pour soup over pork chops then cover with stuffing mix. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees of 45 minutes or until pork shops are done.

Saturday night was Spaghetti( Homemade with tomatoes from the garden) with meat balls for 4.  Loaf of fresh made French Bread.  Cost $3.00.  This will be seen again.

Sunday Night yep that Szechsan Stir Fry showed up again for brother and French Bread.  Had to cook more rice $.35.  Also made 1 TV dinner for the freezer.  I sorta didn't eat.

Monday night Brother had a repeat on the Spaghetti and Meatballs and French Bread plus one TV dinner in the freezer of just Spaghetti and sauce.  No cost.  I skipped eating again.

Tuesday night Meat Loaf with gravy, mashed potatoes and green beans Almondine. (previously canned)  Parts of those red peppers showed up again.  Cost $3.75 But watch for that meat loaf to appear again soon.

Just of laughs I have to share one of my loaves of bread from the weekend.  I normally make fresh bread to have for sandwiches of my brother over the weekend.  We never finish a loaf before it gets stale so I bought some smaller pans.  Well it sorta worked.  I put about 14 oz. of bread dough in one pan.
 Looks pretty good, right?
But here is the laugh.  The other side.  I had cut a slash length wise across the top of the bread.  It rose so much it actually peeled and separated one top side right off the bread.

Wednesday night is just me for dinner.  I made shrimp scampi over rice with basil/garlic butter I had stashed in the freezer and a lettuce wedge with creamy French Dressing that I made a week or so ago.

I was bad at the grocery store this week.  I actually bought a loaf of bread for the weekend but I will be away all day Saturday and the only think my brother is capable of getting himself for lunch is a sandwich and he can't cut fresh bread for himself and even if I did it early he might not figure it out.  I also put up 4 meals of chicken breasts, 2 meals for just me of liver and 4 meals of cube steak.  (a bit pricey but have to splurge once in a while)  Total groceries $37.00.  That did include $8 for 2 pounds of cheese with I have an addiction for.

Also made sugar free chocolate syrup for chocolate milk and sugar free cocoa mix but will post that this coming week in a separate post.

Don't forget to drop by  The Gardener of Eden and see what others are putting up, what they are using from their summer stash and maybe share some recipes.


  1. What a great week in meals. You clearly keep your family well fed!

  2. You always amaze me Wilderness. Always a great meal on a tight budget!

  3. yet another week of great meals!I hope you are feeling okay as i noticed you skipped a few meals. I hope all is well

  4. Jody thanks. I always vowed not matter how little I had I would keep warm and eat well.

    Robin thanks. A little planning goes a long way. Most spend a good percentage of their food budget on wasted food. I am guilty of that sometimes and makes me very angry.

    Mrs. Pickles, I am fine. Did have an intestinal bug for about a week but I am just a snacker once in a while or sometimes I eat something for lunch and then don't eat dinner. We are small eaters which helps. What you see on a plate in a picture is what we eat. Very rarely do either of us go back for seconds.

  5. I had to laugh when you said your brother can't cut fresh bread! So typical! :) I have found that when I make bread it's a little too much for us, too, so usually I freeze half immediately and pull it out when the first half is getting low. I have been contemplating about making my own condensed soups, too. You make it seem easy!

  6. Holly my brother is mentally challenged. The mind of a child in a 64 year old body. I am his caregiver and have been for over 15 years since our parents passed away. I have to plan food that he can do for himself like a sandwich which he can make for lunch and a muffin and milk for breakfast if I am going to be away from the house at meal time. He can't even work the microwave. Believe me I have tried.

    I love the soup. Would recommend you make a small batch the first time to see if you like the seasoning in it. I find the thyme to be a little over powering so I now leave that out. Have found another mix recipe that I haven't checked out yet and use it for the condensed soup, alfredo and a lot of other things but alfredo is so easy to make as you want it can't see the point. My next adventure is rice a roni mixes and the packaged pasta mixes. My son cooks a lot of them for himself and he really can't afford the package food but living alone and working it is easy for him with his protein when he gets home from work since he is a brittle diabetic and has to eat on time.

  7. Wonderful week of good eating. Sorry to hear you had a bit of a tummy bug this week. I have been making a hybrid of the traditional no knead bread (our absolute favorite recipe) with the "bread in five minutes" method that has been making the rounds more recently. The result is I bake bread a little more often through the week, in much smaller loaves, and the dough is waiting for me in the fridge. Beautiful artisan style bread without fuss. I wanted to get to more frequent but much smaller loaves - but it has to work with my professional working life such that I cannot nurse dough along during the work week.

  8. Sorry to hear about your intestinal bug but am glad you are fine now.
    Your brother is so fortunate to have such a caring sister and one who not only is a great cook and but knows about healthy eating too. I admire your dedication.
    We all need to splurge once in a while, it's good for the soul.

  9. Laura I make that bread quite often. In fact it is the one listed on the side of blog. I haven't done it lately because the bowl takes up so much room in the frig. I even make it in regular loaf pans sometimes. About the only way we use bread is in sandwiches for DB on the weekend and the little round loaf doesn't work out so well. However I have put that white dough in half of the pan and the rye in the other half of the pan and baked them that way. I wish you could buy a bread pan the same width and depth of a regular pan but only half as long. That would work great. I sometimes make French Bread in the long French Bread pans but make each log into 3 logs and then they come apart when they are cooked and freeze them and they haven't been cut.

    Norma DB is no big deal. I have very little desire to go much of anywhere and he does goes to our younger brothers house once a year for about a month usually in the summer then I run wild and have no discipline at all and that is bad. LOL