Thrift in the kitchen isn't anything to do with spending as little as possible. It is about making the most of whatever food you have, be it the best sirloin or a bag of lentils. It means using up leftovers. I really enjoy finding a creative use for my leftovers. It is very satisfying to create a new dish that tastes as good, and sometimes better than the original.
Yesterday a look in my extremely tidy fridge :o) revealed a tub of beef stew leftover from Saturday's dinner and tub of pizza sauce leftover from my daughter's birthday meal on Thursday. A ferret through my freezer resulted in a tub of bean stew leftover from a meal earlier in the week. Red Soup. I grabbed a tub of duck stock from the freezer and threw the contents of all four tubs into a pot and heated them gently. Delicious beef, bean and tomato soup for lunch. And there was some leftover for my lunch today. Leftover leftovers.
There was also a tub of leftover mash in the fridge from a sausage and mash meal we had on Friday, which, incidentally, I served with two small tubs of frozen leftover gravy. I had minced lamb planned for dinner yesterday evening so I added the mash to the mince, blitzed some dried apricots, onion and garlic in the food processor, added some spices (cumin, cinnamon and allspice) and some salt.
And made meatballs.
I browned them and then put them in the oven to cook through.
A tub of hummus was two days past its use-by date so I mixed it with some yogurt which didn't have a use-by date on it because I forgot to write one on it when I made it :o) - I don't take much notice of use-by dates. It made a lovely sauce to go with the meatballs. The meatballs were very good.
There were a few meatballs leftover, they have gone in the boys' lunchboxes.
I had some leftover grated mozzarella (from the birthday pizza). I used it to make little pitta pizzas for today's lunchboxes.
There was quite a lot of rice leftover from our meatball meal. This was intentional. I often make extra rice or mash to use in another meal. I had lots of eggs and some home-sprouted bean sprouts. A little bacon and some more veg and a lovely supper of egg-fried rice can be had for very little effort.