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Work With What You Have

Ever open your fridge to find that several items don’t have much longer on the shelf? You see the lettuce starting to wilt or the mushrooms starting to brown. Or did you not have time to make it to the store and you realize dinner time is in an hour? You open the fridge to see peppers, eggs and spinach as your only ingredients to go with. This happens to me at least once a week. This week I opened the fridge to find the mushrooms and sweet peppers needing to be cooked sooner or later if you know what I mean. So there I was in the kitchen with these two ingredients along with chicken and I needed to figure out my dinner options. This is when Google or Pinterest come into play…I simply typed chicken mushrooms and peppers and viola. There I had many dinner options to choose from and I ended up going with Paleo Plan’s Garlic Chicken, Red Peppers and Mushroom Sauce. This dish was full of flavor and spice and should be added to your meals this week or the next.

Here are several tips I have for you to help you “Work With What You Have.”

1. Do your best not to waste the food you already have. There are endless recipes to choose from or you can make up one to incorporate items you might have that need to be consumed soon. If all else fails…make an omelet…you can add anything in an omelet.

2. When using a recipe found through Google or Pinterest, look for high-rated recipes and make sure to read some reviews to make sure the recipe is worth trying.

3. If you do not have all the ingredients in the recipe, don’t throw the recipe out. The Garlic Chicken I made this week called for red peppers and I used tri-colored sweet peppers. I also adjusted the recipe by adding a few additional spices to both the chicken and veggies. We served this over thinly sliced brussel sprouts, but next time will try it over cauliflower rice.

4. And never forget that you can take your fresh items and freeze them if you are not going to cook with them soon. For instance, I was heading out of town a few weeks ago and we had pineapple, green beans and bananas that were going to go bad. So I cut up the pineapple, rinsed the green beans and placed the whole bananas in individual freezer bags and placed them in the fridge.

So next time, you are about to order take out because you feel like you don’t have anything in the fridge, re-look in your fridge and work with what you have. Next time you are about to throw out those veggies because they look like they won’t make it to tomorrow, find out how you can incorporate them into your meal tonight. Let’s do our best to figure out how not to waste and learn how to work with we have. Here is to another adventure in the kitchen…working with it and not wasting it!