I'm feeling pretty good about the fact that I haven't done much grocery shopping to speak of since December 9. Heck yeah! Using up those pantry foods! Of course, all that saved money is just going towards Christmas presents and the car insurance that's due this month (seriously? December must be the worst month to have to pay car insurance).
I did buy some rice milk for the kids and some bread for lunchbox meals. But it's been pretty strictly pantry food for the last week. Here's what we've enjoyed:
On Sunday I made the "Everyday Chipotle Tamales" from Veganomicon with only a few minor changes to the recipe to account for missing ingredients. Wow! These were awesome! I ended up with a ton since I had only used 1/2 of the filling when all the masa was used up. So I prepped another round of masa and just froze a ton of tamales for another day. The kids really enjoyed unwrapping the little tamale presents.
On Monday night we enjoyed basmati rice with a crockpot dal. I threw together a can of coconut milk with all of the rest of our red lentils, carrots, parsnips and lots of frozen kale. I used a few tablespoons of red curry paste and some extra ginger and just let it cook all day long. I've been loving this with some mango pickle in my lunch box this week. And it's super fun to dip papadums into.
Last night I had a hankering for tortilla soup, but didn't have tortillas, cilantro, avocado, corn, zucchini or really any of the fun ingredients I usually add to this dish. But I went ahead and made the broth with pureed dried New Mexican chiles, onions, garlic, epazote and tomatoes. Then I added some soaked black beans and pressure cooked it up for a quick dinner. This has got to be the most flavorful soup base ever! It definitely felt like it was missing something, but luckily my sweetie showed up with some Whole Grain Milling Co. chips for me to crush in the soup. That made all the difference!
It basically looks and tastes like a really rich and flavorful black bean soup. This is a shot from my desk at work today. My lunch? "tortilla" soup, satsuma mandarin, almonds & craisins, oatmeal chocolate chip cookies.
I'm going to have to purchase some veggies soon here before things get too boring. We've got a bit of cabbage, a sad little delicata squash, lots of carrots from the garden and frozen kale. But I'm out of grapefruits and my veggie intake needs to expand beyond pickled okra and green beans, so things are going to get desperate pretty quick here.