Sunday, 4 March 2012

Desperation Cooking

I really love desperation cooking. Sometimes the day before a food shop, most often when hungover. It really is an exciting challenge.

What is desperation cooking?

It's a phrase I made up... just now. But to me it's very similar to the Ready Steady Cook mystery bag

So, it's when you have almost nothing in the kitchen. No ready meals, or quick to defrost easiness. No prime cuts. No Pot Noodles to fall back onto. Yes: using noting but your food-skills you create a meal from... not much at all.

I have never had a problem with this. Its such a fun game to play (even when I have a foggy head, and only a few hours sleep). And this weekend I challenged myself twice.

Before I start, I must say we are very lucky in that we always have a well stocked spice cupboard, always have virgin olive oil, butter, onions- and this is a great help.

Saturday night dinner: Spicy Chinese Chicken soup with clear Sweet Potato noodles.

I had: stock cubes, canned carrot, mushrooms, chilli, chicken pieces, sweet potato starch noodles (a great item I discovered in the Asian grocery store: gluten free, and cheap as anything), sesame oil.

I created a gorgeous soup (good for re-hydrating, and filling the post-drink salt cravings). I simply created the soup base with water, stock cubes, onion, chilli, carrot and mushroom. Pan-fried the chicken pieces then shredded the meat. Added this meat and the noodles to the soup base and wha-la!

Lunch: Sunday: Pasta with squash, and tuna in a cream sauce.

This one was so tasty. Boiled off the gluten-free pasta and squash in salted water. Drained. Added creme fraiche, seasoned with tonnes of salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. Stirred through canned tuna pieces. It was just amazing.

I find this really easy to do. But know that most people can look at a cupboard or a fridge 75% stocked and find 'nothing to eat'.

Are you a desperation cooking expert?

Do you have any desperation key recipes?

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