My husband Michael and I had planned to go out for dinner the other night but at the last minute he had to attend a business meeting, so I was on my own with no food plans on the horizon.
It would have been easy to order in a pizza or go grab a burger or open a can of chili. Lots of people who eat alone do just that. Maybe you are one of them. But I want to encourage you to think of times like these as opportunities to let your culinary creative juices flow. That’s what I did. I looked in my fridge and said, “What can I use up and how can I make it delicious?”
This is what I call cooking “booke” – making up a dish from whatever you have on hand in your fridge and cupboards.
Not only can it be fun and satisfying to create a dish on the fly, I guarantee that it will be more nutritionally sound – fresh, less salt, fat, etc.
In my fridge that night I had a spinach/mozzarella sausage, a couple of mushrooms, an onion, some small yellow peppers, kale, white wine and a half-jar of Alfredo sauce. On the counter I had a dozen or so grape tomatoes shriveling in a container and a head of garlic.
So … if it were you, what would you do with these ingredients?
Well, a few options could be: If you had a tortilla or two in the fridge, you could make a pizza. Or if you had a can of white beans or garbanzo beans and some chicken stock in the cupboard, you could make a great soup.
Other ideas?? Let me know!
I chose to sauté the veggies, add in the sausage (sliced) along with a bit of white wine and some Alfredo sauce. Then I boiled brown rice penne pasta I had in the cupboard and tossed everything together. Oh. My. Gosh. It was delicious. I mean really, really delicious.
I enjoyed this dish for many reasons:
1. It tasted great.
2. I used up bits and pieces of stuff from my fridge.
3. It was fresh and nutritionally balanced.
4. I created something new!
5. And, I affirmed to myself, once again, that “booke” cooking is the bomb.
Don’t be afraid. Don’t be lazy. Be brave and creative, and go cook some “booke”!
Eat well. Be happy.