Friday, July 9, 2010

Eat well; eat cheap

I once salvaged a bowl of liquid left after we'd eaten the asparagus at a holiday dinner. My daughter-in-law gave me one of those looks, but I kept it anyway. It makes a rich, delicious and frugal cream soup as does the liquid from other things like potatoes and broccoli.

Another example: I made "half-baked" potatoes - a family "recipe" in which baking potatoes are sliced in two lengthwise, the put face down in a little oil and baked. They're really good, but I digress. ;) Anyway, there were three halves left after dinner. They don't reheat well, like fried potaotes, so I pulled the skin off of them and trimmed off the browned part, grated them, added some salt, pepper and a beaten egg and made very frugal hash brown patties from them. Good eating!

A tablespoon of corn or green beans or peas or whatever... when that's all that's left over, it doesn't seem worth doing anything with. Hold it, though... I don't throw it out. I keep a pint size container in the door of my refrigerator freezer and add the little bits and dollops as they're available. By the time the container is full, I have a good assortment of vegetables for soup or stew - for free. Since I don't eat much soup or stew during hot weather, it gives me a chance to stockpile a little!

Besides things like these, don't throw out radish greens if they're fresh. They're a good cooked green. Salvage large broccoli and cauliflower stems, peel them and eat in a salad or cook as a vegetable.

Got a little leftover rice? Or some chopped raw onions or celery or carrots? How about some leftover hot cereal? Make a frugal meatloaf with it. Add it to ground meat, add seasonings, an egg or two and top with tomato sauce.  

The most frugal way to eat is to not throw out anything, but the best way to eat is when you become creative with food.


  1. Left-over grain of any kind can be added to bread dough and baked into bread for extra nutrients.

  2. Excellent post. We don't throw away any food leftovers. We manage to find something to do with all of them.

    And no one looks at us funny when taking leftovers from family dinners, as we all do it!

  3. You're right, anonymous. Left over grain can be used in bread and soup as well as meatloaf.

    Frances, I'm glad you don't throw leftovers out. Using all of the food item is important to our food budgets.

  4. I save all leftovers and sometimes I just have a giant medley of this and that on my plate. But hey, it's food and it fills the belly all the same. No waste here!

  5. My two previous posts seemed to have been lost in cyber space, so I will try this one again...

    I like to grate the zest of organic citrus fruits -- oranges, limes and lemons, dry it and bottle it for future use in recipes such as breads, muffins, etc. that call for it, or in creations of my own. The oil in the citrus skin is very potent so a small amount really flavors up a batch of baked goods.


  6. I am SO glad I am not the only one who gets funny looks from people who cold not see the sense in sopping up the left over sauce from stews, spaghetti or whatever else is left on the plate after the meal! I have been frugal for years but this year I am extra extra frugal and no plate will go unsopped at my house! No throwing away left over anything either!!! I just ate hamburger rice and left over potatoes from last night. Now I will go swim it off in my pool!