Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Start of Something Frugal, episode 1

In an effort to give you, o elusive reader, an idea of what I might be posting, I figured I should write a few entries. Now, all I have to do is figure out where to start.

I suppose I could half way cheat, and start with the split pea soup recipe that I already have typed out! So, if you've meandered over here from LJ, this may look a bit familiar:

For a nutritious, simple, and frugal meal, think soup. Think split pea soup. Don't run away, crying that soup is too hard! Honestly, split pea soup is fairly easy to make, and if you have a half-way stocked kitchen, then it can be pretty inexpensive, too. The best thing, in my opinion, is the versatility of the recipe. Really, treat the recipe like a guide for temp., proportions and times. Most everything else is fair game.

Even though I like following recipes, I almost never follow to the letter. So, an abbreviated and modified version of the split pea soup recipe from the back of the Lowe's [as in the grocery store in NC] split pea bag:

mince 3 cloves of garlic, start heating in the bottom of a soup pot over medium high heat, as you get the meat ready. I'd been using two links of sausage. [Recipe calls for 1 lb beef, cubed.] Salt and pepper to taste.

Add and brown meat. Wash/sort peas, add peas to pot.

Add 6 cups of liquid [some combination of broth/stock or bullion and water]. Bring to boil. Stir occasionally. Reduce heat.

Simmer for 1 hour.

Dice 2-3 medium carrots and one onion, after soup has simmered for an hour, add veggies. Simmer for additional 20 minutes.


The back of the bag also says to add one diced bell pepper with the onion and carrot.

I think that a bay leaf or two would be a good addition.

I had a lot of this stuff on hand. I'll try to buy several bags of peas when they are on sale. The sausage was gifted to us during a visit to my aunt. The stock I made, then froze months ago. Carrots were on hand. I had to buy the onion. So... inexpensive. Plus, this will easily feed the husband and me for two dinners, and maybe even a lunch. And, it freezes well. Still have some in my freezer from a month ago in a re-used sherbert container.

So, how many frugal ideas did you spot in that last paragraph?

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