Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Practicing what I preach

My name's Gill and I have fridge issues.
There, it's out now.
My fridge is out of control, I feel powerless over it. It keeps filling itself up with bargains, leftovers and impulse buys. well, I have to accept that it's me. I shop for three hundred, not the three people who actually live and eat here. My fridge is enormous and, this morning, I could not find space in it for a litre of skimmed milk.
I am ashamed.
I have tackled the freezer, so today it was time to accept that I have a problem and face up to the fridge.
Fortunately, nearly everything was still in date. Ok, we have to eat nine yoghurts by the end of the day and one bag of spinach had become one bag of spinach slime, but everything else will be useable or freezable.
So, today I'm starting to practice what I preach instead of just talking about it.
Old Bloke will be surprised by joy when he opens his packed lunch. It's his favourite tinned ham sandwiches. I'm not being ironic. He loves that stuff! It's Princes Premium Cured Ham in a pear shaped tin. £3.89 in Tesco, £1.99 in B&M.  (More about my love affair with bargain stores some other time.)
I rummaged through the chiller drawer and the salad and veg crisper drawers and got to work. Here's actual, visual, photos-or-it-didn't-happen proof of how pro-active I have been:
Sugar-free Banana Bread
I know bananas shouldn't be in the fridge, but we had rather a lot of them. Now there are five fewer. It's sugar-free because that's what I do, but the bananas certainly make it sweet enough.
5 ripe bananas, (4 mashed up and one sliced for the top)
285g (10 oz) plain flour. I used a mix of wholemeal, plain and spelt flour, because it was what I had.
2 eggs
110g (4oz) butter/margerine
Handful of sultanas
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp of cinnamon
100 mls buttermilk (or you can add a tsp of lemon juice to regular milk)
Mix everything up and divide between two loaf tins. I line mine with paper liners as I'm lazy and hate the whole greasing and lining business.
Place the sliced bananas decoratively down the middle of each tin of batter.
Bake for about 45 minutes at 180 degrees C. Test with a skewer and adjust cooking time to cope with your oven and anything else you may have added to the cake.
Leave to cool before cutting.
Corned Beef and Potato Pie
The case was made with supermarket-reduced-chiller ready made shortcrust pastry.
Divide the pastry block into 1/3 and 2/3. Use 2/3 for pie base and 1/3 for top crust. I don't bake the pastry blind for this pie, but do roll it out quite thinly. I use an 8 inch sandwich tin with a removable base to make a deep pie, but any tin/plate will do really.
1 tin corned beef
1/2 a large onion
A squirt of olive oil
1 packet supermarket-reduced-chiller ready mashed potato
I beaten egg
Black pepper
Finely chop the onion and sweat in a squirt of olive oil.
Chop up the corned beef (I had to zap it in the microwave for  30 seconds because it had been in the fridge) and mash up with the potato, a quick grind of black pepper and the onion. Fill pastry case and add lid. Wash with beaten egg. Bake for 40 ish minutes or until golden and crispy.

Serve with BetterLife Salad.

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