Cleaning the refrigerator

Doing a deeper dive into the sedimentary layers of my refrigerator I discovered amongst the various assorted oddments that lay hidden from view in my trove of cottage cheese containers (I’m always a little nervous popping these open, you cannot see inside I never know what I gonna find) I discovered leftover roasted tomatoes and, in an effort to wedge a quart and a half of Kiltie custard into the freezer, some slightly freezer-burned chicken thighs. And made this sloppish sort of stuff and ate it on (leftover) toast. It was really, really delicious. I need to work this one up into a real recipe. 


Slop or something

This was just a crap shoot. I had my spice grinder out—it grinds other things too. And I’d chopped up the stray vegetables (mostly peppers and onions) I had in the crisper drawer and tossed them into the thing and ground it to a paste or as Lidia calls it, “pastata,” which seems so much more, I don’t know, culinary. After that I simmered it briefly and I added chicken breasts to poach. Once they were slightly poached I sliced them and put them back into the slop. It was certainly edible. But deeply boring. 

I was watching The Great British Baking Show (a new obsession) or I’d have fallen asleep.

Further complicating things

I like the consistency of the stuff (slop, mostly) that comes out of the pressure cooker (Instapot) but there really isn’t a way to brown things effectively. So just to make things more complicated for myself I decided to brown the mushrooms and chicken first. I figured it would taste better that way. And it did. This, uh, slop, was divine. Chicken, mushrooms, white beans, garlic, onions and fresh sage. I’d serve this to the queen, which is sorta what I did, come to think of it.

Waste not, what not II

After Christmas, along with the bloody Mary mix I had sausage slices (finocchiana) and a half of a cabbage. I cannot think what possessed me to throw this all into my InstaPot but I did with some onion and green pepper and thyme branches. This qualifies as slop. But it was the best damn crap I have made for dinner in months. I’m out of finocchiana but I have some pepperoni that I am going to use for my next batch. I just need a cabbage and some bloody Mary mix. It makes my mouth water just thinking about it.

Wistful memories of the classic Christmas lasagna

Fond remembrances of food I could once, not so long ago, eat, that season has passed and I will have to wait for another year to enjoy it. It’s part of what makes the season so special.

This lasagna is simply the finest. Chopped meatballs and sausages slathered with my deeply, slowly cooked and cosseted sauce (made from tomatoes from my garden [in large part]).

From now on and for the foreseeable future it will be all cabbage and chicken, slop, and whey protein powder drinks until I am once again lithe and at fighting weight, Speedo weight as someone in my office calls it.

Slop, merciless and unrelenting

Yes, slop. Spaghetti sauce plain and simple. Perhaps not plain or so simple, it was chicken. I ground it myself. But I used jarred sauce. The Sauce King’s sauce (meh). It was made with more care than I usually take but in the end, it’s just still slop. It was OK, maybe even good. But it’s a diet meal(s) and it just tastes like that to me.

The Month(s) of Pain drags on, continuing its inexorable and lethargic crawl to just where I do not know.

Pan fry, stir fry whatever

Whatever it is, it’s still slop, just Asian slop instead of Mexican or Italian slop. My Asian slop almost always tastes the same since I am unable to control myself when I am making Asian food. I’m not sure why that is. Maybe the vast array of various sauces disorients me.  If a little gochujang is good, a half cup is better. If a teaspoon of rice vinegar is nice, a quarter cup is gonna really ramp it up. But this time I restrained myself (and maybe most importantly I did not use fish sauce, Jesus—that stuff!!) And it made a difference. 

It was good but the next day for lunch the chicken smelled like wet cat. I ate it, but I’ll eat anything. Except anchovies and of course, cats like anchovies.

Jalapeños helped

I had the bright idea to make chili with butternut squash. It seemed like it might be a good idea if I roasted it first it might be more “meaty” and intensify the flavor. Whatever I mean by that. It was not a good idea. I ate it, mostly because the jalapeños made it tolerable. The remains of it are still in my refrigerator uneaten. The only thing that going to eat it is my garbage disposal. 

It was slop. It’s ok, it’s the Month of Pain. 

Slop, salad

Theoretically slop can only be defined as hot food I throw together without a lot of thought so I realize that a salad isn’t slop exactly. Except when it is. This was all just crap I had in the refrigerator on the point of turning bad or had just a small amount of one thing or another. So I threw it all in a bowl and, well, slop, salad.

It was really good though, beets, hard boiled eggs, celery, tomato, cucumber, onions, pepperoncini, leftover lettuce, bleu cheese…it was magnificent.

Month of Pain, slop in review

This is not actually a review. These are the meals I thought to take pictures of. There were many many meals of slop that were not remarked on, were too pathetic to photograph or I was too hungry and/or lazy to take a picture. 

The Month of Pain is over. It wasn’t all that painful but I also didn’t lose all that much weight. I thought I’d be gaunt by February first. I still look as robust and full figured as I have for years. Although my pants are not torturing me anymore.

So this may become the Winter of Pain.