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Eating stew I made this weekend. 2 cans Dinty Moore style beef stew, the kind you get at a food pantry. You know the kind, a brand you’ve never seen so you know the government paid some company to can whatever they threw in the tin. Meat processed enough for Alpo, vegetables with all their nutrients cooked right out of them. That’s okay because the vegetables and meats are pretty close to questionable when they’ve been forgotten at the crisper in my fridge. Like that baby zucchini I forgot along with the “baby” carrots which are ugly carrots cut to look like little carrots anyway. It’s okay, I cut out the dark bruises and washed off the slime that clung to them. I cut the bottoms of the broccoli head that was sweating in it’s plastic bag getting increasingly close to brown. They’ll have to be eaten soon, the broccoli florets. Two sweet potatoes are peeled and cut into chunks as soon as I could cut out the shriveled edges and ends off. I found a package of sliced mini portabella mushrooms that are beginning to look old and brown. The kale leaves left over from a pasta salad are the only thing close enough to be called fresh. I had an over abundance of canned green beans and potatoes as well as mixed vegetables so they’ve been opened and drained. A small container of pork that SM sent home with me for K is planning on taking a high jump into the mix. As is the can of diced tomatoes, I will only spare one. The cheap @ssed Hunts spaghetti sauce HAS to be doctored up for any kind of Italian dish I make. And onions rough cut as well as semi minced garlic start the dish as they are friend in the stock pot.

I steam the raw vegetables that I’m not frying. Soft veggies get fried like the sliced zucchini, mushrooms after the onions turn semi translucent. I slice the stems of the broccoli only and toss them in the steamer over the carrots, then in goes the sweet potatoes and the kale on top. It doesn’t take long for them to become slightly limp.

The two cans of stew are dumped unceremoniously on top of the fried vegetables then the drained canned veggies then the undrained diced tomatoes. I can’t forget whatever kind of left over alcohol on top of those veggies. This time I forgot K’s coors light and dump a cooking sherry I got at Haxton’s just before Christmas. It helps to take out that tinned flavor. I take out a cup of liquid from the pot and put it in a cup. I add about 2 or 3 tablespoons of crushed beef bullion to the mix and heat it in the microwave. In it goes with the other things, the stock pot hasn’t even been half filled yet.

I drain the liquid from the steamed vegetables. Cruciferous veggies tend to make me gassy so i don’t want to encourage that any more than I have to. In go the veggies, the stock pot is about 2 gallons full. Turn the heat down so low that the flame is barely there and let it heat for at least 2 hours or for as long as you can stand it. Oh yeah and add whatever spices you like but NO SALT. Salt never has to be added I don’t care what the chefs on Chopped say. Let the diner add their salt. If you add spices keep them herbal like bay leaf, thyme, black pepper, marjoram, oregano, basil (not too much basil though,) maybe some sweet paprika.

That’s what I made Sunday. That’s what I’m eating for lunch today.

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