In the end, your creativity - perhaps even your outrageousness - will determine the final result.
- Bobby Flay
If you drive through our neighborhood on any given weekend, you will be inundated with neon signs posted to telephone poles advertising yard sales, garage sales, estate sales, antique sales. No matter the verbiage, they all mean one thing - someone needed to get rid of the junk in their home.
I take the same approach in our kitchen. Every so often, I do a scan and make a note of the items in our freezer and pantry, and then I brainstorm ways to use up those ingredients. It usually results in some interesting meals, some better than others.
Club crackers wrapped in bacon, sprinkled with parmesan cheese and baked in the oven for 2 hours at 250 degrees. The result is a crisp salty buttery snack, perfect with a cold beer. Next time I make these, however, I'll use less bacon and possibly a different type of cracker - maybe a Wheat Thin. I think a lighter cracker (not to mention bite-sized) would be a better fit.
For this dish, I combined rice with frozen mixed veggies, fried egg, and tilapia, tossed with teriyaki, soy sauce, and sesame oil - and served it with crab rangoons I made with leftover won ton wrappers, crab meat, cream cheese, and chopped green onions. This was simple, delicious, and used up a good portion of ingredients I had on hand.
I always keep tuile cookies in the house - they are the perfect accompaniment to ice cream or sorbet. I combined brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, vanilla, and chopped pecans, brought it to a boil, then drizzled the mixture over the cookies and baked them for 10 minutes at 350 degrees. After they cooled, I broke them up into large pieces. These are gooey, with a crunchy bite from the cookies.
On the days where I'm attempting to clean out the freezer, fridge and pantry in anticipation of a trip to the grocery store, I think about those yard sales - and how someone's trash is another person's treasure. It's all in how you look at it - and what you do with it.