August 24, 2014

Necessity Breeds Invention

This is a gloat post, so discontinue reading if you don't feel like hearing about how awesome I've done at not wasting food.

While we have been so blessed in our transition to Rochester, there have been some pretty heavy challenges already. We still have not got any school loans which is our only source of "income" for the next 5 years. Every day, the first thing I should do as Mr Medic walks through the door ought to be to greet him with a welcome-to-our-immaculately-clean-calm-always-cheery-home kiss, but I usually ask about the cash first. I'm terrible, I know. The fun doesn't end there.

Throughout the interview/admissions process we were made to understand that there were many resources and funding available (grad loans can be as much at $100,000, it's just up to the school on what they actually disburse) Each school has their own estimate on the cost of living for a student, and that determines what you get. UofR only has one cost of living estimate, and it just so happens to be for a single student (nothing for students with dependents) Therefore the school basically approved Mr Medic for an amount that completely and utterly ignores mine and the boys very existence! 

We've been in 100% panic mode and exploring all our options on how to meet even our basic needs. There are still no solutions yet, but we are determined to be optimistic and trust that the Lord brought us here for a reason, and that He will take care of us just like He always has!

Seeing as money is tighter than the lips of a prude schoolgirl it's pretty clear that we have either stooped to an all time low, or are just being super frugal, however you want to look at it. 

Exhibit A:

Mr Medic would never touch the boys gnawed on food remains from meals with a ten-foot pole. I on the other hand have always been the one to "take one for the team" and it's never really been my pleasure. It's just what we mommas gotta do. For a while now, I have seen Mr Medic willingly take the scraps so as not to waste. I know how much he detests that, but I also know that he wants to do his part to save money. May seem silly, but I think it's quite admirable myself!

Exhibit B:

I rarely enjoy eating leftovers. It's gotta meet certain criteria for me to re-heat and eat something from the fridge. First, I am 100% convinced that meat, especially chicken, tastes funky after it's been nuked. Totally grosses me out. Also, I usually have myself convinced that it's already "gone bad" when clearly it hasn't. 

Anyway, I have been working really hard to not let the leftovers go to waste. Whether that means I make much less so we don't have to put anything in the fridge, remember to send it with Mr Medic for lunch, offer it to the boys for numerous meals, eat it myself, or recreate it into something new.

I can honestly say that I have only thrown away 3 pieces of produce since we moved here. I didn't get to the food in time since the Public Market produce has a shorter shelf life than the supermarket,. Something I didn't know beforehand. 

Tonights dinner was no exception. I offered the boys sauerkraut and wieners, one of their all-time favorite sloth (aka paternal family) dishes. They've eaten that up like champs for several meals over the last few days. I really wanted chicken pot pies, which I'd made earlier in the week, but I wasn't up to making more crust, yet I was determined to use it up. I texted Mr Medic to give him the option of sauerkraut and wieners or a creamy soup I'd make out of the extra pot pie filling. I knew what he would choose before I even asked, but I thought I'd let him think he had a choice anyway. 

Needless to say I thinned out the filing with just water ('s FREE! Well....sorta. I guess I pay that bill too now!) and had myself this delicious creamy soup! Mr Medic got the short end of the stick for sure...

I sincerely consider being more conscious of food and making it last or not wasting it a blessing from Heavenly Father.

Necessity truly does breed invention, and this invention while not brilliant was delicious! 

Here are my recipes:

1/3 C Milk 
1tsp Vinager

This is a way to make your own buttermilk.  The vinager will start to curdle the milk, wait till it thickens some. 

2 C Flour
1 tsp Salt

Then add 1 C Crisco ( I like the butter flavor kind) using a pastry cutter ONLY UNTIL SLIGHTLY BLENDED.
Pour "Buttermilk" into flour mixture and mix, but don't overdo it.  

Form two balls (one for top and one for bottom, or save some for later) I find it easiest to refrigerate them for 30 min to 1 hr.

Roll out and use for any pie.  For pre-baked crust bake at 450 for 10-12 mins.


1/3 C       Butter
1/3 C       Onions, Diced
1/3 C       Flour
1/2 tsp    Salt
1/4 tsp    Pepper
1 1/2 C   Chicken Broth
2/3 C       Milk
1 1/2 C    Shredded Chicken
2 C          Mixed Veggies, Chopped (fresh or frozen. I even like to add a baked potato cut into cubes to this...yum!)

Heat oven to 425, place first pie crust into pie pan.

Melt butter in sauce pan over medium heat, add onion, cook 2 min until tender. add flour salt and pepper, stir until well blended.

Gradually stir in broth and milk cooking and stirring until bubbly and thick.

Stir in chicken and mixed veggies, spoon into crust. Top with second crust seal and flute edges, cut slits in top to let out steam.

Bake for 30 min or until golden.


1 comment:

  1. i am so impressed and, honestly, a little humbled. humbled just because we've been there, too, and it reminds me of how close you get to the Lord. It has a way of reminding you just exactly where all of your comforts come from. so have you ever heard of bountiful baskets? google it and sign up for it. for $15 each month you get sooooo many different kinds and amounts of fruits and vegetables. They're all local and organic. They have different locations where you pick them up at a specific time of day. So I pick mine up at 7:00 am at the local library on wednesdays. It's a huge money saver.