Wednesday, January 11, 2006

One Ingredient, Three Meals

We've had a lot of threads where people talk about cooking, having trouble cooking, learning to cook, never having what they want in the fridge, finding it hard to cook economically for two people ...

So my "challenge" to you in this thread is to share one main ingredient that you serve in at least three different ways over the course of a week or so. For example, maybe you make a turkey breast, then a turkey pot-pie, then turkey sandwiches. Or maybe you make a hot bean dish one night, which you then serve cold on a green salad the next night, and toss the end of the leftovers in a soup the third night.

The "ideal" is to have one thing you cook up, and then the "leftover" dishes mostly made with things that are pantry items, freezer items, or common things to have in the house (lettuce, ketchup, etc.) ... so you're not shopping for three gourmet dinners. You're basically shopping for one (and maybe a few add-ons for the later dinners) and using what's in your pantry for the rest.

This is obviously particularly well-suited to meats, since meat is typically much less expensive if you buy a whole turkey or a ham shank or whatever, instead of individual-sized portions or deli-sliced meat, but most of us (especially if you're single or in a small family) would be stuck eating leftover turkey for two weeks off just a turkey breast! Even if you're in a family of eight, it's nice to have some ideas for those leftover scraps.

So give us your recipe sets! They "leftover" days can be complicated, like pot pies and casseroles, or dead simple, like tossing bits of meat on salad or making sandwiches.

And yes, you can do two-meal sets if they're particularly good, but three or more meals is better!

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