Friday, November 19, 2010

My Top Ten Go-Tos.

I had an interesting request for a blog topic a couple days ago, and as I aim to please (and have no better ideas for tonight-I'm back on a liquid diet after my embarrassingly stupid jaw injury is acting up again, so I've had nothing but Fresh & Easy soup for the past few meals), here it is:

"What if you could only have 10 things in your fridge, what would they be??"

Well, Jess, excellent question. I assume you aren't looking for me to say the ten things currently in my fridge, cause right now we're looking at beer, wine, tequila, romaine, pickles, olives, and a shit-ton of condiments. We haven't been shopping this week...trying to keep the fridge empty for the massive Thanksgiving shopping trip happening this weekend. I'm also counting items I like in my pantry. (Go to the side and choose the label 'desperation' if you don't know why.)

Oh, and I'm not counting olive oil, salt or pepper, btw. They don't count. Yet are used pretty much every night. Oh, and Jess..I know you have (adorable) little you know, I don't. So hopefully these aren't too 'adult' only...I wasn't a picky kid, but I know how some kids are.

Anyway. Here we go:
1. Garlic
I always, always have garlic on hand. Fresh. Powdered, too, but that's typically reserved for times of extreme desperation/laziness.

2. Onions
Green, red, yellow, occasionally white. Yellow for Indian/mid-west Grandma food, red and/or green for pretty much any and everything else. Don't underestimate the shallot, either. Yum.

3. Fresh Herbs
I typically have basil and cilantro, and when I'm stocking up, rosemary and fresh thyme. Makes such a difference.

4. Frozen Poultry
I stock up on frozen boneless chicken breasts and lean ground turkey. Endless possibilities with either, especially the chicken.

5. Pasta
I ALWAYS have some sort of noodles around. "Regular" pasta (generally penne or linguine), rice noodles, and/or bean thread noodles. Depending on which I've got, add some of that poultry and you've got a quick base for asian food or just a pantry-pasta.

6. Canned Diced Tomatoes
I almost always have a back up can of diced tomatoes in the pantry. I think they're the most versatile of the canned tomato bunch.

7. Rice/Quinoa
Risotto is the easiest one-pot meal you can make, and rice makes a filling base for just about anything with chicken/sauce in it. I always have basmati rice (not the best for risotto, however), but I try to keep arborio or white rice around for that purpose. Same goes for quinoa.

8. Tuna
Canned tuna takes me far. I either mix it with cooked rice, cilantro, sriracha, green onion and lime for a quick bowl of awesomeness, or mix it with some mayo, lettuce, onion, cucumber, a hard boiled egg, and tomato for a great tuna salad. Or you know, throw it on some bread. Oh, and always water packed. Oil packed is just gross (not to mention full of unnecessary calories).

9. Cream of Mushroom Soup
By itself. Mixed with rice and chicken. Mixed with tuna and pasta (and cooked edamame!). Mmm. Mmm. Mmm. Oh, and for soup, you have to go with the original. With 1% milk, not water. For cooking, the low sodium stuff is just fine. Reduced fat, however, not so much.

10. Veggies. Green ones.
Spinach, lettuce, broccoli, brussels, asparagus or green beans. At least one of those is always in my fridge. The husband and I like our veggies, what can I say? And if don't have fresh, we like to stock up on canned asparagus and green beans (and he likes spinach), so we almost always have a quick green side to dinner.

Runners Up:
Cheese. The stinkier the better, Gorgonzola, goat, romano...I usually have all of those
Citrus (lime and lemons)
Black beans (although I also like cannellini and kidney)
Chicken bouillon powder (Yes, Mom, I know it's not good for me. But it makes everything that needs water-including rice-so much better)
Barilla Marina with Mushroom sauce (Hubby still adds onion and garlic, but it's good in a pinch without anything)

Good Question! This was fun. Anybody else??

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