Anyone up for an April Pantry Challenge? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 110 Old 04-20-2006, 03:17 PM
 
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twinmom,
do you think this woud taste ok without the tamari? sounds so great but i dont have that!
rach

Quote:
Originally Posted by TwinMom
Desdamona, do you have a crockpot? If so, I have an AMAZING recipe for sloppy lentils (like sloppy joes, but lentily). It's from Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker. My family LOVES this! We eat it on toasted buns, with pickle slices and barbecue sauce and mustard. Sometimes I double the recipe and freeze half of it.

Sloppy Lentils

1 T. olive oil
1 medium-size yellow onion, chopped
1 small red or green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 T. chili powder
1.5 c. dried brown lentils
1 14.5 oz. can crushed tomatoes
3 c. water
2 T. tamari
1 T. prepared mustard
1 T. brown sugar or natural sweetener
1 t. salt
freshly ground black pepper

Saute onion and bell pepper in olive oil until the onions are soft. Add chili powder and stir to coat the veggies. Put that in the crockpot, add everything else, and cook on low for 8 hours.
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#62 of 110 Old 04-20-2006, 03:18 PM
 
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im up for a house challenge too...i have so many lotions that it makes my head spin. i havent been buying any until i use them all, but none of them are what i use and i feel bad just throwing them away.
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#63 of 110 Old 04-20-2006, 03:29 PM
 
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aisraeltax--yes, I think it would be fine without the tamari.

mmgarda--good idea for a house challenge! I have been kind of doing that. Somehow, everyone except for me ran out of shampoo last week, so we have been passing my shampoo around from bathroom to bathroom. I broke down and bought more yesterday, though. I love the products at The Body Shop and usually each season I buy a bunch of body washes and lotions. Even though I'm craving citrus smells right now, like I do every spring, I am forcing myself to finish using up the coconut and vanilla products I love in the winter. Toilet paper is one thing I am not going to wait to run out of, though!!

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#64 of 110 Old 04-20-2006, 03:34 PM
 
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oh, i had about 10 pkgs. of Ramon (?) noodles last week. i added some peas and mushrooms and made some soup for lunch. hope to finish those up in the next week or so. how long do they keep? 10 years? 20??? seems like forever.
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#65 of 110 Old 04-20-2006, 03:36 PM
 
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I forgot, I have a question for you guys. I found a box of tofu burger mix in the pantry with a recipe on the back for tofu loaf, which I have never made. It calls for a cup of walnuts, but I can't eat nuts--what could I substitute? I was thinking of just adding more rice than it calls for; it probably just needs something to help bind it together. Oh, maybe breadcrumbs?? I have a bunch in the freezer. Yeah, I bet that would work.

I am also going to use one of the several bags of pasta! How is it that pasta accumulates? I am sure some of you have more than I do, but I have in the pantry right now: brown rice fettuccine, brown rice penne, egg noodles (a HUGE bag from Sam's), vegetable rotini, and a bag of wacky mac (various shapes and colors). Normally I would also have six packages of angelhair, but I restrained myself last time I went to Sam's.

Right now I have the tail end of a bulk bag of split peas cooking on the stove. Lunch for the next several days is taken care of! I just hope I have enough flour left to make some biscuits.

I love this game!

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#66 of 110 Old 04-20-2006, 04:06 PM
 
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well i went shopping, cuz my dh came home on his 2 week r&r from iraq, so i let him buy all the stuff he likes i'll join a may challange after he leaves though. im still feeding the freezer.

*~*Ashley*~* newly single mama to Tristan 10/01/2007
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#67 of 110 Old 04-21-2006, 09:47 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwinMom
Desdamona, do you have a crockpot? If so, I have an AMAZING recipe for sloppy lentils (like sloppy joes, but lentily). It's from Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker.
Deb, This does sound amazing... I'm going to wait until my sister comes into town to try this recipe. It's hard for me to introduce "new" meals (even though DH does like Sloppy Joe's) to my very picky older boys and even finickier husband. If I make it for my sister, who vegetarian, I stand a better chance of them all at least trying it without making too much of a fuss. Thanks for the recipe! .
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#68 of 110 Old 04-21-2006, 02:04 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmgarda
We are trying so hard to squeeze blood from a stone right now (Mama's not working - well not for pay, anyhow! ). So I decided to extend my pantry challenge to a household challenge!

Will not buy any new soap until all the soap in the house is used up, even if it isn't our favorite kind. Same with lotion, even if that means I have to use the glittery, bubble-gum smelling crap I got from my friend's 6 year old DD. And how long can we go without replacing light bulbs? Same with garbage bags.

Whaddaya all think? Anyone with me?
Oh, I've been doing this for a while. We moved into my dad's house not long after my little sister moved out. Imagine my surprise when I started digging around in the bathroom and found a ton of bath-n-beauty stuff. I thought surely she'd forgotten to pack it, but no, it turns out she'd go to Sam's Club, buy a six-pack of something new, bring it home and decide she didn't like it, so just stick it in the cabinet.

I haven't bought shampoo, deodorant, shaving cream, or bath gel in over a year. Not to mention all the samples of baby creams and lotions we were given! I still haven't bought DD baby lotion!
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#69 of 110 Old 04-22-2006, 01:29 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwinMom
Toilet paper is one thing I am not going to wait to run out of, though!!
ROFLMAO! And you know, I have very expensive TP tastes, too!

On another note - my friend's b'day party was last night and the men in her house totally blew the whole planning (as in 1/2 hour before the party was to start there were still no plans regarding food or beverage . So I volunteered to go to the store and pick some stuff up. It didn't all get eaten, so I wound up coming home with a whole roasted chicken, a loaf of garlic bread (which I had to throw away because it never got baked and sat out all night - ick), and a bag of potato chips.

Challenge to overcome: what do I do with the chicken? Currently I'm trying to get my family to eat up the last of some pork/bean soup (which I think has to get tossed today if we don't finish it), leftover chicken/veg fried rice, and leftover pasta. I already had leftover chicken I was going to turn into pizza toppings.

Should I just take all the meat off the roast chicken and freeze it? I could throw the bones in my soup bag in the freezer too. Or does someone have a suggestion for a dish to use the chicken in that I could make and freeze for later? The chicken is roasted with herbs de provence. I do NOT want all this food to go to waste!

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#70 of 110 Old 04-22-2006, 09:37 PM
 
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I'm up for the household challange too. I have BOAT LOADS of lotions, soaps, cleansers, etc.

OH and I had a little breakdown in the pantry challenge. . . At big lots they had Annie's Delux mac and cheese and Organic Toaster Pastries each for a dollar! I bought 21 boxes of mac and cheese and 5 boxes of the pop tarts. That would have cost well over $120 and I spent like $26. I feel pretty proud of myself, but my pantry feels more crowded than when I started. I am going to prioritize using the stuff that was in there before the big lots excursion first.

~laura
and planning to eat it again
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#71 of 110 Old 04-23-2006, 12:30 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Synchro246
YEEEUCK! Sounds like the person who invented that was doing a pantry challange. I have a few questions- what is "instant" minced onion? and what is "creamed" cottage cheese?

You know what I think I might have the ingredients needed for this (as long as the onions don't have to be "instant"). I'm going to make it just for the heck of it. Let's see how much I can eat before I puke.
Okay, this is plain gross. Has anybody posted another (edible) jello-salad recipe? I have a couple I'd be happy to share that are actually good! Make jello according to box but WATCH it. When it's soft-set (Kinda set, but not really...)mix in 8 0z of cool-whip (or hip-whip, whatever, cool-whip's better though, and a dairy, so you could technically get some if you don't have it hanging around in your freezer like we do...) with a hand mixer then fold in the fruit of your choice by hand(our favorite is orange jello with chopped up mandarin oranges...it's like a creamcicle SO GOOD! But raspberry's good w/raspberries and/or blueberries, strawberry w/berries, you get the point). Put in the fridge and let set the rest of the way. It's really important to pay attention and get it when it's soft set, though, or it's not gonna mix right with the cool whip. OOOh, yum! Think I'm gonna go make some...

Then the other one is a lime jello recipe. Again, wait till soft set, then mix in shredded organic carrots (they're sweeter), chopped up mandarin oranges, a small cann of drained shredded pineapple, and 1/4-1/2 cup of walnuts. Put back in fridge or transfer to bundt pan and put in fridge to finish setting.

Have one more that uses raspberry jello and sour cream, but I don't know that one by heart, so I'd have to look it up if anyone was interested. Good luck, and by god, please don't make the lemon thing. Ick!

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#72 of 110 Old 04-23-2006, 12:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aisraeltax
in order for me to do this, i need to take one trip to get things that i can actually use for all the crap i have in my pantry, such as flour, oats and just a few things.
this is what i have most:
pasta, pasta, pasta
tomato products (tomato sauce and tomatos)
soups
lentils
ramin (sp?)
a huge box of bisquix that i never use
a million bottles of dressing (dont ask me why...dont really know)
canned fruit (i eat it for lunch b/c its easy with the baby and i know fresh is better but sometimes im lucky to open a can and stick a fork in it, kwim?)

?
Ever make chicken and dumplings? Yum, yum, yum. Cheap, cause you can chop up a whole chicken, or can buy dark meat (thighs and drumsticks on sale). If you want the recipe we use, let me know, but you can make the dumplings out of bisquick. Mom did it that way all the time!

Plus, I'd make a bunch, bunch, bunch of different kinds of pancakes (banana nut, blueberry, oats and grains, etc.) with the bisquick and freeze them. Take em out for quick breakfasts or cheap dinners. Can do waffles with it too.

Also, soda type biscuts.

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#73 of 110 Old 04-23-2006, 12:56 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aisraeltax
anyone have good recipes for shephards pie or pot pie? i love both.

last night i used up 2 boxes of elbow macaroni to make mac and cheese. dh doesnt like it though..says its too bland. im thinking of putting some stewed tomatos in it..any thoughts? i hate the thought of this huge dish sitting there.
Saute garlic and onions, throw in sour cream, an egg, and the tomatoes. Mix it up, warm it up.

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#74 of 110 Old 04-23-2006, 01:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmgarda
ROFLMAO! And you know, I have very expensive TP tastes, too!

On another note - my friend's b'day party was last night and the men in her house totally blew the whole planning (as in 1/2 hour before the party was to start there were still no plans regarding food or beverage . So I volunteered to go to the store and pick some stuff up. It didn't all get eaten, so I wound up coming home with a whole roasted chicken, a loaf of garlic bread (which I had to throw away because it never got baked and sat out all night - ick), and a bag of potato chips.

Challenge to overcome: what do I do with the chicken? Currently I'm trying to get my family to eat up the last of some pork/bean soup (which I think has to get tossed today if we don't finish it), leftover chicken/veg fried rice, and leftover pasta. I already had leftover chicken I was going to turn into pizza toppings.

Should I just take all the meat off the roast chicken and freeze it? I could throw the bones in my soup bag in the freezer too. Or does someone have a suggestion for a dish to use the chicken in that I could make and freeze for later? The chicken is roasted with herbs de provence. I do NOT want all this food to go to waste!
Mmmmmmmm. Make stew. I usually split the stew into two dinners, then, and make one a pot pie. Yum. But just freeze both portions, and put the pot pie together the day of the meal. To add flavor, cause you're not really gonna cook the meat as long, saute the onions, garlic, carrots, and celery (shrooms, too, if you like em), then take some of the chicken skin and brown that too, and take all those brown bits to make the gravey for the stew. Yum. I do that all the time with leftover pork loin. Makes the BEST stew. Frequently make pot pie from leftover huge turkeys, this way, too.

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#75 of 110 Old 04-23-2006, 01:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by aisraeltax
i have a million cans of tomatoe soup. i think its from when dh was sick and wouldnt eat anything other than tomatoe soup. anyone have any good suggestions?
i got rid of 2 boxes of banana cream jello last night and a box of angel cake mix. i made the cakes cut them in 2 and put hte banana cream in the middle.
no, i would have NEVER done that without this challenge.

anyone know what to do with a box of chocolate cake mix for a family that doesnt like chocolate cake? no, i dont know how it got there. lol!
Eat meat? My mom makes a killer pork chop recipe with tomato soup. She sautes onion and garlic and celery hearts in olive oil with salt and pepper to taste, adds the soup to soak up all the brown bits, turns off heat. Makes rice (not instant, you want it firmer...we use brown rice), adds that to the pot. Then, she salts and peppers the cheap, bone in chops (maybe a little garlic powder, too) and browns them quickly. Then, gets out a family sized brownie pan puts in a layer of the chops, layer of soup stuff, layer of meat, layer of soup stuff, until she ends with the soup stuff on top. Bakes an hour or so on 350. Comfort food, doesn't really taste like the soup at all!


Also, don't remember who asked for the recipe for something that wasn't chocolate cake for a chocolate cake recipe, but here's one for chunky chocolate cookies that uses a cake mix...

1 pkg chocolate cake mix
2 large eggs
1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (we don't use nuts cause I'm the only one who'd eat the cookies...)

Preheat oven to 350.
Place cake mix, eggs, melted butter, brown sugar, and vanilla in large bowl. Stir with spoon until thoroughly blended. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Drop by level measuring tablespoonfuls onto greased baking sheets. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes for chewy cookies (they'll still be puffed) or 14 minutes for crisp cookies. Cool 2 minutes on baking sheets, then remove to cooling racks. Cool completely and store in airtight container. Hope that helps!

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#76 of 110 Old 04-24-2006, 08:39 PM
 
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going to try the chop recipe tonight. thanks
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#77 of 110 Old 04-25-2006, 12:04 AM
 
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Any time, her grandma's recipe. Lemme know what you think.

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#78 of 110 Old 04-25-2006, 01:29 AM
 
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it was excellent! if you dont have thick chops, you dont need an hour cooking time! i cut mine short! made some broccoli w/ the dish and dh loved it (of course he sat there and picked the celery out, but thats b/c i didnt cut them small enough so he couldnt see them). oy!
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#79 of 110 Old 04-25-2006, 11:04 AM
 
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Glad you liked it! Just talked to my mom, and she says I should have had you saute the onions, etc. WITH the chops to brown everything at once and get a little more flavor to the chops. *shrug* I guess I just change the recipes to how I like em...but perhaps next time try it that way and see how you like it! Who knew that tomato soup could be so versatile?

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#80 of 110 Old 04-25-2006, 02:19 PM
 
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Trying those banana oatmeal cookies right now. I'm exicted as it's the first ever cookie recipe that I haven't had to alter due to my dc's allergies. It has neither milk nor eggs...hooray! Also, as don't have dates or even raisens AND I have a recipe for banana BREAD that uses coconut and we have THAT, we're trying it with coconut. Let you know how it turns out. Looking forward to a treat that's good for us, too!

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#81 of 110 Old 04-26-2006, 01:00 PM
 
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They love the cookies. The coconut gave me an idea for granola bars that they could eat (they have allergies to milk, nuts, soy, etc.). This could easily, I think, anyway, be made on a little lower heat for a longer amount of time and be mad into bars...I'm going to try putting some wheat germ, raisins, dates, sunflower seeds, and another banana/p'raps some tiny bit more oil in it, along with the coconut. We'll see. Of course, this won't be within the scope of the April pantry challenge, as we don't currently have raisins and dates, but it's almost May and I'm almost out of EVERYthing, so I'll be shopping this weekend. But I promise not to buy doubles of anything I already have. Promise.

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#82 of 110 Old 04-26-2006, 01:16 PM
 
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Originally Posted by courtenay_e
Ever make chicken and dumplings? Yum, yum, yum. Cheap, cause you can chop up a whole chicken, or can buy dark meat (thighs and drumsticks on sale). If you want the recipe we use, let me know, but you can make the dumplings out of bisquick. Mom did it that way all the time!

Plus, I'd make a bunch, bunch, bunch of different kinds of pancakes (banana nut, blueberry, oats and grains, etc.) with the bisquick and freeze them. Take em out for quick breakfasts or cheap dinners. Can do waffles with it too.

Also, soda type biscuts.
would love your recipe.
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#83 of 110 Old 04-26-2006, 01:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by courtenay_e
Mmmmmmmm. Make stew. To add flavor, cause you're not really gonna cook the meat as long, saute the onions, garlic, carrots, and celery (shrooms, too, if you like em), then take some of the chicken skin and brown that too, and take all those brown bits to make the gravey for the stew. Yum. I do that all the time with leftover pork loin. Makes the BEST stew. Frequently make pot pie from leftover huge turkeys, this way, too.
Hey Courtenay - since I'm trying to set up how to use up this pork roast I'm crock-potting today, can you help me out? As I read this your suggestion is to cook onions, celery, etc. (basically my stew veggies) separately and then combine them with leftover meat and gravy and then freeze it all. Yes? Do you end up making separate gravy? I'm not sure what I'm going to have left in the crock pot in terms of liquid. Should I just make some gravy using beef broth?

I'm coming up with a new mnemonic: WWCD? (What Would Cortenay Do?)

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#84 of 110 Old 04-26-2006, 03:11 PM
 
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Oh, you're so funny! Gimme a minute, I'm warming up soup for the kids' lunch...

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#85 of 110 Old 04-26-2006, 04:03 PM
 
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Alright, ladies. First, for the chicken and dumplings (or, Mimi's Chicken and Dumplings) (mimi is my great grandmother)

*salt and pepper your skin on, bone in chicken to taste
*have min 6-8 carrots and same (or 4-6, if you're not a celery person) number celery cut into good sized (like about 2" long) chunks, you want these big enough that the carrots and potatoes aren't mush before the chicken's done...
*have a medium-large to large (but not huge, they start to lose flavor) white onion chunked (like half-half-thirds)
*mince or press 4-6 (or more if you like garlic...)cloves of garlic
*chop about 1 potato per person in 1 1/2 in chunks

Over medium high heat (no lower) brown chicken in oil. Keep brown bits in pan (also called fond), but remove chicken. Throw carrots, celery, onion, and garlic (can put garlic in a little later if you prefer) in the pan and brown. Remove, leaving brown bits, and make gravey. Gravey should be on the thicker side, as it has to support the dumplings when the time comes...also, make sure to make enough that it not only covers the chicken in the dutch oven (did I mention that this is easiest made in a dutch oven?), but leaves a little room above them for the dumplings to "float" above the chicken. Put the "guts" back into the gravey (including now the potatoes and chicken too) and simmer (or as Mimi used to say, "Putsy") for just about an hour. When the carrots and potatoes are JUST about done(done is easily pierced with a fork so that the potatoe breaks in half), make the dumplings with the bisquick (there SHOULD be directions on the box), and put them in the gravey. Mom says she used Jiffy mix and it cooked 12 minutes, but check the bisquick time.

Everyone has their own way of making gravey. Mom and I do it differently...she makes a roux in the pan and then adds the liquid, I simmer the brown bits up with the liquid and then add the roux, whisking it in. I dirty more dishes, but find it more easily controls the thickness.



Now, for your pork roast gravey...crock pots in general create an abundance of liquid...it's how they cook. In general, you can stretch the juice or pan drippings as far as you want by just adding broth to your drippings/juices. Doing this makes for a better depth of flavor to your gravey. However, if you don't have any drippings left (you could save some planning to use it for this purpose), you could just take a couple of pieces of the meat and brown it in a little tiny bit of oil, making some brown bits for the pan, and this definately improves the flavor over not using any meat or meat product at all...so if that's what you have to do, yes, I'd brown the veggies, then the couple of pieces of meat, then pour in the broth and simmer up said brown bits, and then add the roux (oil and flour), while whisking all the time to keep it smooth. Hope that's what you need. Ask if you need clarification anywhere...

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#86 of 110 Old 04-26-2006, 04:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by courtenay_e
Now, for your pork roast gravey...crock pots in general create an abundance of liquid...it's how they cook. In general, you can stretch the juice or pan drippings as far as you want by just adding broth to your drippings/juices...so if that's what you have to do, yes, I'd brown the veggies, then the couple of pieces of meat, then pour in the broth and simmer up said brown bits, and then add the roux (oil and flour), while whisking all the time to keep it smooth. Hope that's what you need. Ask if you need clarification anywhere...
Ok, so...

When my roast is done, I'll transfer some/all of the liquid and make gravy (I do know how to make gravy - hooray!). Then I can put chunks of meat, sauteed veges of my choice and gravy in a ziploc bag, lay flat on a cookie sheet and freeze. This will then be a) thawed and thinned down for stew or b) thawed and added covered w/ crust for pot pie. Yes?

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#87 of 110 Old 04-26-2006, 04:48 PM
 
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Ok, so...

When my roast is done, I'll transfer some/all of the liquid and make gravy (I do know how to make gravy - hooray!). Then I can put chunks of meat, sauteed veges of my choice and gravy in a ziploc bag, lay flat on a cookie sheet and freeze. This will then be a) thawed and thinned down for stew or b) thawed and added covered w/ crust for pot pie. Yes?
Yup, it's that easy.

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#88 of 110 Old 04-26-2006, 04:57 PM
 
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#89 of 110 Old 04-26-2006, 05:01 PM
 
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Hope you like it as much as we do.

Mama to two awesome kids. Wife to a wonderful, attached, loving husband. I love my job-- I'm a Midwife, Doula and Childbirth Educator, Classes forming now!

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#90 of 110 Old 04-26-2006, 05:29 PM
 
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That doesn't include mass quantities of booze?? If the answer is no, then I haven't got any usable suggestions. LOL
Yeah, pre-kid days that was an excellent way to clean out the jell-o cabinet AND the liquor cabinet, AT THE SAME TIME!!!!!!

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