Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Eating from the pantry

We are eating quite well from our pantry and freezer; I'm lucky to have browned ground beef frozen in bags, tons of tomato products, and pasta of many shapes.

So far the staples have become spaghetti (natch), egg lasagna, vegetable soup, and a cold pasta salad with a $1 bag of Kroger gumbo vegetables. (Just pour the frozen veggies into the drained pasta to thaw.)

Now, about those two big bags of frozen whitefish nobody seems to like...


Marie said...

If you make them wait long enough between meals, they will LOVE the whitefish!

Amy said...

You could make maybe do a crumb coating and make them into fish sticks.

I also love any white fish if I mix mayo and Parmesan cheese together and top it on top of the fish. Then I cover it with bread crumbs and some Italian seasoning. Bake for 400 degrees and cook for ten to twelve minutes. We call it fish ala sprinkles :) My kids love it!

Anonymous said...

Meredith, you do things with such grace. I admire that very much. I am sure that what ever you do with the white fish it will be wonderful.

I admire how you stress the importance of family. Working together to get through a situation like a cash 'shortage' because of auto repair expenses is a wonderful chance to teach children the importance of being a team. Not using credit cards etc. Children learn from our example far more than they learn from what we TELL them. (I know this from my own experience) I am now raising grandsons. I hope to avoid some of the 'mistakes' I made when I raised their father. Take care. My God belss. Roxie

Kelly said...

I'm a pretty picky eater when it comes to fish, but i love this Teriyaki marinade on fish.
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup oil
1/3 cup beer
3 garlic cloves minced
2 tbsp. parsley flakes
1 tbsp. Teriyaki sauce
I would let it marinade as close to 24 hours as possible and then cook as you like.

Cyndi Lewis said...


Good luck on the fish. When I find things "creeping" in the back of my freezer it is usually fish.

Months ago,in an attempt to vary our diet a bit I bought a package of frozen salmon patties. It was like eating cardboard. I tried jazzing them up the next time with mayo and cheese and bread crumbs but it really wasn't an improvement. A few weeks ago I found the lone remaining patty in the back of the freezer, still in the package. I very unfrugally dropped it in the waste basket. I wasn't about to try and divide one patty, that no one liked, six ways and I surely didn't want the Lord providing a miracle with that fish! LOL! I decided I would be more frugal in the future and not buy the frozen salmon patties.

Betty Canuck said...

Dice it up and serve in a casserole.

I always like white fish with a Salsa Tomato type topping. Something full of flavour. Then you can kind of hide the flavour.

But my husband refuses to eat fish and the daughter uses that as a reason to refuse as well!

Keep on up with the creativity! It can be frustrating and hard to live with cheer but you can do it right now!

Anonymous said...

Remember to explore vegetarian options. Here are some ideas:


If your library has Nava Atlas' 'Vegetariana,' her curried lentils recipe is very good.

Also, you can look at the 'budget cooking' forum on recipezaar. A fair number of discussions and ideas there.

And I cut the beef waay down on this one:


-- Jora

K E Fleck said...

we are making that pantry last right along with you! Pasta salads - what an awesome use it up invention, eh? I love just throwing things together and calling it "salad" :-)

10 more days in August! Best Wishes :-)

martha said...

What is "egg lasagna"? Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Grilled fish tacos? You can make homemade tortillas very easily and you will never go back to store bought. The nice thing about fish tacos for those who aren't crazy about fish is you can top them with salsa/diced tomatoes, and all kinds of toppings. DH isn't a huge whitefish eater but goobles these up. Rachel Ray has some good recipes on the food network site.

Anonymous said...

I love Amy D's philosophy on not having an attitude of deprivation through frugality - that alone can get any of us far in life by having the right attitude.

What a blessing that you have savings to fall upon if need be - although not the "chosen" avenue, it must be comforting to know it is there.

Perspective is very important I feel in life. It is always interesting to me how people view things; there are some with very little that feel they are blessed with everything in the world (I stand in humility of such people). These are the people we often read of who have nothing but the clothes on their backs, a little food, and a tiny 1-room house to live in, but are often the most generous and giving people in the world.

Compared to the rest of the world we are all so rich. When I am feeling a bit low all I have to do is to remember those in other countries trying to make it through another day by finding some food, or the thousands of people devastated by earthquakes, floods, etc. even now as we sit on our computers, in our lovely homes, with food to eat, clothes to wear and so much more. Yes, what blessed richness indeed! If someone from a 3rd-world country entered my home, what might they feel? That is convicting to me (even though I live quite modestly).

Although I am sure you might not have even thought about this, perhaps the word "poverty" (in your original post) should be used in the content for those it truly applies to. Definition: 1. the state or condition of having little or no money, goods, or means of support; condition of being poor; indigence. Just a thought to kindly bring to your attention.

Jenny's Vegcafe said...

Your "Stretching Food Dollars" cookbook is worth at least 4.50 on ebay. Something to make you smile.

If you need recipes for fish try the saving dinner website. Leanne Ely does a lot of fish recipes.
You could batter them with mayo and seasoned bread crumbs. Or try a beer and cheddar cheese fish chowder.
If you have beer and cheese in your pantry. ; )

Anne Marie@Married to the Empire said...

Anon beat me to the suggestion of fish tacos. Bread the fish, bake or fry it, put it in tortillas, then top with salsa and whatever else you want. Personally, I like them with a nice, vinegar-based coleslaw. Delicious!

Anonymous said...

Fish Chowder or Cioppino since you've got lots of tomatoes

Anonymous said...

We are also stretching our resources this week--two unexpected medical bills and back-to-school expenses did a number on our family budget. I went grocery shopping last week and am using the pantry and freezer to make what we have last 2 weeks (my goal is to only buy milk, oil, and eggs). We can do it! Miss Kris

Mrs. Pear said...

Might I suggest fish tacos/wraps? Or fish enchiladas?

We are not big fans of fish around here, but have eaten fish enchiladas thinking they were chicken.

Rhonda Jean said...

Hello Meredith, how about trying them on fish cakes made with your white fish. Just put the fish in the food processor to pulverise it, then add a chopped onion, some parsley, chives or coriander, S&P, a beaten egg, half a cup of breadcrumbs or mashed potato and form into patties. You can have these with a dipping sauce, with salad or vegetables or as a fish burger.

Anonymous said...

I do not like fish, but I will eat this recipe! Dip the fish in olive oil or italian dressing, then in seasoned breadcrumbs. Bake until cooked, and serve with lemon juice. It is so delicious and simple (read: frugal).

*carrie* said...


We're working through the pantry ourselves. After a heavy load of expenses at the start of the month, we have to stretch our food budget, too. Thanks for the inspiration!

JJ (Lady Di) said...

Not sure if your family will like this since it has fish/mushrooms/spinach , but...

Fish Rolls:

Thaw and squeeze dry a package of frozen spinach. Saute slieced mushrooms until just starting to turn brown. Spray a pan (size depends on how many you are making) with cooking spray and spread spinach along bottom of pan. Sprinkle with mushrooms. Salt and pepper fillets and rolls up jelly-roll style and place on top of spinach/mushroom mixture. Pour a bottle (or homemade) Alfredo sauce (tomato alfredo is good too) making sure to cover the fish completely. Bake at 350 for about 20-25 minutes or until fish is done (flakes easily). Serve with rice or pasta