Making Do

Living alone has given me the freedom to practice ‘making do’ on a regular basis. I do not have kids or husband in the house to complain if dinner is not up to par. On the other hand, it seems everything I make ends up divvied into portions and put into the freezer. But all those leftovers have combined into some pretty tasty treats. Let’s just say I am in my 6th decade, learning to be the good cook my Mom learned to be, by making do.

Mom learned to cook during the depression and the rationing period of the WW2. My Dad often told the story of coming home from work despondent because he knew there wasn’t food in the house, and he hadn’t been paid. But when he walked in the door, the house was filled with this wonderful aroma. Mom had taken an onion, cut the bad parts out of some old potatoes, and made a wonderful soup for dinner. Proving that you don’t have to have picture perfect produce to eat well. And also, that you can eat well on produce.

Recently I made a luscious soup. I’d made too many lightly candied carrots, and after three days I was tired of them. I also had some leftover mashed potatoes. At first I was going to mix them together, add some kind of protein, and make croquettes. Then i discovered some out of date cream in the fridge. Hmmm. Creamy potato carrot soup. OMG good! As I splurged on a second cup of it, I pondered all the ways it could be made even more interesting. Garlic, cheese, cheese and garlic!, curry powder. And since as usual I had a pot of it to divvy up for the freezer; this time I could make each container a little different. A week of heart warming, quick meals.

Similarly my left over pulled pork became a chili like concoction that went well over veggie noodles, stir fried kale, and stirred into mac and cheese. While I’m at it. Cheese sauce is FABULOUS over summer squash noodles.

I may be ‘making do’ with what I have, but the result is very tasty meals.