Thursday, February 26, 2009

Making Something Out of Nothing

Lately I have been getting better at not running to the store whenever the food that remains in my kitchen doesn't sound too appealing. I am trying to work on my ability to "make something out of nothing" or, as the Italians say, l'arte d'arrangiarsi. Here are some of the concoctions I've come up with this week:
Creamy Goat Cheese Polenta with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Toasted Pine Nuts. It was basically all I could find that was in my cupboard and seemed like it might work. I had some goat cheese in the fridge and I rarely finish my goat cheese before it goes bad so I grabbed that and melted a good amount of it into the polenta. It turned out pretty good although I forgot to cook fresh garlic into the polenta so I know it could have been better. Next time I will master it!

Saffron Chickpeas. This sad little picture does not do this dish justice. It was quite delicious. I had used 1/4 of a can of garbanzo beans for a salad the night before and didn't want the rest to go to waste. So I grabbed a little olive oil, my last few tomatoes - chopped, a clove of garlic, and some onion; threw it in a pot with the garbanzos and the liquid from the garbanzos and simmered it for 20 minutes. Then I added a pinch of saffron. I know... Saffron is expensive, but the flavor is so worth it! And I got mine at Trader Joe's for 6 dollars which is a steal. Anyways, I stirred in the saffron and let it simmer five more minutes. Added sea salt and pepper to taste. Then devoured the deliciousness that I had created. This is a dish I will certainly make again.

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