in the kitchen

i just unintentionally spent the last 3+ hours in the kitchen. and i haven’t even made or eaten dinner tonight! i started out making bread. then i decided to make soup out of things in our fridge & cupboard that needed to get used up. then i made a cucumber/onion salad (from the garden!) to use those up before they go bad. then i washed and cut off the stems of some tomatoes to throw in the freezer to be used at a later time. then i washed all the dishes. and now i’m waiting for the third and final stage of bread rising to be done. whew.

i typically love being in the kitchen, especially on a day like today when i accidentally and joyfully spend several hours cooking. the days i don’t enjoy so much are when i’m hungry and trying to quickly put a meal together or if things don’t turn out as i’d like (sometimes in such situations i feel like i wasted good ingredients. i guess it’s also a learning opportunity).

anyway, here’s a peek at what i was up to:

second time making this sandwich bread. the water i added was too hot, thus the dough was really sticky & difficult to knead. thankfully it wasn’t anything a little extra flour couldn’t fix. we eat this stuff so fast!

in an effort to actually use food that’s in our house before grocery shopping i made this mexican-ish soup (aka: whatever was in our fridge & pantry that needed to get used). it’s mostly corn (from the garden), black beans, lentils, mystery beans (mix from costco) and tomatoes. and a potato (like i said, random). and spices. we plan to eat it with rice.

using my “simply in season” cookbook as a resource for making a super easy cucumber salad.

garden-licious veggies: cucumbers & onion with vinegar, olive oil, a little sugar & a sprinkle of pepper.

one of our pastors sent out a group text to raid his garden if anyone wanted tomatoes. um, yes please! we’re saving up to making marina sauce. can’t go wrong with free tomatoes! these are all from his garden.

and these tomatoes are all from our garden. we’ve been freezing them as they ripen (and eating some fresh). when we get 30lbs we’re going to make and can marina sauce. as you can see, our venison supply is getting low. really hoping for a deer or elk soon.

this is our first week (and time) planning out our meals in advance. we’re going to do a better job of really keeping track of our grocery budget and hopefully this will help. we went through all the grocery adds, cut out coupons, and planned away. it was fun! and it’s kinda neat to know what you’ll be cooking/eating later in the week. i love looking forward to meals.

call me crazy with all the food pictures, but i love seeing pictures of what other people cook and learning from how people create healthy meals without spending lots of $$. if you have tips on planning weekly meals please share! i recently discovered a website called “One Hundred Dollars a Month”; it’s impressive how this woman feeds a family of four on $100/month.

anyway, the bread will be done soon and bread fresh out of the oven is scrumptious!