Wednesday, 7 October 2009
A salad, a stir-fry and a soup
It's been a super-frugal week in the Beckett household so far, thanks not to me but my husband who has been trawling for bargains in the local Co-op/Somerfield. As you may know the Co-op took over Somerfield some months ago and finally seems to be in the process of introducing its own lines. That seems to be good news in the case of fresh fruit and veg which have improved in quality and gone down in price.
At the weekend he managed to pick up a decent-sized cos lettuce for 25p which I turned into a faux-Caesar salad (above) then yesterday proudly brought home some reduced sprouts (35p) and cheap parsnips (50p for a 500g pack) - with no particular purpose in mind, it has to be said.
I initially wondered whether I could turn them into okonomiyaki (but then I'm wondering whether I can turn everything into okonomiyaki since my induction last week) but having consulted a couple of recipes I realised I hadn't got vital ingredients like tempura flakes. However I knocked up a makeshift stir-fry instead which actually wasn't half bad and which I've just posted on my student website here.
The remaining veg together with some green beans I found lurking in the fridge went into a hearty minestrone-style soup along the lines of my Sad Unloved Vegetable Soup. I added a spoonful of tomato paste (diluted with some stock) as I didn't have any fresh tomatoes, a frozen tub of home-made chicken stock I hadn't got round to using and a tin of cannelini beans and topped each helping with plenty of parmesan. It made easily enough for four so there are leftovers for my husband today while I go waltzing off to London.
In both cases I grated rather than chopped the parsnips which I think gives a better texture - unless you're going to boil and purée them or roast them. In fact I'm wondering if you could add parsnip - and even sprouts - to okonomiyaki . . .