"Bacon is the candy of meat."

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Pantry Cooking

You should know that I'm not from the great housekeepers. I don't keep my dry goods in individual, labeled canisters that all fit just so into the cabinet. My spices are not alphabetized. You could probably find pork chops from 2004 in the back of my freezer. There are odd cans and bottles and bags of pasta and beans all over the place.

So from time to time it becomes necessary to cook something incorporating all these dribs and drabs to make room for better, fresher stuff, but also I am dead lazy. In furtherance of this project, I like to make use of Trader Joe's simmer sauces (also thereby eliminating a jar from the pantry). Last night I pulled one of those out (masala, spiked with a little extra cayenne) and poured it over a can of chickpeas (drained), a bag of frozen peas (thawed) and some leftover roasted cauliflower. I didn't feel like taking the time to make a pot of rice, so I made couscous instead, cooked in the contents of an 8 oz. box of chicken stock. Served with a little Greek yogurt and some mango chutney we had in the fridge, this was actually a delicious dinner in the ethnic comfort food category.

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