Pantry/Freezer Clean Out Challenge – Week 4

This week didn’t hold as much progress as last week on the challenge. We were out of town for Thanksgiving and had a few days where we ate meals elsewhere – at friends’ houses, etc. But I’m happy with the things we did use – and we didn’t add anything!

One evening for dinner, we cooked up the Ohio City Pasta – I believe we had red pepper and some sort of basil/spinach mix. It tasted great mixed (especially with a glass of leftover wine from Friendsgiving!).

ohio city pasta collage

We also needed another quick dinner one night, so we baked one of the frozen Pizza Joes pizzas. Pizza Joes is a local chain that’s centered around the area where I grew up, and I love them. My favorite pizza place ever. So when Mark travels to one particular site for work, he ends up near one of their locations and he will sometimes pick up half baked pizzas that we finish off in the oven. Much better than fully cooked pizza that’s frozen after the fact. We had the veggie ranch one.

pizza joes collage
We also gave a jar of the Penn’s Corner hot pepper jelly to a friend who was visiting to try, so that took one of the jars in the pantry. Though I’m less worried about using those up now that I know of a great marinade recipe.

So after week 4, here’s where we stand. Going to kick it up a notch this week.

Brown rice 2 portions beef stew Pizza Joes pizzas (2) (1)
Dark chocolate bar (56% cocoa) 1 portion corn and poblano chowder Cortland apples
Dark chocolate bar (75% cocoa) 1 portion mushroom bolognese Swiss chard
Unsweetened chocolate bar (1) (.5) 1 portion venison chili Thai veggie gyoza (half bag)
Penn’s Corner hot pepper jelly (3) (2) (1) 2 portions stroganoff Kaiser rolls (8) (4)
Penn’s Corner strawberry jelly 5 portions bolognese sauce Alexia french fries (1) (.5)
Penn’s Corner dilly beans (2) Hog jowl bacon Pork gyoza (half bag)
Evaporated milk Slab bacon Coconut chicken tenders
Bag sundried tomatoes Hot dogs Venison jerky
Stuffing mix (1.5) (.5) Hot sausage patties Roasted hot peppers
Honey buffalo sauce Venison sausage Roasted sweet peppers
Dried cherries with pits Hamburger patties Raspberries
CRO Bloody Mary Mix Pork shoulder Ripe bananas (1 million)
Chuck’s Hot Salsa Blueberries (3) (2) Frozen basil
Cinnamon applesauce Strawberries Apple cider
Pearl couscous Cranberries Pierogies
Maifun rice sticks Corn (2)
Rice Ramen Peas Grape juice
Orzo Macadamia nuts Homemade whole grain pancake mix (4) (3)
Braised eel Spinach and ricotta pierogies Fresh tomato sauce (2)
Coconut milk Harvest bread Roasting chickens
Whole tomatoes (2) Hot dog buns Chicken wings
Red enchilada sauce French bread Lamb chops
Whole canned jalapenos Ciabatta roll Ground lamb
Butter crackers Cheese tortellini Duck legs and thighs
Graham crackers (2) (1) Pizza crust Ham shank
Black turtle beans Ohio City pasta Kale sausage
Dried chick peas Pitas Pork neckbones
Dried kidney beans Puff pastry sheet Pork liver
Arborio rice Bear claw Pork heart
Partial dark chocolate bar (70%) cocoa PB donut Ham hock bones
Beef marrow bones Rhubarb thumbprint cookies Pork breakfast sausage
Beef neckbones Potato and pea samosas (2) (1) Country style pork ribs
Beef round steak Pork and vegetable dumplings (half bag) Chorizo
Beef soup bones Naan Puddin’
Catfish Green onion pancakes Beef heart
Beef hot dogs Oxtail (3) (1)
Beef mock tender
Beef shank Beef shank Beef cross cut roast
Beef stew meat Beef liver

 

 

Pantry/Freezer Clean Out Challenge – Week 3

This week we chipped away at more items from the pantry and freezer, making more progress than I anticipated. We were able in some cases to strategically use recipes for the things we wanted to eat that included some ingredients we already had. Which I guess is exactly the way you do this!

I made a delicious winter squash chowder with some butternut and acorn squash and kale from our CSA, and I toasted up the one remaining ciabatta roll for us to split as a side to dip. It actually went really well with the chowder!

winter squash chowder

When I posted last week that I was having trouble finding ways to use hot pepper jelly, Penn’s Corner tweeted me this link to a recipe for Spicy Pepper Jelly Marinated Pork Tenderloin. So I made that, with some roasted turnips and brussels sprouts and some bagged stuffing  from the pantry as a side. I highly recommend the marinade if you like spicy, flavorful marinades.

stuffing and pepper jelly collage

Friday night, I roasted two heads of garlic and took the leeks from the CSA and the bacon from the freezer and made toppings for Mark’s sourdough pizza crust. (He’s the pizza guy in the house.) Delicious, but let’s just say that using two heads of garlic as sauce, where we each virtually ate a whole head of garlic, was a bit….much.

bacon and leek pizza

One night we had burgers and fries, so we used up half of the kaiser rolls and half of the bag of fries.

fries and buns

Sunday night we had our annual Friendsgiving dinner with our best friends. Instead of a turkey, which we will all be eating this week, we decided to make prime rib. Mark did the prime rib, and chose a recipe that required roasting some other meat with it – so we used an oxtail, a beef shank and beef soup bones.

I did the dessert, and sort of lost my mind. I decided to make pumpkin brownies, which used up half of the unsweetened chocolate bar. And that’s when I jumped off the deep end and decided to make 3 homemade ice creams from the Jeni’s cookbook: salty caramel, maple with buttered nuts, and sweet potato with toasted marshmallow. And then make them into terrines. But I forgot that a mini loaf pan might be “mini” when it comes to breads, but when it comes to ice cream, it’s a LOT. And so it looked kind of like a giant brick on the plate. But it was delicious – just ridiculous.

We were so hungry I didn’t take much time to take good photos, but it was all great.

friendsgiving

So here’s where I stand now after three weeks. Made a lot of progress this week, for sure!

Brown rice 2 portions beef stew Pizza Joes pizzas (2)
Dark chocolate bar (56% cocoa) 1 portion corn and poblano chowder Cortland apples
Dark chocolate bar (75% cocoa) 1 portion mushroom bolognese Swiss chard
Unsweetened chocolate bar (1) (.5) 1 portion venison chili Thai veggie gyoza (half bag)
Penn’s Corner hot pepper jelly (3) (2) 2 portions stroganoff Kaiser rolls (8) (4)
Penn’s Corner strawberry jelly 5 portions bolognese sauce Alexia french fries (1) (.5)
Penn’s Corner dilly beans (2) Hog jowl bacon Pork gyoza (half bag)
Evaporated milk Slab bacon Coconut chicken tenders
Bag sundried tomatoes Hot dogs Venison jerky
Stuffing mix (1.5) (.5) Hot sausage patties Roasted hot peppers
Honey buffalo sauce Venison sausage Roasted sweet peppers
Dried cherries with pits Hamburger patties Raspberries
CRO Bloody Mary Mix Pork shoulder Ripe bananas (1 million)
Chuck’s Hot Salsa Blueberries (3) (2) Frozen basil
Cinnamon applesauce Strawberries Apple cider
Pearl couscous Cranberries Pierogies
Maifun rice sticks Corn (2)
Rice Ramen Peas Grape juice
Orzo Macadamia nuts Homemade whole grain pancake mix (4) (3)
Braised eel Spinach and ricotta pierogies Fresh tomato sauce (2)
Coconut milk Harvest bread Roasting chickens
Whole tomatoes (2) Hot dog buns Chicken wings
Red enchilada sauce French bread Lamb chops
Whole canned jalapenos Ciabatta roll Ground lamb
Butter crackers Cheese tortellini Duck legs and thighs
Graham crackers (2) (1) Pizza crust Ham shank
Black turtle beans Ohio City pasta Kale sausage
Dried chick peas Pitas Pork neckbones
Dried kidney beans Puff pastry sheet Pork liver
Arborio rice Bear claw Pork heart
Partial dark chocolate bar (70%) cocoa PB donut Ham hock bones
Beef marrow bones Rhubarb thumbprint cookies Pork breakfast sausage
Beef neckbones Potato and pea samosas (2) (1) Country style pork ribs
Beef round steak Pork and vegetable dumplings (half bag) Chorizo
Beef soup bones Naan Puddin’
Catfish Green onion pancakes Beef heart
Beef hot dogs Oxtail (3) (1)
Beef mock tender
Beef shank Beef shank Beef cross cut roast
Beef stew meat Beef liver

 

Pantry/Freezer Clean Out Challenge – Week 2

This week was a bit crazy when it came to meal planning, since we had to do a lot of unexpected changes at the last minute. Mark’s aunt passed away, and we had some out of town days and some takeout days. But life is always throwing you something unexpected, so we rolled with it and still managed to get a few items checked off the pantry/freezer list.

One day last week, I took the leftover corn and poblano chowder as my lunch one day. And I remembered why it is that we bothered to save it. It’s delicious.

corn and poblano chowder

 

One night we had a quick taco dinner, and instead of opening a jar of our homemade canned salsa, we tried out the jar of hot salsa we had picked up at a Farm to Table event a very long time ago. Delicious, with a hint of peaches.

hot salsa collage

Before we left for Cleveland, we were exhausted from running around all day and neither of us really wanted to cook. So we ate a ton of appetizers, including gyoza, green scallion pancakes and some samosas. Mark made fried rice from some leftover Chipotle rice and we made a dipping sauce from mirin, soy sauce and sesame oil. My phone photo doesn’t make it look too appetizing, but it was. Especially because it just took a few minutes to make. Which is exactly why we bought that stuff in the first place. I didn’t quite use up all the gyoza in the bags, but we’re getting close.

asian appetizers collage

Last but not least, Mark made his grandma’s cheesecake to take to Cleveland to share with family, since it was one of his aunt’s favorite. We used graham crackers from the pantry for the crust.

grandma's cheesecake collage

So at the end of week 2, here’s where we stand.

Here’s where I stand now with pantry and freezer items. I can’t wait to see more of these crossed off.

Brown rice 2 portions beef stew Pizza Joes pizzas (2)
Dark chocolate bar (56% cocoa) 1 portion corn and poblano chowder Cortland apples
Dark chocolate bar (75% cocoa) 1 portion mushroom bolognese Swiss chard
Unsweetened chocolate bar 1 portion venison chili Thai veggie gyoza (half bag)
Penn’s Corner hot pepper jelly (2) 2 portions stroganoff Kaiser rolls
Penn’s Corner strawberry jelly 5 portions bolognese sauce Alexia french fries
Penn’s Corner dilly beans (2) Hog jowl bacon Pork gyoza (half bag)
Evaporated milk Slab bacon Coconut chicken tenders
Bag sundried tomatoes Hot dogs Venison jerky
Stuffing mix (1.5) Hot sausage patties Roasted hot peppers
Honey buffalo sauce Venison sausage Roasted sweet peppers
Dried cherries with pits Hamburger patties Raspberries
CRO Bloody Mary Mix Pork shoulder Ripe bananas (1 million)
Chuck’s Hot Salsa Blueberries (3) (2) Frozen basil
Cinnamon applesauce Strawberries Apple cider
Pearl couscous Cranberries Pierogies
Maifun rice sticks Corn (2)
Rice Ramen Peas Grape juice
Orzo Macadamia nuts Homemade whole grain pancake mix (4) (3)
Braised eel Spinach and ricotta pierogies Fresh tomato sauce (2)
Coconut milk Harvest bread Roasting chickens
Whole tomatoes (2) Hot dog buns Chicken wings
Red enchilada sauce French bread Lamb chops
Whole canned jalapenos Ciabatta roll Ground lamb
Butter crackers Cheese tortellini Duck legs and thighs
Graham crackers (2) (1) Pizza crust Ham shank
Black turtle beans Ohio City pasta Kale sausage
Dried chick peas Pitas Pork neckbones
Dried kidney beans Puff pastry sheet Pork liver
Arborio rice Bear claw Pork heart
Partial dark chocolate bar (70%) cocoa PB donut Ham hock bones
Beef marrow bones Rhubarb thumbprint cookies Pork breakfast sausage
Beef neckbones Potato and pea samosas (2) (1) Country style pork ribs
Beef round steak Pork and vegetable dumplings (half bag) Chorizo
Beef soup bones Naan Puddin’
Catfish Green onion pancakes Beef heart
Beef hot dogs Oxtail (3) (1)
Beef mock tender
Beef shank Beef shank Beef cross cut roast
Beef stew meat Beef liver

 

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