As I think of my little adventures, I realize that frugality is woven into my life. This morning, I headed to the public library (very close) to return a few DVDs. While there I picked up a few books that were being held for me. I also perused the Cook's Illustrated that was on the shelf.
Hmmmm. II wonder if one can compute the savings from this one errand.
DVDS: save $7.50 on 3 rental fees.
Books: I requested two books on braising, and the accommodating book buyer, bought them! Let's see how much they are on Amazon: Molly Stevens: All About Braising.
I also picked up Jean Anderson's Falling Off the Bone.
As usual, I am drawn to the cheapest recipes. While I may make duck ragu one of these days, right now I am putting this cabbage recipe on the menu. Molly Stevens calls it World's Best Braised Green Cabbage.
Total time: 2 1/2 hours
1 medium head green cabbage (about 2 pounds)
1 large yellow onion, peeled and thickly sliced
1 large carrot, peeled and cut in 1/4-inch coins
1/4 cup chicken stock or water
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly oil a large gratin dish or baking dish (13-by-9-inch works well).
Peel off and discard any bruised or ragged outer leaves from the cabbage. Cut cabbage in half, then into 8 wedges. (Don't trim away the cabbage heart.) Arrange the wedges in the baking dish on their sides, overlapping a little but trying for a single layer. Scatter the onion and carrot over the cabbage. Drizzle with stock or water and oil. Season with salt, pepper and pepper flakes. Cover tightly with foil and transfer to the oven.
Braise for 1 hour. Uncover and gently turn the wedges with tongs, keeping them as intact as possible. Add a little water if pan is drying out. Cover pan and return to oven. Bake 1 hour.
Remove the foil, increase the heat to 400 and roast until vegetables begin to brown, about 15 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Not only is braised cabbage the cheapest of the cheap, but also I still have 4 cabbages that were thrown to us during the St Patrick's Day Parade.
I guess I saved a bunch on the cookbooks. My cabbage dish will be almost free. Molly Stevens is an eater after my own heart: she suggests serving the cabbage with mashed potatoes as "an appealing vegetarian supper."
The Cook's Illustrated had this on the cover: Is a toaster oven really worth $250.00? You may remember my toaster oven dilemma, followed by a toaster oven disappointment. According to the magazine, the desired-by-many Breville toaster oven is indeed a wonder. Can't wait till the death of my Black and Decker.
My little adventures, which involved less than $1.00 in gas, should, if I put the savings in a jar, add up to that expensive toaster oven in a year or so.