Making Something from “Nothing”

IMG_1073 (1)No doubt we have all been there.  Staring into the fridge, wondering what to make for dinner, wishing that we went for groceries, thinking the fridge looks awfully bare.  I remember groaning “there is NOTHING to make for dinner!” This lovely meal started with a lone package of beautiful Thatcher Farm sausages, found in my deep freeze, and thawed through the day.  I am usually pretty good at grocery shopping, and generally don’t have too much difficulty coming up with a healthy meal for my family.  There are exceptions however, and this day was one of them.  I dreaded making dinner.  Regardless, dinner must be made!

Before anyone starts to question the use of sausage in a nutritionist’s kitchen… sure, sausage isn’t typically the healthiest of meats.  I will say that these ones in particular raise the bar of the humble sausage.  While we don’t have them often, we certainly enjoy them when we do.  I’m not saying that sausage should be in your weekly meal rotation, nor am I saying that it should be a food that is stricken from your menu.  How about we will call it a sometimes food and leave it at that?  I feel a little better now that I have addressed the sausage business.  Onwards.

I started with cooking the sausage with some onion. Still, had no idea what would become of it.  I was really trying to avoid dumping some tomato sauce on top and cooking up some pasta.  I had no real inspiration but that didn’t really feel like a decent option – nutritionally lacking, no real option for leftovers (pasta in a thermos isn’t great), and it just seemed like a waste of the sausages.

While the sausage cooked, I went looking for inspiration.  Looking in my fridge I had some kale that has, up until this latest snow, been growing in my garden (December kale!) – a great match for sausage. I chopped it fine and in it went with the sausage.

Looking in my cupboard, I found some mini purple and white potatoes and some sweet potato.  Those went for a steam and were quickly cooked.  I always try to make a meal go as far as possible so that there are leftovers for lunches the next day.  I also found a can of black beans, drained and rinsed and added that to my mix.  This yumminess was all combined and served with some home made hummus and whole wheat chapati.

IMG_1076These are the kinds of meals that I really love.  Wholesome ingredients, minimally processed, comforting and easy.  I initially felt like I had nothing to make but we all ended up enjoying every bite and having enough for leftovers.  Meals like this make me wonder if a weekly trip to the grocery store is always necessary… they avoid wasting food that is already on hand and these meals prove our creativity and resourcefulness.

Happy cooking!