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Using what you have on hand

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Today I made a custard pie for lunch.  As I made it, I was thinking about all you could do with this filling.  To begin with if you have milk and eggs, you could make this basic mixture.  I, of course, for pie added a little sugar, nutmeg and vanilla.  I also made a crust which you wouldn't have to do.  A greased casserole dish or 8x8 pan would work too.


If you want to make a one dish meal you could make the filling and add meat, pre-cooked potatoes, cheese, vegetables, peppers, onions, etc.  Anything, you have on hand.  What you have on hand is the key theme here.  We don't want to always have to run to the grocery store.....especially, if there's no longer a grocery store.


I can picture this pie with cheese and veggies, as a quiche.  Maybe even a can of peaches or pineapple baked in as a dessert.   Would that work and taste good?  I have no idea, but I do know if you're trying to feed a family and have to use what's on hand it just might be delicious.


Who has more ideas?  Let's get a discussion going on things you can fix with what you have on hand. 


A homestead with a cow and chickens can really make a difference, BUT, we're not all out in the country.  Even if we are, like me you may be old enough to think, "I don't want all that work of livestock anymore".


Ok, your turn! 








Edited by Dee
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This is fun!


I'm more inclined to look at the ingredients before assembled because that is how I think. Custard pie....eggs, milk, salt, sugar, flour and fat for the crust.


My ideas:

Sounds like a quiche to me.  Any meat and / or veggie combination.   

The eggs and fat could make a Carbonara sauce and the flour could be pasta.

Make bread instead of pie crust then pour custard over it for bread pudding

Soup.   Make a roux with the flour, milk, and fat.   Add whatever and some liquid.  

I'd make it into flan and serve with fruit or jam. Flan is basically less milk and more sugar and eggs than custard.  

Old fashioned milk toast.  Make bread and pour warm milk over it.   

Needless to say if you have flour, salt, eggs and milk then all things bread are on the table.  pancakes, muffins, bread, biscuits, If you have no yeast then you can do sourdough or flatbreads.  

You could make scrambled egg hand pies or any sort of hand pie.   Flour and milk can make all number of white and cheese sauces.  

Milk can be turned into yogurt, sour cream, or quark (farmer's cheese) in a morning or a day depending.  


Pancakes, scrambled eggs, and milk to drink.   That is a whole meal right there.  You can even use the sugar and some water to make a syrup.  

breakfast burritos with the flour and eggs.   make the milk into sour cream if you have vinegar to add.  

Edited by euphrasyne
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Quiche is the first thing I thought of.  Then white sauce (butter, milk, flour) since that's the basis of "cream of" anything soup.  Add cheese and short pasta (macaroni or shells, mostly) and you have macaroni and cheese.  Or add chopped tomatoes and crackers and bake, and it's good.

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This thread had me stopping to think.  I can’t remember a time when I made a trip to the store for the purpose of making something specific.  I sometimes buy ingredients for a specific recipe IF I am already doing my general shopping.  Otherwise everything I prepare is from what I already have on hand. Recipes are simply modified to use what I have.   

I was thinking that if we couldn’t go to a grocery store and didn’t have a milk animal or poultry then chances are that eggs and milk could be the very things we wouldn’t have. I do keep powdered milk and canned milk on hand but also know how to make substitute ‘milk’ out of a variety of substance I also keep on hand or can forage.  Things like nuts, seeds, coconut, vegetables and fruit.   I keep powdered eggs and frozen eggs on hand but I can also use substitutes for those too. Applesauce in baked goods, gelatin, flaxseed or chia seeds in puddings and even in mock custards, the liquid from cooking chickpeas (aquafaba) for whipping, and more. 

These are things I use even when I do have milk and eggs, especially with the cost of milk and eggs lately.  I really do like “shopping” in my own pantry. Meals are rarely boring as long as I keep a variety of staples on hand.  

Great thread, Dee. 

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I do the same thing. I have found different ways to use what I have on hand. My issue is my picky GS. I gave up on him and if he wants to eat it will be what I am cooking. I do try to stick to things that he can just heat up and eat but if it's something he doesn't like then there is peanut butter and jelly. Not doing specials for him any longer. So, if I want chili and he doesn't want it, that's fine as I can eat leftovers the next day. Sometimes I make chili using hamburger and sometimes I make a white chili using chicken. I have found lots of ways to use pasta also. But I don't use a lot of that being diabetic. Need to watch the carbs as that turns into sugar. 


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This is not specific, but sometimes I just type into Pinterest the ingredients that I want to use up and get so many recipe suggestions!  Yesterday, I put in leftover biscuits.  I will be making croutons.  They were on my list and now I can take them off.  Sometimes, I just need a suggestion.

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DD2 is super picky,  way more so than any of my other kids were.  I usually serve her what we are eating and add a pouch of applesauce since she will always eat that.  


I love pintrest and check it daily.  I love trying new recipes and comparing them to older ones.  

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I got my GS yesterday.  I made a pot of goulash. Yes, it had tomatoes in it. The funny part was powdered up some peas and put in there and he didn't even know it. I was surprised that he ate it. Dehydrated foods just might work out if I can do it in power form. He hates tomatoes but will eat them in spaghetti sauce, and pizza. Go figure. 

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