Creative Cooking: what to do with unused produce still in the fridge
This week I did not plan my meals as effectively as was possible, shopping without a plan can wreck havoc with wasted food, which means wasted money, or it can be an opportunity to be creative. I ended this Sunday with a small head of broccoli & cauliflower, 4-5 small beets, several carrots & half a red onion. As well, I had a small bag of red potatoes that needed a home. My original plans for these 'leftovers' was a roasted soup, maybe add some beans or not. As I chopped the beets & carrots & added red onion slices, & then broccoli & cauliflower, I realized the options were more than soup. I placed the beets, carrots & red onion on a baking sheet with olive oil & salt; I did the same with the broccoli & cauliflower, except no red onion. Both pans were salted & generously drizzled with olive oil, and placed in an oven preheated to 425 convection roast. The potatoes were chopped, first sliced in one direction & then cut in half, and placed in water and brought to a boil. I added salt to the water. While potatoes boiled & vegetables roasted, I considered my options. As it was a sports night & I would be eating hot dogs, I decided on a roasted vegetable potato salad. Letting everything cool when done, potatoes when a fork can slide through & veggies when slightly crispy brown, I placed all together in a large bowl. From there I added a bit of store bought mayo (fairly easy to make from scratch as well) and olive oil. Mixing together & allowing to blend before tasting for salt needs.
In my quest to use everything, the 'ends' & greens of the beets & carrots, broccoli peels & cauliflower stem were place in a pot of water with salt added. This mixture was brought to a boil & then reduced to a simmer for 15-30 minutes – time was not an important part of this process. I allowed all to cool & strained the liquid from the cooked vegetable 'parts' to get a lovely broth to use at a later time for another dish.