This month, I think I’ll let my new favorite cookbook do the talking. It’s Gluten-Free Girl Every Day by Shauna James Ahern. I bought it last month at The Chopping Block and have enjoyed cooking (and reading) from it these past few weeks. I’ve followed Shauna’s blog, Gluten-Free Girl, for many years, and love to read what she writes as much as I enjoy making her recipes. I identify with the joy she experiences in cooking and in sharing food with others. The subtitle of her blog is “Playing with our food” and I appreciate the way she encourages her readers to not just follow her recipes but to make it their own, and to experiment. I found one section in her book particularly concise and helpful – it’s from page 64.
“I often make a one-pot dish based on the leftovers of what’s in the refrigerator that night. Here’s the template I use to make one, suggested by our friends Tracy and Kim.
- Start with a flavor like sausage or bacon.
- Remove the meat and cook onions and garlic in the fat.
- Toss in a good spice or two. Wait until I can smell it.
- Add back the meat, some cooked beans, and whatever leftover cooked grains I have in the fridge.
- Pour in enough stock (or water) to cover it all and simmer it until it’s all tender.
- Throw in some vegetables – preferably the ones hanging out in the refrigerator.
- End with an acid, like lemon juice, and something with a lot of flavor, like cheese.
Using whatever I have in the refrigerator, I can imagine a dish and have it on the table in less than an hour. How about a sausage and chicken stew with cannellini beans, millet and lemony spinach, with a bit of Asiago cheese on top?”
There’s no way I could say it any better. Think of the endless possibilities!
So go and make a one-pot dinner and let us know what you created.