M is for “Make It Up”

This week I arrived home from a 6 night trip with the children… to this fridge:

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Notice the empty fruit drawer, the empty veggie drawer, the empty cheese drawer… no milk; the blue lid container is an experiment – week+ old broccoli!! The blue liquid is watercolor paint. What did Kurt eat while we were gone? I still have not asked! Since we don’t own any packaged, instant type meals or food AND we already ate eggs and potatoes for breakfast…I knew I was going to have to either 1) spend my treasured “home day” with my 2 littles in the stores, or 2) creatively make “something out of nothing” (great children’s book if you don’t have it!).

I chose #2. I didn’t have it in me to drag the children to the grocery store. Instead we went to the docks to see the sea lions, play on the beach, and in our favorite Hecate Park. When we arrived home I started with an onion, pulled from our 50 lb sack in the shed. Here is my helper starting us off:

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We began making it up… adding cabbage, yams, carrots and celery my mom brought us, we came up with a basic veggie soup simmered for 1.5 hours (basic recipe in this hilarious book):

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What about protein? I relied on a faithful recipe using red lentils, transforming them into a dahl type dish that doesn’t look like much, but is in fact quite delicious served with buns and butter (and soup!). And cheap as dirt too!! Everyone in my family gobbled these 2 dishes for dinner AND lunch the next day! Yah!

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Lynda’s lentils: 1 onion, garlic, 2c red lentils (dry), 1 can diced tomatoes (28 oz), 4c water, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp cumin, 1.5 tsp ground coriander. Simply saute the onion and garlic (add some or lots of oil if you want a richer meal), add the lentils, tomatoes and water. Once boiling simmer at lowest temp possible, stirring often about 25 min. Add spices and serve with bread, roti, and if you like yogurt and cilantro. 

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