Use It Up project–january 25, 2019

I am still working hard at using up things that need to be used. As simple as that sounds, it has taken some effort and creativity to stay on task. As the month nears an end, I am realizing that there are still a LOT of items that need to be used. So, I will continue this project into February, while buying a moderate amount of groceries as needed. Here’s what I did this week.

Did I mention the ugly produce I got for free 2 Wednesday nights ago? I’ve been working to use it up. We’ve been eating the mandarins, trimming up the apples, I cooked the spaghetti squash and am working on using the potatoes. None of this is keeping well, which makes sense as I picked it out of the bottom of a tote bin which contained a lot of bad produce, as well as this usable stuff. (It was outside the church, for people to take if they wanted it. I don’t think it could have possible lasted much longer in the condition it was in, so I’m glad I found some good things)

I made cheesy scalloped potatoes with ham yesterday. I cut down the amount of the cheese a lot, and made it lower-fat and we had small portions so Rob could still enjoy some on his diet. It was really good, and there’s lots left.

I baked the spaghetti squash towards the end of last week. We ate some with salt and pepper and a little butter a couple of times. I put the last of it into these muffins instead of zucchini. It worked fine. I just chopped the strands up into smaller pieces and stirred them into the batter at the end. I put cinnamon sugar on the top and they were great! We have not used spaghetti squash very much in the past. When we put pasta sauce on it as they say to do, neither of us liked it very much. So, we just decided to treat the free one as squash, which we both do like and not even pretend it was spaghetti:).

I did fry some up instead of hash browns one morning, along with some chicken sausage, and I enjoyed it as long as I didn’t try to pretend it was potatoes.

I got a few veggies from the old produce rack. There were 3 little zucchinis in one of the bags. I made zucchini noodle lasagna with them. I used cottage cheese that was in the back of the fridge, mixed with mozzarella cheese, frozen long ago, found in the depths of the freezer out in the shop. Although the cottage cheese was expired, it was never opened, so was perfectly fine. It really lasts a long time as long as it’s sealed. The sauce was turkey burger, onion, and the pasta sauce I canned last summer. Rob really likes this kind of lasagna, and it’s low-carb, low-fat, so he wanted some this week.

Much of the food we ate for the rest of the week was leftover from last weekend. I’ve had soup several times from the big pot I made last Saturday, and I started in on the ham I’d been saving out in the camper fridge. It is the last 77c/lb one I got right after Christmas and I didn’t freeze it because it is good until mid-February.

The other thing we’ve been burning through around here is eggs. Thankfully, my aunt got 2 dozen for me last weekend, and I got 2 dozen more. Rob eats eggs several mornings a week. I had eggs for dinner one night. Jake and Patsy started in on scrambled eggs last night and ate several. They were both back at it this morning, and I had some, too. Most of a dozen disappeared between last night and this morning. I’m delighted! Eggs are so healthy for us all.

How is is going for you?

8 thoughts on “Use It Up project–january 25, 2019”

  1. Oh, I am going to try making your zucchini lasagna! At my last doctor’s visit, I was told to eat low carb meals, because, now that I have been taken off my diabetes medications, I am controlling my blood sugar entirely by diet/exercise (which tends to be minimal, and that is something else I need to work on!). So, I have been trying to eat as little starch as I can. For someone who doesn’t much like vegetables (and most of those that I do like, such as corn and green peas, are considered “starch”), this is very hard! But, zucchini is one vegetable that I will eat, so, I shall try this.

    By the way, as you tweak and make changes to your blog, if you could possibly add the notification that a comment has been received would be nice. 🙂 It doesn’t have to say that it will be posted after being moderated, but, just to know that it went through. No hurry, though. As and when you can. Thanks.

    1. Oh, boy. Do you have any idea of how to do that? (The notify comment thing?). I’ll try looking it up on Google and start from there. That’s how I learned most of what I’ve done so far:). I love people telling me things that would be helpful.

      It’s great that you can control your diabetes by diet and exercise! Mine has been re-diagnosed as adult-onset type 1, and it explains why I never could control it that way, no matter what I did. I’ve had it for so long, and had it so young, have had to take so much meds and insulin over the years–let’s just say it explains a lot:). I’m learning to deal with the new normal, which is basically just a new mindset–the day-to-day mechanics are slightly different, but lots of the things are the same. Crazy!

  2. That is wonderful that you were able to get more free produce. And you used it so wisely. We go through so many eggs. My youngest eats them at least one a day, I always have hard boiled ones for easy snacks and just today I made omelets for breakfast. Then there is baking which uses a bunch. I have been getting them for $1.09 a dozen lately. I can’t wait until they go on sale for Easter. They are usually 49¢ a dozen then. I will stock up and get 12 dozen.

    1. Around here, 99c/dozen is the best it gets! So we really stock up when that price comes. They usually limit the quantities, so I’m grateful for my aunt, who looks out for us:)

  3. That lasagna looks great! It reminds me of a lasagna primavera I make with zucchini, broccoli, and carrots layered with the other things, and spinach mixed in the cottage/ricotta cheese (with a bit of nutmeg)–so good! I need to poke through my pantry and try to use up several items. I stocked up on pasta at $.49 last fall, but still have lots of it. I’m thawing a ham in the fridge, and plan to use up some of the 6-7 lbs. of split peas for soup with the ham bone, after baked ham with sweet potatoes tomorrow. We’ve had lots of snow and cold here in Colorado, so hearty meals sound really good right now!
    Thanks for all your inspiration!

    1. Split peas and ham sound good! I’ll have to look out in the garage. I’m pretty sure I still have an amazing amount of split peas out there. Thanks for the great idea!

      Colorado sounds cold. We rarely get snow here, but it looks lovely when we do, for a couple of days. Every thing shuts down completely here when we get snow, and we cozy down. So, that’s the fun part of snow here. The bad part is when we have to go somewhere, since people don’t know how to drive in it very well! We haven’t had even a flake this year, so far. Some years we don’t.

  4. I’ve been cooking up spaghetti squash too, from last summer’s garden. We don’t care for it with sauce as “pasta” either. My favorite way to use it is sauteed with equal parts spinach (or lamb’s quarter), a splash of cream and nutmeg. I need to figure out how to sew some pajama pants for myself. Jake’s sure look comfy.

    1. I tried to grow some last summer from some seeds from one I bought. It didn’t ripen. If I want to grow some, I’m going to have to buy some seeds. I was very glad to get the one for free that we ate. I still have some acorn squash left from last summer’s garden that I need to use, but the butternut are gone, except for a little I froze.

      Pajama pants are very easy. There are some patterns out there that are made for beginners, but they are basically elastic-waisted pants. JoAnn’s has sales where patterns are $1.99. I don’t buy them unless they are that price or lower, except for a rare exception. Then, I might buy one that is $4(ish). I look at the ads online and then go when there is a sale. You could get a cheap pattern, and some super sale fabric and just try without breaking the bank, and then move on to more expensive fabrics once you get the idea!

      I had to crack up. I needed to wash the pj pants for Jake. He insisted that I drip dry them over a stool by the fire–the might be “delicate” and “might shrink.” It was hilarious, but I did it.

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