Cooking something 3 ways. 3 choice cuts of expensive meat cooked in 3 elaborately delicious ways. On Masterchef. And only on Masterchef, because here in the real world most of us could rarely afford to buy enough expensive meat to cook 1 way, if we eat meat at all. Our family had a blast watching the Australian Masterchef series recently, although I must admit it left me deeply contemplating… Who gets feed all the wasted off cuts of food? Who has to do all the dishes? If money was no object, what would I cook for dinner?
As I’m sure most of you reading this can identify with the horror that grocery shopping brings (and no, not because you are shopping with small people). But the horror that comes with wandering around the supermarket isles having no idea how you are actually going to feed all of your family on so little money. So I thought I would share with you how to rock Masterchef’s cooking it 3 ways in the real world.
Cook as much food as you can ‘3 ways’. Over the last fortnight I have turned one frozen chicken into a roast, a chicken broth, and chicken sandwiches for lunches. One 250g packet of bacon has been stuffed baked potatoes, a broccoli salad, and bacon and egg pita breads for lunches. One 5kg bag of spuds has been turned into numerous things. And the whole cabbage I bought has been made into at least 5 dinners, ranging from a side of coleslaw to steamed cabbage with the roast.
Buy dried lentils. These little things are seriously awesome. High in iron, a great source of protein, and cheap as. You can hide them in everything from a slow cooked stew to spag bol. Just be sure to read the cooking time on the packet as some cook very quickly, and others take a while.
Teach your kids to scavenge. I know it sounds bad, but it really is good! Recently my son proudly brought me a whole bag of newspaper he had scavenged from a recycle bin to save me buying a newspaper to light our fire with. Proud mother moment. We also go door knocking if we see pear’s falling off someone’s tree, pick friend’s lemon bushes, collect walnuts when we are walking etc.
Be extraordinarily generous. If you expect people to share with you, you should be sharing with others. It’s very hard to give to someone if they are tight fisted, so make sure you always have an open hand.
Grow your own. Veges that is. I laugh at the $5 bunch of spring onions in the supermarket knowing I can readily pick these out of my garden when I want them.