~ from my home to yours, living the Working Pantry lifestyle ~

Sunday, February 18, 2024

Use it Up Food Challenge: 2/18/24

   What is a 'Use It Up Food' challenge?

 It's about food waste or more specifically not wasting food ...

 It's about repurposing our leftovers into another dish,

 It's about using every part of fruits and vegetables,

 It's about using up the really small amounts of food ...

It's about using up food scraps, peels and stems ...

It's about being mindful of every bit of food that comes in and through our kitchens and finding a use for it ... all of it!

That's our purpose for this series, so, how did we do this week?

Do you remember the leftover pizza sauce I had after making homemade pizzas from this post?  I told you that I had a plan to use it and would share it later.

This week I used it and this is how ...

I made homemade pizza flavored hot pockets! Here's basically how I made them ...

I opened up a pint jar of home canned ground beef and drained the liquid out.

I mixed the drained ground beef and the leftover pizza sauce together and let it simmer while I prepared the dough.

For the dough, I took a portion of the sourdough bread dough I had made up earlier, rolled it out to between 1/8th and 1/4 inch and then cut it into the size shapes I wanted.  You can do circles, but I chose to do long rectangles about 3 inches wide and about 6 inches long.

I then laid half of a piece of pepper jack cheese on the lower half of my cut-out rectangles and then added about 2 tablespoons or more of the ground beef/pizza sauce mixture on top of the cheese.  Next, I placed 2 or 3 pickled banana pepper rings on the mixture.

I folded the top half of the rectangle over the bottom half and sealed the edges, first with my fingers then with a fork.

I melted some butter and brushed the tops of each hot pocket and then sprinkled some pizza topping seasonings on top of each.

Into the oven they went at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes.  

They are quite yummy and it all started with a small jar of leftover pizza sauce!

The original recipe for these hot pockets came from Here, I tweaked the recipe a bit to suit our tastes and way of cooking.

But that's not all, look at what other 'discard' I turned into something yummy to eat ...

These are homemade crackers made from the 'discard' of my sourdough starter.  If you are familiar with making sourdough bread you will know that there is always 'discarded starter' to either 'get rid of' or use it in making something else.  In keeping with my 'use it up' mindset, I chose to make something with it.  These crackers are the result.  Here's how I made them ...

3/4 cup of sourdough starter discard 
3 tablespoons of butter 
1/4 teaspoon of salt
herbs or seasoning of choice

Melt butter and stir in seasonings or herbs, sauté if necessary

Mix sourdough starter, salt and butter mixture together, stirring until well mixed.
Spread evenly on a parchment paper lined flat baking pan and bake for 10 minutes in a 350-degree oven.

Remove pan from oven and make slices through the partially cooked dough for the size of crackers you want. Just make the slices, don't try to separate the dough into shapes.  Return pan to oven and cook an additional 20 minutes.

Remove from oven and let cool.  When completely cooled, place crackers in a jar for keeping until you're ready to eat them.  

Be warned ... I bet you can't eat just one!!

The original recipe for these crackers came from Here, I tweaked the recipe a bit to suit our tastes and way of cooking.

That's how I did this week, what leftovers or discarded foods did you use up?

until next time,

 mrs. patsi @ A Working Pantry

 She looketh well to the ways of her household … Proverbs 31:27 

 Sharing 44 years' experience of frugal, prudent living and pantry building 

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  1. I have made the crackers and they are good but those pastry pockets are amazing!!!

    1. Thank you, the crackers and the pastry pockets, were delicious and with the pastry pockets it's a good way to use up bits and bobs of leftover foods for the stuffing, too!

  2. Patsi, those "hot pockets" are genius and look so delicious. I love making no roll crackers. This week I had some cheese, zucchini, and sprouting sweet potatoes to use up. I tweaked a recipe for a zucchini spaghetti pie.
    It called for 3 cups of zucchini, 2 eggs, 1 1/2 cups of spaghetti sauce, 1 cup of cheese and baked in a 9 inch pie plate. I didn't have I used the sprouting white sweet potatoe for some of the zucchini, the zucchini that I had, and just made it with different cheeses that needed to be used up that I had. It was delicious even with the tweaks and give us 2 dinners that night with a salad and two dinner sized portions for the freezer. Cookie

    1. Cookie, that sounds delicious! I'll have to remember that as I'm always looking for ways to use zucchini.

  3. Thank you for the recipes and instructions, Patsy. Many years ago I made sourdough bread (from starter) 2-3 times per week. My husband still mentions it. Hmmm. Might have to get/make another starter. That 1st was a friend's gift from her own starter. We were both new moms at the time and the motto was, if you can't get to it, don't toss it, share it.

    This week was all food from the freezer, fridge and pantry, using up. Following oral surgery, I had to keep to soft foods. No problem. There was a frozen rotisserie chicken (bought day-old at $3.08) that went into the crock pot (still frozen) with a little water. Traditional chicken dinner 2X with mashed potatoes and soft cooked veggies. I made bone broth from the scraps and used that for a diced chicken stuffing casserole with the last of the celery and green onions. Small pot of broth from the veggie scraps for later. We had grits and eggs for dinner one night. Used more eggs for homemade potato salad yesterday; we have company coming today, but I think I made too much! Used the last of my chives. Thankfully, herb seeds arrived this week. Saved banana peels and egg shells in baggies--they're great used in planting holes for shrubs, fruit trees and more.

    Plugged the sink and used warm up water with Dawn dish soap on a sponge to deep clean the stove top, cleaning the scrubber as I went in that water. Plugged the sink another time when rinsing some things, and used that to wash/rinse potatoes before peeling.

    Thought about starting a compost pile again for things like those potato peels. The issue here is wildlife getting in. We heard coyotes a few times; unusual this time of year. Discovered wild rabbits have taken up residence under our barn shed. A large herd of elk (with yearlings) came across the street and through the (vacant) neighbor's lot. So... until we can buy an acre of fencing, we're pondering how to use the stack of pallets that have accumulated to keep critters out of any garden areas. I ordered the (sale) herb seed collection, because herbs are a good deterrent for deer and elk. Thanks again to Kelsey for the sprouting tips. Whew! That's about it. --Elise

    1. Elise, keeping critters out of the compost is an ongoing problem, and honestly not one that I choose to battle. Right now, some of our chickens are scratching and digging in my compost pile and the squirrels are always helping themselves to whatever is in it. Every once in a while, we'll see where the deer have paid us a visit. We just go with the flow!

  4. Amazing! Keep up the good work. It's nice to see you meeting your goals. You've got this!

  5. I fell off the wagon of home cooking last week, and boy did it crash my budget! I had a lot of "stuff" going on and, regretably, opted for the easy way out. Paying the price for the rest of the month and into March, for sure. I really wanted to get carry-out oriental last night from my favorite place last. Instead, I remembered the 2 leftover egg rolls in the freezer, along with a small bag of oriental vegetables, and I pulled out a package of terriyaki rice mix and made my own oriental dinner. It hit the spot and stopped the craving for a whole lot less money than take-out. I'll be back with my "use it up" report next week.