I woke up this morning with a burning desire to clean out my fridge and put all the odds and ends floating around in there to good use. Along with some stray veggies, about a cup of soy creamer, about a cup of dates and a roll of polenta, I had 2 full bags of spinach that were this close to being ready for the compost pile and some frozen fruit I was worried about losing to freezer burn. I feel so awful throwing away (even if it's to the compost bin) such good food so I needed to figure out a way to use it up.
I first hit up allrecipes and found this muffin recipe for the dates. I made a double batch with white whole wheat flour, clementines instead of oranges, changed up the spices a little, added some orange juice, and they turned out delicious. I'm glad I made a double batch or there wouldn't be too many left for an after school snack. :)
Next I took one bag of spinach, the frozen berries (cherries and blueberries), some OJ, a couple clementines and some soy yogurt and blended up some green smoothies. This made a lot (I did it in a few batches, each one slightly different) so I froze two of the batches in ziploc bags and stashed them in my freezer. Nicky and I polished off the rest. Green smoothies are super forgiving, if you've never made them. Just take a couple of cups of spinach, something frozen (frozen berries or ice), something liquid (oj, milk or cooled tea) and something creamy (banana or yogurt) and blend it up! Add in whatever other fruits/greens you have and taste as you go...you'll be surprised how yummy they are.
I got the idea to freeze them from an issue of everyday food. It says to take a frozen bag out of the freezer the night before you want it and it will be good to go in the morning.
Finally, I made a dairy free pesto with the other bag of spinach and some walnuts I had in the freezer. This idea was also from an issue of everyday food.
First, boil some salted water and add your bag of spinach just for a minute until it wilts. Pour the wilted spinach into a strainer and run cold water over it until cool. Next you need to put it on a dishtowel or paper towels and dry it well. Put the spinach, 2 cloves of minced garlic, some coarse salt and pepper and 1 cup of toasted walnuts into your food processor and process until the walnuts are chopped up nice and small. Gradually add 2/3 cup of olive oil into the food processor while it's running until all is incorporated.
The article says this dairy free pesto freezes better than regular pesto and walnuts are definitely cheaper than pine nuts, so that's another benefit. I can tell you it is delicious and I am so happy to have a couple jars stashed in my freezer.
recipe for dinner tonight! woohoo!
As for the stray veggies, I'm going to make some veggie stock tomorrow. And the soy creamer? gah. I don't know yet. Let me know if you have any ideas, okay? thanks. :)
xoxo, dear ones.