Do you find yourself staring into the cupboard when it’s time to make a meal? You look at the cans of food and you know there’s something there that will nourish your family but you have not the first clue how to turn those cans full of ‘stuff’ into menu fare that your gang will appreciate.
We hope the Food Stamps Cooking Club can come to your rescue!
Let’s use BEANS for an example. Beans are a really inexpensive source of protein. To be a complete source, though, you need to pair those beans with a whole grain. My first thought is beans and rice. Or rice and beans. But to make them INTERESTING and appealing to your family you can dress them up with some other ingredients.
Most households have onions around. Hopefully you have some celery, too. You can create a salad by using some greens-any type of lettuce; cabbage; tender beet tops-whatever you have on hand. Tear them or snip them into ribbons with shears or a knife and add in the drained beans. ANY KIND OF BEANS WILL DO FOR THIS; IT MAKES NO DIFFERENCE AT ALL. If you have some leftover cooked rice, add a few spoonsful into your mixture. Some chopped onion and celery, maybe even a can of corn will go nicely into this dish. Season the whole works with some salt and pepper and drizzle some oil over the whole works. So now you have a whole new recipe:
CANNED BEANS SALAD
COMBINE IN A LARGE BOWL
1 CAN OF ANY KIND Of BEANS, RINSED AND DRAINED
1/2 HEAD LETTUCE OR OTHER GREENS, TORN INTO BITE SIZED PIECES
1 CUP COOKED RICE * VARIATION: COUSCOUS OR MACARONI OR ORZO
Salt and pepper to taste
DRIZZLE OF OIL TO MOISTEN
*OPTIONAL: ONE CAN OF CORN, DRAINED
Good summertime options for variations would be to add in chunks of zucchini or tomatoes or cucumbers. Fresh corn would be good if it’s available. Adding hard cooked eggs or a flat can of drained tuna would amp up the protein, too. Canned salmon, with the bones removed and the liquid drained, will help this dish to satisfy more appetites!
Voila! You have an inexpensive hot weather dish the whole family will love. Serve some pudding or fruit for dessert and you are free from kitchen drudgery!
All this talk about beans reminds me of the bean sandwiches my dad used to make for late night snacks. He would open a can of beans, dump it into a flat bowl and mash the juice, beans and all, with Mom’s potato masher. All the juice would mix with the beans to make a sort of mush. Then he would spread that on white bread, put a slice of onion between two slabs of bread and devour what he considered to be a gourmet sandwich! Sometimes, if there happened to be pickles in the fridge, he’d add those and sometimes he’d put on a dab of mustard.
I had no faith in this “recipe” until I tried it.. IT IS DELISH!
Bean sandwiches give low cost eating a whole new dimension!
If you are eating beans from SNAP or food commodities or even a food pantry, we want to hear from you. If you are learning great and interesting ways to use foods from using Farmers Market Coupons or Angel Food Ministries we hope you’ll send us a hey. Just send your messages to firstname.lastname@example.org . We appreciate that you are sending people in your circle to Food Stamps Cooking Club so everyone can receive the messages that go out from time to time.
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