Recipe: Turkey Pilaf

Recipe: Turkey Pilaf

Recipe: Turkey, pistachio & pomegranate pilaf

Christmas is a time of feasting – and wasting. If you struggle with leftover turkey and can’t face another turkey curry, then may I suggest this pilaf? It’s simple, needs only onion, cinnamon and rice. Sprinkle over some leftover nuts from the table and you have a thrifty, delicious meal to feed the masses.
If you can get pomegranate, the sweet & sour crunch adds variety, but it’s not essential. A handful of parsley is refreshing after a solid diet of roasties and Quality Streets, again not essential.
With thanks to Veolia for commissioning this recipe!

Turkey, pistachio & pomegranate pilaf

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Course: Main Course
Keyword: eating on a budget

Equipment

  • Sharp knife & chopping board
  • Large frying pan

Ingredients

  • 1 onion diced
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 300 grams basmati rice
  • 450 ml leftover gravy/chicken/turkey stock/water
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon or mixed spice
  • salt and pepper
  • handful each of pistachios, pomegranate seeds and parsley (all optional)

Instructions

  • Dice the onion and fry until golden
  • When the onion is nice and soft, add the rice and stir so that the grains are covered in oil
  • Pour in the stock/water and cinnamon, salt and pepper and stir well
  • Bring up to the boil, then cover and simmer on a low heat until the rice is almost cooked
  • Add shredded pieces of turkey just before the rice is ready and ensure hot all the way through
  • Serve, topped with pistachios, pomegranate seeds and parsley

Notes

Storage/further meals
This dish is best served straightaway as you are re-heating meat.

Ratio: Basic Quiche

Ratio: Basic Quiche

Ratio Cooking: Quiche

As a veg-box customer I’ve got used to making quiche from loads of different things. Using just egg yolks for luxury, or an egg and an egg-white when that needs finishing up. Half a jar of roasted peppers and a few olives? A little bacon and loads of greens? Half an egg left from egg washing some scones & some cream from Sunday crumble?
Read on and find out how your small leftovers are the perfect inspiration for a quiche.

Quiche base

Simple: buy a pre-made base.

Easy: a packet of ready made shortcrust pastry. You’ll need a metal or ceramic dish (usually easy to find in a charity shop)

Make your own. For a 15 cm dish, you want 115 grams of flour and 55 grams of fat. Got a great big lovey tart dish, 40 cm across? Double it!
If you’re buying Sainsbury’s plain flour at 50p/kilo, you’re looking at 6p of flour. 2 oz of regular butter will set you back 30p. So, about 36p, rather than a quid! When I have rendered lard, I use half butter half lard. Using rendered lard saves expensive butter for another dish and adds a layer of flavour to my finished dish.

The filling

Egg: let’s start with 2 eggs and 2 egg yolks. You could use 3 egg yolks + 1 egg and a little more cream, or your version.

Cream: you can use single, double, whipping. You can even use slightly cheesy cream, as you’re using cheese and any worrisome bugs will be killed by the cooking process.

Thrifty tip
If you don’t already store the rinds from your Parmesan/Italian Style Hard Cheese, then start. A couple of hours before you make your quiche, warm the cream with a parmesan rind, some seasoning and a bay leaf, maybe some thyme. The flavour from the cheese rind will infuse the cream – result? You need less cheese in your final dish.

Veggies, a little meat

The great thing about quiche is that you can shove loads of random stuff in there. Greens, mushrooms, roasted peppers, a little bacon.

The total weight you want it around 500 grams cooked weight. If you have some cold, leftover greens, a few olives, a little meat.

The cheese

You can use most cheeses here. Cheddar, Emmental, blue cheese, goat. Chunks of feta stirred through a roast pepper mix. A couple of slices of that not-amazing Brie you picked up or some crusty bits of blue.
The point is to use up what you have, and enjoy the mix! If you love greens and feta, then go for it. Love cheese and onion? The cheddar and onion is your friend.
You know what you enjoy eating, so start there. And message me with questions.

 

Quiche: Ratio Guide

Want to clear out the fridge and make a quiche? Here's your ratio guide to make a perfect quiche or tart from weird leftovers.
Prep Time2 hrs
Cook Time1 hr
Course: Main Course
Keyword: cheap recipies, empty the fridge, no food waste
Servings: 4
Author: Ann Storr

Equipment

  • Scales
  • Optional: food processor
  • Mixing bowl
  • Small bowl and lid
  • Tart/pie tin
  • Rolling pin
  • Baking beans and greaseproof paper
  • Measuring jug
  • Whisk
  • Saucepan
  • Frying pan

Ingredients

For home-made pastry

  • 115 grams flour (can be, say, 90 grams plain white + 25 spelt...)
  • 55 grams fat (all butter/half butter half lard/margarine)
  • pinch fine sea salt
  • 2-4 tablespoons water

For the custard

  • 2 whole eggs around 90ml of egg
  • 2 egg yolks around 30 ml egg yolk
  • 300 millilitres cream double, single, whipping... slightly cheesy...
  • 1 rind Grana Padano/Italian style hard cheese
  • 1 bay leaf optional
  • nutmeg optional
  • spring onion greens or leek top optional

Cheese

  • around 100 grams cheese Cheddar, gruyere, double gloucester, Parmesan...

Veggies and/or meat

  • 1 kg raw veggies onions, mushrooms, greens...
  • oil/fat to cook them - lard, butter, olive oil...

or

  • 500 grams cooked, leftover veg
  • up to 150 grams bacon/sausage/chorizo

Instructions

The custard - ideally a few hours before you want to cook the quiche/tart but ** not essential **

  • If you have a parmesan rind and/or bay leaf/freshly ground
    nutmeg etc, place them in a saucepan with the cream and bring the heat to
    medium. Season with salt and black pepper. After about five minutes and before it
    boils, turn the heat off and leave to one side/in the fridge overnight, if you wish.

If making your own pastry

  • Either process the flour, fat & salt in your food processor and then add a little water until it comes together in a ball.
  • Or, if making pastry by hand, rub the fat(s) into the flour/salt mixture until sandy. When there are no lumps of butter left over, add a tablespoon of water at a time, until it comes together in a ball.
    Either way, place the pastry in the small bowl, cover with a lid (I just use a plate) and leave in the fridge for half an hour.

Blind baking

  • Turn your oven to 220C
  • Lightly flour your kitchen counter and place the pastry in the middle. Roll out the pastry to about 10 cm wider than the tin/dish you are using. Move the dish to next to your raw pastry. Either by nudging the pastry onto the pin, or by lightly folding the pastry into quarters, lift the pastry over the tin.
  • Prick the pastry all over with a fork and trim off any excess. Cut a length of greaseproof paper and grease it a little. Oiled side down, place it on the pastry and cover with the beans. Put in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes, or until the sides are golden brown.
  • Once ready, remove from the oven. Carefully pour the very, very hot baking beans into a heat proof bowl and leave to cool down. Dispose of the greaseproof paper.
    You can either go straight on to cook from here, or leave to cool and bake the quiche/tart another day.

The meat/veggies

  • Greens (around a kilo): wilt in a frying pan and after about 5-10 minutes tip into a colander and then squeeze out any water or other ideas.

Cheese

  • Grate; if feta, into chunks

Baking

  • Turn the oven on to/down to 180C. Place a tray in the oven to heat up. Strain the cream and discard the cheese rind. Take the eggs and/or egg yolks and whisk into the cream. Taste and season as necessary. Stir the cheese through.
  • If using spinach/onions, I tend to stir them into the custard. For peppers/feta, I pour in the custard and attempt to make a pretty dish by placing them carefully.
  • Place the tart on the waiting try in the hot oven and bake for between 30 and 40 minutes.
  • Check on it after about 25 minutes; if the top is brown but the middle is still very wobbly, you can turn the heat down and continue to bake. It’s ready when the middle of the tart feels firm to the touch.

Eating

  • If you’ve used a loose-bottomed tin, you can release the tart by propping it onto a tin and letting the side fall down. If you’re using a solid tin or ceramic dish, just leave on the wire cooling rack until ready.

Storage

  • The tart will keep in the fridge for around 5 days. If you want to reheat, it's best to let the tart come to room temperature and then place in a warm oven until warm through. Don't reheat again. And don't microwave! The pastry will go all floppy and foul.

Ratio: Time

Ratio: Time

Ratio Cooking, StorrCupboard

Hi loyal StorrCupboard visitors.
I am still working in the background. But I’ve been working, delivering events, devising and giving workshops, hosting events, making calls, and being a parent, a daughter and a friend.
The reality is that a lot of bloggers don’t need to earn an income. They have the happy fortune of not needing to bring in paid work, and that’s just wonderful! Some make it their source of income, and that is just flipping amazing.
I don’t want to make StorrCupboard a site that is full of ads, encouraging you to spend money and buy products you don’t need. This is a place where you can learn to use what you have. As such, I’ve had to concentrate the last few months on earning and growing StorrCupboard into something bigger, and to articulate what’s in my brain through the help of friends and people able to help me whilst I bootstrap this love of mine.
I’m a self employed, single parent breadwinner and this is the space that has to take the hit, sometimes. (My ex is a good dad and co-parent, but there’s only so much one can do).
The new iteration of StorrCupboard is coming, please keep checking in. I’m no hobbyist. Reducing waste and doing my bit for the planet is my mission. Also making sure I earn enough to keep the lights on and my children fed is rather important… this post is not SEO friendly, it’s not on brand and it’s not about food waste. But it is about the sustainability of work, of balancing a mission and passion with the reality of paid vs. unpaid work.
I’m not complaining; I love this work and I choose to do it.
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After half term, that’s the plan. Fingers crossed.
Tons of love,
Ann x
(Slightly soggy) courgette pasta (just add bacon)

(Slightly soggy) courgette pasta (just add bacon)

Courgettes were, as I’ve said, a veg I associated with having the bollocks boiled out of them and served grey.  Yummy.  It wasn’t until started getting a veg-box that I learnt that there are far tastier ways to eat courgettes.  And, to be fair, at times, there are *a lot* of courgettes, so there a lot of courgette recipes in my brain…
One day, my darling Elizabeth babysat my kids.  Getting home from work, 3 kids (my 2 her 1) needed dinner, quickly. I think we had some ham or bacon, and some courgettes in the fridge.  Pasta is super handy when using up 1 or 2 courgettes because you only ever want a little veg to go with pasta.  I chopped the cougettes up super fine, cooked them with a lot of oil and shredded the meat. By the time the pasta was cooked,so was the veg. And because the veg was cut small, the kids ate some of it.
Note on cooking pasta: I’m reading Rachel Roddy’s ‘Five Quarters’ at the moment, and she’s reminded me to be a little more careful about cooking pasta.
Put on a big pan for your pasta – big.
Salt the water when the water is boiling, not before.
When you add the pasta to the boiling water, make sure it’s moving and separated (i.e., not in lumpy clumps).
Check the cooking time.  Take off 2 minutes and put the pinger on.  So if it says “8-10 minutes”, put the pinger on for 6 minutes.
Find a heatproof jug/small bowl and ladle (you want to retrieve about 80ml water)
After 6 minutes, remove a ladle/jug full of pasta water
Try some pasta.  It might be how you like it, you might want it a little softer.
Try it every minute or so.
If you are mixing the pasta with other ingredients in a hot pan (as with this recipe) you want it a little under-done because it will keep cooking in the pan)
Drain in a colander, but do not shake off every last droplet of water – that is why your pasta clumps together
Turn the pasta into the pan with the veg and meat
Stir, and pour in a little (about 15ml, or 1 tablespoon) of pasta water. This helps to combine the ingredients.

Courgette pasta

Serves around 4

Ingredients

around 250g courgettes (2-3) weighed before grating
around 200g bacon
olive oil
1-2 cloves garlic (to taste)
300g pasta
Cheese, for grating
Salt and pepper

Tools
Sharp knife
Chopping board
Large frying pan (big enough to fit
courgettes, meat and pasta)
Large saucepan
Colander/sieve
Wooden spoon
Heatproof jug/ladle and heatproof bowl
Cheesegrater

Optional tools
Garlic crusher

Time
10 minutes prep
25-30 minutes cook

Level
Medium

Method

Cut the tops and tails off the courgettes
Cut them into 3 inch/10c long pieces
Next, cut each chunk of courgette lengthwise, so you have about 4 strips of courgette
Then cut them into fine dice (squares) around 5mm wide
Put the bacon in the frying pan and put the heat on medium – you want the meat to fry in its own fat. Add a little olive if you need, to get the cooking going
When there’s some fat going sizzle, add the courgettes- you may need to add some more oil
You do not want to brown the courgettes, you want them to soften without colouring
Put your pasta water on
When the water is boiling add salt and then the pasta
Put the pinger on for 2 minutes fewer than the packet directs
Whilst the pasta is cooking, finely dice/squash your garlic
When the pinger goes off, save a a small jug of pasta water (around 50-80 millilitres) in your heatproof jug/little bowl
Try the pasta – you want it a little underdone because it’s going to cook more with the courgettes
When it’s ready, strain the pasta in the waiting colander
While the pasta is draining, take the garlic and stir it into the pan with the courgette and bacon
After about 30 seconds you should smell the garlic
Stir the pasta into the pan with the courgettes
Pour in about a tablespoon (15ml) of pasta water and some salt and pepper
Stir these together
If the pasta is a little too sticky, then pour in a little more water until you have the
consistency you like
Serve with lots of cheese!

Storage/further meals

As you have used a good amount of pasta water, you shouldn’t have a solid lump of pasta in the bottom of a serving bowl/saucepan
Place any leftovers in a lidded container and store in the fridge for up to 3 days
Reheat in microwave or in a pan using a little water/chicken stock, or use a lot of chicken stock to make this the starter for a lovely chicken noodle soup
Or a pasta frittata
Or add some freshly cooked pasta and other veg for another meal

 

 

 

 

 

Got a question? Ingredient you need help with? Get in touch:

ann@storrcupboard.com

Leftover cake crumb trifle

Leftover cake crumb trifle

Yes, trifle! I didn’t grow up eating trifle, which is probably A Good Thing, because it means that I can come to this pudding, this English tiramisu, with happy abandon.
Keeping it cheap, though, well this isn’t a traditional trifle; chunks or layers of cake crumbs are fudgy because any icing will soak into the cake along with fruit. Trifle usually has lots of sherry but I want the kids to eat it and I’m not spending £6 or so on booze for one pudding, thanks.
Not sure which fruit to use?  You’ll want to use a fruit that pairs nicely with the cake. I had chocolate cake, so I used raspberries, though strawberries or cherries would be great.  Coffee and walnut?  Fruit can be tricky here, but some chocolate sauce would be delicious.  Victoria sponge cake would pair nicely with berries.  Carrot cake? Maybe some sultanas soaked in juice or rum. This pudding is a perfect use up for picnic bashed berries and over-ripe fruits.
I used fresh bought custard because it was easier, but if you want to make your own, or use powder, just go for making half a litre and you’ll be fine.
Take that stale cake that box full of crumbs or two sad slices of stale cake and look!  waste-less, cheap, tasty food for everyone, and never a leftover, leftover.

 

 

Cake Crumb Trifle

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

Around 150g cake crumbs/stale cake
1-2 punnets raspberries/strawberries
Large pot custard (I used a 500g pot)
1 300ml pot double cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons caster sugar

Tools

Scales
Mixing bowls
Whisk
Teaspoon
Bowl for whisking
Bowl for serving

Optional tools

Electric whisk/stand mixer
Measuring spoons

Time

15m prep
10m to combine
At least 1 hour to rest before serving

Prep

If you have slices of cake, cut into cubes
Wash and dry fruit
Whisk the cream with vanilla and sugar until you have soft peaks

Method

Place cake cubes/crumbs in the bottom of serving bowl
Fruit on top
Pour over the custard
Spoon the cream on top
Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving

 

Got a question? Ingredient you need help with? Get in touch:

ann@storrcupboard.com

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