Saturday, January 10, 2009

In the pantry

Yes, that's premade chicken stock there!

In the icebox, yes, premade pie crusts too!

I love Mark Bittman and I love him on the "Spain on the Road again" PBS series with Mario (Gweneth not so much at all). He has a great article in the NYT this week on what you need in your pantry.

I am happy to see I have everything he lists and then some. But there are 2 things I just must disagree on: dried beans only and no premade pie crusts. With 2 kids that are really liking to do some cooking and long job hours for me, these 2 are life savers. Sure, I could put those dried cannelini in the pressure cooker but that is still 45 minutes and yet another pot. So I will use dried beans when I can but never will I ban the canned ones from the pantry.

Premade pie crusts? My MIL made a lovely pie once and knowing she is one of ultimate convenience, I wondered how she had the patience to make such a good crust. She revealed her secret of Pillsbury in the refrigerator section. They are good, yes they are. When I was on call for the entire 4 day Thanksgiving weekend, Nina went into high gear and made the pies and she did a great job with the pre-made crusts. And a little less cleanup when I did get home (yes, they haven't quite mastered the cleaning up after cooking part!) They do have their place and I do have a pack in the freezer as I type.

So, yeah Bitty, I do agree almost all the way, but do not take away these two. I'm also coming around to the homemade stock concept. I had to figure out, however, you do not just pitch the bags in the freezer. They conform to the shelves and you can't get them out without thawing the whole freezer!


Jessie said...

I wont do canned veggies or fruits but canned beans are very convenient.

Keena said...

Now frozen fruits and veg are quite good. I just discovered how wonderful frozen peaches are. And frozen peas are always in my freezer.