Wednesday, June 24, 2009

One Woman's Trash Is Another Woman's Culinary Masterpiece

One of my fave things is throwing together meals based on Leftover Crap I Should Really Use Already. Even if the Leftover Crap is maybe not something I would normally eat but it’s a shame to waste it.

Enter, canned asparagus.

Is there a bigger abomination? It doesn’t taste even mildly like asparagus. It’s as mushy as lunchroom green beans and it doesn’t even make your pee smell weird. That right there is a sign that whatever is in that can is barely asparagus.

But I had a can of it in my cupboard (I bought it on a whim, not knowing the atrocity that lay inside but the actual FRESH asparagus at the market that day were the width of my pinky finger and rapidly turning brown so I figured, what the hey?)

Also, I am LOATHE to throw anything out. If I bought it, I am doing something with it believe you me. I have even started following Jacques Pepin’s lead and freezing all my leftover veggies (broccoli stalks, celery ends, unused asparagus ends) in a large baggie in my freezer to use to make a fabulous stock someday. Really these days who can afford to throw anything away?

SO I took that can of Not Asparagus, and threw it in a pan with some olive oil, added a small jar of marinated artichokes, some chopped up leftover onion, a few garlic gloves, an about to go bad zucchini and, for kicks, a can of drained chick peas.

I cooked it all over medium heat for about 10 minutes and then tossed it with some whole wheat linguine and shredded parmesan cheese.

It was, in a word, DELICIOUS. All the different textures and tastes were fab. Adam raved about it too though the recipe included his foe, the chick pea (yet he likes hummus!). In any case, I was psyched!

Maybe someday I will compile a cookbook. Something called "Dishes I made Out Of Things I Was Going To Throw Out". Sounds appetizing, oui? What would you contribute?


Caity said...

I like chickpeas but not hummus.... Adam and I are, like, weirdo opposites!

That sounds awesome and wicked healthy.

p.s. I'm eating leftover pizza as I type this to you. hey, I'm not wasting!

Andy said...

I have a blog recommendation for you:

I wish I could spell recommendation without the help of spell check. Oh wel.

Jenny said...

I dislike chick peas & love hummus too!

Did you give up on icookgood? I miss your exploits & good recipes!!

Your Baked Feta & Marinara has become my new standby party app!

Sarah said...

Caity I have a great roasted chick peas recipe to share with you. I'll bring them to next book club!

Andy - are you calling me brokeass? :-)

Jenny - I am bringing it back! I really just need a new camera because the one I have now has pretty much completely crapped out.

eileen said...

Since I've been preparing to move I've been creating dishes like this for the past couple of weeks. Last night was canned tuna, mixed with diced tomato, a dab of mayo, salt and peppter. I spread it on tostadas (um, because I already finished off the bread!) and added shredded cheese on top and popped them in the toaster over. Add some salsa and... Mexican Tuna Melts! Not half bad.

Jenny said...

YAY! I've been making some great recipes - I write about them all on And sometimes I even "copy" you and take pictures while I cook!!

Sarah said...

Eileen that actually sounds delicious! I love adding tuna into random things when the need/urge arises. Ever had tuna mixed with mac and cheese? Delish!

Jenny share a link with me I want to see!

Kate said...

That's incredible! I didn't even know they sold canned asparagus.