Do you ever have those times when you go to the pantry looking for some creativity? Maybe you have items in the pantry you need to use up, so you throw something together. The other night, I had both of those dilemmas. I was bored with the usual dinner stuff and went to my pantry looking to see what I had that maybe I needed to use up.
I found partial bags of dried kidney beans, great northern beans, and lentils. Now those dried beans won’t go bad anytime soon, but I knew they’d been in there for awhile, so maybe it was time to use them up. My mind started whirling and I came up with the idea to make soup with them.
I wanted it to be a bean and veggie soup. So after soaking the kidney and northern beans overnight. I put them plus the lentils into my crock pot. Next, I went to the refrigerator to see what I could add. OK, carrots and celery would be good. Then, to the freezer….how about corn and green beans. I would have liked to add peas, but we didn’t have any. I wanted something else and went back to the pantry and found two cans of diced tomatoes. I added those, juice and all. Next seasonings, how about thyme, basil, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. I had 1 1/2 boxes of chicken broth and poured those in. Turned the crock pot on low and let it cook all day long.
As the day went on, it was smelling so good. But at about 4:00, I had another brilliant idea. I needed to add some pasta. Aha, I had a box of small shells. I cooked up half of the box and added that to the pot along with the water because there didn’t seem to be enough liquid. At 6:30, we were ready to eat. I had made some crescent rolls to go along with our bowls of thrown-together soup.
To pat myself on the back, I think it was rather tasty. Don’t ask me for measurements of the items I put in. I have no idea. I was throwing things together and not being precise. My husband thought it needed a little more seasoning. It seemed fine to me.
I think I could do this with less broth and add smoked sausage or hot dogs to make a meat and bean dish. But, personally, I liked it without meat.
So, go ahead. Head for your pantry or ‘fridge and throw something together tonight. If you do, share with me what you did. I love the creativity of cooking.
Those are my thoughts for today.