daily recap · planning · repurposing leftovers · what we ate

Day 123: Chicken, Mac and Cheese & Fish Sticks

I made our “big meal” at lunch again. I defrosted four thighs over the weekend to help with my goal of rotating food in and out of our freezer. I made what we call Grandpop fried chicken which is pan-fried chicken made like this but with a tiny bit of granulated bouillon sprinkled into the flour. My grandpop made it that way all the time and it’s so good! I tossed the leftover green beans with the leftover marinated julienned carrot and cucumber from making gimbap and added a dressing for the vegetable. I made mac and cheese with the rest of the shredded cheddar, leftover ricotta and the cooked plain pasta we had from Friday. We are out of milk but the ricotta melted well and helped coat the noodles. Lots of repurposing leftovers today!

I made Rice Krispies treats after lunch.

For our evening meal we finished off the fish sticks (highly recommend the Aldi wild caught fish sticks) with homemade tartar sauce and I had some chips and salsa and Matt had some peaches and yogurt. We already had such a filling meal in the afternoon we didn’t need much but I wanted to finish those fish sticks and get them out of the freezer.

After dinner we prepped the wax beans and the beets we had from last week’s produce box so they will be easier to use in other meals later in the week. This way they are ready for any use.

I placed an Amazon pantry order for Wednesday. There are a few items we just haven’t been able to find in person since February that they had in stock. Matt wants to take this week off of grocery shopping (I’m going Wednesday) since he did the vet visit and grocery shopped at the Italian grocery last week but we have a few things we need and Aldi doesn’t sell.

Non-food related activities:

We started season 3 of Babylon Berlin on Netflix (only one episode, I can’t wait to see what happens next!) and watched a little more Father Brown on Britbox.

I caught up on Gee, Thanks Just Bought It. Caroline is so enthusiastic about everything. It’s interesting to see a slow pivot to more sustainable shopping.

I did a lot of work on Coconut & Lime today.

I started an ARC of the new Caroline Leavitt book. I’ve been reading her books since college so I was excited to get a copy of this!

I thought a lot about how grateful I am no longer teaching and don’t have children during all this.

I organized our enclosed porch. We have very little storage space in the house. The porch isn’t insulated but it doesn’t get below freezing or as hot as the outdoors does. We use it for our recycling bins and cases of soda normally but we have a cart in there I’m now using to store some nonperishables like pasta, instant noodles, extra soy sauce, the case of sleepy time tea we ordered etc. It looks so much better now! In the colder weather I left root vegetables out there but it too hot for that now.

We have been storing yeast and cheese in the tiny mini fridge on the porch but today I noticed it was a little warm inside. I’m going to have to keep an eye on it. I don’t know if it can’t keep up with the heat (I adjusted the temperature down) or if it was left slightly open after Matt made the pizza dough or what. It isn’t essential but it is nice to have! The couple pounds of yeast and shredded cheese take up a lot of space in our regular fridge which is pretty small.

daily recap · what we ate

Day 117: Sardine Cakes & Popcorn

For lunch I made some sardine cakes with leftover baked potatoes and served them with the leftover couscous. That was our main meal of the day.

After lunch I roasted a pre-marinated pork loin I bought at Aldi about 3 weeks ago. The sell by date was coming up so I figured it would keep better cooked. I didn’t want to eat it today and I don’t like freezing things too close to their sell by date.

For dinner Matt made beet greens and I had some popcorn with Trader Joe’s Everything But the Elote seasoning. Matt had noodles and cottage cheese.

Non-food related activities:

I finished the Riley Sager book at like 1 am. It was fun! I started another book but I’m not sure if I’m going to keep going or give up.

I’m still listening to season 2 of Faded Out. I don’t like the addition of Joe Aguiar. He wasn’t in the earlier episodes but he’s been in the last few. He’s really off-putting and keeps repeating that Doreen was a mature looking and attractive 12 year old or that she looked older than her age etc and that’s really irrelevant and gross. She was 12 and possibly abused and then murdered by her father. Joe Aguiar really adds nothing else. He just loudly talks about nothing. It seems like he’s a producer but I don’t understand why he needs to be on the actual podcast talking. Then in another episode he says it’s “creepy” that another man (the landlord) who met Doreen a few times said she was pretty. What? He does the same thing several times. He also keeps insisting that saying the child looked like “Lydia from Beetlejuice” is strange or damning in some way but really, she was a pale girl with black hair. The movie had just come out. She really did look like Winona Ryder back then.

He really seems to push the other hosts to make some leaps in logic that wasn’t an issue in the first part of season 2. He keeps insisting that people should remember this case among his fellow church goers and other people in the general area but then they both say the case was in the media mostly as a runaway type situation. In 1988. How long are people going to remember that? It’s unfortunate but it doesn’t seem like the case got much attention then and they had only lived in their new house 10 days. How much are the neighbors, a landlord and such going to remember or care? His insistence (that the other hosts have joined in on) that people need to talk to them to clear their name or clear things up is strange. These people who barely knew the ones involved really don’t owe them anything. If I listened to this podcast and heard how they pick everyone apart, I don’t think I’d want to go on either. The way they talked about the new owners of the house was really aggressive. It’s okay not to want strangers on your property and they’d have no way of knowing if you were who you said they were. They had nothing to do with the case at all but they talked about them for like 40 minutes and kept saying how strange they were. Maybe they just wanted to live their lives?!

At night we watched Queen and Slim which was beautifully shot but a little uneven. Great cast though.

daily recap · repurposing leftovers · what we ate

Day 116: Leftovers, Leftovers

I planned today so I really didn’t have to put forth too much effort.

For lunch we sliced up the leftover steak and had it tossed with mi goreng and frozen chopped spinach I added to the cooking water while the noodles cooked.

Dinner was leftover tteokbokki. I also had an onion hamburger bun I toasted in a pan with butter. The package got squished so they are really too flat to use as actual rolls so ersatz toast it is.

Non-food related activities:

Watched Josie and the Pussycats on (Netflix) DVD. Somehow neither of us had seen it despite the great musical talent mashup of Fountains of Wayne, that dog and Babyface.

Still reading the latest Riley Sager and chugging along on the second season of Faded Out. The Riley Sager book is fun but it always bothers me that the author is a man who clearly chose that pen name so you’d think he was a woman since all of his books are about women.

daily recap · repurposing leftovers · what we ate

Day 112: Pizza & Home Fries

I heated up pizza in the skillet for lunch. I was skeptical of the method but it does work really well!

For dinner I made home fries with beet greens kimchi and the leftover beef ribs. It was really tasty! I didn’t parboil the potatoes and it worked out okay. It seemed too hot to boil water.

We prepped a huge pork roast for tomorrow but I’m a little nervous because it smelled a little strongly. The expiration date is way into next week so it should be fine. We’ve had issues with pork roast before though. I basically planned our whole weekend’s meals around this roast so we will be in a pickle of it isn’t good.

Non-food related activities:

We watched more Dark on Netflix.

daily recap · what we ate

Day 111: Tuna Salad & Pizza

For lunch I made myself tuna salad and had it on a bed of lettuce and cherry tomatoes with some saltines. Matt had the rest of the chicken meatballs and zucchini with rice.

Matt made pizza dough on Saturday and it’s been in the fridge since then. We made olive, turkey pepperoni, ricotta and red onion pizzas. We had made too much sauce the last time we made pizza and froze it. It did not defrost that well; it got sort of watery as it cooked. We ended up lightly broiling one of the pizzas and straining the sauce for the second pizza and leaving it off altogether for the third. It tasted okay, it was just watery. It was a raw pizza sauce so maybe that was it?

The pizzas turned out great and you could fold the slice which Matt always likes. We have so much pizza leftover. I think tomorrow might be an all leftover/repurposed leftovers day.

I put together a cart for Weis last night around midnight and they had a slot this morning and I took it. Mostly bread products, a few pantry items, vitamins, cottage cheese and yogurt. And bread flour! We’ve been using it in our pizza dough and when we made rolls so we were getting a little low.

I really don’t love grocery delivery but Matt didn’t feel up to going and we couldn’t get those things at H Mart when he shopped two weeks ago. I’m aiming for 4 weeks between big shopping trips this time. It’s already been two weeks and we bought so much stuff at Aldi and H Mart we haven’t even touched yet.

Non-food related activities:

We watched Shirley on Hulu. It was based on a book fictionalizing Shirley Jackson’s life. I don’t understand why people do that. Apparently people who knew her and her own children said it wasn’t realistic. Why not just write a book about a woman author and academic life? Why say it’s about a specific person? Even if you had her in mind, we’d never know. It reminds me of the show Haven and how the creators said it was inspired by the Stephen King novella The Cincinnati Kid. I read the book (as an adult, even) and it really had nothing to do with the show at all beyond a minor mystery around a man’s identity. I guess it’s name recognition but if I watched the show or the movie because of my interested in Shirley Jackson or Stephan King, I’d be sorely disappointed. They were fine without that connection.

My Causebox arrived today! A year subscription was a gift from my ILs for Hanukkah and it’s always fun to get mail. This season’s box really was tailored more to the shut down. Several home items (bowls, stretchy lids) and home spa type stuff. I was glad. The last box was a purse and a few other dressier items and I haven’t had a chance to use most of it yet. Stuff I can use at home now is a lot more fun. I’m looking forward to trying it all out!

daily recap · planning · repurposing leftovers · what we ate

Day 110: Jjajangmyeon

For lunch I made some frozen shrimp for me and finished the potato salad from Saturday. Matt had some rice and half of the leftover meatballs/zucchini from yesterday since he still didn’t feel great.

I had put up some beef country style ribs I marinated last night in the slow cooker. Matt didn’t feel up to much so he had a tiny bit, eggs and rice and I sautéd up some spinach from today’s produce delivery and served it on some instant jjajangmyeon. The ribs were quite tasty! I had never bought or tried them before but Aldi had them when I went (almost 2 weeks ago) and I’ve been making an effort to try different meat offerings there since I never know what is going to be in stock. The store has always been well stocked but it has varied a bit—one week they only had dark meat chicken, the next white etc.

We have a few packs of tofu from H Mart I need to figure out what to do with too. I should have put their expiration dates on my list with the meat.

Tomorrow will be July already. It’s hard to think we have basically been home 24/7 since min-March. No end in sight as cases have really surged. Maryland seems to be holding pretty steady though.

I did place a Costco order for some basic supplies like dish soap, sponges, laundry detergent and honey (Matt goes through a truly massive amount of honey in his tea, I think it must be more honey than tea) that we aren’t desperate for but will need. They were all items that had been out of stock a for many weeks I thought it better to get them now then when things might shut down again or get worse.

Non-Food related activities:

We watched Ganja and Hess (a classic) on Prime. I always wonder what happens to these extras in movies like this. Like the children in the church choir. They must be over 50 now. I wonder what they remember, being so young during the filming.

Started an ARC of Sally Hepworth’s new book.

daily recap · what we ate

Day 109: Chicken Meatballs

For lunch I had the leftover cornflake schnitzel and leftover potato salad. Matt had a can of soup since he didn’t feel well. We are actually getting low on soup! They were on sale for about $1.40 a can in very early March and I bought a ton. I don’t feel like we’ve been eating that much but I guess we have.

Matt made some baked chicken meatballs with ginger, garlic, soy sauce etc and zucchini (all on the same pan) and he had it over rice and I had it over a packet of mi goreng.

Nonfood related activities:

I made those ornaments my mom wanted me to make out of felt and pictures. I think the glue gave me a migraine so the afternoon was kind of a bust.

We watched Shirley Valentine on DVD (Netflix) and and the new Grantchester episode on the PBS app.

daily recap · what we ate

107: Cornflake Schnitzel

The days all run together but today was Saturday! Some how we managed to do very little.

For lunch we had our “big meal” again. I made potato salad with arugula from our produce delivery and Matt made (pork) schnitzel with cornflakes instead of breadcrumbs. It was very good and crispy! Who knew? It finished off one box of cornflakes so now we have like 2 to go? Why did I keep buying cornflakes when we don’t really eat cereal?

For dinner I had yesterday’s leftovers (there was not much left even for one person) and some pretzels. Matt had noodles/cottage cheese/OTAMOT sauce. More cookies. I figure we eat them while they are fresh and then they are gone.

Nonfood related nonsense:

Somehow the bathroom sink was left running and it overflowed? The old timey stopper is never actually water tight but somehow it was today and the overflow hole must have let some water out but not enough to keep it from pouring all over the side of the sink. Luckily we hadn’t gone to bed or anything but between this and the oil spill yesterday Matt somehow didn’t notice until like a liter spilled, I’m starting to suspect poltergeist.

I read more of my book, we finished Black Spot and started rewatching Dark since the third and final season is out and it has been years since we saw season one. We didn’t bother with two because we heard a third was coming out. Normally we don’t rewatch things but between both shows having time plots, years passing between watchings and being in other languages it’s harder to remember. Dark would be complicated even in English. At least Black Spot is in French which we both understand pretty well.

I don’t understand how we watched like 2 hrs of tv made lunch, heated up dinner and did virtually nothing else yet it is nearly midnight .

daily recap · planning · what we ate

Day 105(!): Sesame Noodles & Popcorn

I felt peppy at lunch so I made some sesame noodles with the kohlrabi. Matt had grabbed some soba by mistake at H Mart last week so it was nice to use some of it up! I had a huge amount of kohlrabi so I went ahead and cooked it all up so I have some ready to do something else with. I don’t know if the greens would have last much longer in the fridge but cooked, they should be fine.

For dinner we had the leftover eggplant pasta and some popcorn with Trader Joe’s “everything but the elote” seasoning.

I harvested 3 raspberries today! The beach plums look really good too. Last year we had a great yield and the fruit was really big (some years they’ve been blueberry sized and they have giant pits) but last June was when my mom was diagnosed with aggressive brain cancer and she was in the hospital/rehab a long time. I was too fried to even bother picking them. Somehow she is still with us (went for a routine MRI yesterday) and seems pretty stable so things are more normal on that front at least. So fingers crossed I’ll feel up to picking plums and making something with them this year? It’s not like we have much else to do.

I still haven’t made that lemonade!! Maybe tomorrow??

Non-food related activities:

Matt zoomed with his parents for their anniversary. The cookies and treats I had delivered arrived safely! I found a local to them place that was a bakery that also sold breakfast and lunch and had regular delivery drivers vs a bakery that packed things up to ship. I thought it would be fresher and cheaper that way!

I’m trying to read an easier book after that mess of a book I read yesterday. I’m doing the summer reading program at the library again so I’m trying to read at a good pace. I have like 6 kindle books checked out so the pressure is on.

I listened to more of Faded Out. It’s pretty good but I feel like they sort of bury the lede a bit. We heard a lot from random people like their landlord at the time before learning that the dad had a record and apparently was a child molester.

We watched a little more of Black Spot on Netflix. Matt’s still on call and was up for hours at like 2 am today so we are all a little tired, especially him, of course!

daily recap · repurposing leftovers · what we ate

Day 104: Eggplant Pasta & Snacks

Matt’s on call this week and thought he might be busy this evening so I made our “big” meal for lunch. I roasted eggplant and tossed it with sautéd garlic scapes, spinach, chicken breast and the leftover cooked (plain) pasta from Monday (I made the whole pound when I made this and we ate maybe half of it). We have a lot left so I think we will have it tomorrow for dinner too, Matt has a Zoom with his parents for their anniversary some around dinner time so it would nice to not have to cook.

For dinner I had a hot dog on an English muffin, sauerkraut and some of the spicy refrigerator pickles I made yesterday. I did not mean to have such a salty meal! It just happened.

I really want to make this frozen lemonade tomorrow! I wanted to today but Matt has been busy all day and I don’t want to interrupt. I also need to do something with those kohlrabi greens.

Non-food related activities:

Today kind of got away from me, I did a lot on C & L today and somehow the whole afternoon/early evening was gone.

I finished The Lady’s Handbook For Her Mysterious Illness by Sarah Ramey. It was a struggle to get through. She really talked in circles a lot and made endless references to Harry Potter. I have never read Harry Potter and I would not have thought a book about chronic illness and the medical community ignoring women would have so much about it. It was an odd choice.

I started season 2 of Faded Out. I haven’t listened to season 1 but I hear there is a spin-off of season 2 that’s good so I started there. The episodes are really short! They sort of abruptly end.

My back feels a little funny. I had opened our top freezer yesterday and something fell out. I bent over to pick it up and when I stood up I hit the door of the freezer with my back. I don’t see a bruise but it’s a little achy. Sitting on my uncomfortable office chair all day didn’t help either.