Monday, January 7, 2008

Fridge Overload

It seems like we haven't been to the grocery in weeks, yet after holiday meals and holiday parties, the refrigerator is groaning with food.

At a certain point, it's hard to tell what's in there. I set up a folding table in the kitchen and began to unload, sort through, rearrange, throw out (gasp...we hate to throw out food), and generally conduct some reconnaissance on the situation.

Here are the contents of the top two shelves where leftovers seem to accumulate most. I'll skip the commentary and just list them for you:

Several old pieces of lemon and limes
A 2-cup container of lemon and lime wedges
Some mouldy black beans
Cooked greens past their prime
A carry-out container of Chinese green beans, another of white rice
A very ripe persimmon
Two cups of cooked steel-cut outs
A Ziploc bag of fresh salad greens
Two cups of braised green cabbage
A 2-cup container of turkey hash
A 1-cup container of cooked brown Basmati rice
A 1-cup container of mouldering cooked sweet potatoes
A 1-cup container, half full, of Thanksgiving gravy
A half-full container of Egg Beater
A 4-cup container, half full, of braised red cabbage
A 2-cup container of pesto sauce
A 1-cup container, half full, of unidentified brown sauce
A small amount of sage mayonnaise
Two cups of bread pudding custard mix
A 4-cup container, half full, of cooked cranberry beans
A quart container, mostly empty, of apple cider
A trace amount of heavy cream (which I emptied into another container of half-and-half)
A small baggie of cooked carrots
A quart container, partially filled, of pomegranate juice
An 8-cup container, about one-third full, of chicken broth
An 8-cup container of turkey broth
Another 8-cup container, about two-thirds full, of another turkey broth
Two containers of lard
A 1-cup container of peanut butter butter cream
A 4-cup container of cooked Brussels sprouts
A trace amount of Chesapeake tartar sauce for crab cakes
A 2-cup container, about half full, of maple mustard
A 2-cup container of cooked slices of acorn squash
A 2-cup container of cooked purple potatoes
A 2-cup container, partially used, of low-fat cottage cheese
A 4-cup container, about half full, of cranberry relish
A large Ziploc bag containing a small amount of fresh bread crumbs
Two cups of cooked pasta noodles
A 4-cup container of radishes in water
A large Ziploc bag of white turkey meat
A large Ziploc bag of dark turkey meat
A large Ziploc bag of roasted ham
An 8-cup container, about half full, of chicken stew
One bunch of dill, wrapped in a moist paper towel inside a large Ziploc bag
A bottle of homemade ketchup, partially used
On open jar of roasted red peppers
One partially eaten/licked candy cane, half-wrapped in its original plastic
A very small slice of vegetable lasagna

We proceeded to eat for dinner the cooked squash, some of the red cabbage, the purple potatoes, some of the Chinese green beans and a handful of white rice. However, when we tried to serve out 8-year-old daughter a few of the carrots, she threw a fit and shut herself into a room upstairs to cry inconsolably, saying we (I) knew she didn't like carrots and why were we serving them for dinner.

Ah, parenthood.


Joanna said...

Sounds pretty much like my fridge was until yesterday ... apart from one thing: my bits are all in little Chinese bowls or large Pyrex jugs. Uncovered, because I try very hard not to do unnecessary plastic, so very rarely use cling. Also because, when I put the things into little bowls, I'm thinking they'll get used up within 24 hours ... and that's generally true, but not over the holidays.

I'm in awe of the number of little boxes you've got ... but maybe you use your freezer more efficiently than I seem to be able to manage.

Good work!

Joanna said...

PS hope your daughter recovered in time to eat the rest of her dinner ... your story reminded me of similar times round our table ... these days, it's most likely me, when our teenagers cook up something made with so much junk that I really can't make myself eat it ;)

Ed Bruske said...

Joanna, we've vowed to include our daughter more in planning and making meals but sometimes things don't work as planned. We still have connections to the catering industry, our source for all those sturdy plastic containers I mentioned. They are not sold in the grocery stores, used more as restaurant to-go containers, ranging from 1 cup to 8 cups in size. We use them over and over again--until they break. So we don't use cling much, and I dislike storing things in bowls, these containers stack so neatly.