At one point I was getting into the habit of sharing a recipe on Fridays, but somehow I got out of the habit. So, to start things back off on the right foot, I thought I'd share a cluster of great, simple recipes that you can easily make with ingredients from your pantry. These recipes wouldn't fall into the "gourmet" category, but they are definitely not what you'd think of eating when you think of those two dreaded words, "Food Storage."
I hope you enjoy them. And now... Dinner is Served—Food Storage Style
This recipe is an ideal use of Spam, the meat that seems to store as long as a Twinkie.
And it’s an easy “dump” kind of recipe. If you elect to make it as a non-food storage meal, you can use 8 to 10 ounces of boneless pork chops and add a couple of stalks of sliced green onions (white and green portion) and use frozen peas instead.
As a versatile Pantry meal, you can also substitute the Spam for canned chicken or canned baby shrimp too if you prefer.
1 12 oz can of Spam, cut into small square pieces
2 teaspoons of olive oil
1 package (6.2 oz.) of Rice-A-Roni (Fried Rice flavor)
2 cups of water
1 can of peas- drained
Soy sauce for serving (optional)
Place the oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven. Heat it over medium-high heat. Add the Spam pieces and cook, stirring until the Spam is browned a bit., 2-3 minutes.
Add the Rice-a-Roni including the seasoning contents. Pour in 2 cups of water and stir to loosen the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Let the mixture come to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and cover. Let simmer for 15 minutes.
Add the peas and warm a bit longer, 3-5 minutes. Serve at once with soy sauce as desired.
Fuel conservation note: If you merely heat up the pan enough to bring the water to boiling, you needn’t continue to cook it on your fuel source. You can merely let the dish set for a while (about 30 – 45 minutes) and let it naturally absorb the water. The Spam is safe to eat whether it’s heated or not.
Southern Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole
This recipe is a very, very simple “Open, dump, and mix” one.
1 package (6 ounces) of Uncle Ben’s Long Grain and Wild Rice Original Recipe
1 can of cream of celery soup
2/3 cup of Miracle Whip (don’t substitute an different mayonnaise)
1 can (8 oz) of diced water chestnuts, drained (I like to chop mine a bit smaller than they come in the “diced” can)
1 2 oz jar of sliced pimento peppers. (diced is fine also)
1 can of French cut green beans, drained
1 ½ cups of chicken broth OR water
2 Tablespoons of pre-grated Parmesan cheese. (yes, the stuff in the green can is just fine.)
Combine all of the ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix well with a spoon. Transfer to a Dutch oven or a pre-greased baking dish if you’re cooking in a solar oven. Top the dish with the Parmesan Cheese. If using a solar oven, be sure to cover the dish with foil. If using the Dutch Oven, simply put on the lid.
Bake at 400 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes until it’s bubbling and the rice has cooked. Let cool about 5 minutes and then serve.
Cincinnati Style Chili
This “chili” dish is actually served on top of cooked spaghetti. It is often served with black beans instead of beef. And is usually accompanied by shredded cheddar cheese on top. If you don’t have real cheese on hand, you can also use Velveeta on top for serving.
1 tablespoon of granulated onion
2 tablespoons of minced garlic
2 cans of diced tomatoes. (You can use stewed tomatoes as well)
1 8 oz. can of tomato sauce
1 cup of water
2 tablespoons of chili powder
1 tablespoon of unsweetened cocoa powder
½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon of ground allspice
8 oz. of cooked and drained spaghetti
Saute' the beef, onion, and garlic in your intended cooking pan (pressure cooker or Dutch oven). Cook, stirring with a wooden spoon to break up the lumps until the beef is heated through (about 4-5 minutes). Add the tomatoes and their liquid, water, tomato sauce, chili powder, cocoa, and all spice.
If you’re cooking this recipe in a Dutch oven, simply cook it low and slow for about 8 hours stirring occasionally.
If you’re cooking this recipe in a pressure cooker, cover and bring the pressure cooker to low pressure. Cook for about 30 minutes for maximum flavor. You can use the quick release method when the time is up.
Top the spaghetti with your cooked mixture and enjoy!
Corn Bread Casserole
Yet another easy dump, mix, and cook recipe! You won’t believe how addictive this dish can be. You can enhance it as a main dish by adding spam, bacon bits, or cheese to the dish as well just before baking. Note though that this recipe does NOT double and triple well. It takes a LONG time to cook if you double and triple the recipe. So you're better off cooking multiple batches at the same time rather than doubling it.
1 can of regular corn, drained
1 cup of sour cream. (yes, you can make sour cream from powdered milk or powdered sour cream)
1 egg or 1 egg equivalent
1 box of Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
1 tablespoon of sugar
4 tablespoons of butter
Mix all of the ingredients together well. Place in a baking dish or Dutch oven. Cook at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes. (I usually cook it the longer period because I like it a bit browner on the top than some do.) Serve as a great side dish or add bacon and green chilies for a nice entree!
White Bean Spread
This is great to serve warm. And if you have it on hand you can also throw in a drained can of chopped tomatoes, sliced black olives, or cilantro. Serve on tortilla chips or crackers such as Wheat Thins.
1 can (15.5 ozs) of Great Northern beans, drained.
½ teaspoon of ground cumin (I like to put in a bit more for my taste)
1 teaspoon of granulated lime (or lemon)
1 teaspoon of water
A pinch of Real Salt or Creole Seasoning
2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
Chips or crackers for serving
Mix all of the ingredients together with a stick blender until well blended or you can mash all of the ingredients together by hand. It should represent the consistency of a paste.
Serve cold or warm.
Blueberry Dump Cake
The name says it all. This is easy!
1 box of yellow cake mix (18.25 ounces)
12 tablespoons of butter or margarine
Simply dump the blueberry pie filling in your baking dish or Dutch oven. Top it with the box of yellow cake mix. Top that with the butter or margarine (melted or in cold pieces)
Bake at 350 degrees for 35-45 minutes until light golden brown on top.
If you have a way to make ice cream, this is a yummy dish served warm with some vanilla ice cream on top.
Chocolate Chocolate Molten Chocolate Cake
This is nothing short of pure comfort food. It reminds me of some great molten chocolate cake recipes I’ve had. You can make this recipe in a 4 ½ to 6 quart electric slow cooker just as easily by cooking it on high, for 3 ½ hours, or low for 6 ½ to 7 hours. This is even better when cooked in a solar oven, though. YUM! This is great with some vanilla ice cream as well!
1 pkg. of milk chocolate or chocolate instant pudding mix (3.9 ounces)
2 cups of sour cream
4 large eggs or 4 large egg equivalents
¾ cup of vegetable oil
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
1 small pkg. of semi-sweet chocolate chips.
Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl except the chips and vanilla until well blended. (about 2 minutes) Fold in the chips and the extract. Then transfer to a slow cooking pressure cooker or low heated Dutch Oven (about 200 degrees). Dutch oven cooking will take about 4 hours and a solar oven will take about 4 hours as well.
Serve warm. Top with fudge or caramel syrup for an added layer of delicious taste, or both if you feel wild enough. *grin*
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