Friday, May 25, 2012

Living without a fridge-food post

It can be done!
I thought I'd share a some of our set-up and some typical meals.

Sorry for this poor quality phone pic.  Most everything is out where we can see it which is nice.  There is some stuff in the cooler there, but we don't buy ice or try to keep anything cool.  It's more of a dark, secured area.  I keep my potatoes, ground corn, and my big bag of sea salt I got for making kimchi in there for now.

On the shelves we have condiments and canned goods mostly.  I'm buying a little more canned things than I used to.  Mostly beans, coconut milk and fish: we almost always have salmon, sardines and tuna on hand.  There's also some nori, which is a nice dried green to have, good for iodine if you don't buy iodized salt (which we don't).  Also one of my most prized kitchen tools: fish sauce!!  It's really key for a lot of dishes: egg drop soup, curry, pho, I use it in my kimchi.  Gives that good umami flavor for otherwise meatless dishes.

And then the wonderful hanging basket.  I put produce in there, we always have apples and maybe one other fruit, usually bananas or oranges.  Garlic and onions, there's some beets and kale that my dad brought me from his garden (thanks Dad!).

Butter and kimchi on the counter.  We go through a pound of butter in a week or so, so I haven't gotten around to buying a butter keeper yet, might be in the future some day.

What else can I say about kimchi?  It's one of my joys in life!  I've come up with a pretty simple recipe:
-1 Napa Cabbage sliced top to bottom
-generous amount of sea salt
-8-15 cloves of garlic, grated
-roughly 3/4 cup Korean chile flakes
-roughly 5 tablespoons of fish sauce

Put the sliced cabbage pieces in a bowl (or 2).  Dump some salt in the bowl and stir it with your hands until it seems like most of the pieces are covered with salt.  This will draw out a lot of the water and bulk out of the cabbage.  Let it do it's thang for about 4 hours.
Rinse the cabbage, get some of that salt off.  Drain as much water off as you can/care to.  Mix together the grated garlic, chile flakes and fish sauce.  Slather the mixture all on the cabbage, try to get every piece coated.  Put it all in a nice container.  Voila!  The longer it sits, the funkier it gets.  One head of cabbage will usually last me 1.5 to 2 weeks.

Eggs on the counter.  We get some unparalleled eggs from the farmer's market (I exclaimed that the other day while I was cooking: "These eggs are UNPARALLELED!").  I go through about 2 dozen a week.  2.5 dozen pictured here, but some of them were small, so I bought more.  Do you guys know about the egg test?  I rarely do it, if I was buying grocery stores eggs I'd probably do it more.
You put your questionable egg in a container of water, if the fat end starts floating up, NO BUENO.  Or it's just old, I don't know, proceed with caution if you have a fat-end floater.

Examples of what we eat:
-Every morning I have either rice or pre-cooked potato, which I shred, fried eggs and kimchi.  Yum.
-Lunch is usually either rice or potatoes again with beans or canned fish
-Dinner can be a curry (I make a pretty good massaman), lentils and fried corn mush (I love the pressure cooker for lentils!!), if we've been to the farmer's market/store within the last day, we'll have meat, or sometimes it's just salami and bread and butter.  I used to be a lot more anti-bread than I am now.  Nobody in this house seems to have a bad reaction to it, so we usually have some sort of locally-baked sourdough loaf here (I still avoid the bread aisle in the grocery store).

So yeah, the only things we seem to be missing out on are:
-stocking up on meat/eating meat daily
-milk and softer cheeses (but I wasn't buying milk since we stopped getting raw milk, once you go raw....)

I'm enjoying it so far!

I almost forgot to say, I try to eat as many "wild" greens (shit that grows by itself in my yard) as possible.  Don't need a fridge for things that are alive.  Right now we eat: dandelion, plantain (not the banana-like thing, the green, leafy plant [it's also medicinal]), and sorrel.  The kids love sorrel, they can't get enough, it's like nature's sweet-tart.  Also our blackberries are ripening!

1 comment:

  1. yes to all of it! : ) that butter keeper would be rad...