I think I’ve mentioned before (or maybe I’m losing my mind and just think I mentioned it before) that I didn’t learn to cook until I was in my 30’s. I don’t really remember much about dinners before that. Somehow, before I had a child to feed, I didn’t think it was that important to cook a meal at dinnertime. And then all of a sudden it was.
I’m still only the kind of cook who makes things from recipes. I’m really good at following directions (except when I don’t want to, which is frequently), so I don’t find cooking from recipes all that challenging. But I don’t think of it as really being able to cook.
So I’m really, really proud of myself when I do something without a recipe. And I’m even prouder when I make something without a recipe and it actually tastes good. And I’m even prouder yet when I make a something without a recipe and it actually tastes good and I made it from stuff I already had on hand.
So last Saturday, I made turkey noodle corn soup. I had made a turkey breast in the crock pot, and I had lots of turkey left over. So here’s what I did.
1. I took all the (already cooked) meat off the bone and put the meat back in the refrigerator.
2. I covered the bone(s) with water, added a cup of chopped celery, 3 small chopped onions, and some salt and pepper, and I boiled it for 2 hours. (If the meat is uncooked, you can just boil the whole thing until the meat falls off the bone.) This part made the whole house smell great.
3. I boiled a bag of egg noodles.
4. I threw away the bone and saved the broth. (Note: if you are boiling the breast with the meat on it, you probably want to put the broth in the refrigerator overnight and skim the fat off before adding all of the ingredients, but since I had already taken the meat and skin off the bone before boiling, there wasn’t much fat in it.)
4. I cut up the turkey meat, and added it to the broth/celery/onion, threw in the noodles, added about 1/2 bag of frozen corn, added 1 tsp. of nutmeg and salt and pepper to taste, and then heated it up.
I bought a loaf of good Italian bread, and we got about 2 1/2 meals out of the soup/bread/(Girl Scout cookie) combination. Everyone loved the soup. Even David, the world’s pickiest eater. (Emma said it was as good as Nana’s.)
And yes, I’m really proud of myself.