Sunday, August 15, 2010

Pantry Week Begins!
Spicy Zucchini and Mushroom Saute

So I went to the amazing Amish health food store that I frequent, and one of my purchases was a bag of organic dried pinto beans that I was intending to turn into chili. I brought them home, and as I went to put them away in my pantry, I realized I had already made that exact same purchase. Twice before.

One of the perils of not having a lot of visible cupboard space is that things get pushed to the back and then they are forgotten. I decided to pull everything out and take stock of what I had.

Well, color me embarrassed. I was floored by how well-stocked my pantry was, full of things I had purchased with good intentions and then promptly forgot about. Lentils, beans, cans of tomato sauce, green chilies - the list goes on and on. I then opened my refrigerator and realized how much fresh produce I had too!

Right then and there I decided to instill "Pantry Week" at my house. No new groceries for a week. Period. Not only will it force me to use up the things I already have, but it's a challenge, and those that know me well KNOW that I love a good challenge. And here's the thing - I've made most of the menu for the week and I haven't even begun to get rid of all the things that linger in my pantry.

Today, it's rainy and dreary outside, so I needed something filling and comforting. The main dish will be featured tomorrow, but for today, a unique side dish. I had a zucchini that has been languishing in my fridge for a bit, as well as a few different boxes of mushrooms. I wanted something simple, yet tasty, and this saute was born.

I'm always a fan of using spice in my cooking, and if I can utilize whole spices, all the better! This saute gets a nice punch of flavor from the cumin and celery seeds, and is a nice change from the boring everyday side dishes.

Check back tomorrow for a great vegetarian main dish and later for my first attempt at homemade bread!

Spicy Zucchini and Mushroom Saute

Spicy Zucchini and Mushroom Saute
Serves 4-6

4 cups chopped zucchini
1 (8 oz) container of sliced baby bella mushrooms
3 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tsp cumin seed
1/2 tsp celery seed
salt and pepper to taste

In a large pot, heat oil over medium high heat. Add zucchini and saute for 7-8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and mushrooms, and saute for another 4-5 minutes. Add cumin seed, celery seed, and salt and pepper. Saute for another 2-3 minutes, until zucchini and mushrooms are tender. Serve and enjoy!

1 comment:

Wesley's Girl said...

I am having so much fun with zucchini sautes as well!!! I am just in love with this squash!