Last night we had a quick, healthy and tasty dinner that I was able to make from ingredients we had on hand. It started with Pam's suggestion that I make some kind of fried rice from the small container of cooked basmati we had left over from a few days ago (we are fortunate to have a pretty good fridge and we store things in glass rather than plastic, so leftovers are generally tasty).
I started by pulling a few things out of the freezer. First was the remainder of a bag of uncooked jumbo shrimp, which I quickly thawed in hot water, removed tails, and chopped into half-inch chunks. Foraging for vegetables, I found a small bag of peas, another bag of chopped leeks (I used just a handful), and a bag with chunks of squash (which Pam calls UFO squash because of its funny shape). All of the vegetables are in freezer bags put away during the summer and fall from our Colchester farm share.
I rinsed all the veggies in hot water and drained them for a few minutes in a colander; I also dried the shrimp on a paper towel. The results were still on the soggy side, but I was able to compensate. I heated a generous coating of olive oil (just regular this time) in our indispensable cast-iron skillet; at high heat, I added all the vegetables and stirred them for a few minutes, driving out some of the liquid and searing them slightly. Then I stirred in the cooked rice until it was heated. I added the shrimp, cooking for about 2 more minutes (shrimp cook fast!) and then stirred in one egg. I lowered the heat and added a few tablespoons of store-bought hoisin sauce.
We often comment that food photography is a specialty, with photos not reflecting how nice a dish actually looks, but even the best food-magazine photograph would have shown this to be a rather ugly duckling. More importantly, though, we agreed that this meal (which I cooked almost as quickly as I wrote this entry) was delicious and nutritious, easy and cheap!