This month's collection is an inspired (and inspiring) mix of exotic dishes, put together with mainly store cupboard basics along with a few unusual ingredients that needed using up, and some old-fashioned, kid-friendly treats that were a great way of clearing out the cupboards during half term. I always love seeing what everyone else has come up with, and, more often than not, realising that I have the same odds and ends lurking at the back of my cupboard and fridge too !
To start us off, Peking duck with noodles used up some ends of bottles that were cluttering up the cupboard (Hoisin sauce and black rice vinegar), as well as an upmarket pot noodle from a Degustabox.
Jane from Onions & Paper provided some delicious-looking Mushroom & Cheddar Turnovers which were great for clearing out bits and pieces that were lurking in her fridge - and mine too ! I definitely need to make these - yum !
Galina at Chez Maximka always amazes me with her inventive uses for shop-bought cake mixes and these Dark Chocolate & Strawberry Cake Mix Cookies look and sound absolutely gorgeous.
Chicken with Dumplings was a delicious, family-friendly winter warmer that finally enabled me to use up the end of a box of Bisquik American baking mix, as well as the end of a tube of squeezy gravy and a sachet of Irish Stew seasoning that I found in my spice rack. It made a right mess of my hob though !
Sunday night soup is a great way to start the week with a decluttered fridge and get a surprisingly tasty and satisfying family meal from the remains of a roast chicken dinner, including the carcass. You can't get more frugal than that !
Galina was back with another great bake - this time a Coffee, Rum & Walnut Loaf Cake, which used up some whipped cream frosting and rum, as well as some vanilla coffee from a Degustabox (which I just happen to have too !). Thanks for the inspiration, Galina ! :)
In honour of Pancake Day, but mainly to use up the end of a bag of Vietnamese Crispy Pancake mix, I made Banh Xeo, or Vietnamese Crispy Pancakes. This was also a great way of using up some odds and ends from the fridge (meat and veg), a bit of a jar of Thai 7 Spice and a bottle of sweet chilli dipping sauce that was lurking in the fridge and kept falling out of the door !
I had no idea what to do with the Bé Rouj (Creole red butter) that I'd received in a foodie box so it has been in the cupboard for months, but google had some answers and this Fish with Bé Rouj turned out very nice.
Once again earning top marks for creativity, Galina used a bottle of vegetable blend, as well as the remains of a Valentine's bottle of prosecco and some Grana Padano (after winning a HUGE wheel of it, I can see this featuring in a lot of #KitchenClearout dishes !), to produce a fabulous Courgette & Asparagus Risotto.
A foodie blogger challenge to create Medjool Date Truffles was a great way to use up some half bags of almonds and ground almonds. Even the kids, who aren't keen on dates, kept stuffing these into their faces so I'll have to make some more !
I made a gumbo-inspired dish as a #readcookeat recipe and it ended up being a fabulous throw-it-all-in dish, using up lots of odds and ends from the fridge - some cooked prawns and roast chicken, some leftover Moroccan chicken in a tomato/courgette sauce and half a can of red kidney beans.
Cheesy Crumb Leek & Bacon Pie was an amazing way of clearing out all the half-used packets of crisps, crackers, crispbread and savoury snacks. It's similar to the idea of a savoury cheesecake, using cheesy biscuits and crackers instead of digestive biscuits for the crumb base, and a quiche-like filling.
Finally, after finding an unopened box of Special K Flakes at the back of the cupboard that was past its best-before date, we experimented with different ways of making Cornflake Cakes. How do you make yours?