This week I’m home alone; when I’m home alone I never want to spend much time cooking so I prefer to make a couple of dishes that will serve me over multiple meal times.
I’ve had a rather extravagant January and with the Christmas costs still hanging over me, I’m determined to have an economising month. My mission during February is to literally empty the cupboards and freezer and buy as little as possible from the supermarket.
Last week I’d frozen some leftover tinned tomatoes and some fresh red chillies; also lurking in the bottom of my freezer were some pigs in blankets that I hadn’t used up over Christmas. I couldn’t think of a use for the pigs in blankets other than on the side of a roast, but I figured that they’re just sausages and bacon so why not use them up just as I would normal sausages.
Pasta’s great for using up leftovers, it’s amazing what you can do with tinned tomatoes and a few veggies, there’s no need to buy expensive jars of pasta sauce. As I was using up ingredients I had in the freezer and cupboard I didn’t have to visit the shop for this recipe as there was also a half eaten onion lurking in my fridge.
And this is how the ingredients below, provided me with couple of dinners and a lunch for the week (there would have been 4 portions but I didn’t have quite enough pasta in) meaning that I didn’t have to slave in the kitchen every night after work.
- 6 Sausages (I used pigs in blankets as a substitute)
- 200g Tinned Tomatoes
- 200-300g Pasta (50-75g a portion)
- 1/2 Onion
- 1 Red Chilli (or pinch of dried chilli flakes)
- 1 Garlic Clove
- 1 tbsp Olive Oil
- Dash White Wine (optional)
- Parmesan to top (optional)
Heat oil in large frying pan and fry chopped onions and garlic for 3-4 minutes until soft
Add sausages and fry for 5-6 minutes until browned
Add dash of white wine (water or stock will do if you don’t have wine) and scrape the bottom of the pan (this step will add additional flavour to the sauce). Boil over a high heat for a few minutes, until the liquid has reduced by a third.
Add in the tinned tomatoes and chopped red chilli, bring to the boil and then simmer for 10 minutes or until the sausages are cooked through.
Meanwhile cook the pasta according to the instructions. Once cooked and drained, combine with the sausage mixture and top with grated cheese if desired.
Note I used frozen fresh red chillies for this recipe; I’ve found the best way to freeze chillies is to chop before freezing. I’ve frozen chillies whole before but they tend to retain too much water when defrosted.
The dash of white wine I used was also frozen. If you have a few dregs of wine remaining (sacrilege), freeze in ice cube trays and these can then be used for cooking, as recipes require.
Leftover pasta is a great thing to pack in some Tupperware and take for lunch; it’s also suitable for freezing if you don’t want to eat all the portions in the same week. (Homemade ready meals).