Friday, August 31, 2012

check - next?

It's August 31, and I have indeed used up those 12 items I sought out to get rid of.  I had to use a couple of short-cuts, but I decided it's okay, especially because I also used up at least 5 additional items this month.

First shortcut was to give away a bunch of black tea.  The second was to split up the salad dressing issue into a couple parts.  I used up 2 of three bottles of salad dressing; I decided to make the third one be a separate item altogether.  Seems fair to me.  ...Guess I could have done that with the 10 different varieties of black tea, huh?

Moving in to September, here's what the Random Number Generator threw at me for the remaining items I have in my stash:

1.  Bearnaise sauce mix
2.  Key West sauce
3.  melting chocolate
4.  popcorn kernels
5.  peppercorn steak marinade
6.  sweet buttermilk cream
7.  Kool-Aid mix (about 8 packets)
8.  mung beans
9.  flax seeds
10.  fajita seasoning
11.  pancake syrup
12.  apple butter

Numbers 1, 2, 5 and 10 will work well with some meat/poultry and the grill, and fortunately it's Labor Day weekend - how appropriate!  I'm thinking I'll make a large batch of popcorn and drizzle it with melted chocolate for a party we're hosting next Friday; I have also heard of making flavored sweet popcorn with Kool-Aid, so I may try that, too.  The rest of the Kool-Aid may contribute to ice pops and homemade Gatorade, which will be nice for after my 11 and 12-mile Saturday runs coming up this month.  Only issue with the popcorn is that the DH doesn't like the smell of it.  Maybe I'll make the popcorn and then steak to appease him and get rid of the popcorn smell!

The biggest challenge I forsee is using up all of the sweet buttermilk cream.  Yes, it's easily used in baking as a stand-in for buttermilk or, I don't bake enough to use the amount that I have of it in a month.  Perhaps some baking + freezing?  Like...pancake-syrup-sweetened muffins and apple-butter-infused muffins.  Those will be awesome for pulling out of the freezer & warming up to have with a cup of tea as fall sets in!!  And yes, there will probably be some tea going on here in some form...although it's not on the list for this month, probably next month green tea, herbal tea, and Teeccino will all appear, not to mention mulling spices.

Mung beans I'd like to use at least partly to make a breakfast porridge that I've heard is popular in Malaysia.  I've only ever used mung beans as sprouts (which is why I have these...they were bought for sprouting); that will be a good use for them, but exploring other ways to use them will be good, too.  I never really thought about the fact that they, like lentils, don't require soaking before they can be cooked up.  Hooray!  Maybe my new favorite bean/legume!!

One last note:  as a "reward" for using up my goal items, I gave myself a prize.  This was suggested by some friends when I told them what I was up to.  The squirrels have been raiding/destroying our birdfeeders, so I got a squirrel-proof feeder from RollerFeeder.  DH put it up the other day after it arrived, but no birds have come yet (haven't seen any squirrels attempt to tackle it yet, either).  Maybe now that I've met my quota they'll come...?

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