Frugally Minded: Make Do
What do you do when there is no bread or cereal in the house—and you don't have plans for grocery shopping for the next day? You take a look around and get creative. Or, that is what I do. And when I say I do, I am usually including a capable child (or two) in my venture to make do with what we have. This isn't the first time I have stretched my pantry to help make ends meet. (That idiom was screaming to be used.) Using what is in the pantry is, I am sure, what Mom-mom has done a thousand times. This fits with #6: making my own. It's part of being frugally minded.
I checked the pantry for the ingredients. Using my regular banana bread recipe, I exchanged the bananas for a can of pumpkin and put in 1 tsp of pumpkin spice. Other than that, I followed the recipe. Instead of a traditional loaf, I put it in a 13×9 in. pan and baked it at 350°F for 45 min.
Find the recipe here. It is a recipe for pumpkin muffins. Note the different baking temperature and time for a 13×9 in. pan instead of muffins.
It is November, so this works well as an easy breakfast or brunch item. Tis the season for pumpkin.
I don't know if we will used these loaves for making sandwiches or for French toast (maybe both). This would make great bread for French Toast Casserole. The best part of making the bread was teaching my teenager, BunBun, how to make bread. It's been too long since I've made bread, and I have had it in my mind to teach her. Necessity helped me prioritize that lesson. We had a late night CAKE Academy home-ec class.
I found the recipe for Honey-butter French Bread at Epicurious by Gina M. Sarti. I followed the recipe for the most part. After it finished baking, I brushed the loves with butter.
I struggled to not try both of the recipes the night before. (My body cries out for food at night. It doesn't cry out for celery stick. It wants comfort food. Both of these, especially fresh, warm baked-out-of-the-oven bread, qualifies as comfort food.) I settled on a sliver of the pumpkin bread. Yummy!
During the creative process, I was reminded of why so many people buy convenience foods or go out to eat. After a long, long day, I was not feeling excited about doing more work. I was tired. In the end, I pushed myself and used my dinner prep time to do most of the other recipe work. This is a good tip to keep in mind: Use your kitchen prep time to help make other meal times easier. Having a capable helper was also helpful.
Note: In an effort to write correctly, I looked up “make do” to be sure I was using the correct words. I found an interesting explanation for this idiom at grammerist.com:
Make do is short for make [something] do well enough, where do carries the rare sense to serve a specified purpose. So this do is similar to the one used in sentences such as, “I could use a cup of coffee, but tea will do.”