I rarely have time to make a big production out of my meals. Between work and parenting (and blogging and app development and — shh! — a new secret project), my cup runneth over. I’m not about to make a special weeknight trip to the market to hunt down some exotic ingredients for a complicated new recipe I found in a cookbook.
Instead, when pressed for time (which is just about always), I rummage through my pantry and fridge and MacGyver something together. And that usually involves some handy-dandy Emergency Protein™. (Who says I can’t trademark that?)
There are plenty of ways to quickly cook up a batch of Emergency Protein. My iPad cookbook app shows off a method for slow-roasting meats in an oven, and you can always just throw a steak on the grill or water oven. Leftovers can form the basis of a super-simple Emergency Protein meal, too. For example, on Saturday night, Henry reheated some leftover Slow Cooker Kalua Pig, paired it with a variation on Cauliflower Fried “Rice,” and voila! Dinner was on the table in minutes.
All out of leftovers? If you have a Defrost Bowl™ in your refrigerator, this shouldn’t post a problem at all. (What? You got a problem with me trademarking that, too?)
Over the years, I’ve gotten lots of questions about my Defrost Bowl, but there’s really nothing all that magical about it. It’s just a big bowl in my fridge that I use to thaw a bunch of frozen meat. (Note: It’s a bowl — not a colander. I certainly don’t want to clean up the bloody goo that inevitably oozes out of my packages of meat.) Every few days, I transfer some frozen protein from my freezer to my trusty Defrost Bowl; then, when it’s time to get cooking, I grab whatever Emergency Protein is no longer icy, and then decide on a cooking method.
My Defrost Bowl serves another purpose, too: It forces me to cook my meat before it spoils, and keeps me from stuffing my face with take-out. Win-win!
One of my all-time favorite ways to whip up supper in a flash using Emergency Protein is to make a Garbage Stir-Fry™. (Yes, I’m trademarking EVERYTHING. That’s my secret project.)
Keep reading, and I’ll show you how to make a fragrant and zesty Garbage Stir-Fry with ground meat, curry, and cabbage. Don’t worry about the name – I call it Garbage Stir-Fry, but once you taste it, you won’t want to throw any of it away.