In our household, we like food. Which explains part of our weight problems, but that's not what I'm writing about today. We like food, and we want it to be tasty and have great texture ... and we need it to be inexpensive, because we're limiting our food budget to what we'd get if we were on the maximum amount of food stamps - that's roughly $410 a month for 3 adults here.
Which means I cook a lot of stuff from scratch. While I don't make hamburger buns or most pasta from scratch (the later because it's hard to get the right flour at all around here, let alone at a good price), I make make most of the rest of our breads. Yeah, most of you have been reading long enough to know all this.
Last night I took out the Sacred Book of Chinese Recipes, and I made Pot Stickers - the dumplings that have the crispy bottom. They are one of our Oh My Gods! recipes, amazingly good. And not expensive, especially compared with getting them in restaurants, where they are often not even as good as the ones I make.
I DID cheat a bit, as I chose to NOT make the wrappers from scratch. I've done it before, and I'll do it again, but that will be some day when I'm not working in the garden much of the day ... and yesterday I spent lots of time in the garden.
The entire batch of potstickers had an ingredient cost of about $10.50. It made 96 dumplings. That would have been 12 orders of potstickers in many restaurants. And it would have cost $96 just for the pot stickers - never mind the drinks we'd have ordered, and the tip.
Now, we did not eat all those last night, even tho' we did them as our main course ... hell, it was our only course. We DID eat half of them. I'm going to wrap and freeze the rest tonight and we'll have them some other time, when I don't want to cook.
Cheap never tasted so good.
Oh - and I did NOT use any zucchini in them.