January 11, 2017 10:31:02 AM
Anne Freeze -
A friend of mine who I've known since first moving to Columbus teases me about the sell-by dates and expiration dates of the food in my home. Granted, I do lose track of what is in my pantry, and l do sometimes forget that little dish of leftover whatever pushed to the back of my refrigerator. For the most part, this status is a result of a) having too much stuff, b) just an average day in "Anne Land" (I forget what's in there) and c) Terry and I really do try to not waste food. We faithfully composted for several years until we gave up our gardening efforts. My mother, who composted before I knew the word, influences me. She had a large pile of leaves, horse manure (which she harvested from the University of George barns) and kitchen garbage. Of course, I was embarrassed to death, but that's normal for a preteen. Now, of course, I'm proud of her hard work to garden naturally.
Let me be perfectly clear: We do not eat rotten food. We simply try and repurpose, recompose leftover food. I quickly become bored with leftovers, so I try and disguise them any way I can. And Terry and I may be at the forefront on the year's hottest and, for my money, best trend: anti-food waste. I googled "food waste movement" and 5,600,000 results appeared (somewhere). There are groups devoted to it, research and studies being done about it, and grass roots movements starting even in the Golden Triangle (see The Dispatch, Jan. 4). So, here are some ways we use what we have:
You get the idea.
Ham and muffins
So, we had a wonderful New Year's Day lunch with family and friends. Turnip greens, Daddy's hoppin' john, Weaver D's cornbread and crockpot ham. Weaver D had a restaurant in Athens, Georgia, for years, Weaver D's Delicious Fine Foods. The sign behind the counter read "Automatic for the People." (Sound familiar, all you R.E.M. fans?) It fell on hard times a few years ago, and I'm not sure if it is still open. I found a cornbread recipe of his in an Athens cookbook; I use it a lot. However, at the lake over the holidays I couldn't find it so I turned to the Internet. I found a different one with his name; it was also wonderful. Below are both of them. I mean, the new one with mayonnaise was really, really yummy (it had mayo in it, so yeah, it was).
I also made a ham in the crockpot and it knocked my knee-highs off. The slow cooking infused the ham with flavor all the way through (good and bad thing). Good because it's good; not as good if you want ham pieces that are savory and not sweet. Eating it right out of the pot, hot, was amazing. Using it over the next few days (and, yes, weeks) was harder than a baked ham because it was so tender it was falling off of the bones. You couldn't easily slice it for sandwiches.
I joined two recipes, using one for the method and one for an outstanding glaze. I have made notes on them below.
So, it's time to get into the kitchen. Use your imagination and cook outside of the recipe. Open the refrigerator and imagine what you can do with that cold broccoli staring at you. You'll be surprised.
1 butt-portion ham (about 6-9 pounds)
3 cups light brown sugar (this was way too much; I recommend 2)
(SOURCE: somethingsweetandsomethingsalty.com, notes by Anne Freeze)
For the glaze:
2 cups brown sugar
1 cup yellow mustard
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
(This is the glaze I used. I had handwritten it from somewhere. I added ground cloves)
WEAVER D'S CORNMEAL MUFFINS
Makes 12 muffins
1 1/3 cups self-rising white cornmeal
1 tablespoon sugar
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 1/3 cup buttermilk
4 tablespoons butter, melted.
WEAVER D'S CORN MUFFINS
Makes 24 muffins
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 cups self-rising white cornmeal mix
1/4 cup sugar
2 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
3 large eggs, lightly beaten