For Christmas a week ago I cooked a Niman Ranch, antibiotic- and nitrite-free apple-smoked ham. Glazed it with orange juice, honey and mustard. Made Southern spoonbread, braised rainbow chard with garlic, and mashed potatoes to go with it. (The children like mashed potatoes). We were only five, as my father died three months ago and we really didn't feel like having a big party.
So there was plenty of ham left over. Tuesday, Boxing Day, we ate leftover sliced ham and whatever else was in the fridge. Wednesday I made pasta with spinach and pesto sauce and served diced ham with it. Thursday I made a frittata with the leftover pasta and more bits of ham. Friday there was still a giant chunk of ham left, so I cubed it and made a plain bean soup - speckled Anasazi beans, sauteed onion, bay leaf, salt and pepper, cooked under pressure, then the last of the ham stirred in and cooked a little longer. The four of us demolished a whole pot of the soup in one day.
(the spiced lentil soup was in there, too)
Because we ate beans and leftovers all week, I didn't flinch when hubbie requested roast beef for supper tonight. Don't worry about what it costs, he said. I did flinch when I got to the butcher and saw what grass-fed rib roast costs per pound (our dinner guests might read this blog so I won't share with you).
I repeated out loud to my son: "Daddy says don't worry how much the meat costs, just get it." I still shop like a parsimonious housewife when actually my husband earns a good living and we can certainly afford to buy roast beef, grass-fed no less. We'd spend a lot more eating out. But my inner Puritan struggled. The strong direction from my husband over-rode my price resistance. Now I just have to figure out how to roast the thing. I've only done this once before.
Happy New Year to all.