As we wind up this season of frantic baking and cooking I’m curious about you my few readers, what are your favourite emergency substitutions for when you run out and can’t quite make the recipe as you thought you might. Or what is the one ingredient that when it isn’t on your shelves brings your work to a grinding halt and sends you rushing to the store?
For me this changes based on what I’m cooking. We’re a vegetarian and mostly gluten-free family. I substitute without thinking most days. I actually can’t think of one substitute that rules over all others though I rarely have cream so I do constantly switch butter and milk for it.
I find that if there is no canned tomato of any sort in the pantry life here gets difficult. I’m not sure why this one item dominates my cooking, but it does.
I don’t bake often as I don’t own an electronic mixer of any sort or a food processor. I do mix by hand but I don’t enjoy doing this so I avoid it when I can.
The other day I made crock pot whatever and was happy that on my way home I picked up a can of diced tomato. Crock pot whatever consisted of random things from the cupboard, and reminded me to CHECK first for little things that don’t belong there before I dump them in. It was originally going to be with rice, but I had to dump the contents after I found a few things in there that shouldn’t have been. The rice was quite old and not sealed well, so I’m not surprised but it upset me as I wasted not just the bad rice but the good rice as well. It ended up being some TVP, onion, garlic, oil, can of diced tomato, can of cream of celery soup, some vege broth israeli couscous (the big ones, for those of you who haven’t experienced them), spices, and uhm.. I forget what else. I kept dumping in things that would meld well together. It was a really yummy meal on a cold wintry day.