Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Cooking With Emergency Rations

We try to keep a couple months supply of canned goods on hand, just in case of emergencies. Mostly they're things that need no heat or can be cooked over a sterno if need be. We started this practice about 6 months before Y2K, because although we knew that nothing was going to happen on Y2K, we thought that people might panic just BEFORE it, and that therefore there might be a run on groceries.

We're planners, we are.

The key to good emergency rations is they've gotta be something you'd eat anyway. Otherwise you're going to be throwing out a ton of expired food and waste is Not A Good Thing. You need to circulate through your rations and replace them periodically.

Sunday night, I produced an Emergency Rations Casserole that was a rousing success. MM asked for seconds. He then asked for thirds. He PRAISED THE PEAS. First time EVER.

So here, with no further ado, is my recipe for Emergency Rations Casserole:

To serve 4, you will need...
1/2 package regular spaghetti
Butter or Olive Oil
1 small onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, pressed
1 can Snow's Turkey
1 can Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup
1/2 can Le Seour Peas
Freshly Grated Parmesan (though the Kraft stuff will do)
Bread crumbs

Preheat the oven to 350.

Cook the spaghetti. While it is cooking, melt the butter in a large skillet and saute the onion and garlic until soft and translucent. Add the turkey. Stir until the turkey is broken up and thoroughly infused with the lovely aroma of onion and garlic. Add the soup. Stir. Add the peas. Stir. Add some milk. Stir. Turn off the heat so the peas don't over cook. For God's sake, don't overcook the peas!

Drain the spaghetti and place it in a greased casserole (I use my round brown pyrex). Pour the turkey/soup/peas mixture mostly into the middle and poke it around with a spoon to get the sauce well mixed into the middle, but leaving the noodles around the outside kind of sauceless*. Now pour more milk over the whole thing. Then sprinkle the top all over with the cheese and breadcrumbs.

Bake for 20 minutes, until the top is golden brown and some of the noodles are on their way to being crunchy.

Serve immediately.

Don't expect leftovers.

*Joy of Cooking uses this technique in the recipe for Turkey Tetrazini, which this dish slightly resembles in flavor.


Mummy/Crit said...

Sounds great, though I don't think I can get canned turkey here. For some reason we don't eat a lot of turkey in this country except during the festive season. I like to have a bunch of meals in the freezer, and they've been particularly useful in the last week or so.

purple_kangaroo said...


Eva said...

Great idea! Thanks!