Frugal Dinner Challenge: Pork Stir Fry

February 24, 2011

Last year, when I was cooking without a kitchen, I learned to make lots of dinners using my countertop electric appliances. This was necessary since I literally did not have a kitchen for months–it was gutted–and that meant no stove or cooktop of any kind for me to use. If I wanted to cook a hot meal for my family, I had to do it outside on the grill, or by using my Crock Pot or rice cooker.

One of the meals I “created” during that time was chicken stir-fry in the Crock-Pot, which was a bit of a misnomer since I neither stirred nor fried it. But who cares–when it was cooked, it was delicious.

These days we make stir fry the old-fashioned way–in a stove top pot–and it has become one of my go-to meals during meal planning. However, during this frugal dinner challenge, I ran out of chicken, which is what I usually make in stir fry. I definitely wanted to make it for dinner but I wasn’t going to break my “deal” with myself and go buy chicken. Lucky for me last fall Stop & Shop had a super deal on pork loin. I bought 10 pounds of it, cut into two-pound pieces–all of which I froze. Knowing that I wanted to make a stir fry one night this week, I took one of those two-pound pieces of pork out and let it defrost in the refrigerator.

Tonight, we had that pork stir fry. All of the vegetables came out of cans from the pantry or frozen packages from the freezer. And you know what? I think I actually like the pork in the stir fry better than the chicken. My family did, too.

Glad I’ve got eight pounds of pork still frozen so I can use it again soon in stir fry or some other “chicken” dish I may be forced to modify.

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3 Responses to Frugal Dinner Challenge: Pork Stir Fry

  1. lizzie on February 27, 2011 at 11:07 am

    Stir fry is a staple of my frugal family menu. What I do is any leftover meat and veggies go into freezer bags in the freezer. Even if its only a couple of bites. I separate the meat by kind. But veggies just all get tossed together. Then when I have enough I pull out a bag of meat and a bag of veggies and make left over stir fry.

    • Leah Ingram on February 27, 2011 at 11:10 am

      That’s a brilliant way to use leftovers. I’ll have to try that. Most times, though, my daughters fight over who gets to take the leftovers with her as the next day’s school lunch!

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