Growing up in a household where my father grew up with very little, then learned to cook from the old German women at the YMCA camp before he went off to the military, our house was stocked to feed an army no matter when we last went grocery shopping. It might not have always been the most coherent meal, but there was never a shortage of meat, vegetables and carbs in the house.
Once I moved out on my own, I found myself buying large quantities of staples to hold me over between shopping trips. My freezer was full of different meats, and I had a staggering array of instant potatoes, canned corn, dried beans and Jell-o. And of course, since it was only me, sometimes a can of cold creamed corn was all I needed to hold me over.
Even now, I can look in my pantry, fridge and freezer and put together about a month's worth of meals. I am obsessed with pasta, so there are always at least seven or eight varieties, I think there are about 15 types right now including a few I bought at the Thai grocery. We have canned beans, both regular and baked, and dried beans of all sorts. Frozen fish and beef roasts, along with a bag of food service meatballs that can be nuked and go with anything, plus more beans, frozen. Dozens of spices, herbs and seasonings. Five jars of tomato sauce. Four boxes of broth. Three types of roasted peppers, two types of peanut butter and a partridge in a pear tree.
Okay, no partridge, but I do have a can of Tasty Brand Curry Mock Duck.
Because sometimes, I just need dinner to be easy.
What do you keep on hand for emergency dinners?