Bargain For Dinner
I am a cheapskate. There's no getting around it, I'm a cheapskate. I love it when I can make a meal out of nothing and have it taste like something special.
Artichokes. I know they are local because a) pretty much nowhere else on earth grows them and b) I learned in my botany class that there are varieties that bud in fall as well as in spring. Plus, you can't get them for 79 cents if they aren't local.
Italian sausage. I've been on an Italian sausage kick recently and had half a sausage left from another dish I made a few days ago - I call that almost free.
Rice. I had to cook more of that for Cora's lamb-and-rice dinner anyway (yes, her tummy is still unsettled), so just sneaked out a little to stuff the artichokes.
Onion. Found it hiding in the very bottom of the vegetable bin in the fridge. Definitely a freebee.
Lemon juice. My Beloved's daughter Katie gave us a huge bag of lemons - a bonus!
Herbes de Provence. I always have it on hand and only used a healthy pinch. Can't count that cost.
Olive oil, just a driz for browning the sausage and softening the onion/shallot. Hardly worth mentioning.
But, combine them all together and they make a pretty nice meal.
I cut the top third off the artichokes with a big, sharp knife, hollowed out the centers and removed the chokes with a metal tablespoon, then stuffed the mixture of sausage, onion, shallot, rice, lemon juice (to taste - mine was pretty tart) and Herbes de Provence into the middle. Steamed the whole thing for about 30 minutes, until the bottom of the artichokes was easily pierced with a knife.
Not bad for a budget dinner.