The other day we weren't supposed to be home at dinner time, but our appointment got cancelled, leaving me with no dinner plans and a husband coming home in an hour! To make matters worse, going out was out of the question and it was Thursday - we get groceries on Friday. (I buy our food weekly, which means very little "stocked up". I had pantry staples like flour and condiments to work with.) After staring into the open fridge and pantry with the dull stare of a dairy cow, inspiration finally struck.
I took my favorite cornbread recipe and added about a cup each of cooked, shredded chicken and cheddar cheese. If I had had a jalapeño and whole kernel corn, I would totally have added that, too. Since I use bacon fat in place of some the shortening in my cornbread, the flavor was really terrific! I added the extras after mixing the batter and before the melted shortening/fat.
I was pleasantly surprised to find a couple of Honeycrisp apples in the fridge, too, so I sliced them up and served them. An odd combination, to be sure, but everyone in my family ate it up and asked for seconds. I do have to say, though, that I did have more to choose from than I normally would. Fresh fruit is almost always gone by Thursday night, I had just forgotten about those somehow.
Halfway through dinner, a friend texted and asked if she could come over for an hour or so. Knowing she was going to pick up fast food for her own dinner, I tentatively offered her some of ours. She agreed, and then was so glad she did - she loved it!
I have to say, one of my favorite things about cooking is handling these little challenges - it's like Iron Chef, Secret Ingredient: Shredded Chicken! Allez Cuisine!