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A carnivore's dilemma

I like meat. A lot. (If you don't, you'll probably want to stop reading now) But in the US, if you cook with meat -- unless you're obsessive about parting things out or have a butcher who's willing to sell you a quarter pound of  protein at a time, you're going to have leftovers. And leftovers just seem to expand exponentially. For instance, last night J cooked a stock with a bunch of turkey drumsticks to get read for thanksgiving. Still plenty of flavor in the drumsticks after 7 hours of simmering (and a lot less tendon) so I had one for a midnight snack and stripped the rest to use as generic meat.

For lunch I chopped some up and mixed it with pesto for a couple of turkey salad sandwiches. For supper, I chopped up most of the rest and put it in marinara sauce (usually we put in a block of ground turkey).

So now in the fridge there is: a half-full pint container of leftover turkey-pesto salad for sandwiches. A full quart container of leftover pasta sauce. Another half-full pint container of turkey embedded in gelled juices.  Oh, and a full quart container of pasta, but duh.

That's probably four more meals. But if I cook too much rice with the tail end of the pint container (and don't forget the veg) that will probably be another meal or two. At which point the meat will be getting a little thin on the ground in the leftover starch-plus-meat-plus-veg, so I'll have to cook another piece of meat to throw in with it. Which will be from a biggish chunk that leaves more leftovers...

Admittedly this would be easier if we didn't have picky kids and could just focus on wearing the leftovers down in whatever form they appeared. But it's still a little freaky to think that I've committed to half a week of meals from something that by rights could have gone right into a compost heap.

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