The origins of patchwork are in the attempt to take whatever materials happen to be available and turn them into something of beauty.  Of course, most of us quilters have long passed that point, as our voluminous stashes will attest.  However, I still love a similar challenge: turning whatever happens to be in my nearly-empty fridge into something delicious, and tonight I believe I succeeded beautifully. 

Here’s the menu, if you want to join me:
Mushroom Bread Pudding with Roasted Root Vegetables

For the bread pudding: I had a couple of eggs, a bit of milk, a few strips of bacon, a bit of parmesan rattling around in the bottom of the bottle, a scrap of cheese, a few mushrooms and some very stale, hard bread.  I chopped the mushrooms and sauteed them butter, garlic and herbs (you could use any vegies).  Meanwhile, I spread the bread in a baking pan and sprinkled it with the parmesan and grated cheese.  Three eggs got mixed with 1-1/2 cups of  milk, some salt, pepper and a dash of nutmeg.  The bacon went in the microwive until it was crispy.  When the mushrooms were done, I spread them over the bread, doused the whole thing with the eggs & milk, sprinkled the bacon on top, then covered it with foil and let it sit overnight in the fridge so the milk could soak all the way into the bread.

Tonight, I chopped into bite-size pieces some sweet potatoes, onions, carrots and parsnips that had been languishing in my crisper for a while (you can use any vegetables or potatoes), tossed them with a bit of olive oil, a dash of balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper, and spread them on an oiled cookie sheet to roast in the oven while I baked the bread pudding.

40 minutes at 400 degrees later (with a couple of tosses of the vegies in the interim) out came this delicious meal.  I tossed the vegies with one last dash of balsamic vinegar and sat down to enjoy!

Now, back to quilting . . .