Food: Feeding Old Man Winter |

Food: Feeding Old Man Winter

Lee Mathis
Free Press Food Columnist
Lee Mathis
Staff Photo |



1 lb. boneless chicken breast

4 tablespoons low salt soy sauce

2 tablespoons water

2 garlic

1 teaspoon corn starch

1 lb. mixed vegetable medley (or 2 c.)

1/2 cup low salt chicken broth

1 teaspoon sugar

1 tablespoon corn starch

2 cloves minced


1. Combine marinade ingredients in a bowl.

2. Add meat pieces and toss to coat well. Let stand for 10 minutes; then drain extra marinade from meat.

3. Cool a wok or heavy pan with non-stick cooking spray. Add 1 tablespoon oil and heat on high.

4. Add meat and cook until browned, stirring constantly.

5. Add vegetables and sauce.

6. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until the vegetables are tender but still crisp.


It’s winter, folks! It comes every year, pretty much same time, too.

As I write this on Sunday morning (a few weeks back now), looking out my office window in Palisade, it has started snowing again. First it was just some small innocent flurries, but that has now changed to the big flakes and does not look like it is going to be slowing down anytime soon.

So, it’s great timing for this column on “pantry cooking”!

Though we are having more “indoor” time that we would normally like, it’s not that bad a thing if you like to cook. (Think about it, there are worse things!)

Now most of the time, we see the weather coming so we have at least a day to go shopping, but you should also keep some staples in your cabinet (or pantry for you fancy people!). Canned tomatoes, other canned veggies, soups for those of you who do not make your own, pasta, sugar, flour, spices (I have at least 20 different kind of spices in my shelves), oils, and I even keep some proteins in my freezer — ground beef, hot sausage, chicken, eggs and milk in the fridge, you get the idea.

I even keep a few jugs of water, just in case the pipes freeze, so when winter decides to say “yeah, let’s play with these folks a bit,” I’m ready.

So, what is “pantry cooking”? It’s creating a dish or two that is just from what I have when there is no need or desire to go out and shop. I look to see what I have and go play!

For those of you who either go online or subscribe to cooking magazines, print out or clip some recipes that you’ll always have ingredients for. It can be something you’ve never tried before, too.

That brings us to our “website of the week,” from our friends at Recipe Key — This is a really cool site where you can enter the ingredients and supplies you have, and it comes up with some suggestions.

For instance, I entered what I had in my kitchen and then searched for a chicken recipe and it came with a lot of recipes.

Our “recipe of the week” is one of them — a 15-minute stir fry!

Free Press food columnist Lee Mathis is the founder and owner of Decadence Gourmet Cheesecakes and Catering. He can be reached at, online at, on Facebook, or by calling 970-256-4688.

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