Winner of Your Best Dirt Cheap Dinner

June  1, 2011

Congratulations to My Pantry Shelf, whose Sausage and Kale Dinner Tart won this week's contest for Your Best Dirt Cheap Dinnerearning her a handsome Staub Oval Gratin Baking Dish from Williams-Sonoma, plus big prizes from VikingOXO and Tiny Prints, and a spot in the next food52 cookbook!

My Pantry Shelf  Sausage and Kale Dinner Tart

Q&A with My Pantry Shelf

  • Describe an early food experience that has influenced the way you think about food and/or cooking. 
  • In high school, I worked at Earthbeam, a natural foods store in Burlingame, California. I learned so much about fresh foods and whole grains.  It definitely influenced my habits in the kitchen.
  • What's your least favorite food?
  • Bland, processed food.
  • What is the best thing you've made so far this year?
  • Oh, I have been having a real good time in the kitchen this year, so it is hard to choose.  Of late, my favorite is probably focaccia bread I have been making using the recipe from Baking with Julia.
  • Describe your most spectacular kitchen disaster.
  • I recently left my recipe notebook on the stove, not realizing that the gas burner was on.  You can guess how that turned out.
  • What is your idea of comfort food?
  • I love to make pasta with a chunky tomato and sausage sauce. 
  • Apron or no apron?
  • No apron.  I'm not afraid to get messy when I cook.  
  • If you could make a show-stopping dinner for one person, living or dead, who would it be?
  • I wish I had the opportunity to make a fabulous meal for my grandma Betty.  She was a tremendous cook -- mostly traditional Danish dishes.  She passed away before I became serious about cooking.  
  • You prefer to cook: a. alone, b. with others, c. it depends on your mood
  • I do love to cook alone and have been known "encourage" my kids to leave the kitchen so I can cook in "peace," but I do love cooking with them as well.  They are already pretty capable for little people.
  • When it comes to tidying up, you usually: a. clean as you cook, b. do all the dishes once you've finished cooking, c. leave the kitchen a shambles for your spouse/roommate/kids to clean.
  • Here is my chance to publicly thank my husband for the hours upon hours he has spent cleaning up after my adventures in the kitchen.  I usually clean up as I cook, but there is still a pile for him at the end of the day. Thanks Scott!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • cookinginvictoria
  • Kitchen Butterfly
    Kitchen Butterfly
  • mrslarkin
  • dymnyno
  • cheese1227
The bounty of each season is worth celebrating! Most of the meals I cook for my hungry family of four are based on whatever is fresh and bountiful in our yard or what we can glean from the yards of our friends and neighbors. The seasonal food we have in surplus goes into the canning jars. Even busy families can find time for fresh, homemade foods.


cookinginvictoria June 2, 2011
Congrats again, MPS! Loved reading more about you in the Q&A. I too have left things on my stove, not realizing the burner was on. The photo of you and your daughter is lovely.
Kitchen B. June 2, 2011
Congratulations. There's no going wrong with a tart (well almost always). Well done.
mrslarkin June 2, 2011
Congratulations! What a beautiful tart. Baking with Julia is one of my all time favorite cookbooks.
My P. June 2, 2011
Thank you, it is a favorite of mine as well.
dymnyno June 2, 2011
Hey Neighbor! Congratulations!!
My P. June 2, 2011
Thank you. We are just over the hill! You press your own olive oil? Jealous.
cheese1227 June 2, 2011
Fabulous recipe. Congrats!
inpatskitchen June 2, 2011
Beautiful tart...Congratulations!!
lastnightsdinner June 1, 2011
Congratulations! I look forward to trying your tart soon :)
Angela @. June 1, 2011
Well done. Looks delicious. I've saved it and hope to try soon.
Midge June 1, 2011
Congratulations again MPS! Can't wait to try your lovely tart.
Midge June 1, 2011
Congratulations again MPS! Can't wait to try your lovely tart.
SKK June 1, 2011
You and your recipes are lovely! Thank you.
hardlikearmour June 1, 2011
Congrats! Your tart looks delicious and soul-satisfying.