Some things I always buy at the grocery: Ranch Style beans, canned lentils, sardines, tortillas and fresh spinach. As a grad student, I'm out of town every other weekend, so canned food allows me to make something quickly and not worry about it ever going bad. The problem with canned food is it all tends to have a lot of similar tastes across the different varieties (canned soups taste like canned vegetables taste like canned meat). How do I fix this? The same way universities fix their budgets: lots of adjuncts (hey-o! zing!). I call this recipe:
(Sort of) Curried Lentils with Chicken
2 cans of Progresso lentils
1 lb of chicken, chopped
1 red onion, chopped
1 zucchini, sliced
1 yellow squash, sliced
5 cloves of garlic, minced (I like even more)
3 tbs butter
2 tbs curry paste (I like even more)
Salt, pepper, sour cream to taste
Start by placing 2 of the three table spoons of butter with the garlic and onions in a skillet on medium. Cook until golden brown and place in a pot with the lentils and curry paste on low heat. Place the remaining butter with the sliced zucchini and squash. Season them with salt and pepper. Cook until slightly browned and set them aside. Place the chicken in the skillet. Cook them until the flesh turns white on the outside then place in the pot. Let it simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour. When finished, warm the zucchini and squash and place them on top of the lentils with sour cream.
If you happen to have some fresh basil, put that in here too, because lentils with fresh basil is amazing. There are also some other places that talk about this same exercise of making canned lentils better here. It's a good food website in general.