It hasn’t exactly been crockpot weather – but I had a nice little package of local beef braising ribs. I cut them up and loaded them in my mini crockpot, added BBQ sauce, a little red wine, chopped onions and quartered cremini mushrooms.
I added new potatoes after about 3.5 hours, and it was all done in 4 hours (on high).
And then – the leftovers turned into this. I chopped everything up, tossed it in a saucepan with a little white wine, freshly shelled peas and a few cherry tomatoes.
One bowl easy. Included lots of food groups. And was as tasty as it was colourful.
My sister bought me a cute little crock pot a few years ago to make overnight oatmeal.
Lately I’ve been trying to make a one-person sized pot roast in it. I have used some lower steak cuts from my friend’s farm, added in these great little potatoes, local carrots, onions, BBQ sauce and red wine. It makes a great little dinner…and then I turn it into this on day two.
I sautéed more carrots, green onion and sweet potato. Added all the leftover pot roast bits in (beef, onion, carrot and juice), tossed in some beef stock, a little more wine, salt and pepper, and a cup of leftover rice. And voila I have lunch-sized hearty soup for a week.
Sometimes the best meal is the one that comes as the leftover, second meal.
Could be the lasagna or chili that has had an extra day or two for the flavours and juices to merge more deliciously. The roast chicken that turns into enchiladas.
Or the roast seasonal vegetables -potaoes, carrots, onions and brussel sprouts – that were sauteed in a little butter with grape tomatoes and feta for a perfect second meal lunch.
What is your go-to leftover favourite?
A close relative of the fridge frittata, this stir fry works on the same simple principle. There was a time when I made them every week. And I’ve just rediscovered what a great staple dinner it is. Stir fries are a great way to avoid composting your vegetables, and pair perfectly with fluffy, 15-minute basmati rice.
Open the vegetable drawer in the fridge. Grab whatever looks good. The usual suspects in my fridge include green onion, cremini mushroom and red pepper. I tossed some previously roasted carrots and broccoli in the hot pan with olive oil too. And then some leftover Hayter’s Farm honey garlic turkey sausage. I really love when I can cook simply, and use mostly ingredients that are sourced locally.
After everything was nicely browned, I tossed in a little water and soy sauce. And topped it with crumbled feta over basmati rice.
Perfect simple supper. Lots of veggies. And leftovers for tomorrow’s lunch.
I make one of these almost every week.
There is inevitably a night when I don’t know what to eat, and have various items approaching compostable state in the fridge. (But I am definitely trying to throw out less food to help bring down the ridiculously high rate of food waste.)
That usually means it is time for fridge frittata.
I saute any combination of vegetables – mushrooms, green onion, broccoli, asparagus, leftover roasted root vegetables – in a pan that can go in the oven. If I am lucky there is some bacon or back bacon waiting to be used up too. Cooked pasta makes it even hardier. Just open the fridge door and look around.
I add a few beatened up eggs, usually with a little pepper, and pour that over the softened veggies et al. When everything is just about set…I top with the most important ingredient – cheese. Feta, grated cheddar, gruyere, whatever partial block you have hanging around.
Broil the whole bit until the eggs have finished cooking (no jiggling) and the cheese is bubbling and golden. If you are organized enough, you can add a green salad and some toast to round it out.
I usually make enough that I cut in pie wedges and freeze for easy breakfasts during the week.
Try one for a dark mid-week winter night.
If you like to follow a recipe, here’s a basic frittata recipe from the Egg Farmers of Canada.