08 March 2012
Simple dishes you can make without any fuss or waste
Leftovers: roast chicken
Recipe: Rice chicken
Lightly sauté chopped red peppers, onion, garlic and risotto and basmati rice in a little vegetable oil. Add stock mixed with a small glass of white wine rather than water, and stir regularly until the rice is cooked through. Chop the cooked chicken and add to the rice mix, stirring and heating for another 5 minutes.
Leftovers: stale bread and cooked vegetable
Recipe: Vegetable crumble
If you need to boost this with some fresh veg, lightly fry sliced leeks, chopped onions and courgettes then stir in the leftover veg you have along with a light cheese sauce. Use your blender to make your stale (not mouldy) bread into breadcrumbs. Add herbs, grate in strong, old cheese and a dash of cooking oil to make a crumble topping for your veg. Bake this in an overproof dish for 20 minutes on 180°C (350°F or gas mark 4).
Recipe: Baked peppers with fish
Add whole red, green or yellow peppers to boiling salted water for just 5 minutes but don’t allow them to get too soft. Dry them then brush with a little vegetable oil. Cut their tops off, remove seeds and spoon in a mix of basmati rice cooked in a strong stock, sautéed finely chopped onion and flaked fish leftovers. Perch the sliced off tops back on and bake for 15 minutes on a moderate heat to fully warm through.
Leftovers: cooked ham
Recipe: Ham and cheese pies
Chop up cooked ham and mix with grated cheese, one finely chopped onion and a whisked egg. Roll out a batch of shortcrust pastry and use a large glass to cut circles of pastry. Make 12 little pie cases in a muffin tin, add spoonfuls of ham and cheese to each then cover with a smaller circle of pastry. Brush each with beaten egg and bake for 20 minutes on 180°C (350°F or gas mark 4).
Leftovers: roast chicken
Recipe: Hearty chicken broth
Chop onion, carrots, leeks and other veg to taste then sauté these until soft with herbs in vegetable oil or melted butter. Cover so the vegetables soften then add one to two litres of chicken or vegetable stock and after about 10 minutes simmering, add the chopped chicken (without the skin), and warm through for another five to 10 minutes. Blend if you prefer a smoother soup.
When saving leftover food throw away anything that’s been partly eaten. Cool the leftovers and put in sealed containers in the fridge within one to two hours of cooking. Use within two days.
Pass it on – freezing meat and fish
Make sure it is cooled down properly, wrap it carefully and when thawing either defrost it in a microwave or in the fridge, making sure that any juices are caught on a plate. Use it within 24 hours of defrosting.