So you’ve cooked the feast, wined and dined yourself (and maybe your guests) to a comfy stupor, reluctantly cleaned up and put away the leftovers; now what?
As you rummage through your refrigerator the next day you wonder to yourself if the food gnomes stopped by at night to dump food scraps in it. Everywhere you turn there is a bit of this and a bit of that, mostly stuff that probably wouldn’t make a full meal on their own and if you are anything like me, you are loath to put perfectly good food in the bin. The good news is that there are myriad things to do with left overs and the result can be rather fabulous looking and tasting too. In fact, I happen to look forward to noshing on my left overs because they usually always taste so much better the next day.
After the St. Patrick’s day feast (read all about it on the “Full Steam Ahead” post) I had bits and bobs leftover so the next day, instead of making a meal from scratch, I pulled out my leftovers and devised a plan. I remembered that Ina Garten had said that the Lemon Chicken went superbly with Basmati rice, and since Basmati cooks in about 15 minutes, it was a no brainer. I popped the chicken under the grill to heat it up, and added some cherry tomatoes coated in olive oil to roast lightly. I also roasted a whole bell pepper which I had topped, seeded and oiled.
Roasting things like tomatoes and peppers heightens their flavour/sweetness and give meals a new dimension.
After the rice cooked, I added the juices from the lemon chicken to it, then stuffed the pepper with the rice, adding a layer of white sauce in it. I put shavings of buttered carrots on the rice-stuffed pepper, arranged the roasted tomatoes around the pepper, placed the chicken and lemon wedges on the plate and another portion of lemon chicken flavoured rice with a small side of tomato sauce, sprinkled the dish liberally with parsley and voila a whole new dish!
In my upcoming post about my Easter lunch escapade, you’ll see how I came up with the leftover delight below.
TIP OF THE DAY:
Your leftovers should always be properly stored and preserved. I favour ziploc bowls because they are air tight, prevent spills and general messiness. Alternatively you could cover your containers with cling film; not only will this help keep the food longer in the fridge or freezer but will also reduce the possibility of strong aromas infiltrating other foods.
Speaking of strong aromas, putting half a lemon and some salt at the back of your fridge will banish odours and give your refrigerator a lemony zinginess 🙂