The Cooking Chronicles: Hurrah for Leftovers!

Most of the time, I’m just hoping our weeknight dinners yield enough food to provide us both with a hot lunch the next day, but sometimes, the recipes that are meant to feed a large family are wondrous for the two of us – eliminating a night’s worth of work, without sacrificing a home-cooked meal. What’s not to love?

Mark Bittman’s Paella

Mark Bittman’s recipe for paella in Food Matters is very similar to Michael Smith’s that we tried last year. But somehow, it worked out better. It could have had to do with the fact that we had superior ingredients this time around (sausages from Irvings, tomatoes from Kuhlmann’s), or because we had a more heat efficient vessel (a Le Cruset Dutch oven), but the resulting paella was so tasty! I loved how the tomatoes just fell apart, and infused their sweetness throughout the dish.

Paella

Paella (a photo of the leftovers…I had forgotten to take a photo of the meal before that)

And all the better – we were able to milk two additional meals from the pot. Score!

Mashed Potato-Topped Mini Tourtières

A recipe for mashed potato-topped mini tourtières in the Winter 2010 issue of Inspired appealed to me because of its likeness to shepherd’s pie, and its incorporation of seasonings more in line with tourtières. The recipe made it easy to incorporate many locally-sourced products, including onions from Kuhlmann’s, potatoes from Greens, Eggs and Ham, ground pork from Irvings, and ground beef from our cow share (it keeps going and going…). I decided to omit the cream cheese (knowing that we wouldn’t be freezing the pies) to keep the fat content down also.

Though the steps themselves weren’t difficult (sautéing the meat with the vegetables and reducing down a sauce, boiling and mashing potatoes), it took about an hour to finish cooking (given the pies had to bake for 30 minutes after assembly).

Mini Tourtières

Mini Tourtières

Mack said it was missing a kick (perhaps some cayenne or chili powder would have helped), and I knew I should have added carrots for the texture and the sweetness, but as a whole, I enjoyed them.

And how many pies did we end up with you ask? Seven! They were easy to reheat, and made a great lunch the next day too. Hurrah for leftovers!

2 thoughts on “The Cooking Chronicles: Hurrah for Leftovers!

  1. This is my forte – “the silk purse from a sow’s ear” -meals concocted from leftovers. Trouble is, it’s typically a one-off as I seldom ever have the same combination of ingredients in the fridge at the same time. Very Zen though…Yours look yummy.

  2. Katharine – I’d love to have your skill – I’m still very much a recipe follower. And as much as I love cooking – I also like having leftovers to fall back on :).

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