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Cooking from leftovers...

This past week I did two different meals, where I took leftovers and changed them into a new meal. As I do this frequently, I thought I would share with you what I do.


The first meal was made from leftover turkey. Actually, I had canned the leftover turkey from Christmas, but one of the jars didn’t seal and was sitting in the fridge.


When I opened the fridge to “stare” at the contents for a while and try to come up with dinner, I saw the jar and thought, “Oh, I need to use that.”


I took the jar and poured the contents in a pot, then added one can of corn, one can of chilies with diced tomatoes, one can of mixed vegetables, and some water. I also added salt, pepper, some dehydrated onion (1 Tablespoon) and some granulated garlic.


When this mixture came to a boil, I added one bag of alphabet pasta (the really little pasta). Voilà!…chicken noodle soap. Everyone went crazy over it.


We ate it with chips in it, sliced avocado pieces in it, salsa added to it, and some ate it with just crackers.


A couple of days later, I had just the bottom of the pan filled with black beans so I took a pound of hamburger and cooked it with a little water, some dehydrated onion, salt, and pepper. I then added the hamburger to the beans (I only buy the 93/7 hamburger…if you buy hamburger with more fat…you will have to drain the fat first), then I added 1 can of pinto beans, 1 can of red kidney beans, 1 can of corn, 1 can of green chilies with diced tomatoes, and one can of mixed vegetables.


I then added a little more granulated garlic, salt, and pepper and more packages of Sazon Goya natural seasonings.


This made Chili that we ate for two days. We ate it on rice, with chips, with avocado slices, etc.


Yesterday, I made Pupusas for lunch, but cooked up a batch of pinto beans. As I went to put them in the fridge in the evening, I found some leftover ham from the holidays that I didn’t know was still there. I took the ham and cut it into small pieces and added it to the beans.


The old timers, on Friday’s would make leftover stew which consisted of the week’s leftovers. I have put mashed potatoes in soups and stews (they thicken it and add flavor). I have added all types of leftover vegetables or meats to soups or stews.


Another thing I do to save time and effort is to double or triple recipes. For example, when I came home Saturday afternoon after being in an all-day meeting. We made Goulash…but we made enough to have one large pan for dinner and freeze another batch. That way, someday when I work late or something, they can pull that from the freezer and have a meal.


I just finished a training for a business this morning (I have another one this afternoon), but the morning session went incredibly well. It was one of the best trainings I’ve done. There is such a sense of accomplishment, when you prepare well, and things go so smoothly.


Now we will see if the afternoon session goes as well.


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