27 November 2015

Thanksgiving afterglow: leftover heaven

The meal was great the first time, but the leftovers are a gift that keep on giving.  Get creative in your snacking this weekend, and if you're lucky enough to still have some leftovers by Monday, you can pack a blissful reminder of your holiday break to eat as your sad desk lunch.

Mashed Potato Biscuits: These work well as English muffin-type breakfast food, slathered with cranberry sauce. If you really want a window into my dark soul, I like to split one apart, melt thin slices of sharp white cheddar on each half in the toaster oven, and then slather with cranberry sauce.  Delicious.



Mixed Roasted Potatoes: You know how I love breakfast, right?  Warm these back up in the oven or toaster oven (never the microwave--they are sad and soggy beyond words when you do that) and serve underneath eggs cooked to your liking with cooked greens and a little curry ketchup on the side.



Braised Radishes with Orange: You're not going to have any leftovers of this.  Have you tried them?  They're insane.  But if you do, sprinkle with red chili flakes and toss with pasta and steamed broccoli.  Throw some pine nuts on top if you want to get all fancy about it.



Wasabi Green Beans: These work in any kind of stir fry or Thai curry; just throw them in to any Asian-inspired recipe that calls for green beans. In fact, throw in the leftovers from the stuffed squash and you've got the meal in minutes!




Cheesy baked potato soup
Serves 4
2 tablespoons butter
1 small yellow onion, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
4 large russet potatoes, peeled and chopped into small cubes (or a combination of russet and sweet)
4 cups vegetable broth
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup sour cream or Greek style plain yogurt
2 teaspoons salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 green onions, finely chopped
2 slices crisp bacon or Morningstar Breakfast Strips, crumbled (optional)

Heat the butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat; when it foams, add the onion.  Sauté  until onion is translucent, about 4 minutes.  Add salt, garlic and chopped potato and sauté another 3 or 4 minutes, stirring constantly to keep potato from sticking.  Add 2 cups of the vegetable broth, stir, cover and bring to a boil.  Once boil begins, lower to a simmer and cook about 15 minutes, until potato is soft enough to mash. 
Mash the potato mixture in the pan with a hand masher or use an immersion blender to create creamy mashed potatoes. Add the other 2 cups of broth, sour cream and cheese and stir to incorporate.  Cover  and lower heat to medium-low until cheese is melted into soup, about 5 minutes.  Add black pepper to taste.  Garnish with chopped green onion and bacon, if desired (you can also top with additional cheese and sour cream if you have it). 

Chicken Vatapa
Serves 6
1 teaspoon canola oil
½ cup finely chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon peeled, grated fresh ginger (purchase ready-to-go in the produce section of Safeway on 3rd Ave.)
1 jalapeno pepper, minced (remove seeds for milder flavoring)
1 cup water
1 (28 oz.) can diced tomatoes with juice
1 (12 oz.) can light beer
¼ cup dry-roasted peanuts
3 cups cooked chicken or turkey
½ cup coconut milk
½ cup chopped fresh parsley
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon lime juice
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Add onion, garlic, ginger, and jalapeno and sauté 2 minutes or until onion is soft.  Stir in water, tomatoes in their juice, and beer.  Bring to boil, then cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes. 

Place peanuts in a spice or coffee grinder (or a good old-fashioned nut grinder) and process until finely ground.  Add ground peanuts, chicken, and coconut milk to Dutch oven, stirring to combine.  Increase heat to medium.  Bring mixture to a simmer and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Stir in parsley, cilantro, lime juice, salt, and pepper.