If your house is anything like our house, then you are finding yourself in the post holiday daze, with too many left overs in your refrigerator and and uncertainty on how to use them up creatively. Himself does not like to eat left overs. Our littles aren't fans of left overs either. So while I have a fond spot in my heart for the reheated ham and lasagna (especially in the middle of the night), they simply won't have any parts of it.
So in order not to waste the precious foods of yesterday, I turn to some new recipes (and some tried and true ones) to turn those left overs into new meals.
Here are a few successful dishes for you to try:
If you have ham left over --
You can always go with a ham and cheese omelet, or a western omelet, or the tried and true egg strata. But I also like to change it up a bit and use the following recipe:
Ham and Potato Soup (I originally got this recipe out of an old better homes and gardens magazine and have changed it up a bit over the years)
3 1/2 cups peeled and diced potatoes
1/3 cup diced celery
1/3 cup finely chopped onion
3/4 cup diced cooked ham
3 1/4 cups water
2 tablespoons chicken bouillon granules
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon ground white or black pepper, or to taste
5 tablespoons butter
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
Combine the potatoes, celery, onion, ham and water in a stockpot. Bring to a boil, then cook over medium heat until potatoes are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the chicken bouillon, salt and pepper.
In a separate saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Whisk in flour with a fork, and cook, stirring constantly until thick, about 1 minute. Slowly stir in milk as not to allow lumps to form until all of the milk has been added. Continue stirring over medium-low heat until thick, 4 to 5 minutes.
Stir the milk mixture into the stockpot, and cook soup until heated through. Serve immediately.
If you have turkey left over:
Turkey Pot Pie
1 recipe pastry for a (10 inch) double crust pie
4 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, minced
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, diced
3 tablespoons dried parsley
1 teaspoon dried oregano
salt and pepper to taste
2 cubes chicken bouillon
2 cups water
3 potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 1/2 cups cooked turkey, cubed
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 cup milk
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Roll out bottom pie crust and place in the 10 inch pie pan and set aside.
Place 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet. Add the onion, celery, carrots, parsley, oregano, salt and pepper. Cook and stir until the vegetables are soft. Stir in the bouillon and water. Bring mixture to a boil. Stir in the potatoes, and cook until tender but still firm.
In a medium saucepan, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Stir in the turkey and flour. Add the milk, and heat through. Stir the turkey mixture into the vegetable mixture, and cook until thickened. Pour mixture into the unbaked pie shell. Roll out the top crust, and place on top of filling. Flute edges, and make 4 slits in the top crust to let out steam.
Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) and continue baking for 20 minutes, or until crust is golden brown.
Or if you are like me, simply slip down to the quiet of the kitchen in the middle of the night, have a glass of wine, and enjoy picking at the left over ham or turkey or perhaps a simple sandwich. But no matter how you enjoy your left overs, simply enjoy the season.