Here are a few ideas as to how you can put your weekend food leftovers to excellent use.
Even as a lover of cooking I struggle to find motivation at the beginning of the week.
We have a much more relaxed attitude to food at the weekend and it usually involves some kind of takeaway
and eating out.
I find that by the time Monday rolls around I am eye-rolling at the mere thought of just doing the food shop, never mind making a meal plan
and actually cooking the food. There is also something about Monday that makes me want us to “get back” to healthy eating after a lot more treats over the weekend.
I’ve started using the weekend leftovers to my advantage and at the very least they are sorting out Monday’s dinner for me. In some cases, they’re even working for lunches that roll into Tuesday. It’s been a bit of a game-changer.
Here are a few ideas as to how you can put your weekend food leftovers to excellent use by seeing them as a starting point or source of inspiration for Monday’s family food.
1. Do you have a weekend fry up or grill? In our house, there are usually a couple of sausages and rashers leftover on a Sunday and we, more often than not, bin them or eat them even though we’re not even hungry any more. I’ve started popping them into some tin foil and I use them to make an easy pasta bake on a Monday. Simply chop up the cooked sausages, bacon (and even pudding) and add them to a pot with some cooked pasta. I like to cook some frozen vegetables in the same water as the pasta so it’s a real one pot wonder. You can make your own pasta sauce or add something like pesto directly into it for a super tasty Monday meal.
2. Save your leftover Sunday roast vegetables, meat and potatoes because they are the perfect starting point for a soup. A handful of carrots, a couple of potatoes and a random chunk of chicken are more than enough for a tasty hearty soup. Simply add to a pot with some onion, garlic and stock. Bring to the boil and blitz – you’ve got Monday’s lunch sorted now.
3. Making pancakes for the kids? Double up the recipe and make a couple of extra ones for Monday’s breakfast or lunch. It’s no real extra effort and it makes life so much easier to just have something there. They also work great as an after-school snack.
4. Did you open a packet of Doritos (nachos in general) and now have the end of the bag leftover? Save them and trust me on this one – it makes for the most amazing chicken burger. Flatten a chicken breast, dip into some egg and then crunch the nachos up in a sandwich bag to make a “crumb”. Dip the chicken into the crumb and pan fry for a quick, easy but insanely delicious Monday night burger (or goujons/nuggets). You can also do the same with cod and a packet of salt and vinegar Velvet crunch. It’s so delicious and a real winner with the kids!
5. Did you get a Chinese takeaway and end up with a tonne of leftover rice? Save it. It is the basis of a quick and easy special fried rice dinner. Simply add torn ham (or any meat/prawns) to a frying pan with some onion, garlic and frozen peas then throw in the cold rice along with some soy sauce, a beaten egg, Chinese five spice and curry powder. It’s a quick, easy and delicious dinner that only requires one pot, pan or Wok.
Tracey is a happy mammy to four-year-old Billy. She is a breastfeeder, gentle parent and has recently lost five stone so healthy family eating is her passion! You can find her at www.loveofliving.ie.