Those on the gluten free diet find early on that preparing their own food from scratch (or close to it) is the best way to eat well. Ever since I became responsible for my own diet, I started preparing food with leftovers in mind. Even if I was cooking for one or two, I’d make enough for several meals, and enjoy my creations for breakfast, lunch, and even the next day’s dinner. This works very well for me and bringing my own GF bento (lunchbox) to school or work means I don’t have to risk getting “glutened” by a substandard lunch out. Recently I’ve started freezing especially successful meals in semi disposable Tupperware, labeled with the date and content, which is great when I come home tired from classes, can’t justify the calories in Amy’s delicious GF Mac and Cheese or other frozen meals, but still want a convenient, microwave fast meal.
While I love the convenience of leftovers, they can get tedious the second or third time around, so I often make a little effort to make them even better the next time around. Here is one example of a meal I recently transformed three different ways, with very satisfying results. I may continue this as a series, but we’ll see how interesting I manage to make my leftovers!
Meal One: the Southern Vegan
Biscuits made from an Allergy Grocer mix (similar to Bette Hagman’s bisquick recipe), Big Bubba tofu from page 117 of Cookin’ Southern Vegetarian Style (tofu breaded in soymilk with a little egg replacer powder, cornmeal, brown rice flour and nutritional yeast, then fried and simmered in a GF onion gravy), and Roasted Sweet Potato, Potato, Onion and garlic mash, served with sliced organic tomatoes.
Evaluation: The biscuits were scarfed up by everyone in the house, including two Gluten Fiends who proclaimed them “just like regular biscuits” and “impressive.” The Big Bubba Tofu was ok, but thick and the coating started coming off the crispy tofu the longer it stayed in the gravy. Also the soymilk I used, although plain, was sweetened so the dish failed to be properly savory. DH ate some, but wasn’t as enthusiastic as he is about my other Nutritional yeast tofu recipes. The Roasted Sweet Potato mash had good flavor, but because I mixed it in the food processor was not as fluffy as it could have been. All in all, the meal was probably a 6/10, although the biscuits individually would probably be more like a 8-9/10.
How did I use these ingredients to make a new meal?
Biscuits: I cut the biscuits in half and topped them with whipped cream, Kozy Shack GF Vanilla Pudding, Yoplait Raspberry Yogurt, and fresh strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries. I then garnished the dish with fresh mint. Everybody loved them, and they were a wonderful easy summery dessert.
Roasted Sweet Potato Mash: I added some Gluten free bread crumbs and brown rice flour to the mash and then coated them in bread crumbs and seasoning and then sauteed them in olive oil. I threw some chopped kale into the pan and added a teaspoon or two of artichoke pesto for flavor. I served the croquettes with the kale, some pre made artichoke salsa, broccoli sprouts, and a dab of yogurt. It was even better than the original dish and made a fantastic breakfast/brunch.
Big Bubba Tofu: As I mentioned, I wasn’t that crazy about this dish, so finishing it off became something of a chore. I had it with rice, including my special rice, and with some biscuits, but it was getting pretty old when I suddenly got an urge for a loaded baked potato. I microwaved a delicious white potato until almost done, then cut it open, added a little margarine, put a layer of fresh spinach and then a serving of the Bib Bubba Tofu. I added some drops of vietnamese hot sauce and fresh coarsely ground black pepper and it was hearty and absolutely delicious. I might even consider making the recipe, or a similar recipe again just for this purpose.
So, there you have it- one elaborate meal was transformed into a dessert, a lovely light gourmet brunch, and a hearty evening snack. Just because you’re eating leftovers doesn’t mean they have to taste like the same old thing you had for dinner!
Question: How do you use your leftovers creatively? Recipes welcome!