Leftovers Recipes

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Pan-Fried Banh Tet Recipe  Recipe

Pan-Fried Banh Tet Recipe

02.18.15 by Jackie

Hoa Tâm, a family friend, came to visit a few days ago and she gave us a very useful tip on how to avoid bánh tét food waste after the Lunar New Year celebrations. What is bánh tét you ask? It's a Vietnamese savory rice cake (at times sweetened with bananas). It's made primarily from glutinous rice, which is rolled in a banana leaf into a thick, log-like cylindrical shape, with a mung bean or mung bean and meat center, then boiled. It's a must-have traditional food during Tết, the Vietnamese Lunar New Year in Southern Vietnam. We've been given a lot of the logs this season; it's a way to demonstrate the importance of rice in the Vietnamese culture. I told Hoa Tâm my fear that we'd have a lot of leftovers and didn't want to waste all the food. She then give uswonderful trick; if you have a lot of these rice cakes as e do, look no further!

Simply slice them and pan-fry them. Once crispy, drizzle with nước mắm chay (if you're a vegetarian) or fish sauce. It's as simple as that. Thanks, dear Chi Hoa Tâm!


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Cheesy Wild Rice Stuffing Recipe Recipe

When I think of stuffing (or dressing), the picture that comes to mind is of day-old bread mixed with onion, celery, other vegetables, dried fruit and herbs. It's time for a change, and this year for Thanksgiving, I'm opting for a healthier but just as tasty version using wild rice, pumpkin, dried mango, cranberries, asparagus and walnuts.

For easier serving, I baked it in individual cups and covered them with a blend of Jarlsberg and cheddar cheese. That might make them a little less healthy, but it’s so worth it! 


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Chicken Lavash Soup Recipe (Tortilla Lime Soup) Recipe

As a child, Maman would always tell us kids not waste food; it's "tội chết" ("dreadfully sinful" in Vietnamese). Now that I'm an adult, I intend to follow in her footsteps and teach the same values to our future children. Whenever there are left-overs, I try to come up with creative ways to use them. Today, I had left-over chicken broth and roasted chicken, so I combined them to make a hearty chicken soup. I had whole wheat lavash on hand, so I decided to slice it into strips and use it as I would when making tortilla soup. The lavash also made a good thickening agent in the soup.

To the large pot of soup, I added left-over shredded roasted chicken, tomatoes, tomato paste for a little tartness, jalapeños for a little heat, lime juice, cumin, avocado and some edamame beans for texture. The lavash soup is a hearty, tasty dish that makes a complete meal that's a hit even with the kids. Well, at least the non-vegetarian kids in my house!

Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe with Picture


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Stuffed Mushroom Recipe Recipe

Stuffed Mushroom Recipe

11.03.10 by Jackie

Making stuffed mushrooms is a great way to put stale bread to use. I served soup the other night and we had 2 leftover rolls, so I decided to make a plate of these savory treats. To start, I sautéed a few vegetables, including zucchini, bell peppers, celery and carrots. You can use whatever you want, but it's a good idea to choose colorful ingredients. Once the vegetables were cooked, I added the bread, a little vegetable broth and fromage blanc. In case you were wondering, the fromage blanc helps keep the top moist even after the stuffed mushrooms are baked. To complete the dish, I topped the mushrooms with sharp Cheddar cheese. 

I didn't add any additional spices, because the bread was already studded with chiles. Otherwise, a little heat is a nice touch to balance the flavor. One final bit of advice: make a bunch of these. They go fast!


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Sweet Potato Pie with Pecan Crumb Topping Recipe

Sweet potato pie is a classic American dessert that is not overly sweet. The texture is similar to a pumpkin pie, but firmer. I jazzed mine up with a little anise extract, other flavorings and a crown of pecan crumb topping. It's a great pie for Thanksgiving, but really, you can enjoy it any time of the year.

I made this for a reader named Bill who e-mailed me a request for a sweet potato pie recipe. If you're reading Bill, I hope you like it!


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