Sunday, December 06, 2009

Holiday Veggie Leftovers

I've been meaning to share some leftover ideas for the veggies from your big holiday meals. There are always lots of ideas of what to do with the leftover meat but what about those veggies?! Well I have 2 ideas for you.

Risotto! Yup, I'm talking about it risotto again. Here's the basic recipe from my"Lets Talk Risotto" post. Leftover veggies, mashed or diced, are a natural to make into a risotto. Just heat them a bit in the microwave before adding them at the end of the cooking time. Make a big pot! Nothing is nicer when folks drop in then being able to offer them lunch or a snack of yummy risotto and it's a nice break from the deluge of turkey or ham sandwiches. I made one Thanksgiving weekend with the leftover can pumpkin I had opened to make pumpkin biscotti. You can use your leftover carrots, turnip, parsnip, squash, brussel sprouts, asparagus.... about the only thing I wouldn't use is potatoes and I already mentioned freezing your mashed potatoes for Shepard's pie later. Everything has a purpose!

Okay, what other use can you make out of those leftover veggies... SOUP! The mashed veggies can be made into a pureed soup while the diced, chunked or whole veggies can make a great broth soup with barley, pasta or rice or creamy soups. Leftover sweet potato, squash or pumpkin makes great pureed soups while leftover carrots, turnip and even potatoes go great in a hearty pea soup. Leftover green veggies like broccoli or asparagus make great creamy soups. (the underlined items are recipes here on this blog, not descriptions of the items!)

And most of these leftovers freeze beautifully! Just be mindful that pasta and barley in soup will continue to absorb liquid so you can end up with a gloppy soup. If you want to freeze those types of soups, freeze the pasta or barley separately.

Happy Holidays!

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