Category Archives: Leftovers

Deviled Ham Spread


If you’re like me, and maybe you’re not, but if you are…

You still have ham left over from Christmas and you may even be sick and tired of eating it.

I’m not, but I still have a lot of ham to get through.   I did make some lovely Split Pea soup the other day from the ham bone, and we’ve had Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches and Ham and Eggs for breakfast and a couple of sandwiches along the way as well.

Gosh it kinda feels like the everlasting leftover turkey at this point.

Which leaves me approximately 6 pounds to go through.

I’m kidding, we’ve only got 2.8 lbs left.

And even less after today.

At any rate, there are a bunch of us who gather together most Sundays and I subjected them to some of my leftover ham last weekend.

But not just leftover Ham, I wanted to have fun with it, and since I love that spread you can buy in the can.
OK, so I’ve been known to buy a can and eat it all.

So I went down to the kitchen and …

I swear sometimes you shouldn’t let me loose in the kitchen.   I have way too much fun.

Here’s my take on Deviled Ham

Recipe:

2 cups cubed cooked ham
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup Creme Fraiche or Sour Cream
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Grey Poupon Mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons Yellow Mustard
2 shallots, finely minced
2 garlic scapes, or one small garlic clove minced

Put the ham into the food processor, and process until it’s all broken up.  I actually tried just chopping it with my knife, but decided to try my little processor and it worked.  Yay!!!!

Place the softened cream cheese into a bowl and add the mustard, mayonnaise and creme fraiche.

Add the minced garlic and shallots  (you can also let them have a quick whirl in food processor if you like).
Mix together and then add the ham.   Mix until all the ingredients are combined.   Taste at this point and add more mustard or creme fraiche if you like.

 

Put the ham mixture into the fridge and let it set there for a couple of hours, let the shallots and garlic get acquainted with the ham.

Serve with crackers.

And get out of the way, you don’t want to get trampled.

I’ll be making this again soon, or at least the next time I make a large baked ham.

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Stone Soup


I was hunting something in my freezer last week, and had pulled out all manner of bags and containers with bits and pieces of food that I didn’t want to ‘waste’.  And after taking a look at this pile of bags, etc., sitting on the island I got an idea.

Stone Soup…

Only a few things were labeled, no dates, and not enough of any one item to make a meal of.

I started thinking of the parable of the beggar who made a pot of soup using a stone as the starter and the villagers each contributing a little something, some herbs, a few carrots, some potatoes, and the beggar ending up with a great big pot of soup that would feed the village.

So I threw the all those ingredients into a pot.

Added a little water, just so nothing would scorch while the stock thawed.

Picked some fresh oregano and thyme from one of my herb pots outside.

Added that in and put a lid on the pot and let it simmer for an hour or so…

And there you have it.  My version of Stone Soup.

Here’s the list of what went into the pot:

Green Pepper (maybe half of one)
Red Pepper (half of one)
Tomato’s (leftover diced tomatoes from making Taco’s)
Red Onion (half of a red onion)
Field Peas and Snaps (had a partial bag)
Leeks  (leftover from when I made the Leek Pancakes)
Chicken Juice (not quite stock)
Chicken Stock
Andouille Sausage (leftover from making Jambalaya the last time)
Mushrooms
Pork Roast (just a couple of slices)

The only fresh stuff in there were the  few sprigs of Thyme and Oregano from my pots outside, I then simmered the soup for about an hour or so before tasting it for seasoning.    Found out I didn’t need to add any salt, the spice from the Andouille Sausage gave it a nice kick and I now have lots of soup.  After eating some of it, I did consign the rest back to the freezer.

At least this time the packages are labeled and dated.

Potcakes (Potato Cakes)


A few years back we were on vacation and happened upon a restaurant called Grannies’s.

With a name like that, we had to try it.

C’mon, Grannie’s?

Visions of a grandmother standing over a stove, stirring something that smelled like heaven and tasted as good as it smelled.

So we went in and looked at the menu.  I like reading menu’s before I try the food out.  Sometimes the menu just gets downright silly with the descriptions, and you wonder why someone will shell out good money for spinach that was harvested using only gently sustainable efforts on the latter side of a new moon..

You’ve read that kind of menu, I know you have.  And maybe you’ve eaten there as well, but I love seeing the descriptions of the food offered at any new restaurant I want to try.

This menu was pretty basic, but they had one item on there that stood out for me.   And that was the Potcakes.  The only other Potcakes I’d ever heard of were the dogs that you find in the Bahamas.

So I ordered them as my side to the meatloaf, and they were so good.   Deep fried potato cakes, crispy and melty and yummy, with little bits of sweet onions mixed in.

I’ve tried to replicate them ever since, with no success.   I’ve actually eaten the evidence of my failures.  Although some have been consigned as offerings to the Kitchen Goddess. sigh

I finally done did it.   Made them, just the way I remember those Potcakes from so long ago.   And all it took was me messing up some mashed potatoes and deciding to take that failure and make a potato cake for lunch.    I’d made the mashed taters with new Yukon Gold potatoes and they didn’t have the starch in them like russets, and quite frankly they were a little gluey.  I ate a bit of them, then consigned the rest to the fridge.

I didn’t measure out exactly, but I had about 1 1/2 cups of mashed potatoes (made with fresh gold potatoes, not russet.   I just added an egg, about 1/2 cup of Wondra flour, mixed that all up with half a chopped onion and then fried them in a little hot oil.

I then glopped (technical term here) some Creme Fraiche on top of them and proceeded to eat three of them.  I left one for later.

OK, so I ate the first one I took a picture of, then proceeded to eat two more.

But they were worth it.

So, the next time you make gluey mashed taters, try adding a little Wondra Flour, a chopped onion and an egg to them, and frying them up as Potcakes.

Haluska and Seniors Lunches


I can’t say I’ve cared for Cabbage all that well in the past.  I mean I love my Brun Køl, Coleslaw, Red Cabbage (Rødkål), Danish Style  as well as sautéed cabbage for soup.  But until I moved to the south, I had no idea how much people liked their cabbage dishes and I have to admit, I have come to love this humble vegetable.

We get a lot of cabbage as a donation through Farmshare, which we’ve used in many dishes, and this week I made some Haluska, which is basically Cabbage with Noodles and Bacon.   A dish I was introduced to while visiting friends in Pennsylvania, and fell in love with.   So I thought it would be a good dish to make for one of our lunches at the Senior’s center.   And it was well received, with the only complaints I received being that I didn’t get enough cabbage in the dish.   So, the next time I make it, I’m going to put three times the amount of cabbage in there.    I have said it before, I will let you know when I make a mistake  need to make a dish differently.   I am still learning how to gauge the right amount of food to prepare for a lunch, or maybe I should put this another way, learning to gauge the proportions of what is needed for our lunches, and prepare it so.

Let me catch you up on the past few lunches.   Last week the Lion’s Club made a donation of Ham for us so we had fun.  We baked the hams with a brown sugar and mustard glaze.   Carved it up and served it with some Baked Yams, made some Cornbread, Turnip Greens, Carrot Salad and Dot’s famous Deviled Eggs.
We had enough ham left over that we can make some scalloped potatoes and ham, some Lima Beans and Ham and other good stuff as well.   We don’t waste much around here.   Robin and I are both very good at making food stretch until it screams.

Last month we also had a very nice donated lunch as well.   The local prison’s staff made some wonderful Pulled Pork and Chicken for us, as well as some Potato Salad, and Green Beans.

All we (kitchen staff) had to do that day was to make the breads and desserts.   So we did.   And I had fun.   I made some Cheese Danish which were well received, at least by the kitchen staff.  Just kidding, we did put some out on the dessert table.

And we’re planning on Fried Chicken this week, with Potato Salad, a Macaroni Salad and some Stuffed Green Peppers, and maybe some Collard Greens as well.     Robin will be doing her fabulous Fried Chicken, and I’ll be making some Stuffed Green Peppers since we have a bounty of green peppers from Farmshare.   We will also be putting out some cherry tomatoes that came from Farmshare.

And now for the Haluska recipe

2 heads green cabbage, cored and sliced
1 lb. bacon,
2 onions, sliced
2 packages (12 oz) egg noodles, cooked.

Cook the bacon a little in the pan, you want it cooked, but not totally browned.   Remove from pan and do a rough chop and throw it into a large pot, which has been placed over low heat.   Take out all but a tablespoon or so of the bacon grease from the pan and reserve.   Fry the cabbage in the bacon grease, adding more bacon fat if needed.  When the cabbage has wilted, add to the pot with the bacon, then fry the onion in the remaining bacon fat.   If you need more fat, add a tablespoon or so of olive oil.  As soon as the onion has cooked to the translucent stage add it to the cabbage.  Place a lid on the pot and let it cook for a little while, then add the cooked noodles, stir together and serve.    This is one of those dishes, well, let me put it like this, I could eat this every day for a week.  Come to think of it, I probably will the next time I make it.

Skidne æg (Hard cooked eggs in Mustard Sauce)


Looking for a new idea for something to do with some of those leftover hard cooked eggs?    How about trying something a little different?   Skidne æg was one of my favorite lunches growing up, which translated means Dirty Eggs, not the greatest name, but the flavour, well, let me just say it’s yummy.     Ideally, you want eggs that are just barely hard cooked, most recipes call for a 7 minute egg.    However, this recipe does yield itself very nicely to hard cooked eggs as well.    Which is why I’m posting it today.

If you have kids, they wanted to decorate hard-cooked eggs, and you probably have a few left over since you know your kids didn’t really want to eat all those eggs, just decorate them.   I know you can always make egg salad sandwiches, or potato salad or sliced eggs on bread.   However, why not try this with some of the eggs.  And by now you’re probably sick of the hard-cooked eggs anyway.

Peel your hard-cooked eggs and set aside.   I made some eggs up for this, because I didn’t decorate any eggs this year, but as I said before, this is also a great light lunch so go ahead and boil a couple of eggs if you don’t have any handy.   I’ll wait.

Ready? Good, so am I.

To start with, make a white sauce, simple right?   But try using this trick, heating your milk in the microwave while you are making a roux.   Which is just your basic flour and butter or oil, in a pan.   Then whisk in the hot milk with the roux and cook for a minute or so until thickened.   Add a couple of tablespoons Dijon Mustard and whisk that in.  Some salt and pepper to taste and then you are ready for the eggs.

You can warm your peeled hard-cooked eggs, or barely cooked eggs in some hot water for just about a minute or two, if they’re cold.   Or my mom used to just stick the peeled cold eggs into the sauce and spoon the sauce over them for a couple of minutes to warm the eggs up again.   Just keep the pot on low while you’re doing that.    And serve the eggs with a side of rye bread or in my case white toast since I didn’t have any Rye-bread.   I know it’s time to make a few loaves.   But I’ve been in a time crunch the last little while and every time I plan on a baking day, my plans get changed.

There you have it, a simple, different way to serve those pesky leftover hard-cooked eggs or just a nice light lunch.

White Sauce
1 1/2 cup hot milk or half and half
1-2 tablespoons flour
1-2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons Dijon Mustard
Salt and Pepper to taste.
Heat milk in a small saucepan or in the microwave until hot.   Make a roux of the flour and butter in a saucepan and cook until it bubbles for minute or so, stirring
constantly.   Then whisk in the hot milk, and cook until thickened.   Stir in the  mustard and taste.   Add some salt and pepper at this point, to taste.     Add your eggs to the pan to heat up or if using freshly cooked eggs, place your peeled eggs onto a plate and pour the sauce over them.   Serve with some lovely rye bread or toast.

Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwich


It was late, I was tired and I didn’t feel like cooking.  There I said it, contrary to popular belief, it’s not all about time spent in the kitchen, it’s all about me.     Just kidding.   Truth is though, I spent the day at the beach, in the sun, and I was tired but I wanted to eat dinner too.   So, I made one of my husbands favorite sandwiches for dinner.    You can also make a salad to go with the sandwich for a more balanced meal if you like.

And you can turn this into a Panini if you want to.   All I know is that it tastes good and is easy to make.   Let’s face it, we all need meals like this. Quick to put on the table, almost effortlessly.

Start by warming a loaf of your favorite french bread in the oven.

Then place some thinly sliced ham or leftover ham from a ham roast if you have it, into a fry pan you’ve sprayed with some non stick spray.   You want the pan on low, all you’re doing is heating up the ham a little, not frying it.  Add some sliced cheese on top, I like to use Cheddar,

Next take a pickle out of the fridge, slice it thinly.

Take the bread out of the oven, spread it with some mustard, make pretty designs if you like.   Then layer the warmed ham and cheese and the pickles onto the bread.

Cut into quarters and serve.   As you can see from this picture, I got a little skimpy on the ham on my end of the sandwich.

And it was good and fast.  I’ve also put this sandwich on my George Forman Grill and make a Panini out of it at this point,  now that’s good.

Grilled Steak and Cheese


Some years ago I had an absolutely yummy grilled steak sandwich at a chain restaurant.   That particular restaurant isn’t one we frequent so some time went by before we ate there again, and by this time, they had changed the menu and the sandwich was no longer available.     The other day I had a lovely piece of leftover steak and decided to recreate the sandwich.    Which would have worked out really well, but I didn’t have Swiss Cheese, and the bread I had on hand wasn’t the same either.   It was actually better than what we’d had in the restaurant.    I persevered however, and here’s my version, and it was, very tasty.

I spread some Caesar dressing on the bread, layered my lovely, very thinly sliced steak on it.

And since I didn’t have Swiss cheese, I added some shredded Colby Jack cheese on top, then placed another buttered slice on bread on top of that and placed them in the pan.  Did you know that if you use shredded cheese on any kind of grilled sandwich, rather than sliced cheese, it will melt faster?   Just one of those little facts I like throw in while the food’s cooking.

I was kind of hungry at the point and drooling, which wasn’t a pretty sight at all, however, I wiped my chin, and waited while the sandwiches cooked, well, grilled up in the pan.

The finished result, and yes, one of them has a big bite taken out of it, but I was hungry and it tasted so good.  And at least I took a picture before both sandwiches disappeared.

You need some lovely bread for this, I choose a nice Artisanal baguette, thinly sliced, butter, Caesar dressing, some cheese, and a nice piece of grilled Steak.   My  steak was medium rare, and it did cook a little more, so I would start with a steak cooked a little rarer than you like.    Cooling it before slicing it, is also recommended, as the meat gets a chance to firm up and then you can slice it very thinly.    I actually do refrigerate any leftover steak and slice it thinly the next day and then I freeze it or use it up right away.    Leftover steak can be used in so many dishes.
Enjoy.