Tag Archives: leftovers

Toni’s Tasty Tortilla Tuesday

27 Jun

“Don’t just make a delicious dinner. Use those darn leftovers.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


When I have no idea what I’m going to make for dinner, I rummage through the fridge, grab a tortilla or two, then see what’s in one of those mysterious to-go containers. Let’s see… what did I find today? There was a small styrofoam box with my leftover chicken fried chicken from lunch the other day. I found half an onion, an almost mushy tomato, a really ripe avocado, some black beans, an almost empty bag of shredded cheese, and a handful of baby spinach.

While the slivers of chicken and onion and black beans sautéed in the pan, I diced the tomato and the avocado. I’m usually not that neat and tidy, but I wanted to take a nice picture. (This would be a good vegetarian meal. Just leave out the chicken. There wasn’t that much anyway.)

The tortilla was so full, I decided to make only one instead of two, The bad part about having all those leftovers is, now… there’s enough leftover leftovers for another day. Oh no!

“It’s not leftovers that are wasteful, but those who either don’t know what to do with them or can’t be bothered.”

~Julian Baggini


How blessed our we to not only have enough to eat, but enough left over for another day.

Friday:) Freezer Frenzy 

19 Aug

“To me, it’s sort of funny that wasting food is not taboo. It’s one of the last environmental ills that you can just get away with.”
– Jonathan Bloom (@WastedFood)


I love to cook. I love to eat at restaurants. The dilemma that follows is called…leftovers. I hate to waste, so I generally wrap up and pile up the leftovers in the freezer. My freezer is packed to the gills, and there isn’t room for even a teeny-tiny gill. So, I decided to go through the maze and the mess of frozen leftovers.

I emptied a couple of shelves at a time and piled the stuff on the counter. It’s pretty darn hot out, so I couldn’t leave the freezer door open too long. I organized bins into fruit, leftover doggie bags, frozen meals, vegetables, baking stuff like frosting and cookie dough.

Then, I had a light bulb moment. 💡.   Why don’t I make a big pot of leftover train wreck stew? Mrs. Johnson, a wonderful old friend of the family, used to take out leftovers and feed all the kids, grandkids, and their friends and she called it “train wreck.” 

I had four littlebaggies of taco meat, two bags of okra, a couple bags of vegetables, and a bag of rice medley. I threw it all in a pot and started to simmer. I added a can of diced tomato with green chile, and VOILA! 

Toni’s Jumbled Up Jambalaya.


Pretty tasty. Tasty and no wastey.

Look! There’s a little room on one of the shelves in the freezer. I can go get some ice cream tomorrow for my Black Russians. Yay!

The bad news… not much room in the fridge for all the leftover Jambalaya. Want to come over for dinner tomorrow? Bring containers.

Sunday Sermon, Super Scrumptuous Soup, and Some Turkey Salad

3 Jul

“Leftovers make you feel good twice. First, when you put it away, you feel thrifty and intelligent: ‘I’m saving food!’ Then a month later when blue hair is growing out of the ham, and you throw it away, you feel really intelligent: ‘I’m saving my life!'”
– George Carlin


Another lovely Sunday morning. It was already a bit warm and muggy at 8:20, but while I greeted at the door at St. Gabriel’s, I popped inside inbetween the surges of parishioners. Ah, air conditioning, a gift from God. (Actually, in 1902, the first modern electrical air conditioning unit was invented by Willis Carrier in Buffalo, New York.)

Today’s Gospel, in my humble opinions, was about priorities…

Gospel – Mt 10: 37-42

Jesus said to his apostles: “Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever does not take up his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it…

Father Don commented that it’s not necessarily that we are expected to give up our life or die for our faith, but we must make it a priority. 

My take on it…sometimes people focus too much on material things, i.e. Wealth, status, possessions, money, cars, or even friends or family. Family, friends, and people are important, but without God in your life, the rest doesn’t matter. You need to know where the blessings came from.


After church, I came home and tackled the leftover turkey. I made a small turkey the other day, and was looking forward to all the meals the leftovers would provide. I chopped and diced and sliced away at vegetables and the turkey parts.

I made two big pots of turkey soup.

Then, with the nicest pieces of turkey, I diced and sliced, and made some turkey salad.

My secret is, I finely dice a little onion and celery, (I don’t measure) but sauté it a little, then soften a package of cream cheese, and about an  equal part of mayo, salt, pepper, and quite a few shakes of garlic powder.

When I was done, (about 5 hours later) I had 5 containers of soup and one of turkey salad, and there was some soup still left on the stove for my dinner. 

I’m a big fan of the leftover challenge. I think I did a pretty good job.

Saturday:) Seriously Searching For Some Leftovers

5 Feb

Each new season grows from the leftovers from the past. That is the essence of change, and change is the basic law.~Hal Borland

A chilly lazy Saturday. I bundled up around noon and went for a long walk. By the time I got home, all I could think about was a hot cup of tea and what I was going to have to eat. With no plans or invitations for lunch, I decided to brave and investigate the dreaded freezer. I usually close my eyes and grab something, but the freezer is packed so full, I was afraid of an avalanche. Turns out that I still had to dodge a few falling frozen weapons on my toes. 

I found some frozen pasta, a container of sauce, spinach, tortellini, and last but not least, a couple of slices of cheesecake. How’d I miss that? After I combined all the above, except cheesecake, I had way too much food. It’s a good thing that I have neighbors that don’t like to cook.

Every time I think I’ve made some headway, the freezer is still jammed packed full. I think things multiply in there while I’m sleeping.

Tuesday:) Let’s Talk Turkey

30 Nov

“…no one is born a great cook, one learns by doing.” 

― Julia Child, My Life in France


Thanksgiving dinner is synonymous with leftovers. I haven’t made a turkey dinner in several years. So, this year, I decided I was going to make a turkey and all the fixings. It was delicious…now, what to do with the leftovers…

Rule number one: always have several very big pots and pans.

Rule number two: try and use as many leftovers as possible. Experiment.

Rule number three: share with friends and neighbor’s because you couldn’t possibly eat all that food yourself. And, your freezer is probably as full as mine.

I boiled the remains of the turkey for three hours in a very large pot. Then, I carefully removed all the good meat and broth. There was enough to make two big pots.  I chopped carrots, celery, potatoes, and onions. One pot I made soup and the other I made a creamy stew. 

Then, there was some leftover turkey breast for making turkey salad. I added grapes, diced apples, cream cheese, mayo, then sprinkled with walnuts. 

Just when you thought I was done and couldn’t possibly make any more turkey dishes, I used some of the stew to make mini pot pies.

I rolled out some biscuits, buttered a muffin pan, filled with the stew, sprinkled with a little cheese, and topped with another thin layer of biscuit and bake. Oh boy! These were soooo yummy.

Yep, these are as delicious as they look. I just ate one. Yep, delicious. I’ve been sharing with friends. That’s rule number three.