Tuesday, June 23, 2009
That Makes Cents: Leftovers
When it comes to our food budgets, many of us throw hundreds of dollars in uneaten leftovers in the trash. Well, one local chef is showing Seven's Craig Stevens how to turn leftovers into brand new dishes and why That Makes Cents.
WSVN -- No one knows how to make food last more than a chef at a busy restaurant.
Chef Michel Nicaty: "You can always use your imagination or use your taste and make what you really want to eat."
Chef Michel Nicaty of the Bankers Club says, whether it's veggies or meats, the key is to know how long they'll last.
Chef Michel Nicaty: "Cooked food can be kept for five to seven days."
Uncooked meats, only two or three days. Your best bet is to cook things and then freeze them and then turn your leftovers into fabulous new meals.
Chef Michel Nicaty: "You change the taste, you change the way you present it. People don't really know if it's old, fresh or leftovers."
Chef Nicaty says, leftover turkey, chicken, even beef, can be turned into a great soup.
Chef Michel Nicaty: "This is a turkey breast leftover cooked. We can make many plates with this."
Some leftover rice or cooked spinach becomes a masterpiece when cooked up to stuff. Yellow squash, add grated cheese and even the kids will gobble it up.
Chef Michel Nicaty: "Ten minutes or 12 minutes in the oven at 350 degrees, and that's it."
As for seafood, it also can have a second life, like these shrimp used in an Asian stir fry by combining it with peppers, celery, carrots, garlic and ginger, toss with fresh noodles.
Chef Michel Nicaty: "It's a Japanese noodle, but we can use angel hair, we can use linguine and other kinds of pasta."
Chef Nicaty says, using up leftovers is easy, just use your imagination or search the Internet, but above all else, make sure the food is still good.
Chef Michel Nicaty: "You smell it, and you taste it. If there's an acidity or if something changes, you don't use it."
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
One Biscayne Tower, 14th Floor
Miami, FL 33131
Tel: (305) 374-1448
Some Great Ways to use Leftovers:
- Red and green peppers, julienne
- Carrots and celery, julienne
- Minced garlic cloves
- Fresh, grated ginger root
- Chopped cilantro
- Soy sauce
- Soba noodles, angel hair pasta or linguine
Cut the shrimp into medium, diced-size pieces and keep refrigerated while preparing the other ingredients and cooking the noodles. Gently sauté fresh ingredients in sesame or olive oil. First, add the minced garlic then the peppers and ginger. Add cilantro last. Drain noodles and pour sauté over them. Heat shrimp in the same pan just enough to heat but not overcook (they're already cooked). Toss shrimp and other ingredients together and serve.
Turkey or Chicken Garden Soup:
- Mirepoix of carrots, celery and onions (small dice of 2 parts onion to 1 part celery and 1 part carrots)
- Chopped leeks
- Lemon juice
- Chopped parsley
- Salt and pepper to taste
Add leftover turkey or chicken to enough water and simmer. Save the broth and remove meat from bones if any. Simmer all other ingredients, except parsley and lemon juice (add at the end), in the broth. Add chicken or vegetable bullion (optional) for flavor. Cook until carrots are tender, then add turkey or chicken and season with fresh lemon juice. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley and serve.
Stuffed Yellow Squash:
- Fresh yellow squash
- Leftover rice
- Diced onions and tomatoes (small dice)
- Fresh or leftover spinach
- Shredded mozzarella or Parmesan cheese
- Tomato sauce
- Fresh chopped basil
Slice squash lengthwise and remove seeds by gently scraping with tablespoon. Mix the rice with diced tomatoes, onions and spinach. Fill each scooped out half squash with mixture and bake for 10 minutes in a pre-heated oven at 375 degrees. Remove from oven and top tomato sauce and basil. Cover with shredded cheese. Return to oven until all the cheese has melted. Cut into halves and serve.