How do you feel about leftovers? Do you love them? Hate them? Or do you view them as nothing more than recycled food you feel obliged to use in another day’s dinner?
To be honest, I’m a fan. Nothing excites me more than finding stacks of containers filled with uneaten cooked vegetables, roasted proteins, and good-for-you-grains hanging out in the fridge waiting for a meal makeover. Leftover buttermilk is pretty usable, too, not to mention the remnants of a bottle of wine (but let’s be honest, it’s not often you’d find that in my house), or the ends of some crusty French bread.
Once weekday lunches are packed for Rob and the boys there isn't much left behind for my use, but on the rare occasion that I’m faced with a cup or two of decent quality leftover items I stake my claim to them, planning a humble transformation for the otherwise disregard goods. This is how I came up with the strata-frittata.
Based on two different egg dishes, I combined them to make a meal worthy of a mention here. Using up cubed day-old baguettes and a few cups of what remained from our Saturday night dinner (shown here in the photo) we ended up with a hearty and rustic dish popular with everyone at the table.
Feel free to use any combination of leftovers you might have. I like a good mix of seasonal vegetables and lean protein, but anything would work, included pasta. Use whatever cheese you have on hand, or opt for none at all, and serve it alongside a tossed salad or bowl of soup for a complete meal.
Which leftovers camp do you fall into? Are you pro or con? And what are some of your favourite things to do with the uneaten edibles you find in your fridge.
- 2 cups stale bread cubes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 2 cups chopped leftovers (any combination of proteins/veggies/starches)
- 8 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine the breadcrumbs, olive oil, Parmesan cheese, parsley, salt and pepper in a bowl and toss together, ensuring the bread cubes are evenly coated with the seasonings.
Warm a 10" skillet over medium heat and the add the bread to the pan, stirring occasionally, and cooking until golden all over, about 5 minutes. Add the chopped leftovers to the skillet and stir to combine with the bread.
Pour the lightly beaten eggs over the bread mixture, tilting the pan to make sure the eggs settle evenly over the filling. Cover with the cheese and cook for a minute or two until you see edges beginning to set.
Transfer the skillet to the preheated oven and bake for 8-10 minutes or until the eggs have completely set. Cool for 3-5 minutes, then cut into wedges and serve.