Thursday, 12 February 2015

Using up Leftovers

Good evening everyone,

We had family visiting this past weekend and my dear sister-in-law Mary made the most amazing butternut squash and kale pizza for dinner one night. It was one of the best pizzas I had ever tasted. After making it, we had 1/2 a roasted butternut squash and most of a bunch of kale left over.

Now, using up the squash is easy peasy as there are tons of things you can do with it. The kale is not so easy, mostly because my dear husband does not really like it. He remembers it boiled and mixed with mashed potatoes as a dish from his childhood and he hated it. I can get him to eat it if I disguise it somehow. That is until tonight.

Tonight we made "Kale Chips". We had bought these once before and he just loved them. So, I made them myself. They are dead easy. 

Simply strip all the leaves off the kale stems and after washing and drying thoroughly place in a bowl and drizzle on a bit of extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkling of fine sea salt. Mix very thoroughly. You want all those kale leaves to have a very thin film of oil on them. 

Now spread them out evenly on a cookie sheet and pop them into the oven. I cooked them in my wood-burning cookstove and I am guessing that it was about 400 degrees in there. The kale chips only take 5-10 minutes. You want them to be dry. Once during the 9 minutes that mine were in there I opened the oven and gave them a little stir. I baked mine in two batches so that they were spread out in a single layer on the cookie sheet.

Once out of the oven, they are dry, crispy and utterly delicious.

Now, back to the issue of the butternut squash. I decided to make soup with it. I found a recipe in a cookbook that I had recently purchased which is called "The Everyday Squash Cook" written by Rob Firing, Ivy Knight and Kerry Knight. This is a fantastic cookbook because it is all about squash, a vegetable that I love to grow and love to eat. I made the "Squash, Apple and Cheddar Soup" and it was truly divine. I used up all my leftover squash, an apple that was starting to look more like an apple doll than an apple and a small piece of cheddar that was getting a bit dry around the edges. All of these cast off ingredients made for the most stunning soup. Although the recipe does not call for it, I added a few of my kale chips on top at my husband's request.

So dinner tonight was made almost entirely from leftovers with no added cost at all. I just love the thought that all that food was used up, nothing went to waste and the whole thing was delicious.

Thanks so much for visiting with me. Hope you had a great evening. See you soon. Cheers.

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