Turn Your Leftovers Into Delicious Meals With These 10 Recipes

If there is something that the lockdown has taught us, it is to make the most of the resources that we have at hand.

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Recipes
5 min read
Try these simple recipes to turn your leftovers into delicious meals!
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If there is something that the lockdown has taught us - it is to make the most of the resources that we have at hand. For the first time in recent history, we have faced a situation where simple everyday groceries like a loaf of bread, or some fresh vegetables, could not have always been available by just going out and buying them from the shop next door. Online delivery slots were often filled for many days on a stretch, and there was a disruption in supply coming from the factories.

Welcome to the world of making do with what you have - using/remodelling the leftovers to cook and eat. The biggest lesson: Don’t waste anything. Eat it all.

Try these 10 simple, ready in a jiffy dishes made from leftovers like rice, dal, roti, aloo and eggs.

Mushroom & Brown Rice Soup

Mushroom and brown rice soup.
Mushroom and brown rice soup.
(Photo: iStock)

Fry 1 chopped onion in a little oil, add 1/2 cup leftover cooked rice, and then add lots of sliced mushrooms and grated carrots (or any vegetables you have handy; or simply last nights leftover vegetables). Cook for 5 minutes. Then add sliced garlic, salt, and pepper and any herb of choice (any thyme, paprika, oregano parsley etc). Add 3 cups of water, bring to boil over high heat, and simmer for about 15 minutes, Your delicious soup is ready.

Phodni Chi Poli

Even when you don’t have anything handy, you can still make phodni chi poli, a Maharashtrian version of crumbled left over rotis. Just whizz them in the dry grinder for a few seconds, and add a tadka of mustard seeds, hing (asafoetida) and jeera (cumin), and some finely sliced onion and green chillies. Pair with buttermilk/raita, and a fruit chaat. A delicious, satisfying meal is ready.

Leftover Aloo Chaat

Aloo chaat with sprouts and paneer.
Aloo chaat with sprouts and paneer.
(Photo: iStockPhoto)

Have last night’s zeera aloo subzi at hand? Just take it out of the fridge and add 2 tbsp crushed chivda or roasted papad, a tbsp of imli sauce, a tbsp yoghurt, a handful of raw or slightly steamed sprouts (any), and a few slices of cucumber. Add a few strips of cottage cheese if you have it handy or just crush some cheese on top. Chill again for half an hour and then dig in.

Egg Salad

Egg salad.
Egg salad.
(Photo: iStock)

Do you keep boiled eggs handy in the fridge? Then this one is for you. Toss in 2 chopped boiled eggs, half cup boiled carrot, finely diced, half cup diced cucumber, half cup spring onions and any veggies you have handy. Add 2 cups boiled and mashed potatoes, mix well. Now add salt and kali mirch (peppercorn) powder to taste, and 2 tbsp of low fat mayonnaise or hung curd. Chill before eating.

Egg-Roti Mix

Egg-roti mix.
Egg-roti mix.
(Photo: iStock)

Place poached eggs on a couple of leftover warm rotis, top with tomato salsa (or ketchup), chopped chillies, dhania (coriander leaves), some grated carrot, beetroot and steamed spinach (or any veggies you have handy). Enjoy!

Curd Rice

Curd Rice
Curd Rice
(Photo: iStockphoto)

Easiest and quickest - mash 1 cup leftover rice and add a few tbsp of hot milk. Let it cool down, then add 3-4 tbsp of curd, finely chopped cucumber, carrot, green chilly, ginger, and a few curry leaves. Temper with mustard seeds, curry leaves, salt and fried cashew nuts.

Spinach Delight

Spinach delight.
Spinach delight.
(Photo: iStock)

Have leftover spinach subzi or stir fry from last night? Heat 1 tbsp olive oil, add the spinach, grate in a pinch of nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir in 50 gm feta (or any cheese you have), pair with a big serving of simple kachumbar salad (of tomato, onion, cucumber) and dig in.

Poitabhat

A dish with leftover rice.
A dish with leftover rice.
(Photo: iStockphoto)

Add water to 1 cup cooked rice, cover it and leave it to ferment overnight. Next morning for breakfast, add half cut onions and 2 chopped green chillies, salt to taste, and half a lemon’s juice. A little roasted brinjal or mashed potato can be added (other additions can be achaar, fried fish, various boiled veggies, dal or curries that may be leftover from the previous night). You can even have a little sour curd on the side.

Chilled Red Rice With A Tadka

Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan, add 1 tsp mustard seeds and 1 tsp urad dal. Add a few curry leaves and saute them. Remove this tadka from the pan and keep aside. Take a mixing bowl and mix 250 gm yogurt along with salt and cumin. Add boiled red rice, half a cucumber (diced) and mix with the prepared tadka. Refrigerate and serve cold, garnished with fried curry leaves.

Dal Tikki

Dal cutlets.
Dal cutlets.
(Photo: iStock)

Take leftover dal from last night, dry it on a pan over low heat till all the water evaporates. Add finely chopped onion, spices to taste, boiled and mashed potato, or steamed cauliflower. Shape like a patty and air fry or pan fry. Eat the tikki placed in between burger buns with sliced cucumber and onions in the middle, or just pair with a nice salad on the side.

(Kavita is a nutritionist, weight management consultant and health writer based in Delhi. She is the author of Don’t Diet! 50 Habits of Thin People (Jaico), Ultimate Grandmother Hacks: 50 Kickass Traditional Habits for a Fitter You (Rupa) and Fix it with foods.)

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