Using Leftovers And Substitutions

- is the holy grail of thrift and creativity,
- often a time saver, since part of the meal is already made
- can be the start of new and delicious homey meals,
- may not always be good for the waistline so eat less. :-)

There are things I always make too much of, for instance I don’t think we ever finished a cheese sauce I make for cauliflower.  We had company and I overestimated the cheese sauce again and I ended up with half a jug of it in the fridge. It did not come together to serve it again. It was time to bake bread anyway and I thought why not make a cheesy bread? That is how it started. I replaced part of the liquid with the leftover cheese sauce in the recipe. To be precise I used 1-1/4 cups of cheese sauce in place of 1-1/8 cups of water. The result was a little flatter but delicately soft bread with a slight cheese flavour. The actual bread recipe is coming later.

here is the Cheesy Bread:
I don’t think it makes much sense to make cheese sauce for making bread, there are other ways to make cheese bread, but it is a good example how one can use up leftovers. Of course, there are failures too.  Not long ago I made spaghetti with meatballs and I threw in some chopped up leftover meatloaf. We ate the meatballs and pushed the meatloaf bits aside. I will not do that again.

A while back I made too much meat sauce, I know what you are thinking, for a Hungarian I make a lot of Italian dishes. Anyway, I wanted to make a lasagna with the leftover meat sauce, but I had no ricotta cheese or spinach. However, I had cream cheese and broccoli plus a half a tub of artichoke dip that also needed to be used.  

here is the amazing Artichoke Broccoli Lasagna I made from leftovers and substitutions:

My lasagna recipe is here

and here is what I replaced the ricotta-spinach layer with:

8 oz. cream cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 cup parmesan cheese
1 egg yolk
1 cup finely chopped broccoli florets
1/3 cup artichoke dip from the deli

  • Beat the cream with the sour cream to soften it. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to blend. 

I confess I also made fresh lasagna pasta and this turned out to be a dangerously good lasagna. On the other hand if you are ever short of ricotta... you know what to do. I must not forget, I dedicate this post to Maria for all the wonderful innovations she does with food and to Eva for the bread. But more about Eva's bread later.

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It began with posting a few recipes on line for my family. "zsuzsa is in the kitchen" has more than 1000 Hungarian and International recipes. What started out as a private project turned into a well visited blog. The number of visitors long passed the two million mark. I organized my recipes into an on-line cookbook. On top of the page click on the cookbook to access the recipes. I am not profiting from my blog, so my visitors will not be harassed with advertising or flashy gadgets. Feel free to cut and paste my recipes for your own use. Publication is permitted as long as it is in your own words and with your own photographs. However, I would ask you for an acknowledgement and link-back to my blog. Happy cooking!