Cleaning up, the aftermath……….
The parties are over and it’s time to clean up, this is the time of the year to get rid of these extra pounds gained over the festive season and bring our life style back to normal again.
There is always a lot to clean up when celebrations are over, beside the pounds you gained from over indulging yourself, many refrigerators are bulging out with all sorts of leftovers.
Hang on, don’t grab a large garbage bag and start disposing, food is too valuable, and making all that festive food cost a lot of money and effort. So do not waste unless absolutely necessary.
There is not much hope for a leafy salad that has soaked in marinade for a day or two, but turkey and ham leftovers, surplus Brussels sprouts, sausages, relishes, sauces, soups and stews are perfect ingredients to be turned into delicious lunches, snacks and dinners.
I hope that you made full use of your vacuum sealer prior to festivities, but it does not stop here. Your vacuum sealer is the ultimate tool to save most of the leftovers that can be turned into delicious meals with a bit of imagination, saving a good amount of money along the way.
To save most money, start preserving as soon as you can, I know it’s easier said than done, but ultimately you will not regret the effort.
Start by separating all leftovers you have, I imagine you served a turkey with veggies and potatoes on a large serving plate and stuffed the whole remainder with plate in the fridge before serving dessert, this is what I do and I don’t believe that I am the only one.
Examine the leftovers and if it looks usable, place the item individually in vacuum bags, sprouts, parsnip, red cabbage, potatoes and what else is there. Remove the meat from the turkey carcass, portion and place in vacuum bags as well. If you have a cleaver, chop the carcass small, makes a great base for a stock later on, if you don’t have a cleaver, wake your hubby up early and it is done in a blink. Vacuum all bags and your fridge looks a whole lot better already.
Now judge what you want to use in the next few days, the veggies, potatoes and maybe a bit of leftover pumpkin soup will make you a lovely hearty blended vegetable soup.
Christmas day falls on a Thursday, a hearty soup could be just nice for next Sundays lunch with some crusty bread, if so, leave the veggies in the fridge.
Ham, turkey or any other meat you served are tops for sandwiches, homemade pizza, pasta dishes, tacos, quiche, frittata and salads, freeze it after vacuuming and it will stay perfect for 3 to 4 months.
Go through all there is, vacuum the usable and keep chilled or frozen, smoked salmon freezes perfect once vacuumed and functions again as canapé for an upcoming birthday party.
Think of a wonderful turkey con chili, poached egg with ham for breakfast, if you find a whole Camenbert cheese you forgot about on Christmas day, while you are cleaning up, don’t think you wasted it. Remove the plastic from the cheese, poke one or two garlic cloves and a few thyme sprigs in the cheese, return to the box (normally made from wood) and place in a 400 F oven for 10 minutes, serve with some crusted bread or a ciabatta loaf for lunch. The warm melting cheese will make anybody melt as well.
There are so many scrumptious dishes you can make with left overs, there is absolutely no end to the list.
Your vacuum sealer will keep your carefully prepared food safe from freezer burn and will preserve your food 3 to 4 times longer in good condition in the refrigerator compared to non –vacuumed food.
Don’t waste, save money with your vacuum sealer.
By: Marinus Hoogendoorn