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Ode to Leftovers: Pizza & Bread Pudding

February 12, 2011

At one point, my brother said that his roommates didn’t even know what leftovers were. One of them stated something like, “Well, I’ve already eaten the food once, so why would I want to eat it again?”

This is heresy to my family of origin.

A leftover is to be eaten, plain and simple. And if a leftover goes bad before it is eaten, it is probably your fault and you should feel guilty for wasting food.

“Monitor the contents of your refrigerator!” I’ve told my students when I’ve taught classes about food.

Well, tonight I monitored the contents of our refrigerator. This is what I made:

1. Pizza

Some people have leftover soup. Some have leftover casserole. We have leftover pizza on this pizza crust recipe that I’ve posted about before. This is what I put on the first small pizza I made: leftover caponata, a can of spicy sardines, the rest of a jar of red salad peppers, and a bit of grated parmesan cheese. It was good. On the second pizza, I put the rest of a jar of pizza sauce, black olives, a can of anchovies and a little more grated parmesan cheese.

This really looks like we like canned fish. We do, but it has a tendency to sit in the cupboard for awhile until I figure out what to do with it. This pizza makes it worth buying canned fish. Sardines are actually quite good for you since they’re small fish and don’t absorb as many of the toxins as bigger fish.

2. Bread Pudding

Bread pudding/overnight French toast is a great way to clean out your breadbox or use a loaf of dried-out lemon poppyseed bread. I had frozen it but neglected to wrap it properly and it was dreadfully dry. So, I mixed up eggs (in this case, a ton of egg whites leftover from when I made lemon curd and 1 whole egg) and a bit of whipping cream that hadn’t been used and I poured it over a mixture of the crumbled bread and chunks of low-fat cream cheese. It’s sitting in the refrigerator now and after it bakes in the morning, we will eat it. I think it will be good, though.

You can also make savoury bread pudding with eggs, milk, herbs or spices, and cheese (if you like.) With whole-grain bread, it can be a main dish, almost like macaroni and cheese.

Do you have any leftover go-to meals you make on a regular basis?


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