Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Using Up All Leftovers

Money Spent - £0     Money left in purse £15
Over the last few days I have been photographing all the food in stock in the house, there's lots of it, but even though I could go mad and use it willy nilly, if I want this Challenge to actually work I have to make the most of everything that I have and that means not wasting anything.
The other day I did a Blog post on my main Blog about some little savoury biscuits that I made (see HERE), today I got an email asking me just what it was that I made with the rest of the pastry ... oops sorry I forgot to Blog about that!!

Well I made these little open pies.  They are a sort of cross between a Homity Pie and a Macaroni Pie which is something I get from a brilliant little independent shop called Forsyths when I'm up in Lovely Hubby's home town of Peebles.
It all started after I did my usual trick and cooked too much pasta for my tea, once cooled I added it to the small dish of chopped, cooked potatoes that were lurking in the fridge, it looked very bland, there's something strange about all beige coloured foods together ....

... so I quickly threw in some frozen peas to give me more inspiration .

Rooting around I got the last of a tub of grated Cheddar and a roll of ready made pastry from the fridge and got out my large tub of Cheese Sauce (bought from Approved Foods last year for the amazing price of 75p for a 2kg tub, it's going to last me forever as I bought two for 1.50!!).

Deciding that more colour and flavour was needed I used half of my last few Cherry Tomatoes carefully cutting each one into four.
I simply rolled the pastry out a little bit thinner than it already was, trimmed the rough edges and cut it into six squares, I lined my baking tin with the squares and then made up a little bit of the Cheese Sauce, it was poured over the pasta/potato/pea mix and then shared it out between the six pastry cases, I sprinkled the grated Cheddar on top.

That's when I nearly threw away the trimmings, but as the other Blog post shows they were rescued and turned into five little savoury biscuits, as seen in the top picture sprinkled with paprika and sesame seeds and ready to go into the oven.

Ooh look only five little open pies, where's the other one ...
... on my plate with the biscuits.

After cooling for a while four of the pies were boxed up and put in the freezer and the other one was taken by LH as a snack to have with his coffee at the motorway services.
So snacks and nibbles made from leftovers. 
I love this sort of thinking, and in fact I have another dish of pasta lurking in the fridge ... yep I did it again!!  I'm going to have to start weighing out individual portions before I cook it from now on until I get used to just what is a single or double sized portion, because my chickens don't get to eat many leftovers from the house anymore!!
Sue xx


  1. Great use of leftovers...they look really tasty! I have really enjoyed your posts about the food lurking around in your home and will now enjoy seeing how you proceed to use it all up!
    We only have a small freezer at the moment, so I'm really looking forward to the time when we've finished paying off our debt, so that we can invest in a large chest freezer, so that I can do lots of batch cooking.

  2. Sue, you could have rolled some cheese into the pastry and made cheese straws qith the lft over bit of pastry.

    1. That's exactly what I did, only rounds not straws!!

      See the cheese on the leftover pastry, I pulled the edges up around it, balled it all up and then rolled it out again et voila Cheesy Pastry, sprinkled with some paprika and sesame seeds they were very tasty and took only 5 minutes to cook.

    2. We did just the same sort of thing last night with leftover pastry from a pie. I made some odd shaped cheese straws and three cheese tomato and herb tartlets, which OH said were delicious! Waste not want not!

  3. Just you find you are eating less as you are more conscious of wasting food and not buying? I am trying to do the same, and also need to lose weight....just went through the cupboards yesterday and threw out the way pastexpired food. I find if I have too much stored, it tends not to get used when it should...also a bag of rock hard sugar that I could not loosen up at all...

    1. Funny you should say that ... YES I do find I'm eating less, I'm just less hungry, I honestly thought it would be the other way round, messing about with the foods I have, researching how to use them the best way I thought would at the very least make me feel like nibbling, but it seems the more I process foods and think about it the less I actually want or need to eat it and I am NOT going hungry AT ALL.

      I hope you didn't throw away the sugar!! And were all the date expired foods really only fit for throwing, I would guess about a third of my food stores are really out of date and I mean by over a year in some cases (and even longer).

      All types of sugar keep indefinitely, no bugs can live in such a sweet environment. To soften white sugar simply tip into a tough plastic bag and bash it with your rolling pin, or other heavy implement, once you have lumps rather than one big mass tip them into a food processor and whizz up, not for too long though or else it will turn into first Caster and then Icing sugar.

      If it was brown sugar that is even simpler. Put it into an air tight container with a single slice of fresh bread and then leave over night, by morning you should be able to break apart the sugar and return it to it's former free flowing self.

      White sugar needs to be kept absolutely dry and brown sugar needs to retain its own moisture content, hence the different methods of softening them.

      Hope this helps.

    2. I've got a Christmas pudding in my cupboard nearly 2 years out of date. I still intend to eat it!

  4. Wow!, Good luck with your Mission!

    I've been doing something similar in January in an attempt to raise funds for the Trussell Trust - living off a pound a day. I'm doing this slightly differently, as all my shops are from Aldi, and I started with a bare cupboard - so no salt, sugar, oil etc - also I cannot accept free food or drink. It's part of a personal mission for me to reconnect with the value of food, and to cut out snacking on rubbish between meals.

    So far I'm 15 days into my challenge, and have raised £210 for the charity in question. If I may be cheeky - any help you can give in mentioning my blog, or just giving page before the end of January would really really help me get to my target:

    Tonight, I'm hoping to make oat flatbread from some porridge oats I have in order to make my budget last longer. I'm looking forward to february so I can start eating the homemade jams my wife made with fruit from our allotment.


  5. I love the idea of those little tartlets they look scrummy. Its amazing how a little food goes such a long way with a bit of thought and inventiveness.

  6. Just a quick question: is that shortcrust pastry or puff? Cheesy leftover bits would work with either I suppose but was just wondering which you had.
    I bought some mini quiche tins in France a few years ago because I was sick of having lots of balls of small amounts of leftover pastry in the freezer. Now I have something small and I can use the cutoff bits to line one of those small tins and either add some of the filling that I was using anyway or a spoonful of jam for a sweet treat. Really like the idea of the cheesy biscuits, so will try that next time if I have cheese on hand.

    1. Mine was shortcrust pastry but like you say it would work with either. Usually I would just line a little tin too but I thought that the pastry was too small to do that, I guess it would have just about worked. Needless to say I enjoyed my little biscuits.


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