3 Delicious Recipes for Leftover Christmas Vegetables
“I couldn’t eat another bite” – us after our third helping of Christmas pudding.
We LOVE Christmas. Especially all that amazing Christmas food. Plates piled high with turkey, roast potatoes, cranberry sauce and yes…even brussels sprouts! Delicious. And that’s just dinner. We can’t forget all the little snacks and treats we graze on throughout the day.
Enjoying a scrumptious Christmas feast with friends and family is truly wonderful. Followed of course by a long nap in front of the TV, while we recover from the Olympic feat of devouring so much food.
Like most families, when it comes to Christmas food, we always end up with mounds of leftovers. And, with no clue what to do with them, nine times out of ten, they’ll end up in the trash.
Food waste is a major problem. According to the UN Environment Programme’s (UNEP) Food Waste Index Report 2021, approximately 17 percent of food produced worldwide goes uneaten. It’s thought that households are responsible for over two thirds of global food waste.
Today, more and more of us are conscious of our environmental footprint. Cutting down on food waste plays a big part in helping lessen our impact on the planet. Not to mention, by using food that would otherwise go to waste, you’ll be saving money, too. Which is extra helpful, as so many of us have been impacted financially by the current pandemic.
So, with that in mind, here are some creative and delicious ways to use up all that leftover Christmas vegetables after the big day.
Carrot & Parsnip Lentil Dhal
Deliciously warming and simple to make, this easy dhal recipe is perfect for a lazy post Christmas dinner. Serve with plain yoghurt, cilantro and flatbreads.
1 onion, chopped
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp garam masala
400g tin chopped tomatoes
100g frozen spinach
300g red lentils, dry
½ tbsp ginger paste (or grated fresh ginger)
500g parsnips, sliced
3 large carrots, grated
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Lay the sliced parsnips onto a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Roast for 25 minutes, until crispy.
While the parsnips are cooking, heat some oil in a large pan, before adding the chopped onion. Fry for 4-5 minutes over a medium heat. Add in the ginger and spices, frying for a couple more minutes.
Next, add in the lentils, chopped tomatoes and 800ml of boiling water. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and let it simmer for around 20 minutes.
Finally, stir in the grated carrot and frozen spinach. Leave for a further 5-7 minutes. Top with the parsnips and serve.
Potato, Leek & Red Cabbage Hash
A great way to use up your leftover roast potatoes and cabbage, this recipe is perfect as a side dish or a tasty breakfast the morning after. This also works well with white cabbage, if you don’t have red.
800g roast potatoes, cubed
100g red cabbage, shredded
100g leeks, sliced
Preheat the oven to 380°F.
Heat the butter in an ovenproof skillet, before adding the diced onions. Cook for a few minutes, until they start to soften.
Add the potatoes and cook on a high heat for a few minutes, pressing down with the spatula, before adding the cabbage and leeks. Cook for a few more minutes.
Make sure the mixture is spread evenly over the base of the skillet, before transferring to the oven. Cook for 10 minutes.
You can serve this with bacon, grated cheese and/or eggs if you like. Or, just leave it as it is and season with salt and pepper.
Sprout Mac & Cheese
Some people love them, some people hate them. But, like it or not, sprouts will always have their place at the Christmas table. If you always end up with a bunch of leftover sprouts, try this recipe for a quick and easy sprout mac and cheese that’ll change the minds of even the most hardy sprout dodger.
3 tbsp butter (one for the sprouts and two for the cheese sauce)
400g brussels sprouts, halved
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
¼ cup plain flour
170g grated cheese (plus 50g for the topping)
Cook the macaroni according to the instructions on the packet. Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp butter in a frying pan and add the brussels sprouts. Cook until the sprouts turn golden brown. Once cooked, transfer them to a separate dish.
In the frying pan, melt 2 tbsp butter and add the garlic and flour. Cook for a few seconds until the mixture becomes a paste.
Next, slowly pour in the milk, stirring constantly. Mix until there are no visible lumps.
Add in 170g grated cheese and continue to stir until the cheese has melted. Season with salt and pepper.
Mix in the sprouts and cooked pasta until coated. Serve topped with the remaining grated cheese.
So, there you have it. The perfect inspiration for your post Christmas menu. Reducing waste, saving money, and saving you a trip to the store when the in-laws pop by unexpectedly.
What are your best Christmas leftover recipes?
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