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River Cottage Love Your Leftovers

I learned about Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall only a few months ago. I've put a cooking class/session at River Cottage when I travel to UK on my wishlist ever since.

Because I'm someone who cooks fancy occasionally and LOVE doing so, I also often end up with leftovers. Rather than giving them off to someone less privileged or throwing them away altogether, the idea of using them came to me. Since most of the food that is leftover isn't too high on spice (a la a desi curry, for instance), using up a leftover hunk of chicken or pork or chunks of veggies might mean simply rising them to remove the 'masala' or sometimes not even that! That said, I obviously love using leftovers. More yolks for my sunny side ups. More whites that way for pavlovas. Grilled veggies. Palestinian pilafs to biryanis. This book is amazing in that it gives seasoned home cooks lots of new ideas to use leftovers and helps noob cooks alike. Also, the recipes all come with swaps and tips. So you can use lettuce instead og kale or mutton instead of pork, without stressing out too much really. And that's the beauty of it. Loving your leftovers.

September 29th we decided to meet at my house because two new people were showing up and two of the older members were too lazy to make that trek elsewhere (disclaimer: one is my husband, the other is a nice young lady who stays two floors below me, in the same building). The two new folk decide to not make it by Saturday night, so it was justus 4 usual suspects.

Shriya made some grilled cucumbers and roast root hummus from leftovers from a party the previous night. I made some vegetable peel crisps from peels I'd been saving up all week. I often do grilled vegetables for dinner, so this wasn't entirely new to me. However, the peels didn't quite crisp up as intended and the bowl didn't find as many takers.

Swapnil has been on a keto diet for a few weeks and got us some crispy pork crackling along with pork in a rosemary cream sauce from a chunk of pork he'd roasted for himself earlier that week.

Suraj isn't one for salads or fruits and however much I buy these, I clearly don't learn my lesson and we end up not using them as often as I think we should. So, Suraj made a cold soup with cucumbers and almonds (and we couldn't stop thinking about how we could think it down and have it with some ginger).

Shriya also used some leftover chicken to make a rather yummy Turkish chicken with walnuts.

For dessert, my keto pavlova was nice and crispy but the regular sugar ones JUST did not crisp up. I realized only the following day that I'd goofed up my Fahrenheit and Celsius and was expecting my oven to bake pavlova (without browning or burning) at Fahrenheit readings and not Celsius readings. I'm glad I realized my mistake and corrected it for a batch mid-week. The cream and hung yoghurt topping that I used that night was quite yum, if you ask me. I obviously re-used it mid-week. And then there were red currants, pomegranate kernels and berries - some strawberries and some raspberries. I added red flame grapes for our mid-week binge and was a happy puppy.

All in all, for me, food from leftovers was something I do enjoy and enjoyed cooking and eating that night as well. I know Shriya had a good time too and will most definitely be cooking again with whatever leftovers she has handy.

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