Waste not: Five tasty recipes to use up leftover food and feed all the family

We hate to see food go to waste, but thanks to these handy recipes lots of food will be used up in delicious meals and snacks
Waste not: Five tasty recipes to use up leftover food and feed all the family

How to have leftovers for breakfast, lunch and dinner

From soup and sandwiches to afternoon snacks, you won't believe these yummy dishes could have been headed for the bin.

Chicken stir fry

recipe by:Derval O'Rourke

This speedy sweet chilli stir fry is the perfect way to use up tired, leftover vegetables

Chicken stir fry

Servings

4

Preparation Time

10 mins

Cooking Time

15 mins

Total Time

25 mins

Course

Main

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce

  • 500g chicken breast, sliced into strips

  • salt

  • pepper

  • 3 tbsp sunflower oil

  • ½ red pepper, roughly chopped

  • ½ yellow pepper, roughly chopped

  • ½ green pepper, roughly chopped

  • 3 medium carrots, finely chopped

  • 150g broccoli, cut into florets

  • 1 bunch of spring onions, roughly chopped

  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated

  • 1 garlic clove, crushed

  • For the sauce:

  • 2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce

  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce

  • 1 tbsp cornflour

  • 200ml chicken stock

Method

  1. To a small bowl, add 2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce along with the chicken strips and season well. In a large frying pan or wok, heat 1 tbsp of the oil then add the chicken and fry over a high heat until golden brown and just cooked through. Transfer to a plate.

  2. To make the sauce, add the sweet chilli sauce, soy sauce, and cornflour to a small bowl and stir until smooth.

  3. Blend in the stock and season well. Heat the remaining oil in the frying pan or wok. Add the vegetables and stir fry for three to four minutes.

  4. Add the ginger, garlic and spring onions and stir fry for 3-4 minutes until just cooked. Add the chicken and sauce and toss together for two minutes.

  5. Serve with rice or noodles and enjoy.

 

Pecan and leftover banana muffins

recipe by:Michelle Darmody

Gently spiced, with a fluffy crumb, these muffins are perfect for an afternoon treat

Pecan and leftover banana muffins

Servings

12

Preparation Time

15 mins

Cooking Time

25 mins

Total Time

40 mins

Course

Baking

Ingredients

  • 150g wholemeal flour

  • 100g self-raising flour

  • 2 tsp baking powder

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 60g muscovado sugar

  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten

  • 100g natural yoghurt

  • 80ml rapeseed oil

  • 350g ripe bananas (without the peel), mashed and 1 firm banana sliced

  • 50g pecan nuts, chopped

Method

  1. Line a muffin tin with twelve paper cases and preheat your oven to 190°C.

  2. Stir the two flours together and sieve in the baking powder and cinnamon. Mix well. Stir in the sugar.

  3. Mix the eggs, yoghurt and oil together. Stir these into the dry ingredients. Mash in the banana and combine everything including the nuts.

  4. Scoop into the twelve prepared cases. Bake for about 25 minutes until baked through. Once cool enough to handle place onto a wire rack.

Irish country soup

recipe by:Darina Allen

Rich, hearty and filled with vegetables, this soup is the perfect solution for a cold winter evening - enjoy with homemade bread

Irish country soup

Servings

4

Preparation Time

10 mins

Cooking Time

15 mins

Total Time

25 mins

Course

Starter

Cuisine

Irish

Ingredients

  • 175g un-smoked streaky Irish bacon

  • olive or sunflower oil

  • 150g potatoes, peeled and chopped into 5mm pieces

  • 50g onions, finely chopped

  • 1 small garlic clove (optional)

  • 450g very ripe tomatoes, peeled and diced or 400g tin of tomatoes and juice

  • salt

  • freshly ground pepper

  • ½-1 tsp sugar

  • 750ml homemade chicken stock or vegetable stock

  • 50g cabbage, finely chopped

  • chopped parsley, to garnish 

Method

  1. Remove the rind from the bacon if necessary.

  2. Prepare the vegetables

  3. Cut the bacon into 5mm dice approx. Blanch the bacon cubes in cold water to remove some of the salt. Drain and dry on kitchen paper.

  4. Sauté in a little olive or sunflower oil until the fat runs and the bacon is crisp and golden. Add potatoes, onions and crushed garlic. Sweat for 10 minutes and then add diced tomatoes and any juice. Season with salt, pepper and sugar. Cover with stock and cook for five minutes.

  5. Add the finely chopped cabbage and continue to simmer just until the cabbage is cooked. Taste and adjust seasoning. Sprinkle with lots of chopped parsley and serve.

End of summer stew

recipe by:Currabinny Cooks

We always serve this with good crusty bread to mop up all the delicious juices.

End of summer stew

Servings

4

Preparation Time

10 mins

Cooking Time

50 mins

Total Time

60 mins

Course

Main

Ingredients

  • Olive oil

  • 3 medium onions, peeled and roughly chopped

  • 2 green peppers, deseeded and roughly chopped

  • 2 red peppers, deseeded and roughly chopped

  • 2 large courgette, cut into medium-thick dice

  • 2 aubergine, cut into bite-sized chunks

  • 4 medium to large very ripe tomatoes, quartered

  • Couple pinches of sea salt and a few cracks of black pepper

  • Big handful of basil leaves

  • 100g Parmesan, finely grated

  • Loaf of fresh crusty bread

Method

  1. Heat olive oil in a large casserole over medium-high heat. Add onions and the peppers, cooking until the onions are soft and translucent (around 10 minutes). Add the courgette, tomatoes and aubergine, stirring everything around. Season with sea salt and black pepper and cover the pot. Lower the heat and cook, covered, for around 30 minutes.

  2. Take the cover off the pot and simmer for around 10 minutes. The stew should be nice and thick but still with a lot of juice. Check the seasoning and then garnish with loads of freshly grated parmesan and fresh basil leaves. Serve in bowls with crusty bread.

Fried cabbage and ham sandwich

recipe by:Currabinny Cooks

Take the traditional Irish combination of ham and cabbage to a new level, with the core ingredients fried in garlicky, lemony butter, soaked up by baguette

Fried cabbage and ham sandwich

Servings

2

Preparation Time

10 mins

Cooking Time

5 mins

Total Time

15 mins

Course

Main

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp wild garlic and lemon butter

  • good handful of green/York cabbage

  • 6 rough slices of left over ham or charcuterie ham such as speck, prosciutto or capicola

  • good quality French baguette, halved

  • For the wild garlic and lemon butter:

  • 100g butter, softened 

  • small handful of wild garlic, chopped finely

  • juice of ½ lemon

  • pinch of sea salt 

Method

  1. On a medium heat In a large frying pan, melt the wild garlic and lemon butter (with a small drop of olive oil if you are afraid of it browning).

  2. Shred the handful of cabbage thinly and add to the pan, softening it for 2 or 3 minutes.

  3. Add the ham and cook for a further minute. Push the contents to one side and place the pieces of bread on the hot pan, allowing them to soak up the hot garlicky butter.

  4. Spoon the ham and cabbage onto the bottom piece of baguette, put the top on and eat immediately.

  5. To make the wild garlic and lemon butter, mix the ingredients together in a small bowl, using a fork to mash everything together. The lemon will resist amalgamating with the butter but it will come together with enough mashing.

  6. Roll the butter in some brown parchment into a sausage and place in the fridge until set completely.

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