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How to Transform Your Holiday Leftovers

by Bill Welles

You made it! You’ve survived another holiday season. It’s been a long couple of months of cooking, shopping, opening gifts, and uncomfortable questions from your distant relatives you only see once a year. And while your wallet might be lighter and your belly a little rounder, you got through it. 

The new year is upon us and the joyful cheer of the holiday season is beginning to wane, but the cravings for tasty seasonal cuisine are everlasting. Instead of warming up the same plate of leftovers time after time, try transforming your holiday leftovers into creative and delicious new recipes. 

1. Ham & Cheese Quiche 

Just because your holiday feast was filled with rich, hearty cuisine doesn’t mean it can’t be succeeded by an equally decadent breakfast the next morning. If ham was on your holiday menu, then you ought to take those leftovers and whip up a perfectly fluffy and savory quiche. 

Like it’s well-known counterpart, bacon, ham is a perfect protein that is full of flavor and texture to act as a companion to those soft, buttery eggs. Quiche Lorraine is a classic French dish that features pork fat, so following that recipe for your post-holiday quiche will yield similar, tasty results. 

All it takes is some pie crust, eggs, heavy cream, and lots of ham and cheese! Simply toss in the oven for a quick bake and your holiday brunch is ready to serve. 

2. Savory Pies   

Holiday pies aren’t just for sugary sweets. All your leftover veggies such as carrots, potatoes, celery, peas, and onions can make a great addition to a savory pie. You can go with the classic turkey pot pie or channel your Irish roots and whip up a shepherd's pie. Of course, you’ll still need whatever meat you carved for your holiday feast, but it’s a great way to make a brand new comforting dish. 

For pot pie, add some stock to your veggies and turkey, plop them in a pie crust and bake. If you’re feeling the shepherd’s pie, it’s the same process, but you put your veggies and meat in a baking pan, top with your leftover mashed taters and bake some more. 

3. Crazy for Cranberries 

So far your leftover menu has featured some pretty heavy, rib-sticking meals, so how about we balance out the menu with something a little bit lighter? Some fresh fruit is the perfect addition to offset all the unhealthy eating of the holidays. We suggest using all those leftover cranberries. They’re a fresh and tart berry that creates a nice pairing amongst the rest of your savory menu. Cranberries can be dried, used as a sauce or salad topping, and even dessert filling. 

It pairs well with pecans and other fresh fruits that you might want to add to your dessert, and a simple salad dressing of balsamic, olive oil or lemon drizzle creates a perfect contrast to the tartness of the berry.  

4. Lots of Desserts

Speaking of dessert, we know you already have plenty of leftover candy canes. And while candy canes and hot chocolate can already constitute as dessert, it’s even better to combine them into one epic sweet treat. Everyone likes brownies, but this dose of cocoa and candy canes can work on pancakes, fudge, cookies, or anything else your sweet tooth can’t resist. 

Simply add some extra cocoa powder to your mix of goodies and add your crushed candy canes--it’s a great way to release any pent-up holiday stress. Add a generous dash of powdered sugar and some marshmallows never hurt, either.  

5. Everything Makes a Good Sandwich 

If you’re a big fan of holiday leftovers, then the odds are, you’ve loaded everything from your holiday meal onto a couple of slices of bread for a messy leftover sandwich. It’s something we all do each year and it’s quite irresistible. This creation is usually an open-faced sandwich with your holiday meat, stuffing, mashed potatoes, a dollop of cranberry, and a generous ladle of gravy on top, but you can get creative. 

It doesn’t have to be the classic recipe--try using cornbread as your base, corn pudding, mac and cheese, or green bean casserole can be your topping. Whatever your guilty holiday pleasure is, throw it between some bread and make your leftover holiday sandwich just the way you like. 

At Grand Appliance and TV, we understand that each and every host needs the proper appliances to prepare the holiday feast and the holiday leftovers. Let us know what appliances you might need to start the new year off right and we’ll help you find the perfect style to match your needs.