Did you know that not only can we repurpose clothing, furniture, and household items, but we can also repurpose food! Yes, we can. When I was growing up, we always had a hot meal. What I remember is we never threw away food that had been sitting in the refrigerator too long. That’s because we rarely had leftovers. My mom and my grandmother were creative cooks in the kitchen so until I was much older, I realized that our leftovers were presented in a different form. My grandparents had twelve children, and my parents had eight children to feed. We never went hungry because they seemed to be able to make wonderful meals from what we saw as nothing in the refrigerator or cabinets. From these two wonderful women, I learned how to repurpose dinners.
Thanksgiving and Christmas were meals that kept on coming for days. These dinners were still delicious the day after or even two days after. However, no one wanted to see it for day three or four. If anything was left, it was presented in a whole different form. It may come as a turkey salad, soup, or a turkey casserole with cheese. Who could resist cheese? I could share so many repurposed meals from my childhood memory. However, now that I have my own household, I make it a point not to have leftovers for more than 1 day. When I do, I present it as something new.
Two of my favorite salads from Chop Chop, a restaurant in my area, are Sweet Home Alabama and the Mexican Elote Bowl. Sometimes I purchase them as they come on the menu, and other times I customize them with ‘some of this’ and ‘some of that. Of course, most of the time, I prepare my own salads from home. A couple of days ago, my salad consisted of chopped kale, quinoa, raw sweet corn, roasted sweet potato cubes, avocado, goat cheese, and red onion with a miso sesame ginger dressing. The salad was delicious but huge! I couldn’t eat it all but I didn’t want to waste all of that goodness. I prefer kale as my salad base, not only for its nutritional benefits of it but because it holds up for the next day without that sogginess. So today, I want to share with you a simple recipe that I repurposed from my leftover kale salad.
Kale Salad Soup
1/2 Vidalia onion
1 medium chopped tomato
1/2 Tbls. sesame oil
1 Tbls. torula yeast
1 Tbls. Salt-Free Garlic Herb seasoning (contains garlic, onion, basil, rosemary, fennel, blk pepper, marjoram, celery seed, and carrot) (or seasoning of your choice)
2 cups of vegan chicken broth with Not Chicken bouillon cubes (use broth of your choice)
Leftover kale salad (I had about 1 1/2 cups)
Sweet Potato Vermicelli (or Asian noodles of your choice
OR cooked Jasmine Rice which is my husband’s preference)
Basil or Cilantro for garnish (and taste too, actually)
Thinly sliced red chili peppers if you like a bit of heat (optional)
Prepare noodles and set them aside. Saute onion and chopped tomato in sesame oil, and add spices and chicken broth. Simmer for about 5-6 minutes, then add noodles. Serve in bowls topped with basil or cilantro.
I tell you this soup was delicious. You may wonder about the avocado turning brown. Well, I ate that the first day so no worries about that. The miso ginger salad dressing added some mystical flavoring to the soup. It actually gave it an incredible flavor. At any rate, I hope this gives you some ideas to do with your own leftovers. Be creative. Let me know if you have tried anything like this before. I would love to hear about it. Have a fabulous day on purpose!