Lofty Leftovers: Chicken Ravioli, Two Ways

Lofty Leftovers: Chicken Ravioli, Two Ways

One of the things you figure out when you like to cook is that you usually make more than you need…and when you learn how to make leftover food recipes, the more meals, the merrier! Get my recipes for a hearty soup and a clever take on chicken ravioli, two ways. Click to skip to the recipe

 

 

One of the things you figure out when you like to cook is that you usually cook more than you need. This is a by-product of not getting it totally right the first time or making sure you don’t run out of food! 

On the one hand, say your making soup and upon first taste, you discover that you were a little heavy-handed with the salt. No problem, you just add more liquid or starch and the taste is repaired to delish status!

You now have not only yummy soup, but enough for an extra meal down the road. Win! Win!

On the second hand, you’ve invited pals to dinner who notoriously travel in packs and bring along more pals at the last minute. Therefore, you cook two chickens instead of one.

Both of these happened to me during the past week.

The results were some great leftovers that I morphed into two really yummy dishes. The first was what started out as my butternut squash soup and ended up as a cheesy, thick butternut and potato soup.

It’s hardly a recipe, but here’s the lowdown.

Cook onion and butternut squash chunks in oil in a deep pot over medium-high heat until the veggies are soft.

At this point, I remove the pot from the heat and a splash of sherry or dry white wine. I return the pot to the heat and add chicken or vegetable stock. Season with salt and pepper. Cool the soup to room temperature and use a blender to pulse the veggies to make a smooth soup.

But then, I returned the soup to the pot to reheat and found that it was a tad too thin and a bit too salty. So, I added a couple of spoonfuls of leftover mashed potatoes as I warmed the soup over medium-high heat. I tasted the soup and it wasn’t too bad.

So, I add more potatoes.

Then hubby came in and asked if I was making cheese soup. The butternut squash had given the soup a cheesy golden glow.

So, I nodded in the affirmative and added some grated cheddar cheese. I kept adding potatoes and cheese until the soup was rich, and velvety and hearty and really, really good.

I cooled it again, pulsed it again, reheated and poured it into bowls. Hot pepper sauce and parsley were the perfect garnish. Voila!

The second dish takes advantage of leftover chicken and wonton wrappers in place of pasta to make a yummy chicken ravioli that tastes as good as it looks. 

Leftovers are not an afterthought, they’re the new way to cook smart and cook well!

Enjoy!!

Chicken Ravioli: Two Ways

Tomato Pie

Ingredients

Make these on a day when you have leftover chicken. You can store extra ravioli in a single layer in a resealable plastic bag in the freezer. To serve, bring them to room temperature before you drop them into boiling water.

For ravioli:

2 cups cooked chicken

1 cup ricotta cheese

1 cup fresh basil leaves, plus more for garnish

2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated, about ½ cup

1 teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon coarse black pepper

1 package Wonton wrappers, about 36

For brown butter sauce:

½ cup butter, 1 stick

4 to 6 sage leaves

For red sauce:

1 cup prepared marinara sauce

2 to 3 tablespoons half and half

Toasted pine nuts for garnish

Grated parmesan cheese for garnish

Servings: 4 or more

Time: 30-minute cuisine

glazed lemon cake with berry sauce
glazed lemon cake with berry sauce

Place the chicken into the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to mince the chicken. Place the ricotta cheese, basil leaves and Parmesan cheese into the bowl and pulse to combine. Season with salt and pepper and pulse a final time.

Spread four wonton wrappers onto your works surface. Place a spoon full of the chicken filling into the center of each square. Place a small basil leaf on top of the filling. Wet the border of the wonton square with water. Place another wonton wrapper on top. Gently press with your fingers to seal the ravioli. Use the tines of a fork to firmly seal the edges. Repeat with the remaining wonton wrappers and filling.

For the brown butter sauce, warm the butter over low heat until it begins to froth and turn golden, about 5 minutes. Toss in the sage leaves and continue cooking for two minutes more.

For the red sauce, heat marinara sauce over low heat. Stir in the cream.

Fill a deep pot with water and bring to a boil. Season the water with a generous amount of salt. Lower the ravioli into the pot, one at a time. Do this in batches so that you don’t overcrowd the pot and damage the ravioli. The ravioli will cook in just minutes. Use a slotted spoon to lift the ravioli from the pot. Transfer to the brown butter or red sauce. You pick! Garnish with grated Parmesan cheese and pine nuts.

One Potato, Two Potatoes, Three Potatoes…More!

One Potato, Two Potatoes, Three Potatoes…More!

The other day, I was rummaging around in my fridge and discovered a treasure trove of leftover potatoes! Multitask those spuds with two different recipes sure to hit the spot. Click to skip to the recipe

I love potatoes. 

I think this devotion stems from early breakfasts shared with my Dad. 

To quell my then rebellious teenage persona, Dad would spend quality time with me on the weekends.

He traveled for his business during the week but was always home on the weekends. Saturday morning was our time.

We woke early (thus my lifelong habit) and drove to his office where he would catch up on paperwork and I would help him run job cost numbers.

First things first, we stopped for breakfast on the way. Many times, it was just to gather a box of donuts to share with the others in the office. 

But SOMETIMES we would splurge and stop at the local Denny’s restaurant. 

We would sit, sip really good coffee and Dad would order either a Denny’s Grand Slam or Denny’s Skillet breakfast. The grand slam loaded pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage, toast, and fried potatoes onto one large plate. The skillet was just that, a cast-iron skillet loaded with potato and meat hash and topped with a couple of eggs – your way. 

It’s been almost 20 years since my Dad went to heaven and my fondest memories still include the joy on his face as he tore into that meal.

The other day, when I was rummaging around in my fridge, I was delighted to find a treasure trove of leftover potatoes! I had leftover twice-baked from last Sunday’s potluck supper and a baked potato because hubby and I decided to split one instead of consuming a whole.

And, I even had a mound of left-over smashed parmesan potatoes from Monday night’s meatloaf dinner. Eureka!

It’s one of the good cook’s miracles that leftover potatoes will last a long time in the fridge, giving you an opportunity for a second dish with just a little effort. 

So, with a nod to my Dad, and a love of leftovers, I have two dishes for you this week.

The first is a breakfast skillet made from the baked potato and enhanced with beef, bacon, peppers and onions and topped with a glazed egg.

This is a hearty breakfast that is super served after an early morning hike or when combining breakfast and lunch into one leisurely brunch meal.

The second dish was FUN. I used the inside of the twice-baked potato with the mound of mashed and made a potato croquette that was perfectly (and simply) fried crisp on the outside with a soft, almost gooey center.

Yumm oh yumm!

 

Breakfast Skillet With Glazed Eggs

Breakfast Skillet with Glazed Eggs

Ingredients

A perfect use for leftover potatoes, feel free to add absolutely anything into your hash.

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 sliced bacon, diced

4 ounces beef (I used tenderloin, but you can substitute with ham, corned beef, or chicken, it’s your choice), about 1 cup

1 large baked potato, cooked and cut into ½-inch cubes, about 1 cup

1 green bell pepper, seeded and cut into ½-inch cubes, about 1 cup

1 white onion, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes, about 1 cup

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon coarse black pepper

2 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated, about ½ cup

2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill

For eggs:

1 tablespoon butter

4 large eggs

Servings:

Time:

2

30-Minute Cuisine

glazed lemon cake with berry sauce
glazed lemon cake with berry sauce

Drizzle the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon and beef. Cook until the bacon begins to crisp. Remove the bacon and beef from the skillet. Add the potato, pepper, and onions to the skillet. Season with salt and pepper.

Cook until the onions and peppers are soft, and the potato begins to brown, about 15 to 20 minutes. Add the bacon and beef back onto the skillet and toss. Scatter the cheese on top of the hash. Cover the skillet and cook to melt the cheese. Toss the fresh dill over the top.

Place the butter into a separate skillet (with lid) over medium heat. When the butter is melted, crack the eggs into the pan. Fill an empty eggshell half with water and pour this into the pan. The water will bubble up. Cover the pan with a lid. Lower the heat to medium-low. Coo the eggs until the yolks are just set, about 3 to 4 minutes.

Scoop out the hash onto a plate. Top the hash with eggs. Garnish with dill sprigs.

Mashed Potato Croquettes

Ingredients

Starting out with seasoned left-over mashed potatoes makes this an easy recipe to prepare. However, if you like to start from scratch, just bake a couple of potatoes and scoop out the flesh. You can season with salt and pepper and even add some sour cream or cheddar cheese. It’s all good!

4 cups left over mashed potatoes

1 large egg yolk, plus 1 whole egg

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons milk

2 to 3 green onions, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon coarse black pepper

2 cups seasoned breadcrumbs

Canola (or vegetable) oil for frying

Yield:

Time:

1 Dozen 3-inch croquettes

30-Minute Cuisine

glazed lemon cake with berry sauce
glazed lemon cake with berry sauce
glazed lemon cake with berry sauce

Place the mashed potatoes into a bowl. Stir in the egg yolk (reserve the white part), and green onions. Place the bowl into the fridge for a couple of minutes while you assemble the breading station.

Place the whole egg and the egg white into a shallow bowl. Beat with 1 to 2 tablespoons of water until combined. Place the seasoned breadcrumbs into another shallow bowl. 

Remove the potatoes from the fridge. Use an ice cream scoop to form round potato balls that you dip into the egg wash and then the breadcrumbs. Transfer each ball to a parchment lined sheet pan or platter. When all the croquettes are formed, place them back into the fridge for 15 minutes. 

Heat oil in a fryer or deep pot to 375°. Fry the croquettes in the oil a couple at a time until deeply golden. Transfer to a paper-towel lined platter. When all of the croquettes are fried garnish with a touch of sea salt and fresh herbs.

Make Ahead Tip:

You can make these ahead of time and store in an airtight container in the fridge. Bring them to room temperature before you fry.