Hello all! January is almost at an end--can't believe how quickly this month has flown by! My apologies for not posting for a few weeks--between 2 feet of snow, days off from school and general life, time escaped me. But I'm back and ready to get down to some serious recipe blogging!
We are adding another element to Healthy Bitez Kosher--money-saving shopping tips and just cutting down on your food bill in general. Here is the first blog on this topic.
One great way to save money on food is, of course, reusing your leftovers. It seems especially pertininet to us Shabbos observers. You ask, "what do I do with all this extra food?" or "do I really want to eat all this 10 more times?" or, if really overwhelmed, "should I just throw it all out?" NO! Recreate your Shabbos food into completely different meals. Today, we start with one of my favorite Shabbos staples: chicken soup.
Freezing: Freezing is certainly an option. However, be warned that carrots don't usually freeze well. When defrosted, they become a watery, unappetizing consistency. For that reason, if you are set on freezing the soup and reusing it, I suggest freezing the broth only, maybe including the onions and celery, but removing the carrots and reusing them in a different weekday dish. By the way, chicken stock is great to have in the freezer to use in other dishes or soups. You may just want to freeze the stock in 2 cup servings to have on hand for future recipes.
Resoup: Here's a new word for your vocabulary. Maybe your family loves having soup during the week...just not the exact, same chicken soup everyday. So change it up and make a different soup...resoup!
** Chicken Vegetable Soup: Add more carrots, onions and celery if needed, but also some or all of these veggies: corn, green beans, peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, peas, zucchini, yellow squash, cabbage, or any others that you think of. If you like a tomato base, just add a can of crushed tomatoes in their juice or tomato sauce to the mix.
**ABC Soup for Kids: My kids love ABC noodles--they are so much fun! Jazz up the chicken vegetable soup by boiling up some ABC noodles and adding them to the soup itself, or to each individual bowl.
**Pureed Chicken Vegetable Soup: This works best with vegetables like carrots, squash, broccoli, and cauliflower which mush easily. Add some or all of these veggies to the soup then stick it in the food processor or blender to make a smooth puree. Tastes great with fresh or dried dill!
**Tomato Chicken Soup with Rice: Mix one large can of tomato sauce with 2 cups chicken broth, 1-2 tsp. oregano and/or basil, and salt and pepper if needed. Cut leftover chicken into chunks or strips, place and heat in the soup. Cook rice and add to soup, itself, or to individual bowls when serving.
**Chicken Tortilla Soup: One of my favorite Tex-Mex soups! Ate this a lot when I lived in San Antonio, Texas (my hometown!). Add 2 large chopped tomatoes (you can also use canned tomatoes), 2 sliced avocados (sounds peculiar, but trust me, it's excellent!), 1-2 tsp. cumin and lots of garlic to the soup. If you like the taste of cilantro, put in a large bunch for extra flavor. When serving, add a handful of broken tortilla chips to each bowl, as well as 1/4 lime and 2-3 Tbsp. of salsa. Yum!
Redish: Ok, so maybe you are just plain sick of soup and want something completely different. Here are a few ideas for main courses.
**Chicken, rice and veggies: I make this a lot for my family--it's really one of our favorites. Especially in the winter time, it's warm and satisfying. Cut leftover chicken into chunks. Add leftover carrots and onions to the chicken. It's great if you add some corn, too. Heat in a skillet, adding chicken broth to the mix. Cook up some rice. Hint: Use chicken broth to boil the rice instead of water for extra, excellent flavor. Serve chicken and vegetables over the rice.
**Chicken tacos: Cut chicken into strips and set aside. Fry up 1 chopped onion in 2 Tbsp. of oil until brown, about 5 minutes. Add 1 large chopped tomato and cook an additional 5 minutes. Add chicken and 1/2 cup chicken broth, plus 1 tsp. salt, onion powder and 1/8 tsp. pepper. Simmer for another 10 minutes.
For the tacos: you can use the crispy taco shells if you prefer, but if you want a more authentic taco, use soft tortillas. I recommend healthier whole wheat, although admittedly, there is almost nothing more delicious than a fresh, flour tortilla if you feel like indulging. Simply add about 1 1/2 Tbsp. of the hot filling to the tortilla, along with lettuce, tomato, guacamole and salsa. Roll up like a wrap or blintz, or you can also just fold the tortilla in half with the mix in it if that's easier (but messier!).
**Chicken Po' Boy Sandwiches: Cut leftover chicken into strips. Mix with bar-b-que sauce and heat. Pile a generous amount of the mixture onto a round sandwich roll and eat up! Tastes great with hot kidney or pinto beans and potato salad (great way to re-use leftover Shabbos potatoes!).
By the way, if you don't have enough chicken from the soup, leftover Shabbos chicken works well in these dishes, too!
Well, I hope this has been helpful. Many more articles like this to come, bli neder. Please give me feedback and post comments below. Just hit the "Comments" button--and thanks!