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Best things you'll NEVER be able to cook again??

So, I get home... it's winter and wet and cold. Mr Goddess is grumpy, the dogs are smelly and 3 out of 5 kids are "starving"..

And guess who forgot to go to the shops on the way home??

So what does a good Hound do??

Gets by...

Some aborio rice, a dodgy packet of pre-fab chicken stock (and you don't know how much that pains me to admit that I actually had that in my cupboard), mix up a quick basic risotto, but what to add????


There's some Indian take away left over from last night... So in goes and unidentified amount of palak paneer, maybe 2 tablespoons of Aloo Ghobi, something that may or may not be left over chicken Makhani, and a left over container of some unidentified pickle.

Stir.. Heat... Serve with left over cold raita and call it "fusion food"

Man.. it was SPECTACULAR!!!.. I mean really REALLY good.. like picky Master 11 got all "Oliver" on my a$$ and asked for "More"..

The pain.. the shame.. of knowing I will never be able to recreated this dish ever, ever again...

I am shattered.

Anyone else got a spectacular "will never be able to be repeated" recipe that you can mourn here??

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  1. More often than not!
    When you make something from leftovers, it's a once in a lifetime experience. I just tonight tried to recreate a dipping sauce for dim sum that I make last weekend for company. I made mustard sauce (Colemans dry and water) and then put Ponzu (or maybe teriyaki) out separately; when everyone left I put them together and when we ate the leftovers the next night we couldn't believe how good this sauce was. So tonight I tried to make it again from scratch, but it wasn't the same. Maybe because I added wasabi powder too, my bad. Although I think I'm on to something, it just needs some work!

    1. First, I love that you're all "winter, wet, and cold," and I'm out there sweatin' over the grill today!! The other night, I had two different kinds of leftover chicken, some cold rice, a bit of leftover veggies - were they broccoli, carrot, and cauliflower? heck if I know! - a little hoisin, green onions (fresh), and soy sauce. I pulled all the cold chicken off the bone (rinsing off the odd sauces) and skinned it. With a little sesame oil to finish, it became chicken fried rice. Yummy. And hubby enjoyed it! Bonus!! Think it will ever do up again? No way.

      1. Once when I had ten minutes' notice that my husband was bringing a guest to dinner, a man visiting from Europe, I threw last night's leftovers into the Cuisinart---the insides of some baked potatoes, some cauliflower, milk, a chunk of onion---then tossed in some odd bits of cheese and cut-up sausage and a can of cream-style corn and disguised the whole mess as a first course of soup. The guest adored it and said in very precise English, "You have made a very good soup". I didn't tell him the phenomenon could never be repeated.

        1. Eggplant lasagna (eggplant instead of pasta).

          Put it together using several steps (to get the eggplant ready) and a combo of cheeses, mostly once soft hard bits left over from the Pleistocene, ground in the coffee grinder.

          Might be easy, but after the couple of Coonawara reds, can't remember. My wife now and then sighs while mentioning the dish.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Sam Fujisaka

            Try Michael Chiarello's eggplant lasagna recipie - may not be exactly as you did, but really good!

          2. I once made an amazing butternut squash gnocci - the lightest things ever and gluten-free. I was just playing around, and now, I have no idea what I did, and have never been able to recreate them. Alas... too bad, since the only way I can have gnocci is at home.

            2 Replies
            1. re: jsaimd

              Wow-- the butternut squash gnocchi sound great-- anybody care to speculate on what might have gone into it? maybe a cup or two of pureed squash (pureed in some veg stock, maybe?), some flour, an egg or two? would that be it? maybe (wringing my evil genius hands here) some pumpkin pie spice?

              1. re: alias wade

                If it's anything like sweet potato gnocchi then it's like regular gnocchi. Use some mashed butternut squash and add flour to create the right texture. I added pumpkin pie spice to mine and I actually cooked it in a cinnamon butter sauce.

            2. Probably 30 years ago - we were on a camping trip way the heck out in the sticks and decided that we wanted grilled chicken for dinner. Needed a barbecue sauce, natch, and had no idea what to do to make one. However, I had a women's magazine with me - Woman's Day or Good Housekeeping or Ladies Home Journal - one of those. In it, there was a recipe for a thrown together barbecue sauce that included frozen orange juice concentrate, soy sauce, mustard and I can't remember what all else. We took the page with us to the closest supermarket and easily found all the ingredients, since there was nothing esoteric or gourmet about it. Stirred it all together in a saucepan and heated it while the chicken grilled over the coals, slathering it on towards the end of cooking. The recipe, unfortunately, went into the trash at the campground and I've never been able to duplicate that sauce, which was probably the best we've ever had.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Deenso

                This wouldn't be it would it?

                1 can of frozen orange juice concentrate
                1/3 cup brown sugar
                1/4 cup corn syrup
                1/2 cup malt vinegar (or other vinegar)
                3/4 cup water
                1 teaspoon prepared mustard
                1 tablespoon Soy Sauce
                Salt and pepper to taste

                1. re: DetectDave

                  Can't swear to it, Dave. I don't think I remember including corn syrup or vinegar and I *think* there was some ketchup in there somewhere, but anything's possible. As I mentioned, it was at least 30 years ago. Thanks for the effort. I'll give your version a shot, maybe over the weekend, and report back.

              2. There was this Thai-style fried rice that the Spouse slammed together once from whatever bits in the fridge hadn't totally gone off yet. Obviously rice, some fresh pineapple, fish sauce, some assorted veggie-like substances, and who knows what else. I've begged for it time and again but Spouse swears he has no idea what he did. Sigh. Isn't that so often the case?

                1. My fiance and I participated in a chicken wing cook off a couple years back...

                  We created several different sauces for our wings (buffalo, teriyaki, sweet and sour, garlic, etc etc). We had quite a bit of each leftover, so we combined them all. It made the rockenest sauce ever... and was favored out of all of our others by everyone.

                  1. I did it again last night!!!

                    An unidentified amount of the weekend's left over pumpkin soup (home made), some random cheese ends from the back of the cooler, a squirt of mayo from an unlabeled bottle I THINK I bought at a dodgy Viet corner store, some chicken, some leek and some sliced chorizo (left over from the Great Jambalaya Debacle).

                    Mix together, add some pasta. Bake. Eat.


                    7 Replies
                    1. re: purple goddess

                      pumpkin - mayo - chorizo ?
                      I gotta wunda
                      why you didn't chunda
                      :) veggo

                      1. re: Veggo

                        well, I was going for a creamy sauce with a bit of piquant spice (the chorizo)

                        It worked, babe!!!

                        (And remember, I grew up on Cat's Vom stew, so I have a HARDY constitution)

                        1. re: purple goddess

                          Could you please explain Cat's Vom to me, because in a house with nine cats, it really doesn't sound like something one would wish to eat.

                          1. re: revsharkie

                            My mum's time tested go-to dish..

                            "Cat's Vom" casserole (tinned pulped pineapple, a shredded left over roast chicken and dehydrated carrots and peas in a cornflour glaze)"

                      2. re: purple goddess

                        purple goddess, pumpkin soup, is that one of the soups you make fairly often?
                        I would love to try it, never made it and I'm starting to plan Fall dinners. If you have a good recipe I'd love to make it. Always sounds so good to me....

                        1. re: chef chicklet

                          Chef darlin...

                          It's as easy as!!

                          Take a medium sized punkin. Peel it, dice it. Do the same for 1/2 a meduim sweet potato (your ratio should be about 1 piece of sweet tattie to 10 of pumpkin)

                          Finely slice 1 leek.

                          Sweat everything off in a large pot, with a bit of olive oil. When nicely coated, and the leek is glassy, add chicken stock.. as much chicken stock as it takes to cover the veggies.

                          Cook until the pumpkin is falling apart.

                          Whizz with a hand blender until completely smooth.

                          Add fresh parsley and dill, and serve with a goodly dollop of cream and crusty bread.

                          (MR Goddess likes to add about 250g of pouring cream after the whizzing, rather than serve it with cream, but it's pretty much as you like it)

                          Whole shebang should take about an hour and it freezes up a treat!!!

                          1. re: purple goddess

                            Ok sounds fairly simple I almost asked you if you peel the pumkin then caught your instructions. It sounds so delicious... I sure wish the weather was cooler, I really only like a gazpacho and vichyssoise cold..

                            Do you ever serve this in a pumpkin for a party?

                      3. It sounds to me that each of these recipes were created from an "experience" - that is a nice takeaway! :)

                        1. We used to make hand-cranked vanilla ice cream at day camp with the hippie counselors. It came out runny like a milkshake and also crystal-ly, which is good, instead of creamy. Now I wouldn't have the patience or the strength. Or enough children. The ice cream I've had from the automatic ice cream makers doesn't seem like anything special.

                          1 Reply
                          1. Oh shoot this happens more times than I care to admit. A recent vegetarian lasagna made with left over veggies, and I used one of the many tiny Hickory Farms cheeses that comes in a gift box. I won't throw them out so I try to work them in when I can.

                            And the other night I could not for the life of me figure out what to do with the beautiful scallops. I knew my husband didn't want to grill, I was running low on gas, and so I made what was sort of a paella... I used the last of my Spanish saffron, some of my Mexican safflower, and turmeric, some frozen peas, cilantro, and a zucchini....it was really delicious. Will I be able to recreate it? Doubtful.
                            Wanna see? http://www.flickr.com/photos/7220939@...

                            1. I once poached salmon and started to make some sort of a light orange sauce that wasn't quite right - so I added in leftover hollandaise and who knows what else. I made brown rice and sauteed spinach and poured the sauce over the top. My husband went crazy for it and I have no idea what I did. None.

                              (To tell the truth I wasn't sure which way this post was going - from the title i thought it was more about something you used to love and then it made you sick and you can't eat it anymore....and when you brought in the leftovers I was worried foodbourne illness was on the way. Whew - glad that ended up differently!)

                              1. In long ago and far away land my brother and I were cooperating one morning and decided to make breakfast. Don't know what cookbook we were looking at, but we thought we were looking at the same page. I was making drop biscuits, he was making muffins. Of course we were doing this in the same mixing bowl... couldn''t figure out why the other one kept messing up the recipe. Whatever we did it came out great. Those things baked up high and light, with a wonderful crisp crust, and a rich buttery flavor. Of course we were never able to re-create them.

                                1. Oh my, so many times! I no longer working in restaurants, and miss the days of having so many wonderful leftovers to use for my own dinner. Make a sandwich from the meat of one dish, the sauce from another, and the condiment of a third. So good.

                                  1. I just made a delectable treat that I will never, ever be able to recreate again. It was based loosely on bread pudding.

                                    I was cleaning out my 'fridge and pantry hence the oddity of the ingredients here Here is goes: several old croissants were cut up and placed in a 9 x 12 baking dish (enough to completely cover the bottom of the dish).

                                    In a pot on the stove, I combined unspecified amounts of whole milk, soy-vanilla "milk", and mini can of sweetened condensed milk, some vanilla, some run, some cinnamon, a square of unsweetened chocolate, and what was left in a tin of General Foods International Chai Latte powder. Near the end, I whisked in 4 eggs.

                                    Poured the liquid concoction over the croissant 'croutons' and let it soak for 15 minutes before backing at 350 for 45 minutes. Though I was scared almost to try it, I just had several forkfuls and it is delicious ... really is heartening on a crisp autumn day like today.

                                    1. "Anyone else got a spectacular "will never be able to be repeated" recipe that you can mourn here??"

                                      Yes. I made a Carne Guisada when I was "drunk cooking" one day that was outstanding. I have been trying to replicate it ever since. I get close... but never exactly

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: bullsi1911

                                        When I worked at bars and restaurants through college, I was always "drunk cooking" for my boyfriend and his poker buddies. There was more than one occasion when everyone, including myself, was wowed, but I couldn't remember what I put in those snacks the morning after, so I sure as hell can't remember now :)

                                        1. I'm so glad I remembered this post, because I just had this experience.

                                          In a Dutch oven I put several tablespoons of coconut oil, a liberal sprinkling of sea salt, and two diced gloves of garlic and heated until the garlic browned. After that, I threw in a big spoonful of tomato paste. After that got semi-dissolved I put in about 1/4 of a coffee cup of old coffee from this morning that had been sitting out all day. Why - I don't know, but I think it was the best decision of my life.

                                          After that all came together, I added 8 oz of chopped mushrooms and let the 'shrooms mostly cook through. Then I added a whole package of [frozen but thawed] Dover sole filets from Trader Joes that had been sitting in some EVOO and sprinkling of spices for a couple of hours in the 'fridge.

                                          I have literally been spooning up the last remnants of the sauce before typing. I'll never be able to recreate this, but it was so luxurious and deep and flavorful that I really, really want to.