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So Now That Christmas Is Over, What Are You Cooking?

Trying to plan my weeknight menus for the upcoming weeks. I usually like to cook at least two large entrees on Sunday and we eat on those for the entire week since it's only the two of us. I'm thinking for the upcoming week a lasagna and making turkey hash from yesterday's turkey. In my meal rotations, I usually make a beef roast which is good for two nights and then making soup from the leftovers, spaghetti, chili, country style steak and gravy, and swiss steak.

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  1. So funny, I was just thinking we need lasagna also very soon; haven't had any pasta over the holidays. Son just gave me a Thai cookbook for Christmas so I know he'll be wanting Pad Thai--me too!--but I want some ooey-gooey lasagna.

    1. We had a really great sirloin roast with mashed potatoes and carrots for yesterday's Christmas dinner; have quite a bit left. Will probably use that up over the next couple of days...and am also thinking about making some kind of soup...now sure what yet....browsing around on chow to get inspired:)

      1. We were just talking about making a lasagna, too! I might use some of my downtime for a bolognese, or a meal that will help me use up the leftover gorgonzola.

        1. Making lasagna as I type. I like to assemble mine the day before I want to serve and then put in fridge to let the flavor develop. I'll probably bake it tomorrow to have for Sunday lunch.

          1. I'm planning a pot pie with the leftover turkey. And I think I'll be continuing my experiments with vegetarian cooking that I started after thanksgiving. There's something about all the over indulgences of the holidays that makes me want to eat nothing but braised greens and lentil soup for a week.

            1 Reply
            1. re: northside food

              We don't have our family dinner until New Year's Day. We recently had an excellent lasagna thanks to hosting a club potluck. the lasagna maker told us we could keep the leftovers. We had our regular family dinner on Wed night so we had marinated steak tips and roasted vegetables so Christmas eve my husband and I enjoyed leftovers. Last night I made bacon-wrapped shrimp with onions and a ketchup sauce from Thousand Chinese Recipe cookbook. Thinking about making corn chowder for Sunday. This afternoon is a family party and Sunday is a 50th anniversary party. Made a spinach, red pepper and feta cheese quiche today to use up some baby spinach I had bought for a recent Thai coconut soup.

            2. I have about 2 1/2 pounds of raw chicken wings (drummy & flat piece separated) leftover from Xmas eve when I made hot wings that I need to figure out what to do with. They were already frozen (bought from a supplier) so don't want to re-freeze. I also have baked potatoes left that will be turned into potato hash or baked potato soup, and collard greens.

              I'm thinking about making breaded cakes from the collards, mixed with crispy bacon or ham and some garlic and onion. Bind with an egg then coated in panko & fry; serve with smoked gouda cheese sauce drizzled over the top. That'll be for Sunday dinner....

              1. We still have a lot of oysters leftover from Xmas Eve, so tonight I'll have to do something with those. But like so many posters here, lasagna is calling. I almost always crave some old-fashioned red sauce Italian something after a holiday meal, something to get me grounded.

                Trouble is, we don't get much of a breather. Overlapping the holidays here is the Saints fever gripping the city, which means weekly football parties of one sort or another, and then we move right into the Mardi Gras season and all its excess. So any "cleansing" will have to wait until mid-February, when perhaps I'll revisit my Catholic roots and reacquaint myself with Lenten fasts and sacrifice . . . except that in my childhood, it mostly meant substituting delectable seafoods for meat, beer for "highballs" (for the adults that was, not the kids). Good Friday meant big crawfish boils.

                So while, ideally, we should try under-indulging, probably we'll just be indulging differently. Soon, something Asian, which always makes me *feel* virtuous! And I've also been eyeing some lovely salmon at Whole Foods: that too is virtuous, right?

                1. We made Lasagna for Christmas dinner, so tonight will be the leftovers. But tomorrow I think I will make a pot of Split peas soup and some cornbread.

                  1. Leftovers!

                    Deb took my leftover lobster from Christmas Eve and spun together a Jasper White-inspired lobster newburg. I contributed the sparkiling wine (Roederer Estate). We listened to the Beatles (number one son gifted us with the digital remix of their entire songbook) and reminisced over our candle-lit dinner.

                    I like leftovers.

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: steve h.

                      You should! Lobster, Roederer sparkling, Beatles courtesy of son: what could be better?

                        1. re: steve h.

                          Sounds great, Steve....great food and great music! We listened to the Beatles re-mix with some friends this fall when we were in FL and went stone crabbing for the first time...Beatles and seafood are an awesome combined memory for me too:)

                          1. re: sunflwrsdh

                            Love the stone crabs. Christmas Eve is my window for seafood/shellfish self-indulgence. Those tasty crabs have found their way onto my plate several times.

                            Funny thing about the Beatles, I had forgotten just how good they are. The re-mix goes well with good food and candle light.

                            1. re: steve h.

                              Yes, our PBS showed some really great recording footage of the Beatles from back in the day when they were doing their fund-raising...REAL guitar playing, real voices, no hocus-pocus digital fix-ups/voice-overs....I was overcome with nostalgia. And you can find "Get Back" being recorded on a London rooftop on youtube, great stuff. As for the stone crabs, THAT will be our New Year's indulgence. Could have had them for Christmas if I'd known we would not be going out of town...no worries, though.

                              1. re: Val

                                Completely agree about the Beatles....love them with good food! And the stone crabs...we went stone crabbing from Dunedin this October, and loved the experience (and the stone crabs!) so much we are going back for two weeks this October, if we don't get back even sooner:)

                    2. Soup! i got a major hankering for veggie soup... bought some at a local kosher market yesterday, and will hit the farmers' market tomorrow to get everything else i need! now that it's cooled off a bit here, i'm feeling the craving for something warm :-)

                      1. We're still polishing off the ham, so we had ham sandwiches today with horseradish sauce. I made some cranberry jam to use in them, too. It was great!

                        1. Last night I made Portugese Kale and Potato Soup 'cause that's what I wanted, and tomorrow will be Stuffed Shells. I have ricotta leftover from Christmas.

                          Portugese Kale and Potato Soup

                          2 garlic cloves, minced
                          1-1/2 c. finely chopped onion
                          3/4 c. sliced carrot
                          1/4 c. olive oil
                          1 lb. russet potatoes (about 2 large)peeled and cut into 1" pieces
                          4 c. chicken broth
                          3/4 lb. spanish chorizo, in 1/4" slices
                          3/4 lb. kale, stems discarded, leaves washed and shredded (about 8 c. packed)
                          1 lb. red potatoes

                          In kettle cook garlic, onions, carrot in the oil until vegetables are softened. Add russet potatoes, broth and 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil and simmer, covered, for 10-15 minutes or until potatoes are tender. While potatoes are cooking, cook the chorizo in a skillet until browned slightly. Drain on paper towels. With a slotted spoon, transfer the cooked potatoes to a blender along with about 1-1/2 cups of the cooking liquid. Puree until smooth. Stir the pureed mixture back into the broth, add chorizo and kale and red potatoes (cut into 1" pieces). Add salt and pepper to taste. Simmer until potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Makes about 10 cups.

                          Add-in: Chickpeas !!!

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Cheese Boy

                            I make a version of this with collards. We love it! It's my favorite light soup.

                          2. Leftovers! I have a ton of stuff - ham, capon, homemade gravadlax, cheese by the truckful, pork pie, ham stock for soup, winter slaw, veggies. I am awash with food. Aaagh!

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: greedygirl

                              Tons of leftovers here too -- sliced cheese and sausage and veggies and dip. Great munching while we watch football today.

                              Yesterday we made baked manicotti (ricotta, mozzarella, parmesan, and spinach filling), with marinara sauce, grilled mild Italian sausage, and garlic bread. Today it's pork or chicken chile verde and some black or pinto beans (with onions, garlic, jalapenos and bacon). Tomorrow will be something quick and easy, probably a Thai red curry with shrimp and pineapple, or chicken and butternut squash, over jasmine rice. Tuesday will probably be pizza from my favorite local pizza joint.

                            2. VEGETABLES!!
                              brocolli stirfries, hearty salads, chunky veggie stews ... that's as much of a 'cleanse' as I'll do but it needs to be done.

                              1. This morning, I made a soup out of the remaining mashed potatoes from Christmas dinner.

                                Also a mushroom, onion and cheddar quiche.

                                Neither is 'light', but both help clear out the fridge, and provide a change from eating straight leftovers.

                                Froze some sliced prime rib from the feast day, and that will certainly seem new when I go back for it in a week or two.

                                1. The staff at our restaurant (they're Chinese) are thoroughly "over" holiday food this year. We had the T-day stuff left-over for a while, and the various Christmas-time things have finally been devoured.

                                  Yesterday, we wanted to give them a treat. We went out and bought good bread and all kinds of cold cuts and cheeses. I sliced good tomatoes, washed up lettuce and made their favorite sandwich sauce, my homemade dijon mayonnaise.

                                  They loved the meal -- the chef put up a pot of delicious soup with tomatoes and cabbage -- and ate with gusto. What was really amazing is that instead of just slamming the sandwiches together quickly, each staffer invested a little time putting together their "Dagwood" sandwich. The resulting products were very appetizing to look at. Each ingredient was layered and folded just so. I am only sorry I didn't photograph some of these epic sandwiches.

                                  The golden moment yesterday: the Mexican helper eating a heaping Italian sandwich, eating Chinese soup and drinking a Danish beer!

                                  1. After all that indulgence, I felt the need to make a healthy vegetable soup/stew. I made this one from Epicurious/Gourmet 2009:


                                    Curried Squash and Red Lentil Soup (Stew)


                                    For soup:
                                    3 tablespoons vegetable oil
                                    2 tablespoons unsalted butter
                                    1 1/2 pound butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
                                    1 large onion, chopped
                                    1 carrot, chopped
                                    1 celery rib, chopped
                                    2 garlic cloves, minced
                                    2 tablespoons minced peeled ginger
                                    1 tablespoon curry powder (preferably Madras
                                    )1 cup red lentils, picked over and rinsed
                                    2 quarts water
                                    1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste

                                    For cilantro oil:
                                    1/2 cup chopped cilantro
                                    1/2 cup vegetable oil

                                    Take note that you should probably halve the liquid (1 quart, not 2) and use vegetable stock. Seriously, unbelievably delicious and ultra healthy (also reduced the butter/oil).

                                    Wow! Made my weekend!

                                    1. Have everything of a goose except the breasts - going to freeze the legs/thighs for a cassoulet I'm planning for the next cold weekend, and strip the rest of the meat for a cold salad and (I hope) a pie made with phyllo dough. You really don't get much on a goose, even a 12+ pounder. Relaxed on Saturday with pasta and pesto with salad for dinner, and last night with a London broil and Yorkshire pud, fennel salad and peas (spent the day baking, brownies souped up with choc chips and pecans to give to our neighbors who just had a baby girl, bread, and cherry pie for my pie-loving husband - used 1/4 c potato starch as the thickener, and it worked better than any others I've tried. Just once I would like to roll out a round piecrust - mine look like the map of Australia or Ireland!).

                                      6 Replies
                                      1. re: buttertart

                                        From recs on this board, I tried the ATK recipe for pie crust made in processor with vodka -- it rolled out like a dream.

                                        1. re: walker

                                          Will try that, have been using Rose Levy Beranbaum's cream cheese crust (nice flavor and flakiness). I see that they now say you can use other booze in it - a good thing since we seldom have vodka on hand.

                                          1. re: buttertart

                                            Which cookbook is that? I only have the Cake Bible. (Almost unused.)

                                            1. re: walker

                                              "Pie and Pastry Bible", which is ditto for me, except for this recipe. (I love her new "Heavenly Cakes", much more usable than the Cake Bible as far as I'm concerned).

                                        2. re: buttertart

                                          The goose salad was awfully good: shredded the meat (about 8 oz), tossed it in 1 TB dark and 1 TB light soy, 2 TB black vinegar, 1 TB sesame oil, a speck of sugar, with 1 big shallot and a thumb of fresh ginger sliced on the mandoline and the ginger then julienned. Served it on TJ's wild arugula (thanks to alkapal's recommendation, do not usually buy bagged salads) and topped it with a few handfuls of frozen sour cherries. The icy succulence of the cherries made the dish. Served it with prepared scallion pancakes crisped in the goose fat. A swell meal if I do say so myself.

                                        3. spaghetti and meatballs (with mozz cubes in the meatballs) yesterday, clam chowder today.

                                          1. Big pot of borscht with no-knead bread & Oka cheese last night. Next up: coq au riesling and buttered noodles.

                                            1. More leftovers!

                                              I carved out a rib from our Christmas roast. I'll reprise the scallop potatoes and the acorn squash, too. I'm not sure about the leftover root vegetables. We'll see.

                                              Deb cooked the Christmas Day meal to perfection. It's up to me to reheat things to a verisimilitude. A Charles Krug cabernet sauvignon on the side, Beatles on the box. Hell, I might even light the candles.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. Definitely leftovers. We did Christmas Dinner on Sunday before, since the folks were flying out to visit their grandson for the holiday. They sent us home with all of the leftovers. So we made duck tetrazzini. My SO got a GC to a local seafood market, so for our Christmas dinner, it was 3 pounds of steamer clams in wine and garlic sauce. We accompanied it with hot buttered rums, so we never got around to doing more food after the clams.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: tracylee

                                                  i'm just about OD'ed on festive food. it's back to basics for us- what i'm planning on making this week.
                                                  tonight- simple turkey meatloaf with leftover pate grated in and a warm dandelion salad

                                                  lunches- sandwiches from aforementioned meatloaf
                                                  pork chops, pieces of roasted figs, some cream
                                                  something involving lots of carrots - hum...
                                                  beet salad, tofu, parsley salad in hot vinaigrette
                                                  pasta with grilled sausages, chopped herbs and extra greens.
                                                  crab cakes/ chowder with extra crab meat from the party...

                                                2. As we had only Christmas Eve here, we had just the pot of salt-cod stew to finish off, which I did at lunch today. Last night I roasted a little chicken, mashed a couple of potatoes and made a cauliflower gratin, of which little is left (as was my intention). Tonight it's salmon and succotash. Simplicity reigns until Friday, and I'm still not sure whether the biggie will be my usual choucroute garni or ham with blackeyes and greens, but since I *HAVE* a ham I think I see what's coming... and maybe I'll just save the choucroute for my birthday!

                                                  1. After 9 straight days of heavy holiday food and meat dinners every night, needed something simple tonight so it was lentils braised in red wine with a poached egg on top.

                                                    Tomorrow will be something in the same vein....I'm craving greens...maybe a plain omelette with some greens.

                                                    1. Tonight will be stuffed cabbage rolls made with ground pork and rice.

                                                      1. I made a big batch of chicken/vegetable soup over the weekend since my husband wasn't feeling well. We had our Xmas dinner--a whole chicken in white wine sauce--on Sunday, and today I'm using the leftovers from the chicken in the leftovers from the soup. Well, it makes sense to me ...

                                                        1. I'm really wanting a tuna fish sandwich...I've been eating the leftovers since the eve before; all I have left is some NE clam chowder & a small bit of baked pasta from a few days before...tonight it'll be the chowder & sandwich..Tomorrow I get to cook something!

                                                          1. I go through phases where I'm ridiculously anal-retentive about meal planning. And by that, I mean I have spreadsheet monsters that grow and grow as I add things like calenders with not only our schedule but the 7 day forecast. Oh yes, yes I do. Because if it's going to be a high of 45 on Monday, when my youngest daughter has a basketball game, that's a perfect day for chili.

                                                            From there, I'm on to what's on sale at my favorite grocery store - this started as something of a game a while back - whatever the "cheapest" decent cut of meat was, was going into the pot - whether it was a favorite or I was familiar with it or not. ("Country ribs" have subsequently become my favorite cut of pork - they're awesome for everything from 'ribs' to carnitas.)

                                                            I love this time of year more than any other, because I could eat soup every day of my life (I do, come to think of it, have my trashy Cup Noodles chicken ramen w/sriracha almost 3 days a week throughout the year) and my family... not so much. But when it's cold, I can justify all the soup in the world.

                                                            So, the shorter answer would seem to be "soups." I'm making that ridic. "cabbage soup diet" soup not for diet purposes but for a sort of "cleanse" for after New Year's - I've realized I'm treating my body very, very badly lately, and the idea of a simple soup with tons of veggies just sounds like a good idea for a bit. (My family won't be subjected to this.)

                                                            Today it's cold and snowy here (yay, snow in TX!) and I've got lentils, beef stock and sausage on hand, along with celery and onion, so that sounds like a good plan.

                                                            Um, I'll just shut up about soup now if y'all quit reading. Deal? done.

                                                            2 Replies
                                                            1. re: shanagain

                                                              Shanigan....So funny you should mention that ridiculous cabbage soup diet soup...I've been thinking of doing the exact same thing and for the exact same reasons....I love soup just as much as you do....in fact. requested that darling retired husband make french onion soup tonite (it's 8 degrees here today!) and it was wonderful....and btw...I have had the ridiculous cabbage soup before and it's actually pretty good, and does have that cleansing effect we are seeking:) I'm also cooking a ham for New Year's Eve and to me, that really means split pea soup afterwards:)

                                                              1. re: sunflwrsdh

                                                                II had a feeling that would be the case in re: the cabbage soup. I made it yesterday (almost overflowing out of my calphalon stock pot - should've gone bigger) and have to agree, it's pretty good, really. I left out the onion soup mix and added more seasonings as I went along, but I have to admit, I don't think this is my worst idea ever.

                                                                Also, mmmm, split pea.

                                                            2. Ham. It was on sale over Christmas and I bought one and saved it.
                                                              Turkey. It was on sale over Thanksgiving and I froze it.

                                                              What did we have for Thanksgiving? Prime rib, Yorkshire pudding and brussel sprouts.
                                                              What did we have for Christmas dinner? King crab legs and shrimp wrapped in prociutto with a side salad of Belgium endive dressed with good olive oil from Queen Creek Olive Mill, white baslamic vinegar from TJ's and toasted pine nuts.


                                                              1. Check my screen name for the answer to your question.

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: ChiliDude

                                                                  Yesterday I made a cici and split fava stew nice and thick added fresh parsley ,extra virgen olive oil and salt and pepper .I baked some pizza dough in a round loaf earlier in the week.plain and simple just what I needed after the HOLIDAY FOODS. Tonght New Years eve I'll have the forementioned with some rabe and sausage and plenty of lemon and some real good olives Due to an allergy I'll forgo the wine and have sparkling water instead.So Good Luck and Good health to you all.

                                                                2. one pot meals and soups.

                                                                  1. Today is an all-baking day here. Our next door neighbors have invited us to dinner tonight and my contributions are two loaves of bread (from the "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes" book) and a cake. The cake is one of my favorites, a bundt cake made with toasted almonds and moistened with a lemon/amaretto syrup. This is one of the few cakes I have consistent luck with here in Denver; baking at 5,280 feet above sea level can be tricky. It has no baking soda or baking powder, just a flock of eggs, and I'm guessing that's what makes it a success.

                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                    1. re: mandycat

                                                                      Finally making pork buns, and ramen.
                                                                      Two days and still cooking...

                                                                      1. re: mandycat

                                                                        That Bundt cake: is it a recipe adapted for high altitude, or a standard one? If the latter (I'm at just above sea level), it sounds good - could you post the recipe or steer us in its direction? Thanks!

                                                                      2. More leftovers!!
                                                                        I sliced some beef off of one of the two remaining ribs. I have a baguette, some Saga Blue Brie, horseradish sauce, arugula and mayo. There has to be a meal here.