Christmas leftovers

Often Boxing Day is the best, as time slows down, the kids are chilling and you have a fridge full of leftovers.

The big question is what to do with all this delicious food? I often just love a simple cold meat and stuffing sandwich. However, it is the festive season and you often have ingredients you might not necessarily have throughout the year. Here a few ideas to help you along the way.


Ham, potato and egg hash

Breakfast like this don't really require quantities as it is about using up what you have left over. I love to fry up the boiled jersey benne potatoes, slivers of ham, greens work well and perhaps a few juicy tomatoes if you have them lying around. I love fried eggs and a dollop of mustard or chilli sauce to really wake up the mind.

Serves 4
1 onion, sliced thinly
500g cooked potatoes (jersey bennes), cut in half
250g cooked ham or any type roast meat
2 large or 6 cherry tomatoes (cut into bite-sized pieces)
1 cup leftover greens (cabbage, silverbeet, spinach etc)
handful chopped parsley
olive oil
4 free-range eggs
salt and cracked pepper

Heat the oven to 180degC.

Shred or slice the cold roast meat, roughly chop the greens, tomatoes and parsely.

Gently fry the onion in the oil in an ovenproof pan until the onion is soft (about 5 minutes).

Add the meat and potatoes and fry for a further 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, season well and crack the eggs on top.

Transfer the dish to the oven and bake for 8-10 minutes or until the eggs are cooked to your liking.

Remove and finish with a little drizzle of olive oil, sprinkle over the chopped parsley and a little salt.


Cheeseboard and zucchini tart 

I was thinking of Christmas and of the many platters we nibble from and then I thought of the cheeseboard which is always a delight but by the end of the day it has been chopped and mixed and picked at, that you wonder what to do with it all. It would make a delicious pasta, great on pizzas, crumbled in fillings and of course very tasty in a pie or tart.

You could add leftover potatoes, tomatoes, roast vege or salmon to your tart with all the cheese crumbs.

Serves 8-10


125g butter, diced and chilled
250g flour
1 egg yolk

200g mixed cheeses, crumbled together
2 medium zucchinis, peeled thinly into strips
2 spring onions, sliced thinly
6 cooked jersey bennes cut into chunks (can use roast potatoes)
10 cherry tomatoes, cut in half
15g parsley, roughly chopped
15g thyme leaves, chopped
125 ml cream
6 eggs


Begin by making the pastry or you can simply use shop bought.

Put the flour, butter and a pinch of salt in the food processor. Pulse until the mix resembles breadcrumbs. Add the egg and pulse a couple of times. At this stage feel the mixture with your hands. If it feels dry and is not holding together, add 1 tablespoon of cold water. Mix again and bring together on your bench. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes.

Remove the pastry from your fridge and roll out on a floured surface into a circle - about 5cm bigger than the tin and 5mm thick.

Line the tin with the pastry. Put back into the fridge for 20 minutes.

Combine the zucchinis, potatoes, spring onions, herbs together. Season with salt and pepper.

Whisk together the cream and eggs and season lightly with salt and pepper.

Heat the oven 200degC

Line the pastry with greaseproof paper and fill with baking beans and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the beans and return to the oven for 5 minutes more.

Reduce the oven to 160degC.

Spread the filling over the pastry, crumbled over the cheese and pour over the egg mixture. Finish with the tomato halves and a little cracked pepper.

Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden and the filling is set.

Cool slightly before cutting.


Pulled roast meat rolls 

It would be very rare to find my house with no roast meats leftover after Christmas, and apart from slicing off some for this and that, it doesn't really get appreciated. I remember my mum reheating the meat with onions and gravy and we would have it with fresh bread - the best sandwich ever. This is my take on a meat sandwich.

Serves 4-6

1 Tbsp oil
4-6 good-quality buns
2 onions, finely sliced
1 Tbsp oil
300g leftover roast meat, either shred or finely slice
200ml left over gravy

½ iceburg lettuce, finely shredded
½ red onion, sliced thinly
1 carrot, grated
pinch chilli flakes
2 gherkins, sliced
1 Tbsp gherkin liquid
Yoghurt and garlic sauces
4 sprigs of fresh mint
1 lemon
¼ clove of garlic, crushed
200g natural yoghurt
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper


In a fry pan, add the oil and onions and cook for 10 minutes or until soft. Add the shredded meat and quarter of a cup water and the gravy and simmer for 15 minutes or until the meat is very tender.

Season with salt and cracked pepper. Keep warm.

While the meat is simmering, make the garlic sauce.

Mix the yoghurt with the crushed garlic, finely sliced mint leaves, squeeze of lemon and a light season with salt and pepper. Taste and adjust if necessary.

To make the salad, add the lettuce, red onion, carrot, chilli and gherkin together. Add the gherkin jar liquid and toss the salad together.

To assemble the buns. I like to toast my buns a little but that is up to you. Split them and add a generous amount of the meat and gravy. Top with salad and finish with yoghurt sauce.

Enjoy with plenty of napkins.


Christmas cake brownie

No matter how hard we try we all end up with leftover Christmas cake. I came across a great idea to mix it through your brownie batter. It really adds a chewy, fruity layer which works a treat.

185g butter, cubed
185g 70% good-quality dark chocolate, chopped into small pieces
3 large eggs
275g caster sugar
85g plain flour
a pinch of salt
40g cocoa powder
200g Christmas cake or Christmas pudding


Heat the oven to 160degC.

Grease and line a 20cm square cake tin.

Place the chocolate and butter in a heavy-based saucepan and melt over a low heat until the butter melts, remove from the heat and stir until the chocolate has melted. Set aside.

Whisk the egg and sugar together until thick and doubled in volume.

Fold the egg mixture into the chocolate until combined.

Fold through the sifted dry ingredients. Pour into prepared tin.

Crumble over the christmas cake and bake for 20-25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let it cool in the tin before serving.





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