Not just leftovers

Sakal Times
Thursday, 28 December 2017

City chefs share tips about how you can reuse all the leftover cake, chocolate, and other stuff from Christmas

After Christmas, celebrations are still in the air with the extended festive mood of New Year. With loads of food items and desserts on the platter for Christmas, what to do with all the leftover food and desserts, is the question. Gear up with your culinary tools and accessories and try your hand at some quick and easy recipes that can be made from the extras in the fridge. The rum, fruits, chocolate, cake can make their way into new recipes and desserts for your new year platter. 

Namrata Kripallani, owner of Forennté Tuckshop at Koregaon Park, says that the leftover ingredients can be used to make your favourite dishes. “The leftover rum soaked fruits can be reused to make spice cookies. Similarly, you can melt leftover chocolate and cream in equal quantity and make delicious truffles and coat with chocolate. Adding a little leftover ginger or spice mix can add a real punch to them,” she advises. If you have some cakes from Christmas, you can try new things with them too. 

“A vanilla or a chocolate cake spiced with ginger can be made as a fruity upside down cake. The leftover fruits can be used for this. If you have not had enough of the dark chocolate and are still tempted to have some more on your dish, Chocolate Pecan Fudge is a treat. With dark chocolate, pecan nuts and butter, you can try the recipe to serve as a new dessert,” she suggests.

Tushar Deshpande, sous Chef, Indigo Deli, Pune says that ingredients like chocolate trimmings and Christmas Cake Trimmings can be used in milkshakes and smoothies. “They can also be used to add flavour to a homemade yoghurt,” he says.

The smartest way to use leftover Christmas treats is to add some salad to your menu with the desserts and smoothies. Vegetables and meat trimmings can also be converted into ingredients to make a delicious and quick salad. “Don’t throw away the extra meat, turkey or cheese. Instead, make a Kale Salad, which can be a great dish for the post-Christmas lunch. Use the meat trimmings with kale and feta cheese with a pinch of salt and sugar and have a snack on the table for the diet conscious guests,” says Deshpande.

Chef Dinesh Pujari from The Coconut Tree Bar and Kitchen, tells us how to use melted chocolate to make some quick and healthy desserts. “Use melted chocolate as a dip to go with fresh fruits like strawberry, apples, banana slices, etc. Just add some fresh yogurt and enjoy it as a parfait for your dessert,” explains Pujari. If you have been worried about leftover sponge cakes, fret not as they too can can be used to make cake pops by adding butter and some essence to them.  Sharing a brief recipe, he says, “Crumble the cake, add butter and vanilla essence and make a mixture. Divide the mixture into small cake balls and freeze them. Once they are frozen, poke lollypop sticks into them and dip them in dark or white chocolate and freeze them again. You could use sprinklers or chocolate chips to decorate them”.

Chef  Deshpande shares the recipe of Kale Salad with Turkey Trimmings, Strawberry, Feta Cheese and Chocolate with balsamic dressing
Ingredients:
- Kale.....100 gm
- Turkey or any meat trimming/(vegetable trimmings in case of vegetarians).............(as per the amount of leftovers)
- Strawberries........150 gm
- Sliced fennel.........50 gm
- Feta cheese.........50 gm
- Chocolate or coco trimmings.........(as per the amount of leftovers)
- Balsamic vinegar.....300 ml
- Sugar and salt to taste
- Extra virgin olive oil.....50 ml

Method
Chocolate - Balsamic Dressing
- Reduce the Balsamic vinegar to half by boiling it on low heat and whisk in the chocolate trimming.
- Slowly add the extra virgin olive oil and keep whisking it till it forms a smooth mixture.

PLATING UP
- Put all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and add dressing into it. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- In a salad bowl, first put the kale leaves and then other colourful ingredients.
- Top it off by adding the trimmings.

Namrata Kriplani shares the  recipe of CHOCOLATE PECAN FUDGE
Ingredients
- Dark chocolate (about 50 per cent cocoa solids)....400 gm
- Condensed milk......400 gm 
- Butter (soft at room temperature).....25 gm
- Pecan nuts.....55 gm 
- Square tin (lined with baking parchment paper)...20 cm

Method
- Break or chop the chocolate into small chunks and place in a non-stick saucepan. Melt the chocolate gently over low-medium heat, stirring occasionally until smooth and silky.
- Take it off the heat. Add condensed milk and butter. Whisk it all together until smooth. Do not over mix.
- Press the fudge into the tin and smoothen over the top with the back of a spoon. Press the pecan nuts into the surface. You can add chopped nuts into the fudge mix itself if you like it more nutty.
- Set it in the refrigerator for about an hour and then cut into pieces and serve. This can be had by itself or warmed up and served with icecream.

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