Wednesday, October 10, 2007

For the love of leftovers

Everyday cooking has always been somewhat utilitarian to me. As a result, people who have worked and eaten lunch with me quickly realize that I typically eat the same thing over and over again during the week. I cook a large batch of food at the beginning of the week which is divided into meal-sized portions. This may seem strange to some; however, for me, the advantage of limiting the meal planning to once a week far outweighs any palatal boredom or snobbery against leftovers which may ensue. It certainly makes our weekend culinary hunts for new restaurants and flavours much more satisfying.

The use of leftovers in the pastry kitchen is universally accepted. It is a sign of good food costing and smart planning. Egg whites, cake trimmings, and old croissants can become macarons, rum balls, and croissants aux amandes, respectively. Unadulterated chocolate can be re-melted and re-used endlessly. Over Thanksgiving weekend, my circle of friends gathered for a long overdue visit and I threw together an entremet in which six of the seven components were either leftovers or partially created from leftovers. There were no complaints!

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