Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Now That's How You Do Leftovers!

Remember when we had a pizza round left over when we made grilled pizzas, and I told you I’d let you know how it worked left over?  Well, the answer is it worked great!  The Rev was at his charity golf outing tonight, and when it’s just me and the kids, I can’t usually work up the motivation to really cook.  So, I picked up a take-and-bake pizza at Aldi for the kids (those pizzas are great, by the way, and only $5.99 for a 16-inch cheese pizza) and grabbed another ball of fresh mozzarella for myself.  While the kids’ pizza baked, I threw together a pizza for myself from last week’s leftovers.  I used some of the quick tomato sauce and sprinkled on a little shredded mozzarella I had left from making the kids’ pizzas on Friday.  I thought it would help "glue" the toppings down and help keep them from sliding all over the place.  Next I sliced a tomato into very thin slices on top of the shredded cheese and topped them with some fresh mozzarella rounds.  Meanwhile, I had melted a little butter in a small skillet and started sautéing the sliced mushrooms and green peppers that hadn’t made it on to the grilled pizzas.  Those went on top of the cheese, and I put just a little more of the fresh mozzarella on top.  By this time, the kids’ pizza was done.  I popped my creation in the oven at 375o on the pizza stone, because that’s the temperature the take-and-bake pizza needed.  The pizza round was fully cooked already, so I was just looking to melt the cheese and heat the sauce and toppings.  After about 10 minutes (it might have been less; I was watching the pizza and not the clock to know when it was done,) this is what I got:

Rock star leftovers!
It tasted every bit as good as it looks, and I felt good about myself because I got a great dose of veggies.  The only change I would make if I were doing this again would be to salt the tomatoes and let them drain on a paper towel for a few minutes before putting them on the pizza.  They released a lot of liquid on the pizza, which made it messy, but it still tasted fantastic!
I feel obligated to make this disclaimer:  leftovers are not usually quite this rockstar at our house.  Mostly leftovers get eaten for lunch pretty much in their original form.  Sometimes I heat them up for dinner when I’m feeling lazy.  Growing up, my mom used to make something she called “Presbyterian Supper,” which consisted of a mini-buffet of whatever was left from the previous few days’ dinners.  The churches I grew up in had regular (and delicious) potluck dinners, hence the name.  I don’t make Presbyterian Supper too often because The Rev eats lunch here almost every day, so leftovers don’t accumulate in the fridge enough to make a buffet.  Still, it’s a great way to use up perfectly good food!  When you’re tired of cooking, consider putting your microwave to work and tell your family it’s potluck night!

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