7 Leftover Food Hacks

Blossom Lady
Mar 15, 2022 03:47 AM
7 Leftover Food Hacks

None of us wants to waste food. But busy lives and hectic schedules mean we do not always have the time, energy or inspiration to whip up a culinary classic every night of the week.

We all know that feeling of having "nothing to eat." We are tired, hungry, and staring at a seemingly empty fridge. Here are 7 super-simple tricks, tips and techniques to help you turn any leftover into something truly delicious, and easy hacks to save leftover food for later. Bon appetit!

1. Using up leftover brownies

7 Leftover Food Hacks
If you are faced with the odd problem of having an unusable surplus of brownies or cookies, do not let them go to waste. Freeze them to use later as toppings for sundaes and other desserts.
1. Crush some stale brownies or cookies in the work bowl of a food processor until they form coarse crumbs. Store them in a zip-top bag in the freezer.
Sprinkle the frozen crumbs on ice cream or other desserts.

2. Leftovers are a piece of cake

7 Leftover Food Hacks
After eating just one or two pieces of a cake, you may want to freeze the rest. But you probably will not want to defrost the whole cake if you want to eat another piece or two later. To avoid this problem, first slice the whole cake. Then wrap a piece of wax paper around the top and against the sides of each slice. Reassemble the cake and freeze it. Now you can take out as many slices as you like without having to defrost the whole cake.

3. Preventing ice cream tragedies

7 Leftover Food Hacks
When ice cream is exposed to air, it quickly forms unsightly ice crystals and freezer burn.
A. To prevent freezer burn, cover any ice cream left in the carton with heavy-duty plastic wrap before placing the container back in the freezer, pressing the wrap directly onto the surface of the ice cream.
B. An even better way to reduce the air supply and keep the ice cream as fresh as possible is to use the following method (which also saves space in the freezer): cut off the empty part of the container with scissors or a knife as soon as the ice cream is eaten. Then put the lid back on and return the container to the freezer.

4. Quick and easy single scoops of ice cream

7 Leftover Food Hacks
In some refrigerators, ice cream is frozen so hard that it has to sit on the counter for several minutes to soften before you can spoon it. If you are craving ice cream, this can feel like a very, very long wait. To avoid this unfortunate delay, try this method for portioning ice cream in advance.
1.Pour the ice cream or frozen yogurt into a muffin tin lined with muffin paper, then freeze.
2.After freezing, you can store the paper-lined portions in a zip-top bag in the freezer so you can serve them right away. Simply peel off the paper and place the ice cream in a bowl. This is also a great way to get homemade ice cream to set quickly, as it is notoriously soft when it comes out of the machine.

5. Bread crumbs

7 Leftover Food Hacks
After a cookout, there are almost always leftover buns. Instead of throwing away the excess hamburger or hot dog buns, tear them into pieces and freeze them in a zipper lock bag until you need fresh bread crumbs. Then all you need to do is chop the buns 10 to 20 times in a food processor without having to thaw them. This is also a great way to use up those unwanted heels from sandwich bread or artisan bread that you can not finish before they get stale. (If you do not have a food processor, you can also grate the bread with the large holes of a box grater).

6. Buttermilk

7 Leftover Food Hacks
Many recipes call for buttermilk, but few require an entire container of the real stuff, and it can be a challenge to use it up before it goes bad. Try this tip to keep unused buttermilk from going bad.
1. Place a few small paper cups on a tray and fill each with ½ cup of buttermilk.
2. place the tray in the freezer.
3. Once the buttermilk is frozen, wrap each cup in plastic wrap and store in a large zipper lock bag. Thaw the amount you need in the refrigerator before baking.

7. Caramelized onions

7 Leftover Food Hacks
Caramelized onions add a complex, earthy sweetness to many dishes, including burgers, focaccia, pizza, omelets and mashed potatoes. However, preparing a batch of this flavorful ingredient can take more than an hour. We have found a way to make sure you always have a supply on hand: Make a large batch and portion the cooked onions into zip-top freezer bags, rolling them from the bottom up to squeeze out as much air as possible. Seal the bags and store them in the freezer, where they will keep for up to three months. If you need a small amount to sweeten a dish, simply take out a bag and thaw it.
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