Food is the universal language of celebration. Come to think of it, every occasion or festival is incomplete without a little indulgence and food. However, sometimes, we tend to splurge a bit too much and cook out of proportion, especially when the occasion is highly significant, such as Eid.
At the end of Eid festivities, most of us have refrigerators stacked with cooked food, probably more than we need that may go to waste. So, what to do with all those leftovers from Eid? Do not worry, as you do not need to throw them away. By following appropriate storage methods, and unleashing your creativity with food, you may prepare scrumptious food with leftovers too!
Cooked food, especially curries can be stored in the refrigerator for 2-3 days and for a longer period in the freezer. However, it is important to store them in shallow containers in batches, and cover them properly to prevent any entry of moisture. For dry food, such as kebabs, it is a good idea to store them in zip-lock bags as they take up lesser space.
Roasted meaty goodness
Almost all households prepare roast beef or chicken during Eid given its rich nature. Use the leftovers to make snacks for the following days. Thinly slice pieces of roast beef to add into sandwiches for a delicious taste, or cut them into strips that makes for a great addition to ramen and stir-fries.
You may also tear the pieces of beef with a fork for a delicious topping over pizza or bread toast. If you are willing to go that extra mile, you may even make scrumptious Mughlai paratha revved up with onions and chillies to satiate those hunger pangs during evening.
Being dry foods, tikka and kebabs deteriorate in taste if they are stored for long. A great idea to utilise them quickly while they still taste delectable is to make sliders, accompanied with lettuce, fresh tomatoes and cheese, all nice and snug between two buns.
For grilled chicken that has gone further dry, I like to prepare paratha rolls or shawarma with a generous addition of mayonnaise or curd, and cucumbers. The freshness and crunch of cucumbers elevate the taste of the rather dry chicken.
Eat breakfast like a king
It's not every day that we binge on scrumptious food, so I suggest savour the moment while it lasts!
Pair your curries with naan, paratha or chapri for breakfast and take a break from your usual morning jam and toast. I have found that reheating stale curries with green chillies and dried plums makes them taste better and restores the aroma.
For hosts who spend hours in the kitchen prior to Eid, give yourself that much needed rest and use those leftovers. Cooking with already cooked food not only takes half the effort and time, but adds a distinct flavour to any dish as well.
Photo: LS Archive/ Sazzad