We made a great haddock meal the other night and because half of my family was all of sudden not home for dinner (its hockey try out season in my house and schedules are crazy) I had quite a bit of fish left over. Now leftovers sometimes conjure up less than appetizing images I know but leftover fish is in a whole other category. No matter how good the fish was on day one, it seems to never be as appealing on day two. We have a great tactic we use at home to get my family to use up any leftovers so they do not end up in the bin a few days later. It works for fish but equally well for chicken, steak or other protein sources. Of course we think about food and strategies to minimize food waste way more than we used to since starting The Dinner Daily. But it was not always that way..
FLASHBACK TO 2 TO 3 YEARS AGO BEFORE THE DINNER DAILY:
We have fish for dinner and have a good amount leftover. The next night, I open the fridge trying to figure out dinner (insert sound of heavy sigh) and realize I have leftover fish. Great I don’t have to cook! After opening it up and staring at it for a few minutes, I realize the likelihood of my family eating reheated haddock from the night before is almost non existent. Nope, not going to happen. I cover it back up and put it back in the fridge. Three days later, I see that covered dish leering at me from the depths of the fridge and admit defeat. We are never going to eat that remaining pound of haddock and off into the garbage it goes, along with a $5 to $10 bill (fish literally, money in reality but not literally). I feel frustrated that once again I drove to the grocery store to buy that fish, drove home to cook it, to only throw it in a bin a few days later. Seems crazy. I hate that feeling of wasting money and time. Sound familar?
FAST FORWARD TO CURRENT DAY AS THE DINNER DAILY HAS BECOME A WAY OF LIFE:
We have fish for dinner and I plan for there to be some leftover. If we do, I get to make one of my easiest and favorite dinners (or lunches) the next day and have a no cook night with Fish Tacos! All I need to pull this dinner together is a few simple ingredients: avocado or guacamole (store bought), soft tortillas (or use traditional taco shells), some raw cole slaw mix (or chopped cabbage and carrots), a bit of sour cream, and a lime or lemon.
This recipe is so versatile you can use it for any type of leftovers (chicken, steak, shrimp) or to make it vegetarian just use some black beans or chick peas. I always try to have a package of tortillas on hand for this reason and can usually come up with a second dinner based on this very simple recipe. It’s always a great way to get your kids to eat different foods as having nutritious foods hidden inside a whole wheat tortilla is sometimes all it takes.
Leftover fish (haddock, cod, tilapia, salmon etc ) You do not need much-I had about a pound for whole family
1 to 2 cloves of minced garlic (optional)
Cole Slaw mix, tri colored (usually in with greens/salads in grocery stores)
1 to 2 tomatoes, chopped
Sliced avocado or guacamole (we used pre-made guacamole in picture above)
Juice of 1 lime
Package of soft tortillas, or taco shells
Fruit to serve as side
Break up leftover fish into bite size pieces. Heat some oil in large skillet and add garlic. Add cole slaw mix (about half of 16 oz bag) drizzle with lime juice and 1/3 cup of water. Heat for about 5 minutes over medium heat until veggies are getting soft. Add fish and tomatoes and stir through cole slaw mix. Add a bit more water if it seems dry and let heat for another 5 minutes until it is all warmed. Remove from heat. Warm tortillas according to package (you don’t have to but we like them warmed up) and spoon fish mixture on edge of tortilla, top with avocado and sour cream and roll up! Serve with a side of fruit and dinner (or lunch) is done!
So next time you are doing your grocery shopping, you might want to include the above ingredients in your cart so you have a quick and easy way to use up any leftovers. You will waste less food, and as a result waste less time and money! And we always think that is a good thing!