The very first time I came across this word “rèchauffer” was in a foods and nutrition class in secondary school.
Rèchauffer is a French word which simply means to reheat or warm up a dish that has already been cooked.
The understanding I could pick out of the lesson and practicals that followed was that rèchauffer is not just reheating or warming up leftover foods but is recooking or for lack of a better word is revamping the dish into something new. Most at times leftover dishes from the refrigerator are warmed and basically loose their original taste and flavouring, and we all know that the satisfaction of a dish is in its taste.
To retain this taste and flavouring or give the dish a new taste the “rèchauffer” method is applied, by using that leftover dish as an ingredient and then adding other ingredients, spices and flavours to create an entirely new dish. This can wonderfully be done to so many of our Nigerian dishes such as rice, spaghetti, potatoes, yam, meat and lots more. Let’s take a look at what we can use some of this leftover dishes to create:
1. Leftover boiled rice can be recooked into fried rice,coconut rice, local rice, all depends on your preference.
2. Leftover spaghetti and macaroni can be used hot or cold in salads.
3. Leftover meat and vegetables will be perfect to make a salad, a sauce, meat balls or as a filling for toast or pastries.
4. Leftover boiled eggs can be diced into salads or used as filling for a sandwich.
5. Leftover sausages can be used to achieve corn dogs, hot dogs and sausage rolls.
6. Your leftover bread is perfect for sandwiches or toast.
7. You can achieve an egg coat fried yam or potatoes using leftover boiled yam. When crushed and mixed with the perfect vegetables and fried will give you beautiful yam or potatoes balls. The leftover potatoes can still be used in salads or as a filling in pastries. Also when crushed can be served as mashed potatoes. Or you can choose to just fry your left over boiled yam/potatoes just like that to give you a new eating experience.
8. Leftover fruits can be served with cake, ice cream, blended as a juice or with the right ingredients blended into a smoothie.
A lot of new dishes can be made out of leftover dishes, those listed are just a few to mention out of the varieties you can play your hands around. This helps prevent waste, you get to serve as many dishes possible with one ingredient, you don’t have a boring eating pattern an all together you get to retain the flavor and taste and even make it better. It saves food preparation time and economises ingredients.
So don’t just warm up your leftovers boringly or throw them away, get creative with it and have fun while cooking, you will amazed at what you could come up with.
Article written by Onemano Oludamilola Chidinma,a contributing writer at Sophyfoodblog who is also an Economic graduate from Bowen University.
Twitter handle @damilolaOnemano