from maggie's farm
The most remarkable thing about my mother is that for thirty years she served the family nothing but leftovers. The original meal has never been found. --Calvin Trillin
One of the greatest skills an artist can employ is the ability to make the used, look new. Whether it's capturing the heartbreak of the the Pieta in a thousandth painting, or the majesty in the millionth photo of the Grand Canyon, singing yet another song about falling in love, or writing the next great novel, infusing new life into the antique is truly artistic alchemy.
Let us consider the leftover. Not much different than the masterpieces of above, it's culinary artisty required for it's transformation. Call it the Farmer's Lunch, if you will. So many complain....I don't like leftovers. My family doesn't eat leftovers. Really? So what do you DO with the leftovers. You throw them OUT? I hope, at least, to the chickens. Perhaps, like my grandmothers who lived through the depression, it was the long years spent using every last scrap I had, but I cannot abide food waste! With a little creativity and some new spice, literally and figuratively, much can be accomplished with the wealth of food we have on hand.
So, it is with my frugal habits that I come to the weekend with a new habit in hand, wondering if I have any takers? Would you like to join me on a mission to bring new romance, and deserved charm to the leftover? Will you unite with me in giving the proper love to the leftover?
Well, we'll see how it goes. We're going to give it a try. Each weekend, we'll suggest a new take on the remnants of some meal we've shared, here. The secret for me is to make it look as little like the former meal as possible. Give it a whole new life, not just a dusting-off of relics of meals passed. We're going to start with the remaining oddments of last Monday's simple bowl of red, and add our favorite leftover transformer, a farm-fresh egg, for one very satisfying Farmer's Lunch.
Tuesday's noonday meal, a rustic interpretation of the well-known 'toad in a hole', for wont of a better name, we'll call,
sunrise in a muddy ditch
First a base of one thick slice of bread, any type, from white bread 'texas toast', a whole grain dinner roll, a gluten-free slice of peasant bread, a few diagonal slices of baguette, to a leftover hamburger bun, just butter it, and pop it under the broiler. This is how my great grandmother made toast and I loved it. I haven't used a toaster in years.
Then a hefty spoonful or two of Monday's chili, alongside a bit of your favorite salsa or pico de gallo, with one perfectly simple egg, sunnyside up, atop. Thinly sliced jalapenos serve as garnish. You may enjoy adding a little cheese, or sour cream.
This is quite simple. Straightforward, as many of the best meals are. And delicious. Truly a perfect Farmer's Lunch.