Today’s menu was a bit blank when we came to lunch. The Christmas & New Year holiday season means that I’ve accidentally taken a break from meal planning. Alas, we took up the challenge to use some leftover roast pork from Friday to make a light family meal.
Picture: Pork & Couscous Filo Cigars with my Homemade Stone Fruit Chutney
How to use leftover meats:
- Wrap the roast meat & label it, very soon after cooking & serving what you need for that meal – about 30 mins should be cool enough not to cause issues to other things in your freezer (you don’t want to raise their temperature).
- You can refrigerate for 2-3 days or freeze for up to 1 month.
- Once defrosted and re-used they can’t be frozen again – so when you initially freeze the meat do so in portion sizes that you will use in a single meal.
- Ensure they are always re-cooked to be piping hot (60oC is to be reached rapidly – I use 70oC as my rule of thumb to balance out possible temperature probe errors & consistency across the dish).
- For more information, here is a link to a brochure about cooling and reheating food safely FSANZ: http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/consumer/safety/faqsafety/documents/Cool _and_reheat_food.pdf
What can you use leftover roast meats in?
– Pies / Filo’s
– Pilafs / Fried Rice
– A Pasta Sauce
Condiments (or “dippy sauces”) are great with meat for toddlers. It gives them a fun task during the meal that they are in control of. Some children are picky when it comes to meat eating, so a dippy sauce can make meat more appealing. I made a seasonal stone fruit chutney to go with our roast pork last week. The upside is that I made enough to have again with these pork & couscous cigars.
Seasonal Stonefruit Chutney
2 cups of diced fresh seasonal stonefruit (I had plums, yellow flesh peaches and white flesh nectarines)
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup caster sugar
Juice from 1 Orange
1/2 cup water
zest peeled from 1/2 the orange
7 whole cloves
7 cardamon pods
1 star anise
1 cinnamon stick (broken in half)
1/2 tsp edible gelatin
30ml boiling water
Squeeze orange juice into a pan and add the balsamic vinegar and sugar and heat. Add the diced fresh stonefruit and the extra 1/2 cup of water. Bring to the boil and then take it to a simmer which allows the fruit to poach in the liquid. The fruit only needs about 10 minutes to simmer. Add the spices – you will find it easier if you wrap them in gauze/cloth with kitchen string first. Turn off the heat & sit for 1hr to allow the spices to diffuse. Take the spices out – I had fun fishing out mine individually & being really careful to count that what went in was what came out – will definitely wrap mine next time! I then returned it to the heat to check the consistency and decided to dissolve 1/2 a tsp of edible gelatin in about 30ml of boiling water & added that to my chutney. My chutney was “set” after about 2hrs in the fridge.
Roast Pork and Couscous Cigars
Leftover roast pork
1/2 cup dry couscous
Fennel Seeds, Cumin Seeds, Ground Sage and Ground Cinnamon (all ground together in a mortar & pestle) – quantities to your liking – you can also use rosemary, thyme or other spices you prefer with pork
Filo Pastry (Store Bought)
Sesame Seeds for coating
Preheat oven to 180oC. Make the couscous as per packet instructions. Finely dice roast pork. Add pork and spice mix to the cooked couscous. Use a single sheet of filo to wrap around approximately 3tbsp of mixture in a cigar shape. As you roll up the cigar, don’t forget to tuck the ends in along the way. Use a beaten egg to seal the end of the cigar and paint over the top. Sprinkle on sesame seeds. Bake in the oven for 25min. The egg should make the pastry golden in colour. Check the internal temperature of the cigars is > 60oC. Serve with stone fruit chutney!