Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The Art of 'Recycling' Food

I often wonder how my mother managed to feed us, her 9 children, day in and day out, without losing her mind. I distinctly remember her going to her weekly trip to the market and coming home with countless baskets of fresh meat, fish, fruits and veggies. She spent hours in the kitchen sorting out the meat, cleaning the fish, putting them in separate freezer bags and stacking them all in the freezer. And then she still had to cook! I certainly know that it is really a big task coming up with meals that will make everyone satisfied and happy. I have four children of my own...four with different likes and dislikes.

My dad used to be very strict with the food budget. He accounted for every single cent my mum spent in her marketing. This probably drove my mum to become very creative in the kitchen. So as not to waste anything, she learned and perfected the art of recycling food. When I say 'recycling', what I really mean is this. Leftovers are transformed into an entirely different dish. My mum had a way of changing its appearance...maybe through the addition of another type of sauce or perhaps different vegetables. We'd quickly recognize bits of the 'old' food in the new one though.

I must admit I am not as creative but last night, I proudly used some meat leftovers from the other night's dinner to come up with this dish.

Nothing fancy, really. Just some broccoli, sliced mushrooms and the leftover beef. I stirfried these with minced garlic, put in the sauce from the beef leftover and sprinkled some sesame oil. That's it.

We had some fried flounders and steamed rice with it.

And yes, some watermelons to finish off....

Not bad...

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