Monday, January 1, 2018

Bubble and Squeak - New Year 2018

Firstly I would like to wish you all a very Happy New Year and hope that 2018 is magnificent in every way.  I decided this year that there would be no New Years' Resolutions, no promises that I will fail to keep, no grand plans that will depress me if I do not complete them, etc, etc.  This year I just want to ensure that I make the most of every new day and to love, to learn, to grow and to discover.
Part of my new resolve is to ensure I have time for me.  Time for things I enjoy, time for me to chill, relax, refresh and enjoy me. I thought about trying a new hobby - something that would interest me and I would enjoy.  But then I thought why? I already have a hobby!  Something I enjoy doing, which challenges me and keeps me happy.  What is it?  Cooking and blogging, of course!
2018 will be a year that I have promised myself to make time to continue my love of cooking.  Experimenting with flavours, challenging myself with technique and more importing expanding my tastebuds to ensure that new foods are tried.  It's all very exciting and best of all I am going to share this culinary adventure with you.
So here we go......
The Festive Season means a lot of different things to different people.  For us it's family being together, traditions and love.  But it also means FOOD - and lots of FOOD.  Too much to eat in all honesty but it seems that we must over cater just to make sure there is enough.  Seriously there is always enough and that can only mean one thing.  Leftovers!  Left over ham, turkey, seafood, vegetables - everything.
This morning our fridge was a smorgasbord of food possibilities. Quite exciting really.  There is literally enough of so many different foods all leftover.  I also have a house full of teenagers from last nights' New Years Eve celebrations.  So I decided to first feast of the New Year would be good old fashioned Bubble and Squeak or as we prefer to call it Fry Up.  This meal is definitely on the Comfort Food listing.

Bubble and squeak is a traditional British dish made with leftover vegetables from a roast dinner. The main ingredient is potato but cabbage, carrots, peas, Brussel sprouts, or any other leftover vegetables can be added. The chopped vegetables and any left over meat are fried in a pan together with mashed potatoes or crushed roast potatoes until the mixture is well-cooked and brown on the sides. The dish is so named because the cabbage makes bubbling and squeaking sounds during the cooking process.

Sadly this isn't really a great recipe to blog as there are really no quantities to follow - it really just depends what you have in your fridge.  This morning we were lucky as I had a large bowl of mashed potatoes left over from dinner the other night along with carrots and roast pumpkin.  I did add some freshly boiled Brussel sprouts, peas and corn to give the dish more colour.  But seriously you can use anything you have on hand and theoretically they don't have to be leftover.

An absolutely perfect way to start the New Year.....

Bubble and Squeak

Serves: 8
2 teaspoons oil
1brown onion, diced
leftover ham, diced
leftover mashed potatoes
leftover vegetables (that you have available) chopped into bite size pieces
1 cup grated low fat tasty cheese
freshly ground black pepper
1 - 2 tablespoons dried thyme
2 tablespoons butter

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius.

Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium heat.  Add onion and cook for 2 - 3 minutes or until softened.  Add ham and fry for a further 5 minutes or until ham is browned and crispy.  Remove from heat.

Put the mashed potato, vegetables, cheese, salt, pepper, thyme and bacon mixture into a large bowl.  Gently mix until all vegetables are mixed through the potatoes but are still chunky.

Using the same large frying pan add butter and melt over low heat.

Place the potato mix in the pan pressing down to compact mixture.  Cook on stove top for about 10 minutes.

Transfer to oven and cook for a further 20 - 30 minutes or until cooked through.

Serve immediately.



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