School’s back in session for much of Southwest Virginia, which means kids everywhere are groaning about homework and parents are moaning at the thought of putting dinner on the table every night.
My friends with children all describe the same conundrum: By the time they get home from work and the kids get home from extracurricular activities, how do you fit in dinner, homework and a reasonable bedtime?
The key to cutting the fast-food budget and serving a relatively healthy meal every night is, of course, planning. This can be achieved by cooking extra over the weekend, but another proven solution involves turning one night’s meal into something easy and enticing the next evening.
In my household, the prospect of having something different for dinner every night is always more exciting than eating the same dish two or three nights in a row.
With that in mind, I developed a chart that begins with some popular and common courses: roasted or grilled chicken, pork roast, roast beef, hamburgers and mixed vegetables. Next, I did a little homework and came up with six different ideas for repurposing leftovers, including as a sandwich, salad, ethnic dish, casserole or pasta dish, soup or stew, and everyone’s favorite — breakfast for dinner.
Many of these suggestions are easy enough to throw together without specific instructions, but the more unusual options are spelled out in recipes you’ll find in the sidebar. I hope these will become a regular part of your weeknight repertoire, or will at least make a few nights easier on Mom and Dad.
Click here to see all of the ideas and recipes from today’s column.
What is your favorite way to repurpose leftovers?