Party Leftovers = Gluten-Free Ingredients

When it comes to feeding people at parties, my philosophy is along the lines of “too much isn’t nearly enough”. No matter how often I swear I won’t overdo it on the food, I still find myself making too much, buying too much, and wondering what to do with the leftovers.

When it comes to meats and vegetables, I try to get them packaged up and refrigerated as quickly as possible so they’ll be available for meals later in the week. Likewise for salads that can be served again — I don’t saved dressed green salads as they get mushy. Heck, I rarely serve green salads at parties for that very reason.

Also, between you and me, it turns out most of my guests opt for the less healthy options over the healthy options. I don’t blame them. I go straight for the chips, too! Continue reading “Party Leftovers = Gluten-Free Ingredients”

Chicken Chilaquiles

I love leftovers, but sometimes figuring out how to repurpose them is a challenge. Especially when it comes to party leftovers, like, oh, tortilla chips. Oh sure, it’s easy enough eat them in their natural state (and believe me, I do!), but you can only have chips for dinner so often before people start to talk.

Chilaquiles, with or without chicken, are a perfect solution. All you need are gluten-free tortilla chips, salsa, some protein, and a bit of cheese. Or skip the protein. It’s your call. Seriously, this recipe can be modified, reconfigured, or reimagined to suit your every taste and whim.

If you do this right, you are hitting a leftover trifecta: chicken, tortilla chips, and salsa. That’s a win!

Chicken Enchiladas

Easy, easy, easy weeknight dish. And versatile. There is no right way to make enchiladas…don’t want to roll your filling in your tortilla? Go ahead, make layers like lasagna. Change up the ingredients to suit yourself. It’s all good.

Since I make my own chicken stock, I often have leftover (bland) boiled chicken. This is a great dish for using up extra chicken, and the heat can be adjusted to suit your tastes. You can make this red or green — though, in all honesty, I prefer a green salsa. The tanginess of the tomatillo makes my tastebuds happy.

Also, I prefer salsa to pre-made enchilada sauce. For reasons that escape me, the sauces sold by my local store all contain wheat. Weird. Your mileage may vary.

Chicken and Andouille Jambalaya

Jambalaya is most strongly associated with Louisiana, though friends from Mississippi claim it as their own. Every person who makes jambalaya has his or her own secret recipe — and, if you spend about five minutes searching for recipes on Google, you will discover dozens of variations of this classic dish.

Put another way: this recipe is just a starting point for your own version of jambalaya. My recipe anticipates you will have plenty of time to cook this dish…but, as you will see, there are plenty of opportunities to speed up the meal if time is short.

There are two major types of jambalaya: Creole, which contains tomato and is often associated with New Orleans, Cajun, which relies upon browned veggies and meat for a wonderful smoky flavor. My recipe blends the best of both styles, featuring chicken, spicy andouille sausage, and, when it’s on sale, shrimp.

Needless to say, jambalaya is a great party dish because the recipe can easily be doubled. It’s also a great dish for crockpots.