Budget Stretchers: Leftover Makeovers: Corn Chowder, Squash Casserole

 I have two Leftover Makeovers to share today.

I believe that we can get double mileage from our food dollars if we creatively use leftovers.  It's my theory that starting with a plain cooked dish and morphing it into a not so plain dish is the way to insure I get more for food dollar.

A couple of weeks ago, I steamed 4 ears of corn in the microwave.  We ate two as corn on the cob and I had two leftover.  I chose to cut the cooked kernels from the cob:
I made corn chowder.  I'm sorry to say that this was also the day I was preparing the Southern Style Cream Corn and I forgot all about showing you the finished product!  However, here's my recipe:

Corn Chowder

1 quart chicken broth
2 cups (more or less) cooked whole kernel corn
1 cup diced potatoes
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 tsp (or to taste) minced garlic
1 tall can (15 ounces?) evaporated milk
1/4 cup flour
 Salt and pepper to taste

I started by slightly cooking the potatoes, onion, bell pepper in a little oil, just to begin the cooking and add a little extra flavor from the slight caramelization that resulted.  Then I added garlic and broth, salt and pepper.  Just cook until the potatoes are tender, add in corn.  I mixed the flour and canned milk. I stirred into the soup as I drizzled in the milk mixture and heated until thickened.

We could eat corn chowder just anytime of year but for some reason, I tend to only think of it in summer when corn is fresh.  This recipe works very well with canned (not necessary to drain) or frozen whole kernel corn.  There's a recipe in several of my cookbooks for Turkey Corn Chowder which is recommended for using up the leftover turkey at Thanksgiving or Christmas, so keep that in mind, too.

Here's my second recipe:

Squash Casserole
2 cups yellow squash cooked with 1/2 medium onion(drain well)   
Salt and pepper to taste
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 egg well beaten
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar
1 sleeve buttery crackers crushed fine
1/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

Mix cooked squash and onions with seasonings, mayonnaise, egg and 1 cup cheddar.  Put into a greased casserole and top with the cracker crumbs and cheddar.  Bake at 350F for about 25 minutes, checking it now and then.  The casserole should puff slightly and be just barely firm to the touch in the center.

Now you might note that my ingredients are in a pie dish. I wanted just enough for us to have for a meal and frankly I had a little more. It was very tasty for my solo supper that evening.  I like squash casserole so it was a nice bonus to have that bit extra.  You can increase this recipe easily.  I think for 6 you could use about 4 cups squash and onions.  I steamed mine.  I put the cut squash and diced onion in the frying pan and popped on the lid.  You can add 1/4 cup water, but if you cook it on low and let it alone the squash do steam nicely all by themselves.

I've altered the recipe as well by adding in a bit of diced jalapeno...

You can see here that I prepped my casserole for the next day.  I put waxed paper and aluminum foil over the pie plate, lay the bread crumbs on top and put an egg (shell and all) in a small dish on top of that (so I'd remember to add it in).  I took out the next day and mixed it all up, put on the topping and had my dish ready in seconds.  And yes, you guessed it...I forgot to take a photo of the finished product once more! lol

These photos were taken by my husband who left this image on the camera along with the requested photos:
His parody of 'The Dish Ran Away With the Spoon"...He's a funny man, lol.


Anonymous said...

Guess what I will be doing with the yellow squash I got out of the garden this week? :-) Thanks a bunch!!! For some reason this year all the corn on the cob we have gotten has been tough...I was soooo glad I only got two ears each time!! The watermelons this year though,.....they were superb!! Sarah

unprocessedgal said...

oh, you are such a blessing to find! unfortunately, I am allergic to dairy and hubs asked me a few years ago (for his own sake) to find alternatives. Cooking with a nut milk is iffy, so I haven't. Any ideas for substitutions?

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing the squash casserole recipe. I can't wait to try it!

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