Holiday Leftovers

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I loooove holiday leftovers, don’t you? In fact, I sometimes look forward to the leftovers while making the holiday dinner and end up making even more of some of my favorites. With the holiday (aka leftover) season fast approaching, here are some great ideas to store and use leftover veggies.

Artichokes

Did you know that the majority of the artichoke is edible? If your holiday stuffing recipe only calls for the heart of the artichoke, save the petals and the stem to eat later. To take advantage of your artichoke purchase, use these storage tips and satisfy your artichoke cravings when they hit you later.

  1. For refrigerated storage of fresh artichokes, slice a dime width off the artichoke stem, sprinkle with water and refrigerate in an airtight plastic bag. It’s best to cook them within five to seven days after purchase.
  2. Your leftover cooked artichokes should be cooled completely and covered before putting in the refrigerator, where they will keep up to one week. You can even freeze them for about a month if you plan to throw them on the grill later. We do grill year round in California!
  3. Mix the chopped stems into a simple dip of mayo, balsamic vinegar, garlic and parmesan and serve with the petals. We have a recipe for that delicious and a great appetizer idea too!

Brussels Sprouts

Keep unwashed Brussels sprouts loose or on the stalk, in a plastic bag in the crisper section of the refrigerator. Make sure to remove any wilted or yellow leaves before storing. Although they will keep for up to a week, they are best prepared within 3-4 days of purchase, as their taste gets stronger and less sweet with time.

If you want to prep your veggie ahead of time, do so only 1 – 2 days before you are preparing your dish. Store the trimmed or shredded Brussels sprouts in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

The “on-demand” Brussels sprouts recipe on our holiday table is the Apple-Cranberry Brussels Sprouts Medley. This is a perfect side and a fantastic leftover to munch on with your turkey sandwich.

Cauliflower

Store unwrapped cauliflower in a loosely sealed plastic bag with a paper towel tucked in the bottom to capture any moisture, stem side down. This will prevent the head of the cauliflower from spoiling from any moisture build up.

Whole heads of cauliflower can be stored in the refrigerator for 4 – 7 days, while florets will keep up to 4 days. A great weekend after recipe for your extra cauliflower is Cauliflower Hash Browns. Next to some of that leftover dressing, this will satisfy your holiday food hangover in no time!

Herbs

Chances are, you purchased more herbs than you need for holiday recipes. I always do! Here’s a great way to maximize that purchase. 

Place the herbs on a plate and let them dry in a cool place for a few days. Then, store your leftovers in a resealable container in the refrigerator. Voila!

Different kinds of herbs have varying shelf lives, but a general rule is that your dried herbs will last for 1 year, leaving you plenty of time to try a multitude of new recipes!

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Diana McClean
Growing up on California's central coast, I enjoyed delicious artichokes around the family dinner table and always on Christmas Eve! It is beyond perfection that I now market artichokes for a living and get to share the Ocean Mist Farms story and my love of all things fresh.
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