Holidays are always that special time of the year when friends and family get-together. Gathering around the table with holiday cheer, stories and laughter. Food is always a big part of this season. The kitchen is bustling with energy, the stove and oven working full time. Food connects us all and brings us together like nothing else does. Sharing our meals with our loved ones is probably the most memorable part of the holidays. Connecting the older generation with the younger and enjoying that special bond. Planning the menu, shopping and then execution – it’s quite a lot of work.

However, managing leftovers is another story altogether. With the holidays behind us and nothing exciting to look forward too, no one really wants to eat the leftover food that we all have in our refrigerator. After all the cooking and hours in front of the stove, no one is looking forward to that.
There are frowns, sighs and refusals. The best option is to recycle the food into something new.

The easiest and smartest way to go is the semi-homemade-leftover route. Get some ready to eat rice, add the leftover veggies, play a bit with flavors and you got a new dish that will bring a smiles and use up the leftovers.

Veggie Rice Pilaf

Made with leftover oven roasted green beans seasoned with black pepper and salt, tossed in olive oil. Honey rosemary carrots – carrots cooked in water, butter and honey, seasoned with rosemary and salt. Sweet & sour Brussels sprouts, Brussels sprouts roasted in olive oil seasoned with red pepper flakes and salt, drizzled with white vinegar and honey.

1 packet Jasmine rice or Basmati rice from Tasty Bite
1/4 cup or less of glazed carrots
1/4 to 1/2 cup oven roasted green beans
1/4 to 1/2 cup roasted sweet & sour Brussels sprouts
1 tsp butter
1/2 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp fresh sage
Red peppercorn

Chop the leftover veggies into tiny strips.

Heat the packet of rice according to instructions. In a pan heat 1 tsp butter add rosemary and sage and veggies, now add the hot rice and toss. Now add some crushed red pepper. Serve hot.

Rosemary and sage are strong herbs, they pair well together. However if you prefer to use one of them that’s a great taste too. If you have used parsley with your veggies, add lemon zest and garlic toasted mildly in butter to your pilaf. What ever herb and spices you have used, make sure they pair well when you incorporate them in the pilaf.