Thanksgiving Leftover Brunch

So many leftovers you don’t know what to do with?! It’s the holiday time; which means food, food, and more food. Everyone loves a Thanksgiving feast; indulging in all of our favorite comfort foods, even the next day – but then we get bored, and there is still so much food left in the fridge. I am here to re-create Thanksgiving leftovers into a brunch beautiful for guests.

Read on, below!

thanksgivingbrunchcollage

Most people don’t like Sunday; for it brings the Monday blues, but for me – it is my favorite. Sunday is a day when I don’t feel guilty doing the things I love; you see – I love breakfast, but I don’t LOVE getting up for breakfast time; this is where brunch and I make the perfect fit. Not wanting to have my typical daily green smoothie; I got creative in the kitchen with some leftovers and I couldn’t have been more pleased with the outcome.

I took about a 1/2 cup of leftover mashed potatoes and 1/4 cup savory mashed butternut squash mixing together with 1/4 cup @kodiakcakes (for binding purposes) and a little bit of water.

Next I took the trusty ‘ol waffle iron and sprayed generously with cooking spray; I spooned the thick mixture to the middle and closed the waffle maker. (This makes a smaller rustic looking waffle rather than a full circular one, you can always take up the full waffle surface if you’d like!)

Have you ever poached an egg? Well I haven’t but I love their presentation and so I thought I’d give it a whirl! (See what I did there?) ok, moving on; how to poach an egg:

-Step one is to take a large pot and fill (I used a 4.5 quart) with water and bring just to a low boil

-It is best to use fresh eggs when poaching but first crack your egg carefully into a small bowl for even pouring

-Add 1 Tbs white vinegar to the water and take a large spoon or spatula and stir the water creating a vortex; when the water has a nice whirl to it, pour in your egg!

-The egg will cook for about 3 minutes when you will need a hand strainer to remove the perfectly poached egg

Now that your squash/potato/waffle is almost done and your poached egg is ready to go; I melted some white cheddar (can use yellow as well just had white in the fridge shredded up) about the size of your little waffle on a piece of tinfoil (wanting the edges to get crispy) and put it in the toaster oven.

Not only do we always have leftover turkey; but bacon after Thanksgiving! (Wrapping parts of the bird with thick cut bacon slices while baking gives an amazing flavor to the outer skin, plus who doesn’t love eating bacon with well, anything!)

My layers and toppings included:
▫️(bottom) Mashed potato and savory squash whey buckwheat waffle
▫️Crispy toaster oven Cheddar
▫️Slice of bacon cut in half
▫️Poached egg
▫️Sweet potato casserole
▫️Cranberry Sauce
▫️A dollop of maple syrup

The possibilities are endless though; you could even top with slices of turkey and pour on some gray for a more hearty Brunch (think chicken and waffles!) But now it’s Turk ‘n Waffs!

Alongside I paired with @gtskombucha Trilogy with fresh cranberries and rosemary. If you are not familiar with kombucha; I wrote an entire blogpost on it here. I absolutely love kombucha; it’s a great alternative to soda, alcohol, or fruit juices; plus topped with a few cranberries and rosemary it just looks so fancy and festive! Hosting a party no one would even know there isn’t alcohol (well there could be traces of it in kombucha but you know what I mean!) when presented like this in a stemless wine glass it is picture perfect.

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I did; if you are interested in other ideas and recipes to re-invent Thanksgiving leftovers comment below and let me know!

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Kombucci?! Kombucha; Same Same but Different

Forewarning; if you don’t like talking about poop, if you don’t even like the word “poop” “mierda” “cacca” “Khn sèx” “lem” “prýmni” and so on…this post may not be for you…but it’s beneficial, so let’s make an exception!

First of all; what is kombucha, it has to be more than just a Whole Foods hype buzz phrase right!? In fact; it is not just another health phase, kombucha has been around for thousands of years.

Let’s dive even deeper into what it is exactly…

Derived from black tea, sugar (cane, honey, or fruit), bacteria, and yeast. The combination of yeast and bacteria cause the tea and sugar to ferment. Considering it is made from tea; kombucha does have a small amount of caffeine (usually less than 15mg per bottle.)

kombuchacollage

If you are familiar with the “mother” in apple cider vinegar; you will notice those little things you see floating at the bottom, it might look a little questionable– but it is the source of so many of kombucha’s benefits. It can also be used to make new kombucha!

I was first introduced to kombucha on the Appalachian Trail 4 years ago; and love reaping it’s benefits! At first I was a little apprehensive, but once I got caught with a GI virus/bug/whatevermakesyoupoopallday type of situation–I became best friends with this naturally fizzy beverage.

During the fermentation process; it becomes effervescent and contains vinegar, b-vitamins, probiotics, acetic, gluconic, and lactic acid– hence the beneficial aid to my shitty situation…(had to, I know cheesy.)

What turns hops and wheat into beer? How does grapes become wine? Who knows how rice turns rice into sake? You guessed it (or maybe you didn’t, but I will tell you) fermentation. Which means, kombucha does have trace amounts of alcohol; in reality though it is less than .5% alcohol. This low percentage allows it to avoid being classified as an “alcoholic beverage.”

While probiotics and good gut buggies are great; we won’t stop there, because kombucha’s benefits don’t! As a result of the fermentation process it has iron; which helps hemoglobin, and in turn increases the oxygen we get to our cells. This cellular level stimulation improves energy levels, especially if you drink kombucha on a regular basis (steady for 2–3 weeks.) It is also a great source of anti-oxidants; which work to combat free-radicals in our bodies.

According to a 2000 review, “It has been claimed that Kombucha teas help cure asthma, cataracts, diabetes, diarrhea, gout, cold sores, insomnia and rheumatism. They are purported to shrink the prostate and expand the libido, remove wrinkles, relieve hemorrhoids, lower hypertension, prevent cancer, and promote general well-being.”

If you remember a couple posts back I talked about the benefits of apple cider vinegar; Kombucha, in congruence with a healthy diet and exercise will greatly benefit you. The acetic acid and polyphenols will also aid in the weight loss process. Acetic acid which is also found in apple cider vinegar.

Please remember though; there is sugar found in any fermentation process, which means don’t go drinking 16oz–32oz a day. I have found replacing a beer at the beach with 8oz of kombucha is just as satisfying, or a glass while cooking dinner as a substitution to wine. Please note no where am I replacing alcohol consumption with kombucha; that is just a coincidence that could and would work for you–I still occasionally drink beer and wine!

Cheers!