old made new

Like many of my compatriots, my New Year’s Day dinner looked like this:photo 1 (7)

Hoppin’ John for luck, collard greens for money, and pork for lovin’. I used classic recipes from Paula Dean, with a few adjustments. But I’m not here to talk about that. Today I’m dealing with massive amounts of leftovers, and I’m using my memory of the most delicious soup recipe I made up last year. It’s probably going to be a tad different, because I’m adding other leftover bits, and those vary. But luckily, that’s what makes a good soup great! This recipe is not so much measurements and ingredients as it is the spirit of creativity and resourcefulness. This is why I’m not a baker.

I had half a package of Jimmy Dean hot sausage from breakfast, so I rolled little bite-sized balls and cooked them in a little vegetable oil.

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Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

We can’t let those brown burny bits go to waste, so after I took the sausage out and drained the grease, I poured a little champagne into the pot to help loosen and scrape them up. They’ll add so much flavor to the soup. It smells amazing already. If you haven’t resolved against it, add a little butter.

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Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

After I scraped up the sausage from the pot, I added a couple cups of chicken stock. Any kind of stock will do.

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Next, I added my leftover hoppin’ john and greens. I added all the liquid from the beans, a ladle full or two of the pot likker from the collards, and a large can of diced tomatoes with all the liquid. Then I added about a cup of brown rice. It should soak up a lot of the liquid, so I also added some more water, about 2 cups.Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

A little of whatever fresh herbs you have lying around goes in next, I added thyme, and then the sausage. Cover and simmer until the rice is ready.
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Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Best of all, you’ll have lots of leftovers to stock your freezer and pull out on a lazy day. Though I don’t know how long it will last. My husband ate two bowls of it already.

What’s your favorite thing to do with leftovers?

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