Taking the full measure of life

Using up a leftover vegetable tray

December 4th, 2007 · 3 Comments

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We can all use some lighter meals to counterbalance our holiday indulgences this time of year; that’s why I planned to have a (soy-free) vegetable stir-fry for dinner. Then I realized (bonus!) that I could use up some of the sliced vegetables that were sitting in our work fridge, left over from the party on Sunday. Everyone at work has gotten a bit sick of veggies in dip due to several parties lately, and I didn’t want the vegetables to go to waste.

Then I realized that the same would be true of most vegetable trays–they tend to contain stuff that would work well in a stirfry. So there you go the next time you have a veggie tray left and you’re dipped out–this is a great holiday time solution!

I saved money and prevented waste. (And for anyone who might be wondering, I work in a small office. No one would blink at me taking home some leftover veggies.)

When it came to making my stir-fry, I had to get a bit creative since I can’t have your basic stir-fry staple of soy sauce. Beyond the gluten in typical soy sauce, I can’t have any soy–gluten-free or not–at this point due to my soy allergy.

This is what I ended up combining in my stir-fry:

2-3 T. toasted sesame oil (this stuff is awesome)
1 stalk of green onions
1 chopped onion
3 cloves of garlic, pressed
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. fresh grated ginger
1 tsp. salt
several handfuls each of baby carrots (sliced in half long ways to cook more quickly, and added first), broccoli florets, cauliflower slices (the broccoli and cauliflower added 4 min. later), zucchini slices, and yellow squash slices (the last two added four minutes later again, and cooked for about three minutes).

In a separate pan, I toasted first 2 T of slivered almonds and then 2 T of sesame seeds.

As the veggies were finishing stir-frying, I stirred together in a ramekin these ingredients:

grated zest of 1/2 of one orange
juice of one orange
1 tsp. Sriracha hot sauce
2 tsp. honey

I tossed the mix, almonds, and sesame seeds into the wok and stirred it all together to heat it up. Then I quickly served it over rice; I didn’t want to leave the OJ mix in too long, or the veggies would have gotten soggy.

I can’t say I didn’t think the stir-fry would be better with a few dashes of soy sauce and some lovely tofu, but it was solidly good. Next time, even being a heat wimp, I might add a bit more Sriracha to it.

And it definitely made for a pretty meal.


Tags: 2/3 veggies · allergen-free recipes · celebrations & holidays · quick meals · vegetarian

3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Patricia Scarpin // Dec 5, 2007 at 5:08 am

    Sally, I feel miserable every time I have to toss something. Especially fresh produce. What a wonderful dish this is!
    And also, not many people I know like soy sauce. I love how you worked without it.

  • 2 carrie // Dec 5, 2007 at 7:44 am

    those are the best kinds of meals sometimes! The kinds that you make from stuff on hand that you don’t want to waste! Looks delicious! I just made a chicken casserole by doing something similar with leftovers last night!! 😉

  • 3 Migraineur // Dec 7, 2007 at 10:48 am

    I am always the one bringing home the leftover vegetable tray! Most of the stuff on it is also great for soup, though you may need to do a little chopping to make it the right size. I generally avoid the dip unless it’s in a container with a nutrition label – commercial dips are frequently loaded with things that no human, and especially not a migraineur, should consume.

    I really doubt most offices, of any size, would care whether the leftovers were pitched, eaten by employees on the job, or taken home.

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