Dairy and Eggs – such common items in the American household that we hardly need to discuss them…but then maybe something here will help you, and maybe you have an idea or two that will help me! Please comment, below.
So I’m sure we all know a zillion ways to use cheese, right? Salads, Casseroles, Sandwiches and so on. Here’s a couple more unusual things to do.
- Bleu Cheese – Put inside a hamburger or on top of a warm hamburger or steak. Make a quick dressing by crumbling it into a mixture of sour cream and/or mayonnaise.
- Cream Cheese – Make a spread by adding fruits or nuts and serve on bagels, toast or crackers. Do the same for a savory spread with bits of vegetables. Add dabs to hash browns when they are just finished cooking but still warm. Use in Pinwheels (tortilla roll-ups). Stir into spaghetti sauce. Stir into eggs.
- Feta Cheese – Stuff in a hamburger along with chopped olives. Use in pasta salads. Use in Greek salads.
- Odd bits and pieces of cheese – Break them up and whiz them together in a food processor for a Cheese Spread. Almost any mixture will work, just watch so that you don’t overpower it with one particular flavor. You can combine them all for a “generic” cheese sauce. Add herbs to either method to change it out.
- Soft Cheeses, other – May be used like cream cheese. Some will have a stronger, more savory flavor so keep that in mind.
- Freeze Cheese – Almost all cheese can be frozen and used later, although this will definately affect the texture. It will need to be used in something where it won’t matter rather than eaten out of hand or on sandwiches.
- Freezing – While many freeze milk, I’ve never particularly like the taste. And believe me, in my childhood our milk was delivered early and even though the box was insulated, I’ve had my share of milk that was frozen in the cold, Iowa winters. Seems fine for recipes, though, or perhaps coffee.
- Buttermilk – Have leftover from a recipe? Use in a salad dressing: mix with mayonnaise and add your favorite herbs. Use it in mashed potatoes or twice baked for all or part of milk. Marinade chicken or lamb. Common recipes that include buttermilk are: gingerbread, Soda Bread, Donuts, Quick Breads, Muffins, Pancakes, Biscuits, shortbread, & Scones, so if you’re planning on making one, plan on another for a later date, or make several and freeze.
- Cream – Keeps a long time until you open it, then what do you do if there is some left over? Add to soups to make a “cream of”, whip it and put it on all kinds of desserts or even pancakes. If you are using milk in almost any recipe, substitute the cream and it will be a little richer. Put in your mashed potatoes. Brush the tops of biscuits or scones with it. Transfer to a small clean jar to store in the refrigerator and it will keep a tad longer. Put it in a jar and give to the kids and have them shake it till it forms butter. You can make a caramel or butterscotch sauce; you’ll only need 1/2 cup of cream.
- Milk – It’s not recommended to use sour milk in recipes. If you need to use up milk before it goes bad, consider any type of pudding or white sauce. Try freezing in ice-cube trays for use in smoothies; You’ll use about 7 milk cubes, 1/2 cup fruit (frozen if possible) 1/2 cup of milk or juice, and a few crumbled cookies, optional.
- Sour Cream: Have a smidge leftover and not planning on baked potatoes or Mexican food? Just add right into your mashed potatoes or twice baked. Put a dab on split pea or lentil soup. Mix 2 -1 with melted butter, stir well and add chives or parsley and refrigerate to stretch out for a potato topping.
- Yogurt – drop a little bit of plain on top of a soup such as lentil to add some richness. Use in Meat loaf in place of milk. Lemon yogurt is wonderful over a mix of honeydew and strawberries – just mix in a few poppy seeds, maybe add a squirt of lemon or a little zest and gently toss (use right away or it can be watery.) You can use yogurt in muffins, too – match the flavor to the flavor of the muffin. Make frozen yogurt pops, very refreshing.
- Cream Sauces – A bit of cream sauce or white sauce is easy to incorporate into something like a souffle or croquette – even a dip or spread. (Just add a bit of cheese and seasoning of your choice…)
- Egg Wash – If I’ve made up a little egg wash I hate to throw away the remainder. Just add a bit of milk and have a piece of French toast for a quick lunch or snack. For food safety reasons, you need to do this right away, not save the egg wash, and take care you are not contaminating the mixture.
- Egg Whites – save in refrigerator for up to 4 days in a tightly sealed container, use for merengue or egg white omelets.
- Egg Yolks – gently poach, sieve and garnish salads. Make custard.
- Hard Boiled – Deviled eggs, egg salad sandwiches, add to potato salad or green salad, especially spinach salad or chef’s salad – this is pretty much a no brainer, right?
- Freezing eggs – Raw or cooked – get it right from the horse’s mouth at the National Egg Board.
I’m sure there are dozens and dozens of uses for left over dairy and eggs – any one out there have a go to idea to add? As a matter of fact, there are probably items I haven’t even thought about here!