How to stop Christmas leftovers going to waste

CHRISTMAS meat can be the gift that keeps on giving, say the Brisbane chefs urging the public to make the most of leftovers.

Rydges South Bank head chef Justin Newbury called food wastage a massive problem, one that became significantly worse over the Christmas period.

"People get a little bit worried cooking for families and often make more than they need to," Mr Newbury said.

"Recipes that incorporate Christmas leftovers are an easy way to minimise wastage."

Statistics from Foodwise show Australians throw away 20 per cent of the food they buy, but Emporium Hotel South Bank executive chef Chris Norman said it didn't have to be the case.

"After putting so much love into your Christmas dinner, you don't want the leftovers to go to waste," said Mr Norman.

"There are so many options to choose from when reinventing yesterday's feast, perfect when unexpected guests drop in.

"Served with a chilled wine or beer, of course."

Head chef and owner of Eat Street's Poulet and Pork Peter Dressler said Christmas meats could make the perfect addition to Boxing Day salads.

"I personally always feel like something light and fresh after a big day of Christmas indulging," Mr Dressler said.


Rydges South Bank head chef Justin Newbury. Picture: Liam Kidston
Rydges South Bank head chef Justin Newbury. Picture: Liam Kidston




Leftover legends



Justin Newbury, head chef at Rydges South Bank


Seafood Bisque

Prawns 500g

Crab 500g

Tomato paste 100g

Tomatoes x 2.5

Fennel x 3

Carrots x 3

Onion x 1

Celery x 1

Brandy 150ml

Vegetable Stocks 2lt

Butter 80g

Flour 80g

Cream 200ml


Roast prawns and crabs with tomato paste

Cut vegetables into mirepoix

Put vegetable oil into large pot

Saute vegetables

Add seafood

Deglaze with brandy

Add vegetable stock and bring up to a simmer for 20 mins

Strain liquid

In a new pot make a roux with the butter and flour

Slowly whisk in seafood stock

Bring back up to a simmer

Add the cream

Check seasoning and serve


Chris Norman, executive chef at Emporium Hotel


The Best Turkey Sandwich

Sourdough bread


Cranberry sauce


Rocket leaves

Whole grain mustard

Leftover turkey


Grill bacon on a tray until crispy then remove, but save juice.

Brush juice over both sides of two slices of sourdough bread adding a little butter if needed. Place in this order cranberry sauce, plenty of thinly

sliced turkey, rocket leaves, bacon and a good slice or two of brie.

Place in a sandwich press, toast and serve with some chips and a quality beer.


Peter Dressler, chef/owner, Poulet and Pork


Roast Chicken/Turkey/Pork with tamarind and ginger dressing, red papaya and crushed peanuts

Roast meat 400g

Tamarind puree 6 tbsp

Coconut sugar 1 tbsp

Light soy sauce 1 tsp

Grated ginger 1 tsp

Two handfuls of any leftover leafy greens (spinach, iceberg lettuce, mesculin mix etc)

1 red papaya peeled and seeds removed then sliced into strips

Crushed and salted peanuts or cashews 50g

1 small cucumber rough diced

2 green shallots finely sliced

Fresh picked mint, sliced

Red chilli, finely sliced


Mix the tamarind, sugar, soy and ginger and dress the meat.

Combine the leafy greens, cucumber, shallots, mint and chilli.

Start building layers by adding the greens first then the meat, followed by the papaya and finishing with the crushed nuts on top.

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