Leftover Makeover

While makeovers are popular with faces and human bodies, left over food also gets a makeover many times. Krishnan always remembered one such food item from his college days – “vadakari”. Vadakari used to be available in hotels in the mornings and it was made with the leftover masala vada from the previous day and other things like tomato, onions and spices were added to it. “Set Dosa” – soft plump dosas and 2 or 3 of them in a plate, was served with vadakari as the accompaniment. I made vadakari a few days back the OPOS (One Pot One Shot) way and Krishnan was over the moon.

Here’s the link to the OPOS vadakari video –  https://youtu.be/5js1nQdkbD8.

The picture below shows the vadakari that I made. I added coconut milk at the end and the dish was just outstanding. Even my mother who doesn’t try anything new actually enjoyed eating the vadakari.

The most regular makeover is of leftover idlis in South India. We add “molagapodi” (spicy lentil powder) to crumbled idlis and then make it into an upma. I had leftover dosa and wanted to add it to the same crumbled idli mix but since the dosa was from a hotel, it was stiff and non-crumbly. I cut it into pieces and put it in a mixie jar and dry ground it a couple of times – the result was well crumbled dosa that got made into upma. Am sure many people have done this several times over, I am just excited because I had never used the mixie before to crumble dosas since we mostly had home made ones and they crumble like idlis.


Another day I made the staple “Thengai satham” or coconut rice with leftover rice. I usually make the tamarind rice with leftover rice, but the coconut rice is also something that tastes just as good. My recipe is my mom-in-law’s recipe – for the “tadka” (seasoning), fry dry red chillies, urad dal (whole) and add lots of grated coconut and keep frying till it turns slightly reddish and the coconut loses moisture. Add in the cold rice and salt to taste. Final seasoning is to add roasted cashews. Mix all of it and you are done. Yes, the asafoetida is a must in the seasoning.

The last leftover makeover I did was today morning with yesterday’s rotis (flat bread). My dearest friend Geetu had crumbled Bajra rotis in the mixie and I borrowed that hack and crumbled leftover rotis in the mixie. I added jaggery, cold milk, and some raisins and homemade wheat flakes were ready for breakfast. It tastes yum and is a much healthier option than the wheat flakes that come out of a box.

Its not that I have a lot of leftover food. I just like experimenting with leftover food because its fun. Many times we just give the extra food to the help at home or eat it in its original form the next day. The idea is not to waste food. After being introduced to the OPOS way of cooking, there is hardly any wastage of food because the quantities are just enough for one meal.

As the week begins …. makeover the leftover work :):). Have a great day.


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