Making Leftovers New

First off, it has been a long haul…..literally.  Hubby, Eric, and I just completed over a 3,500 miles of cross country driving.  No we are not truckers  and after this road trip are glad of it.  I for one admire those long-haul drivers.  We went on the very first road trip in retirement, traveling across Texas.  That in itself is a major feat. There were visits to family and friends that were long overdue.  During our travels I cooked in 4 different kitchens and enjoyed good food along the way.  There is nothing like sharing a meal with someone to build a lasting bond.

I have been home now for a few days and working to recover from the last several weeks.  On Saturday, Eric grilled steaks.  Delicious!  There were leftovers and thanks to a heads up from my son-in-law I found that medium rare steak makes a delicious opportunity for trying my hand at using leftovers.  I L-O-V-E Penzeys Spices.  Have been using them for the last several years.  Even through mail order and paying postage I find that they are less expensive and so much better than other brands.

Last summer when I was visiting my daughters family, my son-in-law suggested that I make a stir-fry using some leftover beef and Penzeys Chinese Five Spice Powder.  Since then I have used the recipe and of course personalized it to make it mine.  I’m not sure I’ve ever used the exact same veggies but the stir-fry marinade stays pretty consistent.  Get creative with the veggies.  What I’m listing are suggestions.  The recipe lends itself to personal interpenetration.  While I used beef this time around it also is great to use a chicken breast or boneless chicken thighs or even thinly sliced pork. 

Left-over Stir-Fry

1 medium orange, zest and juice
3 tablespoons soy sauce*
2 teaspoon Chinese Five Spice Powder
1 teaspoon honey
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
crushed red pepper, to taste
1/2 to 1 pound beef, thinly sliced or
1/2 to 1 pound chicken, thinly sliced or
1/2 to 1 pound pork, thinly sliced
3 green onions, sliced (use both green and white portions)

In a large bowl mix together the orange juice, zest, soy sauce, Five Spice Powder, honey, garlic, black pepper and red pepper flakes.  Once mixed well toss in the meat of your choice.  Allow to sit at room temperature while prepping the veggies.


4 to 6 medium mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 medium carrot, cleaned and cut in thin strips or
a handful or baby cut carrots cut in strips
1 medium red bell pepper, sliced in thin strips
1 to 2 cups broccoli florets, cut in bite size pieces
6 stalks fresh asparagus, sliced on a diagonal in 1 inch slices 
cooking oil
In a wok or heavy skillet heat a small amount of cooking oil.  When warmed add in the mushrooms and cook until browned.   Add in carrot and cook a few minutes then toss in bell pepper, broccoli and asparagus.  Allow to cook a few minutes and then stir in meat and marinade.  Continue to cook until vegetables are crisp tender and meat is either warmed or cooked through.  Serve over steamed brown rice for a wonderful meal.
Note:  If cooking gluten free please read labels as not all soy sauces are created equal.  My personal preference is San-J Organic Tamari.

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