I'm a leftovers person. I'm liable to enjoy leftovers more than the actual meal of origin and I like the challenge of figuring out what to do with old potatoes (frittata) or even wilted salad (hippie-style veggie wrap!). Rice, more than anything else, is a cheap and abundant staple that I just can't abide putting in the trash. The other night I made sloppy joes for some friends, one of which is gluten intolerant (for real). I made what ended up being way too much converted rice. Not my favorite rice, by the way, it reminds me of summer camp mess halls. But it felt like the appropriate kind of rice and I had a box I'd been wanting to get rid of. So maybe 1/4 of the rice was eaten on sloppy joe night and the rest is asking, "who's the queen of leftovers now?"
Last night I had a dinner of leftover sloppy joe meat mixed with some of the rice and some cheese mixed in: the kind of meal a divorced dad would cook on his night with the kids. Tonight I got a little more inventive and with a hunk of leftover ham (from a potluck on Saturday) and some fresh collards (from my winter CSA), I made southern fried rice. Just sautee the julienned collards over high heat with salt and garlic, throw in some diced ham and then add a scant cup of cooked rice. Finally tossed in a beaten egg to get that "homestyle" body, some hot sauce and boom: Dad's new girlfriend is coming over for dinner!...metaphorically speaking.