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Among the other things I cooked over the 4th of July long weekend, I was tasked with making potato salad for our picnic outing. Well, I went out and bought a 5lb bag of red potatoes, and cooked the whole bag, because I was concerned that we "wouldn't have enough" because friends were coming over to eat with us this week.

Well, after a picnic and a cookout yesterday, with friends coming over twice, we -still- got at least 2lbs of potato salad left. I'll probably eat at least 1lb over the next few days, but I'm sure a good amount will go to waste. Rachel is sick of it.

Anyone else have this sickness?

Edited by Jason Perlow (log)

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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I made a cracker recipe from one of Alton Brown's books and thought it'd be a good idea to double it. They took much longer to make than I expected, and I ended up thinking they were gross. They sat around for weeks, while I tried to pawn them off on others and left them out for birds. Ended up throwing most of them out.

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Among the other things I cooked over the 4th of July long weekend, I was tasked with making potato salad for our picnic outing. Well, I went out and bought a 5lb bag of red potatoes, and cooked the whole bag, because I was concerned that we "wouldn't have enough" because friends were coming over to eat with us this week.

Well, after a picnic and a cookout yesterday, with friends coming over twice, we -still- got at least 2lbs of potato salad left.

Anyone else have this sickness?

I made a corned ham for Christmas even though I was the only one staying home for the holiday, even my most casual friends had gone out of town, and no one was visiting until New Year's -- and then I ordered a four-pound chaudin and six pounds of sausage from Poche's. I won't go so far as to say I got sick of pork, but I came dangerously close.

Usually I make huge batches of chili, tomato sauce, and coq au vin, because it just seems to come out better than if I make a single night's (or two nights') worth. And lately I've really been craving turkey, so instead of getting something reasonable like those turkey breast cutlets, I'll probably wind up stuffing and roasting a whole bird and eating the leftovers until August.

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Oh yeah. I blame it on my Jewish heritage. It's not a real celebration, and you're not showing real love, unless you greet your guests with that proverbial groaning board thing. Ess, mein kindele, god forbid you should go hungry! :laugh:

I also have an analogous problem cooking for myself as a sole householder. Lots of really cool things to cook just don't quite come off as well unless you make a goodly-sized batch of the stuff--plus it seems such a waste of effort to go through an elaborate preparation just to make a couple of servings' worth.

Yeah, there is such a thing as freezing leftovers ... except some leftovers lend themselves to freezing a bit better than others. So, I'm continually doing this leftovers-balancing act. I've had to make some informal rules for myself, such as: I must really think twice or three times about making a new leftovers-producing batch of anything if there are still a bunch of older leftovers languishing in the fridge. (Although sometimes that problem is solvable by surveying all existing leftovers and purging any that have started to go biohazard.)

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Every October I do it...buy a whole bag (bushel) of green chiles to roast. Then I spend hours upon hours skinning them and de-seeding them. Then I re-pack them for use for the rest of the year. By the time October rolls around again, I start the whole process over by pitching about 3/4 of the previous bushel...I just never learn. But there is NOTHING like the aroma of roasting green chiles.

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I did it with cole slaw for our daughter's grad party weekend before last, but I blame it on my dad. I was rushed off my feet with it and several other projects and my folks offered to shop for me at Sam's Club. I'd never bought any before, but I thought Sam's had bags of pre-shredded cole slaw mix. I didn't know exactly how big they were, but I thought maybe bigger than the ones at a regular grocery. NEEDING to save time, I asked them to get a couple of bags of that. Dad got FOUR BIG bags. I made three of them into slaw, which made two Big Orange Bowls packed full. At the party, we ate maybe half of one bowl. The next day for a get-together/shower, I brought leftovers (this was vinegar/oil slaw, so leftovers are good) and we ate maybe another half bowl. I ate slaw for days and barely made a dent. I finally enriched the compost heap. Blech!

~ Lori in PA

My blog: http://inmykitcheninmylife.blogspot.com/

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"Cooking is not a chore, it is a joy."

- Julia Child

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Guilty, I'm glad I'm not the only one. 2 gal. of gumbo, and about a quart and a half of salsa (we're not even bringing that to the party), there is already hotdogs and hamburgers, and I had already purchased some sausages.

*edit: to serve my fiance and I, her parents, and maybe two or three more older folks.

Edited by coquus (log)
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i too have the disease! is there a twelve step program?

i blame it on working in restaurants and not understanding the concept of only prepping for two people...

what's worse is my husband doesn't really love leftovers so i end up eating most of them.

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This is a fine tradition in my family. The old family tale is that for my christening my mom made sloppy joes. A lot of sloppy joes. Enough that after serving 12 people, she froze the leftovers which were then served at Christmas. And then New Years. And for years after when my mother would invite my godparents to dinner, they would say "Are we having sloppy joes?"

Then potatoes. Every Thanksgiving my mother would buy a 5 lb bag of potatoes and make them all into mashed potatoes. It's a lot of potatoes.

And the macaroni salad. She decided to make a macaroni salad for a 4th of July one year. She quadrupled the recipe (first problem) and didn't notice until it was too late that the measurements were for cooked macaroni, not dry, so the quadrupled recipe was really more like octupled (if that's even a word!)

The irony to all of this is that my mother hates leftovers. Not even cold pizza. She just won't eat them.

I am much better than my mom with food proportions. I usually end up making just enough for what's needed, with maybe lunch for the husband next day left over. Except for mashed potatoes. While I don't make a 5lb bag, I usually end up with ... a lot.

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We have a "luau" every May long weekend (Victoria Day), and have been doing pulled pork and various other smoked pig items the last couple years. We ALWAYS end up with at least 2 or 3 lbs of extra pulled pork.

IMO this is not a sickness, just really good planning since neither my wife nor I gets much of a meal during the party as we're the hosts. Absolutely nothing wrong with leftover pig :biggrin:

A.

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i too have the disease!  is there a twelve step program?

i blame it on working in restaurants and not understanding the concept of only prepping for two people...

what's worse is my husband doesn't really love leftovers so i end up eating most of them.

Yesterday I presented to about 40 cooks and chefs (some of which had never had true bbq) a brisket (12 lbs), two butts and two shoulders (36 pounds of pork all day)

as well as:

corn bread (jalepeno, plain)

boston baked beans 2 gallons homemade

southern green beans 7 lbs precook

coleslaw (3 heads green, two red, 8 carrots

creamed corn, 1 gallon (30 cobs)

onion dip

homemade bbq sauce (=mark's recipe)

german potato salad 5lbs worth

I'm a mega-place'r and there's not much I can do about it. Usually, I'm sick of the 'cue after I'm done (the smell sticks in my hair, nose and mouth) so I can't have sandwiches until two days later, but my smoker's 5 flights downstairs now, so I get a little less smoke on me, and a little more excersise. This time I actually had a sandwich on the day of the bbq!

does this come in pork?

My name's Emma Feigenbaum.

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Well, it was Dorothy Parker who quipped, "Eternity is two people and a ham."

I'm constantly overestimating the amount of potato salad I need to bring to picnics and BBQs (but it looks so skimpy if I make just half the amount), and pea soup (made to use up the hame bone) and barley soup (made to use up the turkey carcass) regularly grows past our freezer capacity.

Our latest leftovers are cantaloupe, which I swear has become twice as much cut into cubes as it was whole.

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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We have a "luau" every May long weekend (Victoria Day), and have been doing pulled pork and various other smoked pig items the last couple years.  We ALWAYS end up with at least 2 or 3 lbs of extra pulled pork.

IMO this is not a sickness, just really good planning since neither my wife nor I gets much of a meal during the party as we're the hosts.  Absolutely nothing wrong with leftover pig :biggrin:

A.

I'm on board the same boat, Arne. When I fire up the smoker I hate to waste all that heat and smoke on just enough pork for the two of us. There is always plenty of extra pulled pork when I do butt.

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We have a "luau" every May long weekend (Victoria Day), and have been doing pulled pork and various other smoked pig items the last couple years.  We ALWAYS end up with at least 2 or 3 lbs of extra pulled pork.

IMO this is not a sickness, just really good planning since neither my wife nor I gets much of a meal during the party as we're the hosts.  Absolutely nothing wrong with leftover pig :biggrin:

A.

I'm on board the same boat, Arne. When I fire up the smoker I hate to waste all that heat and smoke on just enough pork for the two of us. There is always plenty of extra pulled pork when I do butt.

For that matter, I do the same thing when I fire up the Webber charcol grill, do extra burgers, dogs, chicken for the next day. Why go to all that trouble for one meal? nothing wrong with a breakfast of hamburgers.

Also, it's just impossible for me to make small salads.. even when making a green tossed salad I just automatically grab my biggest bowl. Same with macaroni, poato salad, cole slaw, etc. Lucky for my, I have friends, family, neighbors, who enjoy my cooking.

Edited by christine007 (log)

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We have a "luau" every May long weekend (Victoria Day), and have been doing pulled pork and various other smoked pig items the last couple years.  We ALWAYS end up with at least 2 or 3 lbs of extra pulled pork.

IMO this is not a sickness, just really good planning since neither my wife nor I gets much of a meal during the party as we're the hosts.  Absolutely nothing wrong with leftover pig :biggrin:

A.

I'm on board the same boat, Arne. When I fire up the smoker I hate to waste all that heat and smoke on just enough pork for the two of us. There is always plenty of extra pulled pork when I do butt.

There is no such thing as too much butt. It freezes beautifully, and in it's various reincarnations, brings back many memories of many memoriable meals to come. My freezer, no matter how dig I deep, is devoid of smoked butt, so I think I need to rectify that!

Potato salad, however, is another story. They tell you 1/4 lb. per person. If you are serving a mess of of other stuff, fix half of what you think you will need and you will still have leftovers. It is heavy, and not nearly as appealing as smoked meat or home-made sausages.

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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We have a "luau" every May long weekend (Victoria Day), and have been doing pulled pork and various other smoked pig items the last couple years.  We ALWAYS end up with at least 2 or 3 lbs of extra pulled pork.

IMO this is not a sickness, just really good planning since neither my wife nor I gets much of a meal during the party as we're the hosts.  Absolutely nothing wrong with leftover pig :biggrin:

A.

I'm on board the same boat, Arne. When I fire up the smoker I hate to waste all that heat and smoke on just enough pork for the two of us. There is always plenty of extra pulled pork when I do butt.

Mike, that hextra heat and smoke and grate space is called "valuable real estate" in the Fahning household. Waste not, want not!

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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When I make too much of something and I cannot:

1. Foodsave it and freeze it

2. Make lunches for work out of it

3. Eat anymore of it

I take it to the place where they feed homeless people. It beats having them dig through the trash behind supermarkets for stuff to make food out of!

And I don't itemize either! :)

doc

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The only time I've ever made 5 lbs of mashed potatoes and had them all disappear was when three of our dinner guests were strapping young men in their early 20s. Pretty much everything disappeared except the peas.

For me, it's pesto. I love pesto, but I just don't use it all that often. Last year I gave away most of my basil when I realized that I had frozen pesto left over from the past two years. This year I'm working on using the basil fresh because, yes, I STILL have pesto left in the freezer.

Marcia.

Don't forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he wanted...he lived happily ever after. -- Willy Wonka

eGullet foodblog

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The only time I've ever made 5 lbs of mashed potatoes and had them all disappear was when three of our dinner guests were strapping young men in their early 20s. Pretty much everything disappeared except the peas.

For me, it's pesto. I love pesto, but I just don't use it all that often. Last year I gave away most of my basil when I realized that I had frozen pesto left over from the past two years. This year I'm working on using the basil fresh because, yes, I STILL have pesto left in the freezer.

Marcia.

I do the same thing- I still have an ice cube tray in my freezer from last year. I make the stuff from the end-of-the-summer basil plants just to have something to do with all of it, but I really don't like that basil (when it loses its lush green color and has a coarser flavor). So I'm very reluctant to use it on pasta. What I will use it for, though, is a marinade- just schmear a bunch of it on chicken thighs, scallops, whatever, and grill away. I promised myself this year that I would not plant too many basil plants, and then I went ahead and got 4 seedlings anyway :hmmm:

aka Michael

Chi mangia bene, vive bene!

"...And bring us the finest food you've got, stuffed with the second finest."

"Excellent, sir. Lobster stuffed with tacos."

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The only time I've ever made 5 lbs of mashed potatoes and had them all disappear was when three of our dinner guests were strapping young men in their early 20s. Pretty much everything disappeared except the peas.

For me, it's pesto. I love pesto, but I just don't use it all that often. Last year I gave away most of my basil when I realized that I had frozen pesto left over from the past two years. This year I'm working on using the basil fresh because, yes, I STILL have pesto left in the freezer.

Marcia.

What??!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :shock::shock::shock::shock: NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!

basil 3.99 a bunch nyc. Ican't afford to make pesto here :sad:

I'll trade you some bbq :rolleyes:

does this come in pork?

My name's Emma Feigenbaum.

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That "sickness" you speak of is basically a requirement to be a member of my family. If we're serving, say, four people, we will invariably make enough food for ten. If we are serving ten, watch out! There will be enough food on that table for the entire University of Texas football team to have seconds AND bring their mamas some leftovers.

It's something that is pretty much impossible to overcome. I've stopped trying. Everytime I've cooked for my friends, they will at some point comment, "You made SO MUCH!" I can't help it. It's in my blood.

I've been eating pasta with bacon/tomato sauce for the past three days. Yeah, it's really good. Yeah, I'm really sick of it.

-Sounds awfully rich!

-It is! That's why I serve it with ice cream to cut the sweetness!

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My two children are now grown up with their own partners and homes, so I should be able to cook for two now - but while they were growing up we had an "open house" policy for their friends -(that way you know who their friends are) - If you've ever had to be prepared for an unknown number of adolescent friends of your adolescent son descending on you for the weekend, you will know what I mean. Fifteen year old boys can eat an obscene amount of food in an obscenely short amount of time.

It was hard work for those years, and some of the weekenders ended up staying on for longer periods, but I have to say it was well and truly worth it. We mostly knew where they were, who they were with, and what they were up to. Food in quantity, available all of the time, I am convinced was a large part of the lure.

It never ceased to amaze me how many of those kids came from households where no food preparation was done. One kid was watching me in the kitchen one day, and asked me what I was making. "Soup" I said. His reply? "I didn't know people could make soup". Sad.

I've never been able to cook small since. My friends joke about the industrial quantities I make. None of it gets wasted though - the adult "children" still get take-home portions sometimes, as do friends, and I freeze some for busy days.

Happy Feasting

Janet (a.k.a The Old Foodie)

My Blog "The Old Foodie" gives you a short food history story each weekday day, always with a historic recipe, and sometimes a historic menu.

My email address is: theoldfoodie@fastmail.fm

Anything is bearable if you can make a story out of it. N. Scott Momaday

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so last night i tried to make a small quantity of cole slaw...was nearly there until i dressed it and realized i had used too much dressing. so, i shredded the other half of the cabbage and now i have enough cole slaw to last until next week...

so much for good intentions!

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I actually amazed that my mom's overcooking sickness does not seem to have been passed on to me. Perhaps it's because I've been so horrified by the excesses she has gone to in the past few years. On Thanksgiving last year my mother prepared a 23 lb turkey a TRIPLE recipe of wild mushroom stuffing, cornbread stuffing, mashed potatoes, 11 sweet potatoes, brussel sprouts, asparagus, marinated cipollini, salad, and at least 4 desserts, including a vat of chocolate mouse, pumpkin pie, and other stuff I can't remember. All of this was for seven people, two of whom are vegetarians. To be fair, she never knows how many people are coming to Thanksgiving dinner, since she has an open invitation to all of her coworkers and my and my sisters' friends. But still, it was obscene! I could barely look at the leftovers and wound up throwing away most of what I took home.

In general, I'm much, much better at gauging necessary amounts of food than she is. The only thing I really can't seem to get a handle on is gumbo..I always wind up with way, way too much.

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