There is something about using up leftovers that makes great comfort food. Perhaps it is that feeling of ‘decluttering’ or the fact that you are not letting anything go to waste; perhaps it is that element of creativity and imagination that takes you into places less travelled, like hopping on a random train or diving into a good book. Perhaps it is because the highest proportion of leftovers tends to be carbs like bread, rice, pasta and potatoes and these foods often form the cushiony basis of great comfort food.
When it comes to comfort food, macaroni cheese and potato skins (with lashings of bacon and cheese) definitely make the list, alongside bangers (sausages) and mash with baked beans. So for me at least this dish was an inspiration! And it not only used up leftovers, but it used up leftover leftovers (from work). In the instance of the macaroni cheese triple leftovers as this was Charlie’s portion from the Social Kitchen where they use food that would have otherwise go to waste to make meals (Charlie was asleep and didn’t then want food when he woke up).
Cooked jacket potatoes
Hunter’s chicken (chicken wrapped in bacon and cheese in BBQ sauce)
Dash of milk
Handful of spinach
Scoop out the potato (save this for something like fish cakes or to thicken a soup). Chop the chicken and mix with the macaroni cheese, spinach and enough milk to rehydrate the macaroni cheese. Fill the potato skins with this mixture and grate parmesan on top. Bake at about 200C until golden and heated through (about 20 minutes). Serve with some tabasco, sour cream or a sprinkling of herbs.