Coming up with quick, easy and inexpensive dinners is a challenge for most families - but one secret is turning leftovers into completely new meals.
On "The Early Show" Wednesday, contributor Katie Lee demonstrated how to go that route to save time, money and stress, sharing recipes along the way.
She started with a chimichurri steak and turned it into steak fajitas. Then she took rotisserie chicken and transformed it into chicken lettuce cups. And then she turned roasted pork tenderloin with apples into a Cubano panini with apple chutney.
For the steaks:
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 pounds flank steak
For the chimichurri:
- 1 cup cilantro, minced
- 1 cup flat-leaf parsley, minced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
In a shallow baking dish, whisk lime juice, olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Add steaks and turn to coat both sides. Cover and refrigerate for thirty minutes (up to overnight).
While the steaks are marinating, make the chimichurri. In a bowl, whisk the cilantro, parsley, garlic cloves, and vinegar. Slowly whisk in olive oil until emulsified.
Preheat a grill or a grill pan to medium-high heat. Cook steaks to desired degree of doneness, about 4 minutes on each side for medium. Let the meat rest for about 10 minutes, then slice on the diagonal and serve with chimichurri.
For the steak:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1 red onion, thinly sliced
- Leftover flank steak, thinly sliced
For the salsa:
Leftover chimichurri sauce
1 tomato, chopped
For the fajitas:
Fajita-sized flour tortillas
Cheese, sour cream, avocado, tomatoes, etc.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add peppers and onions and cook about 4 to 5 minutes, stirring often. Add steak and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes.
In a small bowl, combine chimichurri and tomato to make salsa.
Serve steak and pepper mixture in tortillas with salsa and desired toppings.
Chicken Lettuce Cups
- 1 packet stir-fry seasoning powder
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1/2 rotisserie chicken, shredded
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1/4 cup diced water chestnuts
- 2 tablespoons thinly-sliced scallions
- 1 hearts of romaine or bib lettuce, leaves separated
- For garnish: minced mint, cilantro, chopped peanuts
In a small bowl, combine stir-fry seasoning, water, soy sauce, and honey. Set aside.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chicken, bell pepper, water chestnuts, and scallions. Cook 5 minutes. Stir in reserved stir-fry seasoning mix. Cook until liquid evaporates, 2 to 3 minutes.
Spoon chicken mixture into lettuce cups and top with desired garnishes.
Roasted Pork Tenderloin and Apples
- 1/4 cup olive oil, plus 2 tablespoons
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons minced ginger
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon minced thyme
- 3 (1 pound) pork tenderloins
- Salt and pepper
- 3 apples, sliced
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
In a baking dish or re-sealable gallon bag, mix 1/4 cup olive oil, lemon juice, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, and thyme. Add pork and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate over night.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Heat remaining olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium high heat. Add pork tenderloins and sear on each side, about 3 minutes per side. Add apples and onions, transfer to oven and bake 15-20 minutes, or until an instant read thermometer reaches 140 degrees F at the thickest part. Cover and let rest 10 minutes. Slice pork and serve with apples and onions.
Cubanos with Apple Chutney
For the sandwiches:
- Leftover roast pork tenderloin, thinly sliced
- Crusty sandwich rolls
- Swiss Cheese
For the chutney:
Leftover roasted apples and onions, chopped
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1/2 jalapeno, minced
- Pinch of cinnamon
- Salt and pepper
Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan over medium low heat. Let simmer for 5 to 10 minutes.
Spread sandwich rolls with mayonnaise. Top with sliced pork, cheese, and chutney. Grill in a Panini press until cheese is melted. Serve with pickles.