It’s a leftover-palooza!

It’s a leftover-palooza!

WE’RE sure a lot of us are playing a form of fridge Tetris (that is, rearranging our leftovers in the refrigerator to make them fit) after the end of 2023’s holiday season. So BusinessWorld asked some experts for their suggestions on how to recycle the goodies that are clogging up the ref and freezer. As we welcome 2024, we’re doing it without repeated servings of ham and lechon paksiw, and serving up “scraps” with style.

The chef-instructors at the Center for Culinary Arts Manila (CCA Manila) were generous enough not only to share their favorite holiday recipes, but also to provide solutions for their inevitable leftovers. Chef Miguel Lorino gave us his recipe for pork asado (available on the BusinessWorld online version of this piece) and the chic mantou sandwiches that could come after.

Pork Asado

Yield: 6 servings

60 ml vegetable oil
60 gm minced garlic
1 kg cubed pork shoulder
480 ml water
180 ml soy sauce
10 gm star anise
10 gm hydrated banana blossom
150 gm brown sugar
Ground black pepper to taste
Salt to taste


Begin by heating oil in a large pot and sautéing garlic until aromatic.

Add pork, cooking until it turns a golden hue.

Combine water, soy sauce, star anise, banana blossom, and brown sugar with the pork and simmer until tender.

Season with salt and pepper, and serve warm.

Mantou Pork Asado with Pickled Cucumbers
Yield: 6 servings

60 ml vinegar
10 gm white sugar
10 gm grated ginger
5 gm crushed black peppercorns
100 gm thinly sliced cucumber
12 pcs steamed pandan mantou 
Sliced pork asado (leftovers) as needed20 gm red onion
50 gm sliced tomatoes

Boil vinegar and sugar together.

Remove from heat and add ginger, peppercorns, and cucumbers to marinate.

For assembly, stuff the mantou buns with pork asado, pickled cucumbers, onions, and tomatoes, then serve.

Meanwhile, chef Anne Atanacio gives us a post-holiday breakfast idea using the ubiquitous Christmas ham, and a solution for the lucky grapes left behind on the table after displaying them for luck.

Ham and Chicken Spread Recipe

1 cup chopped Christmas ham
1 cup chopped roasted chicken
1 stalk of celery, chopped
1 bunch of grapes, chopped
1 cup gated leftover cheese
1 cup mayonnaise
Salt and pepper to taste


Mix all ingredients in a bowl until well combined.

Spread generously on bread for a satisfying meal.

Whipped Fruit Salad

750 gm Drained fruit cocktail
2 cups Red grapes
2 packs All-purpose cream, chilled overnight
1 can Condensed milk


Whip the all-purpose cream until light and fluffy.

Fold in the fruit cocktail, grapes, and condensed milk.

Refrigerate overnight for the best flavor.


Over at One World Deli, the new place to be to get food from all around the world, their chefs George Bustamante and Angela Villaroman offered up their recipes for leftover Turkey Stew and Roast Beef Sandwiches.

Turkey Stew

Turkey meat, cut into bite-sized pieces
Turkey bones
1 cup Carrots
1 cup Celery
1 cup Onions
2 tablespoons of flour
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Leftover vegetables
1/4 cup of cream
Salt and pepper to taste


Debone the turkey and cut the meat into bite-sized pieces.

Place the bones in a stock pot and fill with water, let it simmer for 30-45 minutes.

Sauté one cup carrots, one cup celery, and one cup onions in butter. Add two tablespoons of flour and, once cooked, add the turkey stock and let simmer for 10 minutes, continuously stirring.

Add 1/4 cup of chopped parsley and any leftover cooked vegetables that you may have, and let simmer.

Add turkey meat and 1/4 cup of cream. Add salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy with crusty bread or leftover mash.

Roast Beef Sandwiches

150 gm roast beef, thinly sliced
One piece ciabatta
10 ml horseradish sauce
5 gm arugula
20 gm onions, thinly sliced
2 slices cheddar cheese


Cut the bread, butter one side of each slide, toast on a griddle.

Spread the horseradish sauce on the buttered side, and assemble the sandwich. Arugula at the bottom, then generous layers of thinly sliced roast beef, cheese, and onions.

Over at City of Dreams Manila, chef Edmundo San Jose from modern Filipino restaurant Haliya shared with us how to serve leftover lechon in a relatively healthy way. What’s more, this Ensaladang Lechon (roast suckling pig salad) shares some similarities with one of Haliya’s signature dishes, Binalot na Cochi.

Ensaladang Lechon

Leftover lechon or cochinillo
Optional: leftover pork adobo flakes
Homemade atchara (pickled papaya)
Butterhead lettuce
Homemade pork liver sauce
Cherry tomatoes
Garlic aioli
Pork liver salsa


Shred the leftover lechon or cochinillo meat and set aside.

Optional: make adobo flakes from leftover adobo.

Prepare pork liver salsa by combining tomatoes, shallots, jalapeño, coriander, spring onion, and homemade pork liver sauce. Set aside.

Assembly / plating:

Prepare the butterhead lettuce.

To make individual portions, place the leftover lechon or cochinillo on each butterhead lettuce leaf.

Top with jalapeño, atchara, garlic aioli, shallots, adobo flakes, and coriander.


Finally, from the source of a lot of the hams (and beer) on our tables, the San Miguel Corp. provided us with some recipes for what to do with all that leftover ham and cheese.

Boscaiola Frittata

Two tbsp Magnolia Gold Butter
UnsaltedOne can (198 gm) button mushrooms, pieces and stems, drained
Three cloves garlic, mincedOne stalk
(5 gm) parsley, chopped (1 tbsp)
200 grams Purefoods Fiesta Ham, diced or cut into thin strips
1/4 tsp iodized fine salt
1/8 tsp pepper
Six Magnolia Brown Eggs, beaten
1/2 cup Magnolia Fresh Milk
1/2 cup grated Magnolia Queso de Bola


In an eight-inch frying pan over medium heat, melt butter and sauté mushrooms, garlic, parsley, and ham. Season with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile in a large bowl, combine eggs, milk, and cheese. Pour over the mushroom-ham mixture in the pan.

Cover and cook over lower heat until set. Check doneness by sticking a toothpick in the middle. Toothpick should be clean and without egg mixture when taken out.

Add some chopped vegetables to add color, nutrition, and to further extend dish. Serve with muffins, sliced bread or rice.

Fiesta Ham Beer Stew

Two tbsp Magnolia Butter-licious!
One red onion, chopped
Six cloves (20 gm) garlic, chopped
One (1 kg) package of Purefoods Fiesta Ham, sliced
One pack (300 gm) marble potatoes, cut in half
One bottle (330 ml) San Miguel Beer Pale Pilsen
One cup beef stock
1/4 tsp iodized fine salt
Two bay leaves
Five black peppercorns
One (250 gm) carrot, cubed
One (100 gm) green bell pepper, chopped
One (100 gm) red bell pepper, chopped


In a pot over medium heat, melt margarine and sauté onion, garlic, and ham until lightly browned.

Add marble potatoes, beer, stock, salt, bay leaves, and peppercorns. Cover and simmer for 8 minutes.

Add carrot and simmer for 10 minutes or until tender. Add bell peppers and simmer for 1 minute.

The base recipe is good also for leftover Purefoods Jamon Royale and Purefoods Chinese Ham. Adjust salt further for Chinese Ham. If a saucy dish is desired, thicken the dish with a cornstarch mixture (1:1). Stir in while mixture is simmering until the sauce thickens. — Joseph L. Garcia