MANILA, Philippines – Culturally, Filipinos tend to serve dishes family-style – placing all the cooked food in large containers on the table for sharing. While this fosters a sense of togetherness, putting a premium on eating as a means of communing with one another, it also leads to a lot of leftovers at the end of each day.
It comes as no surprise, then, that Filipinos are also experts at eliminating food waste; as long as a dish hasn’t gone bad, it’s still fair game. In fact, some dishes even tend to taste better as leftovers!
We asked Rappler readers for the foods they think could use a day or two of sitting in your fridge – and in some cases cooked with a few new ingredients – before they reach peak deliciousness. Here are the top answers (plus a curveball at the end)!
This one’s a no-brainer. Every Filipino household worth its asin knows that leftover lechon from last night’s party should automatically be made into sour and saucy paksiw the next day.
This commenter knows what’s what! Overnight sinigang thickened by gabi turns the famous clear soup into a richer, thicker stew for even more heartwarming goodness.
This one’s more of an open secret all Asians know: leftover white rice may be too tough to eat as is, but when tossed into a wok with some oil, garlic, eggs, veggies, and whatever else your heart desires, it comes roaring back to life!
Every person who lived through the ’90s will tell you that a slice of pizza straight from the fridge is nothing to be ashamed about.
However you cook your adobo (and yes, we know your version is the best), they all wind up as leftovers in the same, delicious way: the meat so tender it falls apart, marinated even further in its sauce. It’s a flavor bomb waiting to explode.
We also chalk up the power of leftover pasta to its sauce – there’s just something about the melding of tomatoes, cheese, and spices overnight that’s just plain magic.
Finally, quite a few Rappler readers suggested doughnuts – which we definitely didn’t expect. But hey, anything’s worth a shot! We can imagine jelly- and cream-filled doughnuts work best!
French toast pizza?
And before we end our journey to the land of leftovers, here’s a very interesting tip one reader shared. It sounds amazing!