Using Up Those Christmas Leftovers

Using Up Those Christmas Leftovers

It’s that ‘Twixmas’ time of the year and no doubt you have a fridge groaning with leftovers – I know we have!

If you have lots of leftover cheese do try this tasty, easy idea courtesy of Opies, a great producer of pickled walnuts – as far as I am concerned a ‘must-have’ every Christmas!

Luxury Pickled Walnut Rarebit

Serves 4 

Prep time: 10 mins 

Cooking time: 10 mins

200g strong cheddar cheese, grated

4 Opies Pickled Walnuts, drained and chopped

1 tbsp freshly chopped chives

salt and pepper

8 slices of crusty bread


Pre-heat the grill on a medium heat.

Place the cheddar cheese in a mixing bowl.

Stir in the Pickled Walnuts, chives and season with salt and pepper.

Place bread on the grill pan and toast on one side.

Remove and top each slice with the cheese mixture, grill for about 5 minutes until the cheese browns and bubbles, serve immediately.

Hints and Tips: Perfect for using up any leftover cheese, Stilton is particularly tasty.  Try adding a chopped spring onion or a sliced chilli to add and extra kick.

And that panetonne, brioche or pandoro – especially if someone has left it open and it has gone a bit stale – is delicious with this recipe.  It’s the perfect ‘Twixmas’ brunch or dessert and uses mixed berries in prosecco that are widely available and also fab poured over meringue or vanilla ice cream!  If you don’t have the fresh fruit, don’t worry – just use more of the bottled fruit instead.

Panettone French Toast with Boozy Berry Compote

Makes 4

Meal occasion:                     Quick & easy, Desserts & Baking, Vegetarian

Preparation time:   10 minutes

Cooking time:                       10 minutes

Allergens:                  gluten, eggs, milk, may contain nuts (check Panettone ingredients listing)

Ingredients – for the Compote 

100g Opies Mixed Berries with Prosecco, and reserved syrup

100g fresh raspberries

100g fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced

Ingredients – for the French toast

2 eggs

150ml single cream 

1 tsp. vanilla essence

1 tbsp. caster sugar

25g unsalted butter

2 large slices of Panettone, 2cm thick slices cut into 4 triangles

Icing sugar to dust


Make the berry compote: combine the Mixed Berries with Prosecco with 4 tbsp. of syrup, raspberries and strawberries in a bowl, set to one side.

In a small mixing bowl beat together the eggs, cream, vanilla essence and sugar. 

Melt the butter in a large non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Coat each side of the panettone in the egg mixture and immediately fry slices in the pan for 1-2 minutes on each side until golden brown. 

Serve immediately with the berry compote spooned over each slice and dusted with icing sugar. 

Hints and Tips: Serve with Greek yogurt or Quark. As an alternative, replace the panettone with brioche or fruited bread slices. This would also be delicious with Opies Black Cherries in Kirsch. 

Panettone French Toast with Boozy Berry Compote

Where to Buy: 

Opies’ Luxury Fruits with Alcohol are available from Waitrose, Tesco, Marks & Spencer and Ocado. RSP £6.00 460g

And some corkers to consider 

If you’re planning to pop a few corks over the New Year festivities, it might be worth a quick trip over to Aldi, whose Nicolas de Montbart champagne is on offer at the moment for just £9.99 a bottle!  It’s an elegant and easy drinking aperitif-style champagne with fruit and floral notes. A blend of equal parts Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier,  it’s great value.

Or you might want to lower those units of alcohol after the excesses of Christmas? Maybe you are the duty driver?  If so, check out the pretty extensive Tesco low alcohol range, including sparkings; at just £2.75 a bottle, they are almost alcohol free (0.5 per cent) and compared to some of the other low alcohol or alcohol free drinks on the market at the moment, represent very good value for money.

Wishing you all a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year

The Seasoned Gastronome

Twickenham & Richmond Tribune

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