I look at the counter and see a quarter-cup full of milk, and a plate with grilled cheese sandwich crusts. This is not what I would call "done," but I did grow up encouraged to be part of the Clean Plate Club. My children have no interest in membership in that group.
My usual choices are:
1) Toss the scorned crusts (with regret) instead of eating them as my second lunch.
2) Eat the rejected crusts (with regret) so I don't feel guilty about wasting them.
Also up for consideration:
3) Insist that the child eat the crusts before leaving the table. However, neither one of us has the patience or stomach for that.
4) Put the crusts out for the birds. But then I worry that the birds shouldn't eat cheese.
5) Save a week's worth of crusts to make a savory bread pudding. I'd probably be the only one to eat that, so why bother?
Today I see something I have not seen before, despite the uncounted sandwich crusts left on previous plates. I see ... croutons. Grilled cheese croutons! (Someone should market this.)
(Looking again...does the word crust come from crouton? Croûton, perhaps? I had to look it up, the French for crust is croûte.)
|Leftover lunch for lunch, made slightly appetizing|
I throw together a salad dressing of (store-bought) hummus, olive oil, and vinegar. Make a lazy salad of baby carrots, grape tomatoes, pepperoni, and greens. Top it with the grilled cheese croutons. Eat. Feel slightly virtuous for having had a salad for lunch and not letting those crusts go to waste.
Grilled Cheese Croutons
2 slices of sesame seed Ezekiel Bread (or your favorite, crusty bread)
2 slices of Kraft American cheese (no comments, please, I already know)
1 tablespoon butter (you can use less, of course, but we like butter)
1 child (This is an important, if unconventional, element of this recipe)
- Over medium heat, melt butter in skillet.
- Place on slice of bread in melted butter, rotate to distribute butter over the surface of the bread, then place it (butter side up) on plate.
- Place second slice of bread in the remaining butter in the skillet, rotate to coat.
- Put cheese on bread in skillet.
- Place first slice of bread (still butter side up) on cheese on bread in skillet.
- Press sandwich together with spatula or utensil of your choice.
- After cheese begins to melt, flip the sandwich over. Continue cooking, flipping again if necessary, until golden brown on both sides.
- Cut into quarters and serve sandwich to child to eat the best part of the sandwich.
- When child is done, roughly cut remaining crusts into squares. These are your croutons.
- Use croutons to top a salad, throw them in the garbage, or feed them to the birds.