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February Food Challenge....Recomposed

2942 Views 40 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  WenSamya
We have seen many food challenges through the years.
Just perusing through the many years was a challenge in itself.
This month’s challenge will hopefully get more people involved.
We’re 85,000 plus strong on ChefTalk, yet only a small percentage play the challenge.
I’m challenging YOU!

This month’s challenge, “Recompose.”
I want you to take a convenience product and turn it into something it wasn’t meant to be.

It could be anything that you don’t make from scratch.

I’ll start: The Players...Stove Top Stuffing mix, ground into crumbs and used to bread chicken thighs and potatoes for frying.
Food Liquid Bottle Ingredient Tableware
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Be as creative as you wish. Think outside the box. The only rule is you must use a convenience product.
Have fun.
The rules:

The challenge begins on the 1st of every month. The last entry must be made by the last day of the month.
You may post multiple entries.
All entries must be cooked during the month of the challenge.
If you use a documented recipe, please cite your source.
Entries should include the name of your dish and a picture of the final product. Sharing personal recipes and pictures of the process are not mandatory but extremely helpful.
The winner is chosen by the person who posted the challenge, and is announced after the last day of submissions. The decision is final and falls entirely at the discretion of the challenger.
Submitting an entry makes you eligible to win. If you do not wish to be considered for the win you may still participate in the challenge, but make your wishes known to the challenger.
The winner's bounty includes praise, virtual high-fives, and the responsibility of posting the next month's challenge. That entails choosing a theme, posting a Challenge thread that includes the guidelines, checking in on the submissions regularly during the month, and promptly choosing a winner at the end of the challenge.
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This is based on an idea in a Lee Kum Kee Europe Video.

from about 5:44 time but the other parts of the video are worthwhile too.

And perhaps I'm not recomposing that far from the intent of a stir fry to a sheet pan dinner but that is for Chefross to determine.

So I'll try to make a Sheet Pan Chicken and Veg Kung Pao Dinner. Choose veg that will cook at the same rate as your chosen chicken. I'm going with potato and cauliflower. if you want some faster cooking veg, just add them later at appropriate times.

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Sleeve Font Comfort food Kitchen utensil Junk food

Chicken (boneless skinless thighs) and Sauce. Mix. Add some oil to help with the baking/roasting. Mix some more. The US sauce looks different than the EU sauce. More brown, less red.
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Set up on your baking sheet, I recommend using a liner of one sort or another for easy clean up. And add any extra marinade to bare items in the pan. She cooks hers at about 350 for an hour. I started at 375 because my pan is much more heavily loaded. Bumped it to 400 at the halfway mark as it seemed to be lagging. But you have to watch the temps and time as the sauce is high sugar.

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Almost done
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On the plate with a little of the extra sauce that pooled on the pan.

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I think I'd skip the extra oil if I do it again. There was enough in the sauce I think, at least for my taste. And it is much hotter than I was thinking it would be, but still pretty good. And easy.

Lee Kum Kee sells a bottled Kung Pao Sauce but the ingredients are different. So I don't know how that would work out.
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Hmmm . . . vary interesting. If it's that spicy I'll pass. I like Lee Kum Kee oyster sauce because it's soy free. I use it in my soy substitute recipe alng with fish sauce and Lea and Perrins. If I make a big batch I add beef stock and reduce by half. It's actually better tasting than soy sauce.
Mom's recipe. I used Good Season's Italian Salad Dressing mix to make marinated mushrooms. I added a bit of garlic and black pepper and a small thinly sliced onion. Simply mix the dressing, add mushrooms, simmer for ten minutes.

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The dressing won't be enough liquid at first but once simmered they release enough of their own and shrink enough so they cool while covered in marinade. Quite delicious.

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Refrigerate after they cool.
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My mom would do this too.
We love mushrooms when I made pheasant breast last week I cooked three rashers of bacon then sauteed mushrooms in the drippings along with butter then seared the sous vide breasts in that fond. Talk about delicious . . .
Not a major recomposition of convenience food, but several conveniences from the refrigerator married with some freshly-made pizza dough:

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My problem is that I almost never use these products, so I can't seem to come up with alternative ways of using them. This is not a weird flex or anything; I just never got in the habit. The only thing I've thought of for this challenge was an old idea of Jacques Pépin's, and that seems like cheating.
I can't claim original ownership of any of my recompositions. Go for it.
Chrislehrer- I got my idea from my mom. No one thinks of everything by themselves.
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So, here we are, the day before this month's challenge ends, and all we have had are but a small handful of challengers.
With one day left to go, I'm going to relent and give up a few hints. These are meant to get your creativity going and not to copy:

Pop Tarts can be ground up and used as a base for cobbler or bars.
Egg noodles overcooked, drained, ground, add some flour and seasonings to make crackers or flatbread
Jarred salsa into soup
Jiffy Corn Muffin mix into batter for fried fish or chicken
LaChoy Chop Suey vegetables become Egg Foo Young patties
Boxed mac and cheese made into cheese bread
Boxed pancake mix made into cake or crepes
And last but not least....cheese curls made into a sour cream dip for veggies or chips.

It's not that hard to think outside the box peeps. Good luck all
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All I have of the above are noodles ;)

I was going to use that spice pack that comes with instant noodles instead of salt. Not sure if I manage in time.

The one I wanted to do for tonight was ground meat with either thai red curry paste or a spice mixture for Indonesian fried rice. And make into baby meatballs.
But I can't find any ground meat. I was sure I still had a pack. But even cleaning the freezer didn't make it re-appear.

Now gotta think hard for an other final entry....
I'm hoping to get a fairly lame entry in before the deadline. We'll see if I end up making it.

Okay, here's something. Using an onion soup packet as seasoning for braised leeks au gratin.

The Players

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Leeks, of course, onion soup mix and another convenience item, boullion, which I decided not to use. Which turned out to be the right decision. Would have been too much salt.

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Cream and cheese for the sauce and topping. Yes, that's the good stuff, parm reggiano. Not pictured is the package of speck I used to wrap the leeks.

The Process

First off, cut and wash the leeks. These were pretty clean ones.

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I got out a small baking dish, drizzled some olive oil into it. Added about half the package of soup mix.

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Wrapped the leek halves with the speck, put them in the dish, covered with the remaining soup mix.

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Added about a quarter cup white wine and a quarter cup water. Covered with foil, baked at 400F for about 30 minutes. Removed from oven, uncovered, poured some cream over them, covered with grated parm.

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Back into the oven for about 10 minutes, until the cheese is nicely browned.

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The Product

This was surprisingly good. Just a hair too salty, good thing I used plain water instead of chicken bullion broth.

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And another convenience item, frozen bread slices, used exactly as intended. :)

It was better than I thought it would be. Should have made more!

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I'd hoped to do something today but I've just been swamped. Pépin's trick: using a flour tortilla as the crust for a simple buttery apple tart.
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Happy March first.
Time to pick the winner of the February food challenge.
It's hard to think outside the box, isn't it?
That was the idea.
The one entry that decided it for me was Phatch's pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. He was able to take a convenience product and turn it up-side down.
Congratulations Phatch. I hand the torch to you.
Congratulations @phatch
And thanks to @chefross for an interesting challenge ;)
Looking forward to the March one. Shopping on Friday, so I can still adjust my shopping list
I shall have to think a bit.
Nice job @phatch ! Looking forward to the next one. Hopefully I won't be stuck in the mud with the next one. And thank you, @chefross for hosting.

Nice job @phatch ! Looking forward to the next one. Hopefully I won't be stuck in the mud with the next one. And thank you, @chefross for hosting.

Couldn't have put it better myself!
Congratulations @phatch. Very impressive entry!

Thank you @chefross for an extremely challenging challenge!!
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