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Recently I read a book by Neal Stephenson that captured my attention wholly for a few weeks in some groovy adventure, right? So how come the big detail that keeps rattling around in my head is a comment that one of the narrators makes early on about midwesterners doing some recombinant cooking?* Now every time I start making dinner, I have this Thing hanging over my shoulder asking whether I’m actually cooking or just recombining. Not that there’s anything wrong with a casserole, mind you – I like a casserole every now and then, myself. But I want to consider myself to be cooking when I’m, er, cooking.

Anyway! That thought, and the sudden grody heat spike yesterday, and a fridge full of leftovers,** got me thinking about recombining. And here’s what I came up with: a few simple dishes, some of them salads, all of them tasty, all of them quick. I don’t have a lot of exact measures on stuff because this is a leftovers thing, but none of it is hard to suss out if you taste as you go. Also, this may or may not be considered cooking.

Chilled Spaghetti and Anchovies
Leftover spaghetti, leftover anchovies that may have come with your pizza last week, a little bit of italian hard cheese (like parmesan or romano). Just chop the anchovies, mix them into the spaghetti, top with a smidge of cheese (not too much – the anchovies are already pretty salty). For fancier, add a few pine nuts.

Apples and Lime
I mentioned this one last post, but it’s worth mentioning again. Red delicious apples, sliced into 12ths, with half a lime squeezed over for each full apple. Shake it all up to make sure the lime juice gets around, and chill for half an hour in the fridge.

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