Rescuing Leftovers: Emergency Cheese Bread

I used to deal with leftovers by shoving them to the back of my refrigerator and hoping they would go away. They never did. But they did mutate into something unrecognizable. That’s when I learned that the house elf who cleaned out the refrigerator when I was growing up was my mom. And now in my home it was supposed to be me. Good to know.


Now I no longer have mutants, but I do still have leftovers. How do I make them palatable to my family who’s already seen them on at least one occasion? I could just let them deal with their dinnertime disappointment, but I know I’ll end up with the job of arguing/threatening/disciplining their non-participation in the meal. I’d rather not go there.

Enter my first and favorite solution: Emergency Cheese Bread!

You won’t find this recipe listed in any cookbook under that name. The out of print Memphis cookbook I got it from dubbed it “Cheesy French Bread,” which is far too tame for the spectacular contribution it makes to my worst meals. Basically if you serve this, no one will remember anything bad about the meal, but they will consume the yucky leftovers along with the yummy bread.

Oh, and did I say it’s easy? You don’t have to make the bread from scratch, just buy a loaf — I like Costco’s whole grain unsliced loaf–and spread it with the good stuff.

OK, enough stalling. Here’s the recipe:

Emergency Cheese Bread

1 1/2 cups shredded cheese (mozzarella or other mild cheese)

1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

1/3 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup butter, softened

1 minced clove of garlic (or 1/2 t garlic powder)

1 16 oz loaf French bread

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Preheat the oven to 350. Mix the first 5 ingredients in a small bowl. Slice the bread in half lengthwise. Spread both cut sides with the mixture. Place bread on baking sheet and tent with foil. I sprinkled paprika on this loaf to make it pretty. Bake about 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Slice and step back…It does not make 12-16 servings, despite the cookbook’s claim.


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