HAPPY THANKSGIVING AND EVEN BETTER LEFTOVERS
I have a solution for your Thanksgiving leftovers. Actually it’s four solutions and they are delicious.
Make one, two, or all four.
With one base you can make four different dishes:
- turkey soup
- turkey potpie
- shepherd's pie a la turkey
- stuffing cakes
Since I don’t know what leftovers you have, I’m going to give you basic instructions. You can improvise with what you have. It’s not hard. Remember to use your taste buds to guide you and remember that cooking is fun and eating good food is even better. That is something to be thankful for.
- Start by making one large pot of soup with all the turkey, vegetables, and gravy that is left over. (Do not add potatoes, sweet potatoes, or anything that is mashed. Use chunks of vegetables for a better result.)
- If you need vegetables, cut up carrots, onions, celery, etc.
- Add herbs: bay leaf, thyme, sage, and parsley.
- Add broth: 12 cups or three 32 oz. boxes of low-salt chicken broth.
- Cook for 30 minutes and taste to check the flavor.
- If needed, add low-salt chicken bouillon.
- Take half the soup and put it aside; that’s your soup #1.
The remainder of the soup will become the base for your pot and shepherd's pie.
Pour the soup through a sieve and set all the ingredients aside.
You should have 6 cups of broth if you don’t add enough broth to make up the difference.
In a pot make a roux
- Melt 4 tbsp of butter in a pan.
- Add 1/4 cup of flour and mix into the butter, stirring until you have a paste. Continue to cook a few minutes but don’t let it brown.
- Add 1 cup of broth, stir with a wooden spoon until combined. Continue adding the broth and letting it combine before adding more broth.
- You want the sauce to coat the back of the spoon—similar to thick gravy.
- Taste and adjust the flavor.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- In a container place half the sauce and half the turkey and vegetable mixture. This is for your turkey potpie.
- Place the other half in another container for your shepherd’s pie.
At this point you can freeze everything until you are ready to use it.
I also freeze the extra mashed potatoes to use to finish the shepherd's pie.
To make the stuffing cakes #2
- Take the stuffing and shape it into two 1/2” cakes that are about 3/4” thick. These can also be frozen.
- When you are ready to use them let them completely defrost in the refrigerator.
- Bring them to room temperature and pat dry before using.
- When ready, coat your cakes in an egg wash and lightly coat in flour.
- In a skillet, heat oil and brown both sides of the stuffing cakes.
When ready, build your potpie #3
- Puff pastry thawed. Cut 1 sheet into 4 pieces and place on a lined baking sheet with parchment paper.
- With a beaten egg wash, brush the top of the puff pastry.
- Place your cream turkey mixture in a pot over medium heat.
- Place your baking sheet into your preheated 400° oven.
- Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until it has puffed up and turned golden brown.
- To serve, place the turkey mixture into low bowls and top with one of the puff pastry rectangles.
For the shepherd's pie a la turkey #4
- Place the turkey filling into a casserole pan.
- If you’ve frozen your mashed potatoes, let them thaw they will appear to have separated all you need to do is stir them vigorously and they will come back together.
- Cover the filling with the mashed potatoes.
- I add grated gruyere cheese on top and then dot it with butter.
- Place into a 350° oven for 30 minutes until the edges are bubbly.
- Turn the broiler on and brown the top of the casserole.
Et voila you’ve transformed your leftovers. - enjoy
What about you.
Do you have turkey dinner leftover suggestions? Let us know.
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