Happy Thanksgiving! No doubt your turkey was delicious and you’ve decided to read the paper tonight after everyone has gone home or to bed. It’s a good time to pour yourself a cup of tea and consider what to do with the leftovers.
To prevent food spoilage, follow these food safety pointers. If you stuffed the turkey with dressing, remove all of it before carving the bird and transfer it to a bowl. When the meat is off the bone, refrigerate the carcass. After dinner, wrap the meat in plastic wrap or in a bowl, cover, and refrigerate it.
Stir-fry vegetables make a low-calorie healthy dish but adding turkey makes it a complete one-dish dinner. Substitute any leftover or fresh vegetables that you have on hand.
A classic Waldorf salad contains red delicious apples, celery, and walnuts. Here, I’ve added leftover turkey, Pink Lady apples, crystallized ginger, raisins and cranberry sauce to the dressing to elevate the salad from ordinary to extraordinary. For a three-star lunch, add hot crusty bread and pour a glass of chilled chardonnay.
Kids of all ages will love this delicious mushroom, turkey, and cheese pizza. Use a heavy baking sheet or pizza stone set on the bottom rack of the oven for a crispy crust.
For turkey stock: Use the leftover turkey carcass to make a well seasoned and flavorful basic turkey stock to use for soups and casseroles. After adding the vegetables in the following recipe the stock will be delicious but cloudy. To clarify the stock, whisk an egg white (no yolks) along with the crumbled eggshells (yes, use the shells) into the simmering stock. And bring the stock back to a boil and allow it to simmer while the liquid is “filtering” through the “gunk on top” of the stock about 20 minutes. Strain the stock through a dampened linen towel lined strainer set over a clean bowl. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Set stock aside to cool, transfer to clean glass jars and refrigerate or freeze until ready to use.
Happy Thanksgiving and bon appetit!
(Makes about 3 quarts)
1 turkey carcass and bones, stuffing removed
2 large yellow onions, coarsely chopped
4 carrots, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
6 parsley stems, leaves removed
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon whole mixed peppercorns
About 2 teaspoons sea salt
4 to 5 quarts of cold water
In a large stockpot over high heat, add the turkey bones, onions, carrots, celery, parsley stems, bay leaf, peppercorns, salt, and cold water to cover by at least two inches. Cover and bring to a boil. REDUCE the heat and simmer with the lid ajar for forty-five minutes. Cool the stock for fifteen to twenty minutes. Place a large colander over a bowl or another stockpot. Strain out the carcass, pieces of meat, vegetables, and discard. Bring to a boil and clarify according to the directions above.
Stir Fry Turkey
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, peeled and sliced
2 slices fresh ginger, the size of a quarter, slivered
3 fresh carrots, peeled and cut on the bias into thin slices, blanched until crunch tender
2 stalks celery, with leaves, cut on the bias into thin slices
1 bunch scallions, trimmed and cut on the bias into 1 1/2-inch lengths
6 shiitake mushrooms, washed, stems removed and sliced
6 ounces snow peas, strings removed and cut into slivers
4 cups turkey meat cut into 1/4-inch by 2-inch slivers
Few pinches of red pepper flakes
About 1/3 cup sherry
About 1/3 cup soy sauce
About 1/3 cup water
1 to 2 tablespoons cornstarch
Splash of sesame oil to taste
Fresh cilantro for garnish
In a large skillet over high heat coat the bottom with oil, add garlic and ginger and sauté until fragrant, about two or three minutes. Remove the garlic and ginger to a small plate. Add carrots, celery, scallions and mushrooms, and stir-fry until the vegetables are just tender. Add snow peas and turkey and stir fry until heated through. Return the garlic and ginger to the skillet. Mix together sherry, soy sauce, water and cornstarch. Add to the skillet and cook stirring until the vegetables are crunch tender, about three to four minutes. Taste and correct the seasonings. Transfer to heated platter and serve with steamed brown rice and garnish with fresh cilantro leaves.
Leftover Turkey Salad (adapted from Waldorf Salad)
(Serves 4 to 6)
1 to 2 large Pink Lady crisp, tart red apples, cored and diced
1 lemon, zested and juiced
4 cups diced turkey meat (white and dark)
1 small red onion, diced
3 stalks celery with leaves, thinly sliced
1/3 cup crystallized ginger chopped
About 1/3 cup fresh mint, parsley, and cilantro leaves
1/2 cup raisins
1 cup good quality mayonnaise
2 to 3 tablespoons cranberry sauce (raw or cooked)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 cup toasted almonds or walnuts, roughly chopped
1 head Romaine lettuce, cut into chiffonade
In a mixing bowl, toss diced apples with juice and zest of lemon to prevent discoloration. Add turkey, onion, celery, ginger, herbs, and raisins and toss well to mix. Add salt and pepper to taste. Mix the mayonnaise with cranberry sauce. Add only enough dressing to lightly coat the salad. Stir in nuts, reserving a few for garnish and mix well. Taste and adjust the seasonings.
Mound the salad on lettuce-lined platter and scatter nuts on top. Serve at once.
Mushroom, turkey, and cheese pizza
(Serves 3 or 4)
10 ounces refrigerated pizza dough
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
4 thinly sliced fresh plum tomatoes
2 or 3 cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced turkey breast cut into small bite-size pieces
1/4 to 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon @ basil and thyme
Few red pepper flakes
Optional: About 1/3 cup tomato sauce
Preheat the oven 425 degrees F. Unroll the dough and using your hands or a rolling pin to shape the dough into a rectangle about 9 x 13 inches on a lightly oiled pizza stone or heavy baking sheet. Scatter mozzarella cheese over the dough, and then layer the tomatoes and mushrooms and turkey evenly over the dough. (If using tomato sauce, add it with the fresh tomatoes.) Mix the Parmesan cheese with oregano, basil, thyme and red pepper flakes and sprinkle it over the whole affair.
Place the pizza in the oven and bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly and the edges of the dough are crusty brown, about 15 minutes. Cut into serving sized pieces and serve at once. Pass extra red pepper flakes and oregano at the table.
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