Turkey Treats

After what must I do to be saved?, the single most important question you will ask yourself this week is as follows: what will I ever do with all this leftover turkey?

I came home from the store today with an average of (2) turkeys whose sum total weight might equal approximately half a ton (or maybe more like 50 lbs).  From the ever helpful bagger:  “My, you’re feeding a crowd this year, aren’t you?”  She seemed so pleased; I didn’t have the heart to tell her that no, actually, I wasn’t feeding anyone Thanksgiving dinner this year and furthermore I don’t even know how to cook a turkey and furtherMOST even if I did, there is absolutely no reason on earth why Tim and I should require a twenty-some pound bird between the two of us. 

Actually, ma’am, in all honesty, it was just too cheap to resist.  (I didn’t tell her that, either.  But that’s the plain truth.)

I can picture every dinner from now through next August:

“Hi, honey, I’m home.  What’s for dinner?”
“Turkey.”
“YUM!!  I love turkey.”

“Hi, honey, I’m home.  What’s for dinner?”
“Turkey.”
“Mmmm, turkey, sounds good.”

“Hi, honey, I’m home.  What’s for dinner?”
“Turkey.”
“Aaah-huh.”

“Hi, honey, I’m home.  What’s for dinner?”
“Turkey.”
“Oh.”

“Hi, honey, um, I have to, um, work through dinner tonight.  But I’ll be home for dessert!!”

At least I can be sure we’ll sleep well (hmmm…could Turkey Tea be the next Chammomile?).

Seriously, though, I actually love leftover turkey.  It’s so versatile.  I use it in any recipe that calls for chicken plus a few more.  Here are four favorites:

Pumpkin Chili
1 onion
1 bell pepper (any color)
3 garlic cloves
3 cups chicken or turkey broth
2 cans black beans
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can pumpkin OR cooked mashed or diced sweet potatoes
2 1/2 cups cubed, cooked turkey
2 tsp dried parsley
2 tsp chili powder
1 1/2 tsp oregano
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp seasoned salt
Sautee first three ingredients in olive oil, stir in all the rest, cover, simmer for 4-5 hours (can also cook in crockpot).

Turkey and Gravy on Toast
Drown diced, cooked turkey in leftover gravy, spread over toast.  Serve for lunch or dinner.

Turkey Cobbler
2 cups diced cooked turkey or chicken
1 cup sliced carrots
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cups broccoli florets
1 can cream of chicken soup (or 2 cups leftover green bean casserole)
1/2 cup broth (or gravy)
1/2 cup milk
1 garlic clove
1/4 tsp thyme
1/8 tsp pepper
Combine first four ingredients in a casserole dish, microwave on high 2-3 minutes.  Add rest of ingredients.  Top with scoops of regular stuffing, cornbread stuffing, or (1 1/4 cup baking mix + 1/2 cup milk +1 egg).  Bake 30-35 minutes at 400 degrees F.

Hearty Turkey Bake
Shell:
     3 cups mashed potatoes (white, sweet, or mixed)
     1/2 cup cheddar cheese
     1/2 cup french fried onions
Mix and spoon into greased 1 1/2 qt casserole dish.  Use back of spoon to spread potatoes across bottom and up sides of dish to form a shell.

Filling:
     1 1/2 cup cubed, cooked turkey or chicken
     1 10oz package frozen mixed vegetables (or whatever other vegetables you have on hand)
     1 can cream of mushroom soup (or leftover green bean casserole)
     1/4 cup milk
     1/2 tsp ground mustard
     1/4 tsp garlic powder
     1/4 tsp ground pepper
Mix, pour into potato shell.  Warm in microwave while oven preheats, then bake uncovered at 375 for 30 minutes.  Top with 1/2 cup each cheddar cheese and french fried onions, bake 10 minutes more.  Check to make sure the middle is hot before serving.

[All of a sudden, a year’s worth of turkey leftovers doesn’t sound half bad….] 

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  1. #1 by Miriam on November 24, 2010 - 2:43 pm

    We now have THREE turkeys in the freezer! One from last year (yeah, I need to get it out and cook it soon) and then I bought 2 this year. You can’t beat $.29/lb!!!

    You could also use it for turkey-salad sandwiches 🙂

  2. #2 by Miriam on November 24, 2010 - 2:45 pm

    Oh… haha, you’re talking about the bagger person being impressed with you buying two turkeys reminded me of my stockpiling chocolate chips. I was too embarrassed to walk out with as many as I was going to be getting overall, so I broke it down into 3 purchases over a couple days. Each time there was some comment made about “you must be getting ready to do a lot of baking.” Um, not really, just stockpiling so I don’t run out or have to buy any until next Thanksgiving! (Of course I didn’t say that, either!)

  3. #3 by felicialauer on November 29, 2010 - 3:27 am

    Yummy thanks for sharing, Cristy! Those recipes all sound delicious. I have repeatedly been impressed with the things you share about cooking. You are a very creative cook and we seem to share a lot of the same tastes- and the same love for thrift! Stay tuned because I am going to write a Thanksgiving leftovers special, probably tomorrow, so you can get more ideas on how to use all that turkey! Also, I hope you guys are doing well. It has been forever since we’ve seen you or chatted, but I love reading your blog, and I always really enjoyed your company at GCC. God has clearly worked in your life and made you into a lovely lady who shines with His light. We are so happy for you and Tim, too, and I trust that God is richly blessing your marriage. On our end, things have been very busy. Stephen started seminary just north of Seattle in September, so we are still settling into our house etc. Say hi to Tim for us! Happy turkey eating!

  4. #4 by Gretchen B. on November 29, 2010 - 2:02 pm

    Ha, I bought a turkey after Thanksgiving last year and it stayed in the freezer . . . all year! I actually cooked it for Thanksgiving this year since we ended up hosting people! Thanks for your recipes!

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