This past week our 2.5 mile hike of the Divide Lake loop in Isabella brought us many wonders. We started with a greeting from a grouse and plucky pileated woodpecker. The grouse pranced around the park entrance while the woodpecker jabbed for a snack in a birch tree. The ground showed heave spots redolent with icicles pushed up from a mysterious underground world—a sure sign of the coming winter.
The thirty-degree temperature kept our temperature regulated as we wound around the lake, trekking through hills and valleys on frozen moss-covered trails. On our hike, we saw not another soul save an agitated red squirrel and occasional snow bunting.
After spending a few hours outside, we looked forward to something warm and nourishing to bring our body temperature back up and re-energize ourselves. With Thanksgiving just around the corner, we talked about a meal idea for that day and what might be leftover. The best part of Turkey Day is the day-after-Thanksgiving leftovers. It’s like a second holiday, and fuel before Black Friday shopping—or recovery afterward.
But instead of just heating up a plate of turkey, stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes, and various casseroles, try one of these Thanksgiving leftovers recipes. Something more than just turkey sandwiches.
Try these crispy delicious fried delights after your shopping excursion.
2 c. cold mashed potato
½ C. grated parmesan
2 T. chives chopped
1 T. flour
2 C. bread crumbs
2 C. vegetable oil for frying
Mix yolks, mashed, parmesan, chives, and flour in a bowl.
Roll into walnut-sized balls and chill two hours.
Dip potato into the whipped egg and then coat in breadcrumbs.
Brown in oil until crisp, 3-4 minutes.
Serve with Gravy mayo.
Cranberry Rum Cocktail
You can wash down the croquettes with this refreshing cocktail
2 T. cranberry sauce
2 oz bourbon
4 oz ginger beer
1 lemon wedge.
Place cranberry sauce in a rocks glass.
Add the bourbon.
Add ice and top with ginger beer.
Squeeze lemon into drink and stir.
Great with soups, salads or just a snack
This one is so simple. Cut or tear your leftover stuffing into random sized pieces from ½” to 2”. Spread on a baking sheet and bake in 350º oven turning every 3-5 minutes. You can remove pieces as they brown and crisp, or leave all the stuffing in until some are fully crisped and some are crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside.
Turkey Pita Pocket
Skip a traditional leftover sandwich for a souped up version.
2 oz leftover turkey shredded
½ C. Spinach leaves
½ small red onion sliced thin
1 small carrot peeled and cut into matchsticks
4 radishes trimmed and thinly sliced.
1 C. assorted fresh herbs such as mint, parsley, basil or dill.
½ C yogurt with 2 T. sriracha
2 pita warmed
Combine all ingredients except yogurt sauce and mix.
Toss in yogurt and gently combine.
Stuff into warmed pitas and enjoy!
Stuffing Breaded Turkey Tenders
Need we say more?
1 # boneless turkey skin removed.
1 egg, beaten
1 C. buttermilk
Grind your stuffing croutons in a food processor.
Combine eggs and buttermilk.
Slice turkey into strips and dip in buttermilk mixture.
Coat in stuffing breadcrumbs and toast in 350º oven for 10-15 minutes until heated through, or shallow fry in ¾” of oil in a high sided fry pan.
This gravy mayo will kick up all your leftover sandwiches. It is also a delicious dip.
½ C. mayo
2 T. white miso
1 T. fresh lemon juice
1 C. chilled leftover gravy
2 T. chopped chives
1 T. chopped thyme
Kosher salt and pepper
Whisky mayo, miso, and lemon juice in a medium bowl until smooth.
Add gravy and whisk until smooth.
Add chives and thyme.
Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.