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Oct 28, 2011 05:59 PM

Holiday Leftover Entrees

plse add yours too!


8 oz. bacon, sauteed or baked, drained and chopped, and fat reserved
1/2 c. Reserved bacon fat or extra virgin olive oil
11 oz. yellow onion, small diced
2 medium garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 medium carrot, small diced
1 stalk celery, small diced
½ medium red pepper, small diced
1.5 lb. sweet potatoes, unpeeled,cut in ½”dice, preferably both Hannah (white) and Jewel sweet potatoes, which are rich and less sweet than Garnet
1 lb. Capone’s Duck Sausage, cut in half lengthwise and then cut in 1/3” slices
or roast turkey, duck or goose

1-2 tsp.dried thyme, rubbed in palms of hand to release oils
2 small bay leaves
1 bunch cilantro, washed, drained, dried and minced (optional to include m.stems)
Kosher Salt and Black Pepper, freshly ground

In a large 12” diameter skillet, heat 3-4 T.bacon fat or oil til hot. Add onion, adjust heat to medium high and sautee until golden brown(adding more fat or oil if needed to keep from burning.) Add garlic , thyme and bay leaf for the last few minutes of cooking. Remove onion and garlic from pan. Heat another 2-3T of fat/oil to hot, sautee carrots, celery and red pepper 3-5 minutes over medium high heat until seared and tender. Remove from pan. Meanwhile steam* or blanch potatoes until just tender, about 3-5 minutes. Do not cook longer or the hash will be mushy. Cool potatoes in a colander by an open window or in a cool area.
In the original skillet, heat 3-4 T. oil/fat until hot. Over medium high heat,sautee duck sausage on both sides until it loses its pink color.Leave juices/fat in pan with sausage. Add the potatoes, stir to coat well. Increase heat if needed so potatoes will sizzle. Add onion and carrot mixtures and bacon.Sautee 10 + minutes over medium high heat til potatoes are a bit crusty/crunchy and flavors have blended . Add cilantro and salt and pepper to taste. Adjust other ingredients as needed. Serve.

* Steaming potatoes preserves their vitamins better, rather than losing nutritional value in blanching water. I use an aluminum tiered chinese steamer.
Diced peeled celery root would make a good substitute for some of the sweet potatoes and can be prepared in the same manner.
3 lb. of cooked cannelini or Great Northern beans could also be substituted for the potatoes.
This makes an excellent entrée or side dish.
For a great brunch dish, serve it with fried eggs, an omelet, or Eggs Benedict.
Makes 6-7 cups; Serves 4-6 people as a brunch entrée with fried eggs.

When reheating, do not microwave. Rather, heat in medium hot skillet to retain its appealing crunchiness..


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  1. I guess it depends which holiday the leftovers are from - they're going to be different from Diwali than Easter but this one works happily with turkey, chicken or ham.

    Soften some mushrooms.and onion in butter (or substitute leftover leeks for the onion) then add some chopped smoked bacon. Stir in some flour than add stock to make a smooth but thickish sauce. Add parsley, cream and brandy. Now let the mix cool. When it's cold, stir in your leftover meat.

    Roll out some puff pastry to a 30cm square and place your meat mix into the cemtre. Brush the edge with egg then bring up the corners to meet in the middle, pinching the edges together. Bakes for about 30 minutes at 220.

    The original recipe I use is from "Delia Smith's Christmas" (1990).

    1. The Best Turkey and Andouille Gumbo!

      3 cups okra, sliced 1/2 inch thick
      1 pound smoked sausage or andouiIle sausage, cut into 1/4-inch slices
      Chicken or turkey meat, about 2 pounds cut into bite size pieces
      Louisiana hot sauce or ground cayenne pepper to taste
      1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
      Salt to taste
      1/2 cup oil or shortening or bacon drippings
      1 cup all-purpose flour
      1 cup chopped onion
      1 cup chopped green onions
      1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
      1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
      1/4 cup chopped celery
      1 gallon of stock, more or less, made from the leftover turkey
      1 tablespoon chopped garlic
      1/2 teaspoon crushed dried mint

      1.Heat the oil in a large, heavy pot over medium heat, then add the flour and make a dark roux. Stir constantlly! This will take a while, up to 45 minutes. To the roux add the onions, green onions, bell pepper, parsley, and celery, stirring after each addition, and cook until the onions are clear. Add 1 cup of the stock and stir well to form a thick paste. Stir in the minced garlic, then the remaining stock. Stir in the mint, okra, sausage, and chicken. Season with hot sauce, Worcestershire, and salt; stir to mix well. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer at least 3 hours, stirring occasionally. Serve over cooked rice. This can be frozen in containers to be eaten another day

      2 Replies
        1. re: opinionatedchef

          Funny you mention that...I feel the same way, I'm just not convinced that it's necessary!

      1. I usually roast root vegetables along with butternut squash for Thanksgiving. When I have leftovers, I make soup by pureeing the leftovers adding some chicken stock and finishing with half and half. Lovely rich taste.

        I also make a turkey hash which is really a soup/stew. I soften diced celery and onions in butter. Add chicken stock and diced potatoes and cut up turkey. Salt and pepper to taste. I make a big pan of cornbread and that's our Saturday night supper after Thanksgiving.

        1. My leftover turkey goes into "Turkey-Leek Pie" ever since I discovered Jamie's recipe for it:

          Everyone loves it so much that I've bought turkey breast to roast for this pie!

          1. i usually host a small bites / hors d'oeuvres party to get rid of errant leftovers and have the fun of experimenting and guinea pigs :)
            Mashed Potatoes -- sometimes mini souffles (add egg yolks, diced caramelized onions, any diced veg i feel like (broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, mushrooms, etc) thyme or rosemary, fold in stiff egg whites, and pipe of dollop and bake); tacos (sounds weird but the creamy texture mimics somewhere between beans and sour cream, add shredded chicken, sauteed veg, roasted garlic, diced tomatoes, a little gruyere); soup shooters; Latkes (i make mine with a portion of mashed potato and shredded, with roasted garlic mashed and diced cooked onion)

            Stuffing - cut into squares, dipped lightly in egg white, then seasoned flour or crumbs mixed with parmesan and herbs, pan sauteed til crispy under poached egg; Or, with turkey and cranberry sauce on mini tea sandwiches

            Sweet potatoes (depends upon the initial prep) - sometimes become a dip with smoky lime tortilla chips; or a filling for stuffed french toast; sometimes a burrito filling

            Sometimes tho, the best thing to come from Holiday Leftovers are Leftover Fingers... that is to say, a meal from eating different leftovers with my fingers. Sneer away.