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T-day, party of one. Tasty and unusual turkey ideas?

alliegator Nov 19, 2012 11:50 AM

Due to unforseen circumstances, I am not traveling to the family homestead this year, and the mr. is in China for work. My friends are away or with family, and I find myself looking forward to a quiet day to myself.
Have never been a fan of the usual turkey dinner, but I'd like to acknowledge the day by having some turkey. I'd like to do something unusual, like an international recipe, or a stew, somthing like that.
Any ideas, or fun dishes that you may have created from your leftovers or a small portion of meat in the past? I don't use turkey meat often, so would love to hear what you like to do with turkey besides a big dinner.

  1. alliegator Nov 21, 2012 08:53 AM

    Thanks everyone for great ideas! I've decided to go with a turkey chili. Ther are some great looking recipes here that will definitley get me to eat a little more turkey in the future :)

    1. pinehurst Nov 19, 2012 02:54 PM

      From leftovers, The Pioneer Woman has a great recipe for turkey tettrazini:


      1 Reply
      1. re: pinehurst
        sparky403 Nov 25, 2012 11:02 AM

        the terrizini looks really good - I think subing speghetti squash would work really well for this.

      2. c
        cheesecake17 Nov 19, 2012 02:48 PM

        I've breaded and pan fried turkey cutlets. Topped with white beans, arugula and roasted grape tomatoes.

        1. alliegator Nov 19, 2012 01:07 PM

          All great ideas here, thanks everyone! I'm really liking the idea of a mole or chili, becuase I rarely do southwestern or Mexican. And living in Texas, that's almost as sacrelige as not doing the standard American feast ;)

          1 Reply
          1. re: alliegator
            goodhealthgourmet Nov 19, 2012 02:00 PM

            how about this for a Mexican-influencedThanksgiving meal?

          2. GretchenS Nov 19, 2012 01:03 PM

            Consider too the virtues of cornish hens. It will be just my aging father and myself, neither of us is fond enough of turkey to want to eat it for days, so we are going the cornish hen route - butterflied, with mushroom duxelles under the skin, and high heat roasted so the skin gets super crispy.

            1. Will Owen Nov 19, 2012 01:00 PM

              My instinct would be to reduce the meal to what I like most about it: a turkey thigh baked atop a cup or two of stuffing (takeout from somewhere); a small batch of mashed potato (scratch) and gravy (bought); a small pan of roasted Brussels sprouts. Principle side dish AND dessert would be a full-size dish of scalloped oysters …

              For your proposal, I'll second the mole suggestion. Again, I'd use a thigh. Simmer it in broth until it's JUST done - about 150º in the middle, still pink - and use a pint or so of the broth to make the mole sauce with paste from a jar. Doña Maria and Rogelio Bueno are both good brands. Shred the meat and simmer gently in sauce while you make some rice to eat it on. Sides to fit your fancy. Have a nice beer with it.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Will Owen
                Sharuf Nov 19, 2012 01:46 PM

                Your first suggestion is almost exactly what I do. Instead of the mashed potato, I'll roast a sweet potato. And, oh yes, a can of cranberry sauce. And either pumpkin pie or pecan pie -- no oysters, which seem like overkill. Do them on New Year's eve.

              2. s
                sparky403 Nov 19, 2012 12:52 PM

                I tried this recipe once - it takes some time to bone the turkey leg but that's half the fun. I find myself in nearly similar situation but I am going for the full bird none the less.

                Jacques Pepin Turkey Rolade in Coccette:



                1. r
                  rochfood Nov 19, 2012 12:43 PM

                  Ironic to me that on the most American (or maybe North American ) holiday of the year you would consider eating international fare. For me at least, in respect and homage for the historical spirit of the day you would at least eat an American inspired dish. You have the rest of the year to eat international cuisine.

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: rochfood
                    foodieX2 Nov 19, 2012 01:00 PM

                    She also has the rest of year to eat "American" food, why not have some fun when alone?

                    Plus the typical American thanksgiving meal today is no where close to what was served at the so called "first thanksgiving"

                    1. re: foodieX2
                      rochfood Nov 19, 2012 01:29 PM

                      Because she said she wanted to acknowledge the day..not just have a fun meal. The day is a holiday..called Thanksgiving. The rest of the year is not Thanksgiving. We are talking about Thankgiving..not other days.

                      The current meal is inspired..there is that word again..by the original meal..not a replicate..Where did someone say she must eat the original meal. BBQ is american inspired. Mexican / international foods are not. You would consider cornbread..turkey..cranberries..pumpkins to not be American inspired dishes..but international dishes ? Interesting...

                      1. re: rochfood
                        alliegator Nov 19, 2012 01:35 PM

                        I'm acknowledging the day by having turkey, a meat I'm not in the habit of using.
                        All the ideas here are wonderful, and there are some I'll use another day, as well. The beauty of celebrating America is that I'm free to eat whatever I like :)

                        1. re: alliegator
                          rochfood Nov 20, 2012 10:22 AM

                          Exactly..and also the beauty of celebrating America (if that is the reason for Thanksgiving) is that through this forum I'm free to say whatever I like (within reason)...have a happy day..I'll be alone as well.

                          1. re: rochfood
                            smtucker Nov 21, 2012 10:05 AM

                            It is an interesting thought, but being American can actually mean many different things to different people. I didn't realize how much until I actually started to ask some friends what they served. I have an Indian friend, from the South of the country, who has invented a turkey curry that is served with roti, rice, and a ton of side dishes I have never heard of. The haitian community has created a jerk Thanksgiving tradition, and many of my friends growing up were 1st generation from Italy and there was always pasta on the table.

                            If I were eating alone, I would make a turkey roulade stuffed with cranberries, apples, sage, and maybe some bread crumbs and serve it over some mashed potatoes with steamed green beans. If I were a gravy person, that might be included as well. And of course, a lovely French wine.

                  2. biondanonima Nov 19, 2012 12:20 PM

                    I would just make turkey skin gribenes and call it a day! The skin is the only part worth eating anyway, IMO!

                    ETA - I just reread and saw that you were interested in international ideas as well. I would take a look at the poultry recipes on the October 2012 COTM threads - any of the chicken dishes would work fine with turkey thigh meat, and there are some REALLY delicious recipes to choose from.

                    1. letsindulge Nov 19, 2012 12:16 PM

                      Turkey mole, or mole enchiladas. Two of my favorite preparations w/ LO turkey. Make Spanish rice too.

                      1. f
                        foodieX2 Nov 19, 2012 12:06 PM

                        My knee jerk reaction was if you jsut want turkey for turkey sake go southwestern-turkey chili with all the fixings-avocado, cheese and sour cream toppings, corn bread and good beer.

                        My other reaction was s simple turkey cutlet-marinate in lemon juice, herbs and olive oil and then grill. The worlds is your oyster in terms of sides.

                        I made an Indian inspires turkey breast this past fall-rubbed with cumin, coriander and cilantro. Served with a mint yogurt sauce. I am work and can’t seem to find the exact recipe but this is pretty close.

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