No one wants to do much cooking days after Thanksgiving, but then there's the issue of leftovers. There's just so much of them and after a while, a microwaved plate of the same meal can get a bit tiresome. And while you have a fridge full of food, you've used all of your creative energy on Thanksgiving dinner.
Then let me do the thinking for you.
In my family, the solution to the “problem” of leftover turkey was turkey soup. It was a simple recipe of leftover meat simmered along with whatever vegetable bits were found in the crisper, flavored always, always with a few audibly inappropriate squirts of ketchup. Despite my not-so-tantalizing description, I really did love this soup but soon it too became uninteresting and created yet another leftover problem.
This year we’re turning to pot pie. It really tastes nothing of the Thanksgiving meal although I assure you you probably have all the makings for this pie after the main event.
Just keep in mind when you're making stuffing that you’ll want to tuck away an onion, a couple ribs of celery, and a carrot: You’ll need them for this pie. And speaking of pie, you’ll need a crust. I actually always recommend making a double batch of pie crust even if you have no plans for two pies. When you’re already going through the motions, it’s just as easy to double up the recipe. Freeze whatever you don’t use then save it for this pot pie.
I should note also that you really could tuck any number of things into this pie. Have some brussels sprouts that Aunt Judy made? What about those roasted green beans I see way back in the corner of the fridge? Those would do nicely under a buttery blanket. I’ve started with the very basics of a Leftover Turkey Pot Pie, but you should feel free to add to it whatever happens to be lurking in your fridge after the holiday.
If you have the energy, tangy and tart cranberry chutney makes a lovely sauce alongside the pie. If not, leftover cranberry sauce dressed up with a bit of ginger, orange zest, and shallot is fine.
This is the sort of leftover meal that may have you roasting another turkey just for more pie. Because having leftovers of Leftover Pie is never a bad thing.
For the cranberry chutney:
- 1 tablespoon oive oil
- 1 large shallot, minced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 12 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 1/2 tablespoon cumin seeds
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
For the leftover turkey pot pie:
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 carrot
- 2 celery ribs
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon thyme leaves
- Few dashes Worcestershire sauce
- 2 Yukon gold potatoes, diced
- 2 cups turkey stock (or vegetable or chicken)
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream, divided
- 3 cups leftover turkey, roughly diced or shredded
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 1 recipe for pie crust (or puff pastry)