Leftover Turkey Delights

Leftover Turkey Delights

It’s no secret Thanksgiving Day turkey often lingers as a house guest. Long after family and friends head home, it remains in your refrigerator for days. But gobbling down all those leftovers doesn’t have to be a daunting experience. After rising from your tryptophan-induced coma, try a recipe that deliciously recycles your turkey leftovers. Plus Paul Gregutt, WE’s contributing editor and Pacific Northwest expert, recommends wines that intensify the spices, sauces and stuffing of the dishes and kick food flavors into gear.

Recipe by Susan Russo

1 tablespoon butter
1 cup diced yellow onions
1 cup diced peeled carrots
1 cup diced celery
3 cups whole milk
¼ cup all-purpose flour
5–6 sage leaves, finely diced
1 medium sprig rosemary, finely diced
¼ teaspoon each salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 cups cooked diced turkey meat
1 cup frozen peas
3 cups cooked mashed sweet potatoes (If you aren’t using already seasoned Thanksgiving leftover mashed potatoes, then add 1/2 cup milk and 2 tablespoons butter to the plain mashed potatoes and heat for a couple of minutes on the stove top.)

Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat a large baking dish (10–12 inch round or an 11×7 rectangular) with cooking spray. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter. Add onions, carrots and celery, and sauté 5-7 minutes, or until just tender. In a medium bowl, whisk milk and flour until flour dissolves. Add herbs, salt and pepper. Add turkey to the vegetables. Add the milk-flour mixture. Stir occasionally until the sauce begins to thicken. Add the peas and stir. Transfer to the prepared baking dish. Top with mashed potatoes, leaving a ½-inch space between the potatoes and the dish. Cook for 20–25 minutes, or until the sauce begins to bubble around the edges and the potatoes are lightly browned. Serves 6-8.

Wine Recommendation: Comfort food calls for comfort wine. A big, round, ripe Chardonnay such as the Chateau Ste. Michelle 2008 Canoe Ridge Estate ($22)—or a rich Washington Merlot. Try the Columbia 2007 Crest Grand Estates ($12). —Paul Gregutt 



Variation: Make two sandwiches with toasted bread, such as rye, whole wheat, or pumpernickel. The addition of dried cranberries will add tartness. Recipe by Susan Russo.




2 ¼ cups cooked, shredded or chopped turkey meat
¼ cup diced celery, preferably the inner white stalks
½ up diced tart apple, such as Granny Smith
¼ cup diced ripe mango
2 scallions, finely sliced
¼ cup coarsely chopped cashews
¼ cup mayo                                                                                                                     
¼ cup plain yogurt
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
1 teaspoon fresh minced ginger
2 teaspoons hot curry powder
salt and cayenne pepper, to taste
3–4 (6-inch) tortillas                                                                                                                                                 
1 tablespoon dried cranberries (optional)

In a medium bowl, mix together turkey, celery, apple, mango, scallions, cashews and cranberries. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together remaining ingredients until smooth and creamy. Pour over turkey mixture, stirring until well coated. Place in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for 2–3 hours before serving. In a large skillet over medium heat, warm tortillas for 1 minute per side. Divide turkey evenly and close wraps. Makes 4 wraps.

Wine Recommendations: The curry rules this dish, so you might bring out the spicy Hogue 2009 Gewürztraminer ($11); the off-dry Apex 2008 Riesling ($15); or a fruity Oregon Pinot Gris such as the Adelsheim’s 2009 from the Willamette Valley ($19). —P. G.

Recipe by Susan Russo.

4 thick slices rye bread
1 teaspoon olive oil
6–8 ounces sliced leftover turkey
4 slices of prosciutto
2 tablespoons mayo
2 ounces crumbled gorgonzola cheese
8 fresh arugula leaves

Preheat broiler. Drizzle bread slices with olive oil  and place under broiler for 4–5 minutes, or until golden brown. In a large skillet over medium heat, add the turkey. Heat it until warmed all the way through, usually about 5–6 minutes. Place prosciutto slices in a hot skillet for 1 minute until slightly crispy. Spread mayo on the toasted bread slices. Top with crumbled gorgonzola, fresh arugula, heated turkey and prosciutto. Note: Crusty ciabatta bread is also a delicious alternative. Makes 2 sandwiches.

Wine Recommendations: A blended red works, as the gorgonzola can sometimes clash with a too-tannic Cabernet. Go with something young and fruity such as the Columbia Crest Two Vines 2008 Vineyard 10 ($8), a mongrel blend of Syrah, Sangiovese, Grenache and Cabernet Franc. —P. G.

An easy, one-pot meal that turns Thanksgiving leftovers into something deliciously different. Recipe by Jill Silverman Hough.

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
9–12 ounces cooked andouille sausage, halved lengthwise and cut diagonally into ½-inch slices
1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and cut into ½-inch dice
1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded, and cut into ½-inch dice
1 large onion, cut into ½-inch dice
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound cooked turkey, shredded or cut into ½-inch dice
1 14.5-ounce can diced fire-roasted tomatoes (with their juices)
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
1 dried bay leaf
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 ½-cups long grain white rice

In a stockpot over medium heat, warm the butter and olive oil. Add the sausage and cook, stirring occasionally until it begins to brown, about 3 minutes. Add the bell peppers and cook, stirring occasionally for 2 minutes. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are tender, about 1 minute. Stir in the turkey, tomatoes, broth, wine, thyme, bay leaf, salt, paprika and cayenne. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until the rice is tender and the liquid is almost all absorbed, about 25 minutes. Serves 6 to 8.

Wine Recommendations: Here we’re into a winter stew with a bit of heat, so crank up the volume on the wine. A Cabernet Syrah or Rhône will work well. Two to look for: Hogue 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon ($11); and Olsen Estates 2007 Rouge des Coteaux ($18). —P. G.

Turkey Lingune Alfredo with Mushrooms

Recipe by Karen Berman

1 (16-ounce) package linguine
1 stick (4 ounces), plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
½ tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
10 ounces sliced white mushrooms
¼ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
1½ cups light cream or half-and-half, plus more if necessary
¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese or Parmesan and Romano cheese blend, plus more for       serving
¼ teaspoon dried oregano (optional)
Freshly ground black pepper (optional)
2 cups cooked turkey, boned and roughly cut into bite-sized pieces
Few sprigs fresh oregano for garnish (optional)

Cook the linguine according to the package directions. When it’s done, drain and keep warm. Reserve the pasta water.

In a frying pan set over medium-high heat, melt 1 tablespoon butter with the oil. Add the garlic and cook, stirring for 20 to 30 seconds (be careful that it does not burn). Add the mushrooms, stir to coat with the butter, and season lightly with salt. Cook, stirring often for 6 to 8 minutes, or until the mushrooms have released their liquid (it evaporates and they begin to turn golden brown). Stir often and adjust the heat if necessary to keep the mushrooms from burning.

In a large nonstick skillet set over medium-high heat, melt the remaining butter. Add the cream a little at a time and cook for about 4 minutes, or until the mixture has thickened and you can draw a line at the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Stir the mixture frequently and reduce the heat if necessary to prevent it from burning. (If necessary, remove the skillet from the heat for a minute.

Reduce the heat to medium, if you haven’t already done so. Add the cheese to skillet and stir gently to combine. Add the oregano, if using, and season with black pepper.

Add the turkey and the mushrooms, reserving a few golden ones for garnish, toss to coat with the sauce and cook for 1 to 2 minutes to heat through. If the mixture becomes to dry, add a few ladles of pasta water and stir to incorporate, until you achieve a saucy consistency. With a slotted spoon, transfer the linguine into the skillet and toss to coat with sauce and incorporate the turkey. If the mixture again becomes too dry, add a little more pasta water and stir to incorporate. Taste and if necessary, season lightly with salt and a little black pepper. Spoon into large pasta or soup bowls, sprinkle with grated cheese and garnish with the reserved cooked mushrooms and a few sprigs of fresh oregano, if using. Serves 4.

Wine Recommendations: A spicy, sassy Chardonnay is a good bet here, such as the 2009 Nake Chardonnay from Ryan Patrick Vineyards ($9). Continuing the theme, there is also the organically grown 2008 Naked Chardonnay from Snoqualmie ($12). —P.G.

Turkey and Bacon Wrap with Herbed Cranberry Mayonnaise

Recipe by Karen Berman

An elegant but simple wrap, this turkey-bacon club is elevated by the addition of Herbed Cranberry Mayonnaise made with dried sweetened cranberries and fresh thyme. To remove the leaves from the thyme quickly, hold a stem from the top end with one hand and slide your fingers firmly down its length the other. The leaves will slide off.



Herbed Cranberry Mayonnaise
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
½ cup sweetened dried cranberries
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup mayonnaise

Turkey and Bacon Wraps
8 strips bacon
4 8-inch flour tortillas
4 to 8 leaves romaine lettuce
2 cups cooked turkey, boned roughly cut or torn into long strips

To make the mayo, process the thyme leaves, cranberries and olive oil in a food processor until well chopped; the mixture will almost have the consistency of a paste. Transfer the mixture to a small bowl and stir in the mayonnaise until combined. (If you are tempted to mix in the mayonnaise in the processor, do so only for about 5 seconds. Longer processing will cause the mayo to separate and become oily.) Set aside to let the flavors marry while you make the rest of the wrap. (You can make the mayo several hours ahead if you wish. Cover and chill it in the refrigerator.)

To make the wraps, cook the bacon: Cover a platter with paper towel and place the bacon strips on it in a single layer. Cook for 3 minutes, stopping to check for doneness halfway through the cooking, and if necessary, continue microwaving until crispy, stopping every minute or so to keep it from burning.

Place a tortilla on a work surface and lay 1 large or 2 small romaine leaves about half an inch from the edge nearest you. Spoon 1 heaping tablespoon of the mayo into the leaves and top with about ½ cup turkey. Place 2 bacon slices on top, roll up the wrap and secure with 2 toothpicks placed so you can cut the wrap in half and each half will be secured by 1 pick. Cut the wrap on a diagonal. Then trim the outside ends to make a neat, flat surface so the pieces can stand upright if you like. Repeat with the other 3 tortillas and serve. Serves 4.

Wine Recommendations: Anytime there are cranberries involved, thoughts turn to Grenache or a sappy Rhône blend. The Subduction Red from Syncline ($18) is always a favorite—generally a blend of Grenache, Syrah, Cinsault, Mourvèdre, Counoise and Carignan. —P. G.

Published on November 16, 2010