The luxury of leftovers

Many moons ago, I regarded most leftovers with annoyance. Since I liked cooking so much I did not enjoy revisiting the food from the previous day, preferring to having something completely new for each meal. As I got older I realized the error of my ways, learning that leftovers were a delicious timesaver as well as a sign that I was blessed with abundance. I now embrace leftovers and plan ahead for creative ways to make the most of what can best be described as a luxury. Turkey pot pie is the most anticipated post-Thanksgiving meal in our house, but I’m always on the lookout for new ideas so I’m sharing a few articles about leftovers that I found recently.

Cranberry cream cheese French toast from Taste of Home Make It!

First we go to the LA Times which offers a dozen ways to use up excess turkey and stuffing, including a ‘pain perdu’ made with the latter ingredient and topped with Gouda sauce and poached eggs. The New York Times Magazine wants us to make turkey ramen, (registration required for that article), while CNN gives us a handful of healthy turkey recipes plus a few decadent ones like green bean casserole quiche. Lastly, we turn to Eater for a guide to making Thanksgiving leftover lasagna, where food writer Dayna Evans asks us to embrace the chaos that follows an “overthinker’s” holiday.

Since we did not host this year we have fewer leftovers than usual, which will curtail our options beyond pot pie, with one exception: cranberry sauce. I made a double batch because it was one of the things we were taking to the hosts, and my husband wanted to make sure we had plenty for use afterward. However, in the rush to get everything else ready (including a homemade green bean casserole), I forgot the cranberry sauce in the fridge, so the two of us will now get to eat both batches. I think I’ll use it as topping for French toast or crêpes.

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  • Rinshin  on  November 26, 2022

    I love all these ideas there. Right now I am in search of ways to use up turkey for lower carb options. Those are harder to find.

  • Barb_N  on  November 27, 2022

    I love Thanksgiving leftovers so much that if we don’t host, I make a small turkey at home the next day. I need that carcass for soup, along with turkey sandwiches and turkey/stuffing/gravy casserole.

  • bittrette  on  January 12, 2023

    My sister usually hosts Thanksgiving dinner (she has the big house), unless there’s another relative who wants to bring the whole clan over. One year I saw the turkey carcass in the garbage. I wasn’t about to do something gross like fish it out, but I asked my sister to give me the carcass on future Thanksgivings, which she now does every year that she hosts the dinner.
    For me, the day after Thanksgiving is not Black Friday but Soup Friday. I still have some turkey stock in the freezer.

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