Leftovers 101: Turkey

I hope you had a delicious enough Thanksgiving. If you were a guest, I hope you helped your host. A host? I hope you got all or most of your one relaxed hour. Hosts, maybe take a moment to think about and write down what you might do differently next year — especially if you felt in any way overtaxed by your efforts. If you have not gotten a copy of At Home’s Thanksgiving Planner, it could be helpful to get now and file away for next year.  Just send me an email requesting it to steve@athomebysteveposes.com..

I began Thanksgiving morning quite moved by the lead editorial in the New York Times titled A Thanksgiving Toast. I was going to send a quick post, but didn’t want to intrude on Thanksgiving day. It’s still worth reading.

At Home by Steve Poses: A Caterer’s Guide to Cooking & Entertaining is loaded with more than 200 tips written in the side margins throughout the book. The following tip and recipe are from At Home. The book and companion website are make an ideal holiday gift for anyone who loves to cook — aspiring or accomplished, entertain or just loves curling up with a good cookbook loaded with humor, some wisdom and wonderful illustrations. At Home is not available in bookstores.  It is available online at athomebysteveposes.com and weekends at The Reading Terminal Market where I will be signing books at a table in Center Court. I’ll also be at Weaver’s Way on Saturday, December 19th. Books are also available at the restaurants operated by Frog Commissary at The Franklin Institute

Leftovers 101: Turkey
Lucky is the host who has leftover turkey. Leftover turkey is so coveted that family members sometimes expect post-Thanksgiving care packages to go. I strongly suggest roasting a bigger turkey than you need whenever possible—and that you roast a turkey at home more frequently. First and foremost, use leftover turkey for a hot turkey sandwich. Don’t bother trying to reheat the turkey. Just place it open-faced on rustic bread and drizzle it with very hot leftover gravy. Cold turkey combines nicely with cranberry sauce, lettuce and wheat bread for a cold turkey sandwich. Or, cook up some bacon for a turkey BLT on toasted bread. Cube leftover turkey and combine with mayonnaise, cranberry sauce, pecans, celery and scallion for turkey salad. Substitute turkey for chicken in croquettes (see page 270). Use turkey in corned beef hash (page 378). Finally, use the carcass and final meat pickings for turkey chowder (page 119).

A note about the following recipe: Ideally, you’ll take a quick trip to the market to pick-up a few ears of fresh corn. It’s not corn season around here, but it is somewhere and fresh corn still often makes it way here. The recipe uses the cob from the fresh corn to enrich and sweeten the stock. But, feel free to use canned corn (my personal guilty snack food pleasure). It will still make a great soup — served to holiday guests, enjoyed by family next week, or frozen for a cold winter’s day.

Turkey Chowder
The perfect day-after Thanksgiving solution to leftovers (after your Dagwood sandwich, of course), this comforting soup swirls turkey and corn in a creamy herbed broth.

do ahead Stock can be made up to one month ahead and frozen. Chowder can be made up to three days ahead and stored in the refrigerator. Reheat on the stove before serving.

Turkey Stock
4 ears corn, husked and cleaned (or 17-ounce can corn, drained)
2 celery stalks, halved lengthwise
2 carrots, peeled and halved lengthwise
2 small onions, quartered
1 head garlic, halved
1 bay leaf
2 sprigs fresh parsley
6 peppercorns
1 roasted turkey carcass
1⁄2 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped carrot
1 cup chopped onion
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
4-6 cups cubed turkey
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1⁄2 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons salt
1⁄4 teaspoon pepper

1 Make stock: Bring 21⁄2 quarts water to a boil in a large stockpot. Add corn and cook for 3 minutes. Remove corn and run under cold water. Working over a bowl, scrape cobs with a knife to remove kernels and any residual milk. Reserve corn and residue.
2 Return cobs to the pot with celery, carrots, onions, garlic, bay leaf, parsley, peppercorns and turkey carcass. If needed, break up the carcass to submerge it. Bring to a boil and skim off any scum that rises to the surface. Lower heat and simmer for at least 3 hours. Strain and discard solids.
3 Make chowder by melting butter in a large stockpot. When foaming subsides, add chopped celery, carrot, onion and garlic to pot and cook over moderately high heat until vegetables have softened, about 10 minutes.
4 Add flour to pot and stir to form a paste. Cook for a few minutes. Gradually add 8 cups turkey stock and heavy cream to pot, stirring to prevent lumps. Stir in thyme, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in turkey, corn and milky residue. Cook until heated through, about 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper.

911 – At Home Online
Mid Thanksgiving day I got a call from my son Noah, who was making his first Thanksgiving in his new Italian Market abode. He needed a recipe, but had not used the key code that came with his book to log in to At Home’s companion website. He asked for an emergency key code so he could go to the site to find the recipe he needed. From the beginning of this project I felt that providing content in both the form of a book and digitized on a companion website made sense. I don’t understand why every cookbook is not published this way…and think that in the future they will be. But I never expected that among the benefits of At Home Online would be providing my 22 year old son with an emergency Thanksgiving recipe.

Thank you for reading.


1 Comment

Filed under Holidays, Recipes, Tips

One response to “Leftovers 101: Turkey

  1. Pamela Lewis

    I got your book just before Thanksgiving and I’m so glad I did. (My sister-in-law, Anne Clark, gave me the heads up about it becoming available…I’m a big fan of the Frog cookbook).

    All of your Thanksgiving emails were helpful, encouraging, and a lot of fun! My guests loved the cranberry champagne cocktails, I delegated, I relaxed, and today I made the turkey chowder! Delicious! Thank you so much. I look forward to cooking my way through the new book.

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