It’s been a couple of days, and your fridge is still filled with copious amounts of Thanksgiving leftovers. Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, and, well, the list goes on. Instead of mindlessly heating up the traditional plate of turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, why not try something a little more innovative; something no one has ever ventured to cook up with Thanksgiving leftovers?
Here are a few ideas to liberate your leftovers:
If you haven’t already thrown away your turkey carcass, use it to make stock. Put all the leftover turkey bones in a pot. The more meat left on the bones, the more flavor your stock will have. You may want to break them apart so that they fit more snugly in the pot.
Cover them with an inch of water. Put the pot in the oven and turn the temperature to below 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Leave them in the oven, uncovered, for at least 8 hours (up to 16 hours). If you have an enormous pot of water and bones, you may want to bring it to a simmer, and then put it in the oven.
Remove the stock from the oven and add any leftover vegetables to the pot. Bring the stock to a simmer on the stovetop, turn the burner to low, and cook for an hour on the stove. Once done, strain the stock through a strainer.
Chill in the refrigerator, remove the fat from the top, and freeze. Next time you’re craving your favorite soup, defrost and cook!
Mix leftover mashed potatoes with stuffing and some turkey in a frying pan. Fry everything in a generous amount of butter until crisp. Make a hole in the center of the pan and fry an egg. Top with hot sauce if you’re feeling adventurous. Put on a plate and indulge.
In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine some gravy and milk. Bring to a simmer, whisking occasionally, then reduce the heat to low. Cover and keep warm.
Lather one side of each slice of bread with olive oil. Lay the slices, oiled side down, on a clean work surface. Spread 1 tablespoon of cranberry relish on each slice. Place 1 cheese slice on each of four bread slices. Top with turkey and stuffing. Cover each with one of the remaining bread slices, oiled side up.
Preheat an electric Panini press.
Place 2 sandwiches on the Panini press. Close the lid and cook until the bread is golden brown and the cheese is melted. This should take about 4 minutes. Place on a rack-lined baking sheet and keep warm in the oven. Repeat with the remaining 2 sandwiches. Carefully open the sandwiches and spoon on the warm gravy. Close the sandwiches, cut in half and enjoy!
After surviving another Thanksgiving coma, share your creative Thanksgiving leftover dishes!