Leftover Thanksgiving Turkey Ideas
By Dave Urmann
The next day after Thanksgiving is marked by the appearance of a seemingly endless stream of turkey sandwiches. It is, in its own way, part of the American Thanksgiving tradition. But is slapping a few slabs of white and dark on wheat with a smear of Mayo the only thing to do with leftovers from the big meal? Of course not! There are endless possibilities to explore with the remains of the bird.
Tradition aside, what is turkey but fowl? That means that any dish that could contain chicken is a decent fit for turkey. Soups, salads, pastas and casseroles area all contenders. Even a turkey omelet can find its way into your post Thanksgiving turkey recipes.
South of the border flavors aren't out of bounds either. A turkey enchilada or burrito is a unique yet tasty option, as is a turkey quesadilla (use dark meat for the latter so the flavor is strong enough to hold its own with the cheese). A turkey-based chili is a delight, and a nice belly warmer on a chilly November evening.
Instead of a turkey sandwich, try a turkey-salad sandwich. This is a great option for the last few scraps of the bird since you want small pieces here anyway.
Of course, none of these options are possible if you don't have properly stored leftover in the 1st place. It's not simply a matter of having enough Tupperware and refrigerator shelf-space, either. Most folks are sick enough from overeating on Thanksgiving without
the added burden of past-its-prime meat.
When poultry turns, it turns fast and hard. For safety purposes the turkey should be into the refrigerator no more than 2 hours after it came out of the oven. However, if the turkey is stored correctly it should be safe to eat for nearly a week. To be on the extra-safe side, any meat that will not be eaten in 3 days should be frozen for longer storage. Any frozen leftovers should be thawed and eaten within one month of freezing, not so much for safety's sake, but because it won't taste as good.
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Neal Fannin is a full time writer for bread-maker and has an interest in cooking and experimenting with recipes.