Gastrologic: Limited Time Leftovers

You’re On A Deadline, Eat While You Can

Dan Pennington
4 min read
leftover turkey
The bounty of leftovers is truly the greatest thing. (Dan Pennington)
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[Infomercial music starts playing] Has this ever happened to you? [Imagine just a whole ton of turkey leftover after Thanksgiving, and the person looks terrified and confused] Tired of turkey sandwiches? Have you felt left out in the cold by the boring options available to you? That’s where we come in. Hi, I’m Dan Pennington and I wanna talk to you today about something new called “creativity in cooking,” our 23-step process to get you into the meal of your dreams with your Thanksgiving leftovers. So, if you have turkey burning a hole in your fridge and you need to get rid of it quick, we’ve got your solutions!

Turkey’s versatility shouldn’t be understated, with its gamier flavor than chicken, but subtle richness in the dark meats, you’ve got a wide profile of flavors to work with. Don’t be content with treading the same paths as you have in years before, leaving you with a bad taste in your mouth and fear of throwing away good turkey. Turn the paradigm on its head and just incorporate turkey into your basic everyday meals! Feeling hungry first thing in the morning? Just make yourself a turkey breakfast burrito!

That doesn’t fit the bill? Have you considered doing a more traditional ramen, using things you’ve got in the house? Take any pack of instant ramen, boil an egg until you’ve got a solid white and a slightly cooked yolk, heat up your turkey, chop up some onion, throw a little sriracha in and have yourself a very large, delicious meal. With only 10 or so minutes of cooking and work, this is a great way to make an impressive meal for a low cost to you while also burning through some of that turkey (Please don’t actually burn it.)

Want to try something a little more strange? Get yourself a deep bowl, some puff pastry and free up an evening to make a turkey pot pie. Here’s the thing: Leftover turkey has a tendency to be a little dry and chewy, so use the power of the pot pie recipe to change that. With the abundance of moisture you’ll find in your normal chicken pot pie recipe, it should be more than enough to cover the shortcomings of the turkey, giving it a saucy bed to lay in and absorb all that liquid to be just as rich and decadent as the Thursday night prior from whence it came. Add to that flaky crust (anyone got some leftover biscuit dough?) with a slew of veggies and this is a dinner fit for a king (Get it? It’s a reference!). I won’t go into the details of how to make a pot pie, but rest assured a little page called Google will be able to help you hunt one down that suits your needs.

Just because Richie B’s did it best doesn’t mean you can’t play with the recipe a bit yourself. Turkey and pizza are a winning combo no matter what, especially if you add green chile and cheddar. Make yourself a pizza, or if you’re extra lazy, go buy an oven-friendly and throw the turkey on for fun. Add whatever you want to it, make it the pie of your life. The best part is, unless you finish the pizza in one sitting, you’ll have leftovers again! Much like Simba and Pride Rock, you’ll be creating a new circle of life, breathing new energy into the turkey with every reheating of the pizza. (All writers in this weird food section infomercial space are not experts on how long your turkey is legally good for, use your best judgement, it’ll probably be ok.)

Boom! Four new ways to add turkey into your life’s routine without you feeling worn down by monotony. Need more to be convinced? Well, unfortunately, that’s all the time we have. So go out there, be creative, try new things and don’t throw out good turkey! You went through all the trouble to make the damn thing; you best enjoy it while you can.
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