There are a few "givens" when it comes to celebrating Thanksgiving -- the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in the morning, turkey as the star of the meal, the post meal food coma, and of course, the refrigerator full of leftover turkey, side dishes, and dessert. Thanksgiving leftovers are quite possibly as anticipated as much as the actual meal itself, a win-win situation whoever you are -- those who don’t like to cook are covered at lunch and dinner (or breakfast – leftover pie is a completely acceptable breakfast option) and for those of us who like to cook, Thanksgiving leftovers provide a great opportunity to use classic dishes as a starting point to create more inventive recipes. As much as I love planning the traditional Thanksgiving menu, figuring out what to do with the leftovers is the most fun part.
A few of my favorite ways to use up leftovers, if you’re looking for some inspiration:
-Leftover mashed potatoes or mashed sweet potatoes can be formed into pancakes and fried in a little butter and olive oil to make savory pancakes, good as a side dish or on their own with a salad.
-Leftover roast potatoes are great in a frittata.
-Leftover cranberry sauce is delicious stirred in to cake or muffin batter to make a cranberry swirl cake or muffins, or used as a topping for pancakes or waffles.
-Leftover roasted squash is great stirred in to pasta or risotto (post and recipe forthcoming!)
-Leftover turkey and mashed potatoes make a great shepherd’s pie – use the turkey in the filling and the potatoes as the topping.
-Leftover turkey is also great in a pot pie, in chili, in a hash for breakfast, in a wrap, in quesadillas or enchiladas, or most traditionally, used to make a turkey sandwich – my favorite is a turkey BLT. Or, in soup, the star of today's post.