Thankful for Leftovers!

Rosemary Pie
It's the day after Thanksgiving. It's the biggest shopping day of the year and you're at home staring into your fridge full of Thanksgiving Day leftovers. Whether you're going out to take advantage of all the sales today or not, you have to eat. In all of the food available to you for reheating, nothing looks interesting, and the last thing you want to do is stand over a stove again for hours on end. You, my friend, are in luck. There are so many recipes available now that you can effortlessly make a new meal out of your leftovers in just minutes.

A traditional Thanksgiving meal consists of turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, and sometimes much more. For starters, a lot can be done with turkey. Turkey sandwiches, turkey soup, turkey salad (like chicken salad), turkey on your salad, turkey added to macaroni and cheese (a children's favorite); the possibilities are endless! Turkey is very versatile and can be used in place of chicken in nearly any recipe. Turkey can also replace beef and pork in many recipes.

Who remembers Shepherd's Pie? They served it in our elementary school cafeteria and it is such a yummy (but simple to make) comfort food. It is made up of ground beef, mashed potatoes and cheese. The beef can easily be switched to turkey, and you can even throw in a vegetable if you have left over corn or green beans. You just mix together your meat, cheese and potatoes (and veggies if you like) and heat in the oven in a casserole dish. Voila! Lunch (or dinner) is served.

A favorite of mine is "Crispy Rosemary Potato Cakes." This recipe uses up 3 cups of leftover mashed potatoes and is absolutely delicious.

3 tablespoon(s) olive oil
1 1/2 cup(s) chopped onion
1 tablespoon(s) finely chopped rosemary
3 cup(s) leftover mashed potatoes
1 cup(s) panko bread crumbs
Salt
Pepper

In a medium skillet over medium-low heat, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add onion, rosemary, and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper and cook until onion is soft and golden, about 7 minutes. Transfer to a large mixing bowl, add potatoes, and mix. Season with salt and pepper.
Spread panko in a shallow dish. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Using a 1/3 cup measure, form potato mixture into 12 cakes. Gently press panko on both sides of each cake. Cook cakes in batches (adding more oil as needed), turning once, until golden brown and heated t

Turkey tetrazzini is a creamy pasta dish made with turkey and your choice of vegetables. There are many variations of this dish. I like this one.

8 ounces spaghetti, ready cut
1 lb white mushroom, sliced
1/3 cup butter
3 cups chopped cooked turkey or 3 cups cooked chicken
2 (10 3/4 ounce) cans cream of chicken soup
2 cups sour cream
salt and pepper
chopped parsley (optional)

Cook and drain pasta. In large skillet, saute mushrooms in butter. Add the turkey, sour cream and soup. Cook just till heated and combined. Fold in noodles. Season with salt and pepper. Put in buttered casserole. Top with parsley if desired. Bake at 300 degrees for 40 minutes or until heated through.

No matter the selection in your fridge, a quick internet search can bring endless possibilities your way. There are also cookbooks available specifically for using up leftovers. Get creative and enjoy...again!

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