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The hoax of leftover-turkey recipes


Fat Guy
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It must be difficult to be a food writer and always under pressure to come up with something new and different to say.

:biggrin: perfect.

turkey casserole, and some other recipes, have been enjoyed and in my family long before the "food entertainment providers" were around, so, you know, i don't think the author is completely on base. but i do's loves me a good hyperbole and absurd hypothesis when i can't come up with anything better.

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Tommy, you have said it all! Perfect!

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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To be clear, Jill Hunter Pellettieri is not a food writer desperate for ideas. She's the managing editor of Slate. She mostly edits other people's work (she handled my piece on the Jessica Seinfeld book), and she writes just a few articles a year on whatever she wants to write about: gay marriage, the Zamboni, poodle haircuts, etc., and food when she feels like it. So you can be sure that if she took on the issue of Thanksgiving leftovers it's because she wanted to, not because some editor was hovering over her demanding an idea. Indeed, rather than being a claim that applies to her in any way, the statement "It must be difficult to be a food writer and always under pressure to come up with something new and different to say" pretty much sums up her thesis.

Edited by Fat Guy (log)

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Please don't throw away Thanksgiving (especially turkey) leftovers! I would kill for a leftover turkey sandwich right now. Thanksgiving is the holiday I miss the most in Japan and we have only had it twice in 13 years.

As a child I grew up with 7 siblings and leftovers were pretty much unheard of. Any turkey that made it home from my aunt's house was fought over viciously and being the scrawny one I usually lost.

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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I suppose it follows the "I love it because mom always did it this way":

Turkey Divan.  (Someone sorta dissed it above.)

It truly is "Betty Crocker cooking":  In a 13" x 9" glass casserole: frozen broccoli spears, topped with chopped cooked turkey, topped with a creamy mixture of two cans of your choice of Campbell's "Cream Of" soups, which have been mixed with generous amounts of packaged curry powder, topped with grated ched cheese, and then bread crumbs which have been tossed with a bit of melted butter.

Baked until lightly brown and bubbling..

My mom always made Turkey Divan, but it wasn't like this! The recipe from the Fannie Farmer cookbook calls for turkey or chicken breast slices, freshly cooked broccoli spears, and a bechamel sauce enriched with egg yolks and sherry. Arrange turkey over the broccoli, pour the sauce over all, sprinkle with 1/2 c. parmesan, and bake.

Edited by hjshorter (log)

Heather Johnson

In Good Thyme

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To be clear, Jill Hunter Pellettieri is not a food writer desperate for ideas. She's the managing editor of Slate. She mostly edits other people's work (she handled my piece on the Jessica Seinfeld book), and she writes just a few articles a year on whatever she wants to write about: gay marriage, the Zamboni, poodle haircuts, etc., and food when she feels like it. So you can be sure that if she took on the issue of Thanksgiving leftovers it's because she wanted to, not because some editor was hovering over her demanding an idea.

do you have first hand knowledge (if that's even possible) that this writer didn't need a fluff piece to meet a deadline or fill space? if it's not, it sure reads like it is, and, that, of course, is the point.

it's a lame article. yeah, recipes on tv and in magazines are generally repetitive and won't make it into your recipe box to be passed down for generations, and that includes those that come out around thanksgiving, too. and?

she's demonstrating the exact same lack of imagination that she's criticizing, unless there's some sort of irony going on here that went right over my head as i read the other part of her article which discussed the history of turkeys, or the extra "work" required to make anything with the leftovers beyond sandwiches. wait, what was the article about?

it's pretty clear to me how interesting this article was. her motivations, personal or professional, well i won't make any guesses.

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do you have first hand knowledge (if that's even possible) that this writer didn't need a fluff piece to meet a deadline or fill space?

It's Slate. They don't need to fill pages; they're online. They had a full load of other Thanksgiving articles: "Turkey Shoot," by Regina Schrambling; "The Greenest Bird," by Brendan I. Koerner; "Wherefore Turkey?" by Michelle Tsai; "A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving," by Troy Patterson; "A Thanksgiving Contest," by Geoffrey Andersen. It's inconceivable to me that she'd write such a piece for any reason other than that she thought it was a good idea. And it doesn't read like fluff to me at all. It's thoroughly researched and, to me, quite readable. I wouldn't have started this topic if I didn't think it was worth reading and discussing.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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And it doesn't read like fluff to me at all. It's thoroughly researched and, to me, quite readable. I wouldn't have started this topic if I didn't think it was worth reading and discussing.

i certainly never suggested otherwise (i would assume it goes unsaid), and discussing we are. what's the "good idea"? there were no ideas in this piece. only naysaying and criticism.

it's not inconceivable to me that editors write stuff for all kinds of reasons, many of which i'm not privy to, even if they are business associates or friends (i have a few friends in both print and online).

thankfully i know that leftovers from Thanksgiving have a place on my table beyond sandwiches. and i also know how to buy and cook turkeys that taste good, although I can appreciate that a portion of the intended audience doesn't. it's a good thing i'm confident or else i'd think i was a big dope feeding my family such laughable recipes.

i should add that i had a wonderful turkey sandwich today. i find that aggressive salting of the white meat does wonders on a sandwich.

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and turkey enchiladas...

and turkey carcass stock for turkey and sausage gumbo.

i think someone else mentioned turkey pot pie, another fav of mine.

for turkey carcass stock-based soup there is nothing like taking the time to roll out your own noodles while the stock cooks. a simple turkey soup on friday this year... turkey wings and drumstick bones (meat reserved), cooked to rich broth; add loads of carrots and corn, an onion, garlic and fresh rosemary, with the turkey leg meat thrown in at the end and served in the bowl alongside reheated mashed potatoes.

Judith Love

North of the 30th parallel

One woman very courteously approached me in a grocery store, saying, "Excuse me, but I must ask why you've brought your dog into the store." I told her that Grace is a service dog.... "Excuse me, but you told me that your dog is allowed in the store because she's a service dog. Is she Army or Navy?" Terry Thistlewaite

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When my family gets together for Thanksgiving, the leftover meat is secondary. My siblings and I fight over who gets the carcass. We all make turkey congee with it when we get back to our respective homes. I'd love one right now...Thanksgiving was spent at my cousin-in-law's, so I didn't get any leftovers. Dang! I should have asked her for the carcass--I know that thing went in the trash. :sad:

Edited by I_call_the_duck (log)

Karen C.

"Oh, suddenly life’s fun, suddenly there’s a reason to get up in the morning – it’s called bacon!" - Sookie St. James

Travelogue: Ten days in Tuscany

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When my family gets together for Thanksgiving, the leftover meat is secondary.  My siblings and I fight over who gets the carcass.  We all make turkey congee with it when we get back to our respective homes.  I'd love one right now...Thanksgiving was spent at my cousin-in-law's, so I didn't get any leftovers.  Dang!  I should have asked her for the carcass--I know that thing went in the trash.  :sad:

I've already made 11 quarts of turkey soup and 10 quarts of stock (for an event I'm catering this weekend - don't ask) - but I still have 1 turkey carcass in the freezer. Please tell me how you make turkey congee with it!!

Thanks, Duck!

"Life is Too Short to Not Play With Your Food" 

My blog: Fun Playing With Food

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This may sound strange, but sometime try a sandwich of turkey, cranberry sauce, a layer of cream cheese and lettuce on a kaiser roll. You'll be amazed at how good it is. When I owned a gourmet deli we used to sell a million of these sandwiches all year long.

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well, ok, yeah, there are plenty of goofy recipes out there for leftovers--but i have to disagree with her premise that leftovers are the invention of food writers--somehow i thought they were what was left over after the meal--and I always think they are like money in the bank--you don't have to create a whole meal for dinner if you don't have time.

We actually made thanksgiving dinner on Saturday because we go to a cousin's on Thursday and it's great but no leftovers.

And we had Thanksgiving redux last night--and could possibly have it again tonight--I'm fine with that!

Next a turkey soup--which I like a lot--it's wonderful with wild rice.

And i love turkey pot pie, enchiladas--I've even used it in a Chinese stir fry recipe--just add it last after you thicken the sauce and heat it up--it's more than passable.

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NancyH, I don't work from a recipe so here goes my best shot.

I get a little less than a quarter of the carcass since I'm the only one that eats it. These proportions are for a quart, so my share is just enough (more bones won't hurt). Take a heavy pot and brown the carcass in a little oil. Fill pot with water, bring to a boil, and simmer about one hour (skimming the gook). Add ½ cup rice, stir, and simmer, stirring occasionally, for about two hours, adding more water when necessary, until the rice breaks apart. I think the viscosity would be like that of heavy cream. Take the carcass out and remove the rest of the meat. Put meat back in the pot. Season with a splash of dark soy sauce and salt to taste. I hope this works. Enjoy.

Edited by I_call_the_duck (log)

Karen C.

"Oh, suddenly life’s fun, suddenly there’s a reason to get up in the morning – it’s called bacon!" - Sookie St. James

Travelogue: Ten days in Tuscany

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NancyH, I don't work from a recipe so here goes my best shot.

I get a little less than a quarter of the carcass since I'm the only one that eats it.  These proportions are for a quart, so my share is just enough (more bones won't hurt).  Take a heavy pot and brown the carcass in a little oil.  Fill pot with water, bring to a boil, and simmer about one hour (skimming the gook).  Add ½ cup rice, stir, and simmer, stirring occasionally, for about two hours, adding more water when necessary, until the rice breaks apart.  I think the viscosity would be like that of heavy cream.  Take the carcass out and remove the rest of the meat.  Put meat back in the pot.  Season with a splash of dark soy sauce and salt to taste.  I hope this works.  Enjoy.

Karen - thank you for the info! One last question - what type of rice do you use? I haven't had good jook since I was in China almost 10 years ago and I'm looking forward to making this!

"Life is Too Short to Not Play With Your Food" 

My blog: Fun Playing With Food

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You're welcome, Nancy.

I use long-grain white rice.

The great thing about congee is that you can make it with just water, or with whatever leftover bones you have in the freezer. There's a great thread somewhere in the China forum about congee you should check out.

Karen C.

"Oh, suddenly life’s fun, suddenly there’s a reason to get up in the morning – it’s called bacon!" - Sookie St. James

Travelogue: Ten days in Tuscany

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Someone above said: "I think turkey leftovers are tolerable as long as they a) are not paired with some sort of gloppy white sauce (a la King, Pot pie, my mother's dreaded turkey tetrazini) b) brief."

I brought my leftover turkey pot pie for lunch today (never bring my lunch) and I'm hoping I beat my fiance home so I can have one more portion before he chucks it - he thinks it's too old, I'm willing to take the risk. It's so good, made with turkey stock & homemade white sauce, peas, carrots, and leftover haricot verts. We've had it for dinner 2x in a row, and I'm hoping for a third!

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I got shamed into making stock from my turkey carcass by Ruhlman.  I now have 8 quarts of rich delicious nectar in my freezer.

Here's the post...a good read.

http://blog.ruhlman.com/ruhlmancom/2007/11...sgiving-th.html

Me too Morgan. And I have about the same amount of stock in my freezer too! More like 7 quarts actually since I made the Turkey Gumbo from Serious Eats last night (Delicious!).

http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2007/11...ers-recipe.html

There's nothing so bad in this life that pork fat can't make better.

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I have yet to savor this entire thread, so forgive me if I repeat what's already been said:

I make my own turkey as well as attend someone else's turkey dinner. No, my host does not know. And it has nothing to do with my host's turkey.

I love turkey, and more than I love turkey, I love turkey leftovers.

There has to be at least two turkey dinners -- turkey, stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce and pie. And yes, I make all this even when I go to someone else's house. I gotta have it.

There's the turkey sandwich, which involves Miracle Whip as well as lettuce and tomatoes. I did see the cream cheese sandwich person and I will copy that. Don't like Miracle Whip? Tough noogies, I'm from Ohio.

Then there's turkey soup, which is the whole point. I love, love, love turkey soup. I did this with a brown and wild rice mixture and I did this with little delicate pasta squares I got at a Greek supermarket. Both divine.

The significant other must have her turkey legs.

My pet parrot must have his turkey. And his turkey sandwich. And his turkey soup.

Then there's the secret packet of turkey tucked into the freezer for creative turkey use after the fact. This year's game plan: turkey pot pie with a biscuit crust. I can't wait for that one. Chunks of happy turkey bobbing around in a nice turkey gravy, sleeping under biscuits . . . I scissored that out of Bon Appetit, and it fits right in with Fat Guy's target. This will be the first time I've actually used a turkey recipe and then I'll know . . .

I like to bake nice things. And then I eat them. Then I can bake some more.

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I have yet to savor this entire thread, so forgive me if I repeat what's already been said:

I make my own turkey as well as attend someone else's turkey dinner.  No, my host does not know.  And it has nothing to do with my host's turkey.

I love turkey, and more than I love turkey, I love turkey leftovers.

There has to be at least two turkey dinners -- turkey, stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce and pie.  And yes, I make all this even when I go to someone else's house.  I gotta have it.

There's the turkey sandwich, which involves Miracle Whip as well as lettuce and tomatoes.  I did see the cream cheese sandwich person and I will copy that.  Don't like Miracle Whip?  Tough noogies, I'm from Ohio.

Then there's turkey soup, which is the whole point.  I love, love, love turkey soup.  I did this with a brown and wild rice mixture and I did this with little delicate pasta squares I got at a Greek supermarket.  Both divine.

The significant other must have her turkey legs.

My pet parrot must have his turkey.  And his turkey sandwich.  And his turkey soup.

Then there's the secret packet of turkey tucked into the freezer for creative turkey use after the fact.  This year's game plan:  turkey pot pie with a biscuit crust.  I can't wait for that one.  Chunks of happy turkey bobbing around in a nice turkey gravy, sleeping under biscuits . . .  I scissored that out of Bon Appetit, and it fits right in with Fat Guy's target.  This will be the first time I've actually used a turkey recipe and then I'll know . . .

Sounds great to me. I also love Miracle Whip and it reaches its zenith on a turkey sammich (or a ripe fresh-from-the-garden tomato and onion sammich in midsummer).

While I do make my own mayo, I have yet to get the taste and texture just right on my trials at homemade MW so I still buy the regular type.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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There has to be at least two turkey dinners -- turkey, stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce and pie.  And yes, I make all this even when I go to someone else's house.  I gotta have it.

I'm right with you, Linda. Thanksgiving leftovers are mandatory and must be available at all costs. And just to play it safe, this year I cooked a 24 lb turkey for 12 people. I figured if the recommendation was 1 lb. per person, then 2 lb pp would ensure adequate leftovers. (Also added a 10 lb ham and 12 side dishes plus 4 appetizers just to be safe - I didn't want anyone eating too much turkey!)

To be honest, though, I would have cooked the big bird even if I didn't have any guests. It's just what I do on that day, every year.

PS Don't forget turkey and dumplings . . . .

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Andiesenji ---

Yep. M.W. is irreplaceable. Something about the vinegary, sweetish flavor. I also like it in tuna salad and on cheese sandwiches.

Question for you on the casserole -- is it just the two layers, one of stuffing and one of turkey? Have you tried this with multiple layers? Are you a straightforward stuffing gal or do you do corn/sage/sausage things?

Do you do your own cranberry sauce for the top? An entire layer or a dollop? I do a cranberry/orange/candied ginger thing I picked up on Epicurious. Today I was there and found a triple cranberry (cranberry concentrate, cranberries, dried cranberries) recipe that rates high forks . . .

I turned around and read the whole thing (I feel sorry for those of you with no turkey tooth) and have to agree with the salt guy. Salt is very important, as pepper. Especially on the sandwich. Must have pepper.

I like to bake nice things. And then I eat them. Then I can bake some more.

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