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No matter how many people you have for Thanksgiving, how hungry they are and how many of them you send home with food, there is always leftover turkey.
At the first post-Thanksgiving lunch, turkey sandwiches actually taste pretty good. And the turkey soup you throw together for dinner isn't half bad either. But after those two meals, it gets harder and harder to come up with something enticing because you, your family and all your friends are tired of turkey.
The only known cure for turkey fatigue is variety. Because turkey is a mild meat, it lends itself to all kinds of different applications. Try making hash, or adding it to risotto or an omelet. Make a stir-fry, casserole or chili. By the time you get to that Christmas turkey, you'll be an expert.
• Try turkey risotto with onions, garlic, white wine and shiitake mushrooms.
• Make a turkey hash by panfrying leftover stuffing, shredded turkey and gravy (or chicken stock, if the gravy is all gone).
• A good way to get kids to eat the leftovers is in a club sandwich: three slices of toast with layers of turkey, lettuce, tomato, bacon and mayonnaise.
• For a more adult sandwich, try turkey, watercress and sun-dried tomatoes topped with Gruyère cheese. Broil it just long enough to heat the meat and melt the cheese.
• Go the stir-fry route, with bok choy, bamboo shoots, ginger, garlic and soy sauce.
• Make turkey tacos with black beans, guacamole and salsa.
• Add chopped turkey to a pasta salad with a yogurt- or mayonnaise-based dressing.
• Incorporate turkey into just about any casserole- or stew-like concoction. Try making turkey lasagna, tetrazzini, chili, potpie or curry.
Two more important turkey tips:
To keep leftover turkey from drying out, cover it tightly, and only slice off as much as you need.
When the turkey meat is almost gone, use the carcass to make great stock. Put the carcass in a pot with some onion, carrot, celery and a few peppercorns. Cover with water, bring to a boil, and simmer for two to three hours.