IT’S Boxing Day and that means one thing after the decadent Christmas lunch yesterday – leftovers!
Christmas dinner is one of the most anticipated meals of the year, but more often than not you’re left with so much food that it can be hard to know what to do with it.
And people are sharing their excitement to eat the festive food all over again using the hashtag #leftovers on Twitter.
So if you’ve opted for a giant turkey and find yourself with barrels of leftover bird, we’ve rounded up some of the best recipes to use up all that meat.
You can’t go wrong with a good Turkey Stew to warm up the winter evenings between Christmas and New Year’s Eve and it’s a great way to use up a leftover turkey leg or two. Plus, the ingredients in this BBC recipe are so simple there’s no need to do a special shop as you’ll most likely have everything in your cupboard.
1 tbsp olive oil
1 turkey leg (about 700-800g/1lb 9oz-1lb 12oz)
salt and pepper
2 onions, sliced
2 garlic cloves, bashed
2 carrots, diced
1 litre/1¾ pints chicken stock, made from stock cube
500g/1lb 2oz potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
1 bunch parsley, roughly chopped
Heat a large saucepan over a high heat. Add the oil, season the turkey leg on all sides and brown in the hot pan for 7-8 minutes, turning now and again to ensure that all sides are coloured.
Turn the heat down to medium and add the onions, garlic and carrots and stir.
Pour in the stock, mixing well to combine. Reduce the heat so that the stock is simmering gently.
Cover with a lid and cook for one hour, stirring occasionally.
Once the turkey leg is cooked, remove it from the stew and leave to one side to cool slightly. Add the potatoes to the stew, cover again and continue to cook for 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.
Meanwhile once cool enough to handle, remove the skin from the turkey and use a fork to help shred the meat, discarding any bones or sinew. Add the meat back to the pan with the cooked potatoes and stew mixture. Mix well, taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary.
Once ready to serve, stir through the chopped parsley and serve hot.
Spicing up your leftover bird couldn’t be easier with this easy recipe from Good To Know. All you need to do is shred up the leftover meat and stir it into the sauce, before making sure it’s heated thoroughly – we guarantee the whole family will love it so much they’ll be pestering you to make it again.
1 orange pepper, sliced
1 red pepper, sliced
500g turkey breast steaks, cut into short wide strips
200g green beans, halved
4 ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
Small bunch coriander, chopped
2tbsp sunflower oil
1 large onion, roughly chopped
5tbsp korma curry paste
3tbsp spicy mango chutney
200ml hot chicken stock
400ml tin reduced-fat coconut milk
2tbsp toasted flaked almonds
Heat the oil in a large frying pan or wok. Add the onion and peppers, and cook for 3-4 mins, until the onion is golden and peppers softened.
Stir in the turkey and curry paste, and cook, stirring, for a couple of mins.
Add the beans, tomatoes, mango chutney, stock and coconut milk, and simmer for 10 mins. Stir through coriander, sprinkle with almonds and season before serving your turkey curry with rice and chapattis.
Who doesn’t love sitting down to a tasty pie in the evening? This one from the BBC is super quick to throw together and only takes about 30 minutes to prep, all you need to do is chop your leftover turkey into bite size pieces.
butter, for frying
1 large onion, chopped
2 large carrots, sliced into lozenges
2 large leeks, sliced into 2cm/¾in pieces, washed
200ml/7fl oz double cream
200ml/7fl oz chicken or turkey stock
500g/1lb 2oz cooked turkey, cut into bite-size pieces
200g/7oz cooked ham, cut into bite-size pieces
10 button mushrooms
pinch cayenne pepper
2 tbsp chopped tarragon
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
225g/8oz frozen puff pastry, defrosted
1 free-range egg, beaten
2 tbsp Parmesan, finely grated
Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.
Heat a large pan over a medium heat. Add a knob of butter and gently cook the onion until soft but not brown. Add the carrots and leek and continue cooking for five minutes until the carrots begin to soften.
Cover with the cream and stock and simmer until the sauce starts to thicken. Add the turkey, ham, mushrooms, cayenne and herbs then season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper and remove the pan from the heat.
Pour the filling into a ceramic pie dish.
Roll out the pastry to make a lid for the pie and strips to line the rim of the dish.
Press the strips onto the rim, moistening them with a little water, then press down the lid firmly and brush with the beaten egg.
Sprinkle with the parmesan and cook in the oven for 20 minutes until the pastry is golden-brown.
We love a good Mac & Cheese and using up your leftover turkey adds a brilliant twist on the classic American comfort food. The recipe, from Phil Vickery for British Turkey, takes under an hour to prep and cook too, so you’ll have plenty of time to relax after the Christmas rush.
300g small macaroni, raw
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tbsp any oil, plus a little extra for the pasta
1 small onion, very finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
4 level tbsp (roughly) plain flour
560ml semi-skimmed milk
150ml whipping cream
2 tsp Dijon mustard
250g cooked British turkey, chopped into small pieces
2 tbsp leftover stuffing broken up (optional)
4 slices bread, crusts removed and made into breadcrumbs
50g mature Cheddar cheese, grated
Place a pan of water on the stove, add salt and bring to the boil. Cook the macaroni until just tender and drain well. Do not refresh but add a drop or two of oil and shake together.
Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the onion and garlic and soften 5-6 minutes. Add the flour and mix well until all the oil has been soaked up. Pour in the milk and cream slowly, stirring well, until the sauce is nicely thickened and just boiling.
Remove from the heat, season well with salt, pepper and the mustard. Add the turkey and stuffing and mix well. Spoon into a 28cm x 20cm x 8cm deep oval ceramic baking dish and leave for 10 minutes to set slightly.
Sprinkle with the breadcrumbs and cheese and brown under a hot grill for 5-7 minutes.
For a dish that’s as fun as it sounds, look no further than Jambalaya for a flavour packed way to use up that Christmas turkey. Plus, this handy recipe from British Turkey takes less than an hour.
4 tsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 red and 1 green pepper, de-seeded and chopped
4 sticks celery, chopped
2 large cloves garlic, crushed
4 spicy sausages or chorizo, sliced into chunks
400g leftover British turkey breast, cut into cubes
2 red chillies, deseeded and finely chopped
500g long-grain rice
2 tbsp turmeric
2 tbsp Cajun spices
1 tsp Tabasco
2 pints chicken stock
3 tomatoes, chopped
4 tbsp frozen peas
Salt and black pepper
Heat the oil in a large pan and fry the onion, peppers, celery, garlic and sausage for about ten minutes.
Add the cooked turkey, chillies, rice, spices and Tabasco, stirring well so the rice is well mixed in.
Pour in the stock and bring to the boil. Then add the tomatoes, peas and prawns and reduce heat to simmer for about 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste for seasoning, adding salt, pepper and more spices if required. Serve.
What a delicious way to add maximum flavour to your lunch with Food Network UK’s twist on a classic grilled cheese. Bursting with flavour, you can use up some of your leftover cranberry sauce too.
8 slices of free-range cooked Golden Turkey
8 slices of white or whole meal bread
100g softened butter
4 tbsp cranberry sauce
250g brie, sliced
Sea salt and black pepper
Butter each slice of bread on one side only.
On the unbuttered side, spread with the cranberry sauce, top with the sliced turkey, (2 slices per sandwich) and sliced brie and season with sea salt and black pepper and place another piece of bread, unbuttered side, onto the filling.
Heat a frying pan, to a medium heat, with tablespoon of rapeseed oil. Place the sandwich in the frying pan and fry on a gently heat for approximately, 2-3 minutes, each side, until golden brown.
Tip: If you prefer the brie to be melted more, you can place the sandwiches on a baking sheet in a pre-heated oven at 180°C/Gas 4 for a further 5 minutes.
You can serve the sandwiches with home made potato wedges which you have cooked in the oven before melting the sandwich. Garnish with watercress.
Like a stew, but even easier, turn your leftovers into this super tasty soup from Delish can be whipped up in large quantities to keep you going for days.
6 slices bacon, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 c. dry white wine
4 c. low-sodium chicken broth
1 c. jasmine rice
2 c. leftover shredded turkey
1/4 c. Freshly Chopped Parsley
In a large pot over medium heat, cook bacon until crispy, 8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate. Drain all but 1 tablespoon bacon fat.
Add onion, carrots, bell pepper, and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Cook until soft, 5 to 7 minutes.
Add white wine, stock, and rice and bring to a boil. Simmer until rice is tender, 20 minutes.
Stir in leftover turkey and parsley until warmed through and serve immediately with crispy bacon.
This creamy dish from Allrecipes is perfect served with rice or on it’s own with crusty bread and salad.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 knob butter
1 onion, thinly sliced
6 mushrooms, cleaned and sliced (optional)
100ml white wine
500 to 700g leftover breast and brown turkey meat
3 to 4 spring onions
1 (284 ml) carton double cream
1 or 2 teaspoons Dijon or wholegrain mustard
a few sprigs fresh thyme, stems removed
salt and pepper
a few sprigs fresh parsley, chopped
Heat the oil and a knob of butter in a deep sided frying pan. Add onion and cook over medium heat until lightly browned and soft. Stir in mushrooms and cook until softened.
Pour in the wine and let the mixture simmer for a few minutes before turning the heat down to low. Stir in the turkey, spring onions, cream, mustard and thyme and continue to cook gently for another 5 or 10 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper and garnish with fresh parsley.
If the festive feasting has left you feeling a little bloated, take a break from the rich and heavy foods with this brilliant turkey salad recipe from Food Network.
2 cups shredded leftover turkey meat
2 stalks celery, sliced
1/2 cup celery leaves, coarsely chopped, plus more whole leaves for garnish
1 crisp apple, such as Gala or Macintosh, cored and chopped
1 cup red seedless grapes, halved
1/2 cup pecans, toasted, and coarsely chopped
1/2 cup non-fat yogurt
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon honey
1/4 teaspoon salt, plus more as needed
1 small celery root, peeled and cut into matchsticks
Freshly ground black pepper
In a large bowl, gently toss the turkey, celery, celery leaves, apple, grapes, and pecans until combined.
In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt, mayonnaise, honey, and 1/4 teaspoon salt until well combined. Put the celery root in a small bowl, add 2 tablespoons of the dressing, and toss to coat completely.
Add the remaining dressing to the turkey mixture, season with salt and pepper, and toss gently to evenly dress the salad.
To serve, spread the celery root evenly onto a serving platter, top with the dressed salad, garnish with celery leaves and serve immediately.
Pasta dishes are quick and easy and this zingy dish from Simply Recipes is a brilliant way to use up your leftover meat.
2 eggs (large)
Zest of one lemon
1/2 cup prepared basil pesto
1/2 pound of farfalle (bow tie) pasta
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 heaping cup of chopped onion (about one medium onion)
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cups chopped cooked turkey meat (leftover turkey thigh meat works great)
Freshly ground black pepper
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 1 Tbsp of salt for every 2 quarts of water. (While the water is coming to a boil, prep the ingredients to save time.)
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, lemon zest, and pesto. Set aside.
Add the pasta to the boiling water. The pasta should take 10 minutes to cook to al dente, cooked through but still a little firm. Cook on a rolling boil, uncovered.
While the pasta is cooking, cook the onions in a large sauté pan in olive oil on medium heat until translucent. Add the garlic and chopped cooked turkey meat. Cook until heated through, then remove from heat.
When the pasta is ready, reserve 1/2 a cup of the pasta cooking water and drain the pasta
Add the hot, drained pasta to the pan with the onions and turkey. Pour the egg mixture over everything and quickly stir to combine. The heat of the pasta will cook the eggs sufficiently, though keep the pan off the heat or the eggs in the sauce will curdle.
Salt and pepper to taste.
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