November 26, 2010
Ideas, recipes for your leftover feast

turkey.jpgBy Niesha Lofing

It's the day after Thanksgiving - do you know where your leftovers are?

And perhaps more importantly, how you're going to prepare them?

While reporting our Thanksgiving food stories, I came across these handy tips for holiday leftovers.

Blue plate specials: If you're a traditionalist and simply want a replay of that fabulous meal you slaved over, Food Network's Melissa d'Arabian advises folks to make their plate and then cover it with a moist paper towel, which will help leftovers taste fresher.

"The trick there, and this is my Grandmother's, is to heat everything up and the last 30 seconds, toss on the turkey," d'Arabian said in an interview from her New York home last week.

For more of d'Arabian's ideas on how to reinvent leftovers, check out my story from this week's Food & Wine section.

Cold weather = hot soup: Don't throw that turkey carcass away. Use it to make the base for soup, suggested Christine Bruhn, director of the Center for Consumer Research and a food safety expert at UC Davis.

Cut all the meat up and boil the carcass down, making a delicious broth that can be used for turkey soup or as the base for a rich, heart split pea. Just add carrots, onions, ham hocks and split peas.

"It's wonderful for cold weather and turkey stock has such wonderful background flavor," she said

Appetizing appetizers: Home cook Valerie Reynoso Piotrowski, of El Dorado Hills, loves using her leftovers to make little appetizers in the days that follow Thanksgiving. She uses Pillsbury Crescent Roll dough, and rolls out squares large enough to hold a small dollop each of stuffing, peas, turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy. Then she wraps them up like little bundles, brushes them with melted butter and bakes them at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

"Fabulous!" she said.

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