Tag Archives: turkey

Meals from Raiding the Freezer

28 Jan
"And what meal shall I select from the freezer today?"

“And what meal shall I select from the freezer today?”

I’ve been on a self-imposed cooking haitus this week. I decided to scour the freezer for all the leftovers we had stockpiled in there from our snowbound two months, and discovered I had NO LESS than 8 meals in the freezer I decided we should heat up and eat before they were freezer burnt and long forgotten.

I made a list on our fridge white board we usually use for our shopping list, and have been gradually eating them and wiping them off. I can’t help but make meals for 4 to 6 or 8 people (some kind of hangup from growing up in a family of 8), and with my daughter gone most of the time, we simply can’t eat the same meal more than two nights in a row (or sometimes every other night). Many of these just needed a side salad, bread, or veggies/potatoes.

I have compiled for you my freezer list meals, along with links to the recipes for them. (Or similar recipes or part of one, and some are adaptations of prior recipes I’ve posted.) I’ll get back to more recipes and cooking soon! Enjoy!

Lasagna Soup

This freezes really well! Just as good, if not better later with loads more fresh-grated Parmesan cheese.

One-Pot Lasagna Soup

One-Pot Lasagna Soup

Beef Stroganoff

A classic with a healthy twist. No canned soups! The version in our freezer was a wonderful meal made with shredded cooked beef that my husband made instead of ground beef, but similar concept.

Homemade Ground Beef Stroganoff

Homemade Ground Beef Stroganoff

Smoked Sausage and Tortellini Soup

Another Italian-based soup recipe that freezes well and gets the same raves as the day you made it!

Smoked Sausage and Tortellini Soup

Smoked Sausage and Tortellini Soup

Cabbage and Chicken Soup

I made this same type of soup, but used shredded chicken instead of ground beef. Try it, you’ll like it!

Mexican-Style Beef and Cabbage Soup

Mexican-Style Beef and Cabbage Soup

Turkey and Turkey Gravy

Traditional roasted turkey leftover from New Year’s dinner, with gravy made from the turkey carcass stock. Here I give you the recipe for the stock.

Turkey Carcass Stock

Turkey Carcass Stock

White Chicken Chili

One of our favorite winter comfort foods. I know it’s many of my friend’s favorite too! I used white beans instead of black beans for the leftovers in the freezer but I’ve posted both versions before, but this one has the printable PDF.

Creamy Chicken Chili and Beans

Creamy Chicken Chili and Beans

Sous Vide Meatloaf with Bacon

I made this with a several pieces of ground up uncooked bacon in it and cooked via the sous vide method. Wow, talk about a flavor bomb! I am linking up to Conor Bofin’s recipe, as his inspired me to make my mom’s meatloaf with bacon and sous vide method. I did not write my own post about it.

Mom's Meatloaf

Mom’s Meatloaf

Spicy Chicken Florentine

Well I know I just posted this, but it IS in the freezer and we need to finish it. Just two small lunch-sized servings left. 🙂

Spicy Chicken Florentine

Spicy Chicken Florentine

Quick and Easy Posole

1 Jan
Quick and Easy Posole

Quick and Easy Posole

Happy New Year my friends! I thought about freshening up my good ol’ black-eye pea recipe for today, but instead decided to give you a quick and easy posole recipe that can make good use of any leftover meat you may have hanging around from the holidays. This includes pork, chicken, turkey, or beef!

I delivered this meal to a friend as a pre-packaged “make it yourself meal” when she said she wished she had some easy dinners to cook for her family. All the ingredients were packaged up in a box along with pre-printed step-by-step instructions. She said it was a huge hit with her family so I thought I’d better try it out myself. (Yes, I sent her a blind, untested recipe.)

This posole is huge on flavor and does not even skimp in the filling factor. Plus it’s very versatile, too! Thumbs up all the way around!

Posole Ingredients

Posole Ingredients

Quick and Easy Posole

2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon flour
Posole Seasoning Mix (divided, recipe below)
3 ounces tomato paste
1 cup water
4 cups chicken stock (can also use turkey, pork, or beef)
4-ounce can chopped green chiles
15.5-ounce can hominy (gold or white, drained)
2 cups cooked chicken, shredded (can also use turkey, pork, or beef)
1 fresh lime
Fresh cilantro
Crushed tortilla chips, shredded cheese, Mexican sour cream, for garnish (any or all optional)

Posole Seasoning Mix
Hint: Make a double or triple batch to store for future use!

1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon New Mexico Red Chile powder (or sub with regular chili powder)
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Finely dice the onion, then add it to a soup pot or Dutch oven along with the oil. Sauté the onion in the oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until tender and transparent. Add the flour and a tablespoon of the seasoning mix and continue to sauté for two minutes more.

Posole Soup Base

Posole Soup Base

Add 1 cup water, tomato paste, and the rest of the seasoning mix to the pot. Whisk the ingredients together until the tomato paste is dissolved. Allow the mixture to come to a simmer, at which point it will thicken.

Big Ladle of Posole

Big Ladle of Posole

Finally, add the stock, shredded meat, diced chiles, and hominy. Stir to combine and then heat through for about 10 minutes.

Cut the lime into wedges and roughly chop the cilantro. Top each bowl with chopped cilantro, crumbled tortilla chips and cheese and a wedge of lime to squeeze over top.

Quick and Easy Posole

Quick and Easy Posole

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

Turkey, Lentil, and Mixed Brown Rice Soup ~ Food52 Community Pick!

4 Nov
Turkey Lentil and Mixed Brown Rice Soup

Turkey Lentil and Mixed Brown Rice Soup

I’m happy to announce my recipe for Turkey, Lentil, and Mixed Brown Rice Soup was selected by the editors of Food52 cooking website as a Community Pick in their “Your Best Recipe with Thanksgiving Leftovers” contest!

Now I just have to make it to the finals and people can vote, but you have a chance to test it now and send in your testing notes! Unfortunately I omitted an ingredient from the ingredients list but it is in the instructions. I’ve asked the editors if they can fix that for me, as I can’t edit a recipe during an active contest. (It was 1/2 cup chopped onion in case you’re interested.)

Here’s a link to the selections:—> Food52 Community picks

And here’s a link to my original recipe that has a handy-dandy printable PDF! (Although you can also print my recipe from Food52.) —> Turkey, Lentil, and Mixed Brown Rice Soup

I plan on having a new recipe up this weekend too. Crazy weather here too for November today, sunny and mid-60s! Unheard of!

Turkey Chipotle Posole

30 Apr
Turkey Chipotle Posole

Turkey Chipotle Posole

As a lot of you know, I’m a spicy kind of gal, and I like spicy food. This posole, which is a traditional Mexican soup/stew, makes good use of leftover turkey or even chicken. I bought a deli-roasted turkey breast recently for a quick week-night dinner, but with the daughter not eating at home that night we were left with a bunch of leftover cooked turkey breast.

We had a cold snap, and what better thing to make in a cold snap is a nice spicy, warming stew? This ended up making more than I thought it would, but ate the rest for lunches.  Don’t scrimp on the toppings, as the cabbage, lime, and radishes really complete this. And you can always cut way back on the spices/chiles for a milder version.

After opening a few cans and a little chopping, dicing, and processing, this posole comes together in a snap all in one pot. I always freeze any leftover canned goods, clearly labeled, for future use. I can’t imagine ever using an entire can of chipotle peppers in a recipe unless I am feeding an army. And my local grocer only sells 30-ounce cans of hominy, which, after draining the liquid, yields about 2 cups of hominy. Hominy freezes well too.  Even if it’s already warm in your neck of the woods, do try this flavorful posole, if anything to warm your heart. Plus it also gives you good reason to open a bottle of Mexican beer to wash it down! UPDATE: A kind reader reminded me that Cinco de Mayo is coming up. So hey, why not make it for that day?!

Turkey Chipotle Posole

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 to 1 canned chipotle in adobo sauce (or less), diced fine
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped carrot
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons Ancho or Pasilla chile powder (or other or less)
2 cups cooked and shredded turkey or chicken
4 cups homemade or low sodium turkey or chicken broth
1/2 cup tomato puree
1 corn tortilla, processed fine
1 cup hominy, white or yellow is fine
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
Ground black pepper and salt or Mrs. Dash, to taste
Shredded cabbage, sliced radishes, and lime wedges, for garnish

Puree, Peppers, and Hominy

Puree, Peppers, and Hominy

Open up all those cans and chop/slice/dice all the veggies.

In a Dutch oven or soup pot, heat one tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat. Add the next 6 ingredients (through the chile powder), and cook for 5 to 7 minutes until vegetables are tender.

Spicy Veggie Base

Spicy Veggie Base

Add the remaining ingredients except the garnishes, stir to combine, and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 45 minutes or until ready to eat.

Posole Ready to Simmer and Cover

Posole Ready to Simmer and Cover

Ladle into bowls, and garnish with fresh sliced cabbage, sliced radishes, and a lime wedge to squeeze into the stew. (Don’t forget the beer to wash it all down!)

Turkey Chipotle Posole

Turkey Chipotle Posole

 

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

 

Turkey, Lentil, and Mixed Brown Rice Soup

12 Dec
Turkey Lentil and Mixed Brown Rice Soup

Turkey, Lentil, and Mixed Brown Rice Soup

Yay, a new recipe! And of course it is a soup recipe made with some of the turkey stock I cooked last week. I also had some dried green lentils left from the last soup I made (wow was that a month ago?), as well as some leftover cooked brown rice in the fridge begging to be used up. We had also frozen the leftover turkey breast from Thanksgiving, so this soup ended up being not only a no-brainer, but a deliciously wonderful and frugal dinner.

Here is how it goes:

Turkey, Lentil, and Mixed Brown Rice Soup

1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 clove garlic, minced
4 cups low-sodium turkey stock, preferably homemade (can sub chicken stock)
1 bay leaf
2 sprigs fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried
1/2 cup dry green lentils
1 1/2 cups chopped cooked turkey (can sub cooked chicken)
1 1/2 cups cooked mixed brown rice (or 1/2 cup dried)
2 teaspoons dried parsley
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
Ground pepper and Mrs. Dash or salt, to taste

Onions carrots and celery cooking

Onions, Carrots, and Celery

In a Dutch oven or soup pot, melt the butter over medium high heat. Add the onions, carrots, and celery and cook until the vegetables are starting to soften, about 7 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook a minute more.

Mixed Whole Grain Brown Rice

This is the brand of brown rice I used

Next add in the turkey (or chicken) stock, bay leaf, thyme, and lentils. If using dried rice, add that now too. Cover and bring to a boil.

Simmering the Soup

Simmering the Soup

Once boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer with cover on for 45 minutes.

Uncover and stir in turkey and cooked rice, and continue simmering until lentils are tender, about 15 more minutes. Remove the bay leaf and thyme sprigs, then add the parsley and balsamic vinegar. Taste test, then add ground pepper and Mrs. Dash or salt, to taste. Serve with crusty bread.

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

Turkey, Ham, Sausage, and Shrimp Gumbo

1 Dec
Turkey, Sausage, Ham. and Shrimp Gumbo

Turkey, Sausage, Ham. and Shrimp Gumbo (with Okra!)

I’m always on the lookout for a new recipe that will help use up the leftover turkey from Thanksgiving, and The Homesick Texan “brought it home” for me with this one! I told my husband I was going to make this, and he said, “I don’t like gumbo.” Well. I think he said that as a knee-jerk reaction to okra. He doesn’t like okra, ergo he doesn’t like gumbo. “I don’t plan on putting any okra in this one. It will have turkey, ham, and smoked sausage in it! Doesn’t that sound great?” Pretty much no reaction to that. He doesn’t like okra, ergo, he doesn’t like gumbo. I made it anyways. Plus, since I’m such a great gal, I bought some shrimp to add to it because he loves shrimp.

The Holy Trinity and Meats

The Holy Trinity and Meats

The day before I made this, hubby and I teamed together to make a huge pot of turkey broth from the carcass, recipe here: How to Make Homemade Turkey Broth. You can never have too much turkey or chicken stock on hand. You can substitute low-sodium store-bought, but why? The original recipe makes enough to serve 10 to 12, so I halved it as well as made other adaptions/tweaks (including adding about a cup of my homemade canned tomatoes). Feel free to experiment! And if you like okra, by all means add some of that too. Since I wasn’t going to add gumbo, I was also going to add some file powder to thicken it, but alas, the Pacific Northwest does not seem to know of its existence (I scoured four different stores!), so I had to substitute a little cornstarch for the thickener.

Turkey, Ham, Sausage, and Shrimp Gumbo
Adapted from Turkey Gumbo, The Homesick Texan

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 small red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and diced
1 large rib celery, diced
1 small yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup diced tomatoes
1/8 cup chopped parsley
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
Ground black pepper, to taste
Mrs. Dash Garlic and Herb Blend, to taste
1/8 teaspoon cayenne, or more if you like spicy
5 cups turkey broth or chicken broth
1 1/2 cups chopped cooked turkey
1 cup diced cooked ham
1 cup sliced smoked sausage (1/2 of a horseshoe link)
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon corn starch mixed with 1 tablespoon water
1/2 pound peeled and deveined shrimp (optional)
1/2 cup frozen okra, microwaved for 3 minutes (optional)
Cooked rice, for serving
2 green onions, green part only, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a cast iron dutch oven or cast iron skillet, add the oil and flour and whisk well to combine. (You are making a roux here, the easy way!) Place in the oven for an hour and a half, whisking every 20 minutes or so.

Caramel-Colored Roux

Caramel-Colored Roux

Meanwhile, you can prep your veggies, chop up the turkey meat, and brown the sliced sausage and diced ham in a skillet sprayed with a little oil. Set aside.

When the roux is done (it should be a nice caramel brown), carefully remove it from the oven. If you have a cast iron dutch oven, you can continue cooking the gumbo in it. If you don’t (like me), transfer the roux to a regular dutch oven and place on the stove burner over medium-high heat. Add the onions, celery, red peppers, and garlic, stirring constantly for about 5 to 10 minutes.
Sauteing the Veggies in Roux

Sauteing the Veggies in Roux

Now add the tomatoes, parsley, thyme, Worcestershire, Mrs. Dash (or salt), black pepper,  cayenne pepper, and mix well. Gradually add the turkey broth, stirring constantly. Add the turkey, ham, smoked sausage, bay leaves, and sugar, bring to a low simmer, and cook for about an hour or more, stirring occasionally.
Turkey Sausage Ham Gumbo

Turkey Sausage Ham Gumbo Simmering ~ No Shrimp Yet!

During this time you can cook your rice. In the last 10 minutes or so, add the shrimp (if using) until cooked through. Last, add the cornstarch mixture to the pot (or file powder if you have it), stirring to combine. Simmer for a few more minutes, turn the heat off, cover and let sit for about 10 minutes. Serve over the cooked rice and garnish with green onions. (Pssst, I added some cooked okra to my bowl!)
My daughter really liked this, and my husband went back for seconds and looked me square in the face and said, “This had a nice blend of flavors, the perfect spice amount, and the shrimp really added to it, Thank You.” (except you don’t want to know what he said when I forced him to try a spoonful of mine with the okra in it… lol!)
Turkey, Sausage, Ham. and Shrimp Gumbo

Turkey, Sausage, Ham. and Shrimp Gumbo

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

Baked Ham and Swiss Cheese Sliders ~ A Party Hit!

6 Feb
Baked Ham and Swiss Sliders

Baked Ham and Swiss Sliders

I was invited to a very good friend’s house for Super Bowl Sunday, and she said I didn’t have to bring anything except myself and daughter (hubby was out of town), and that there would be plenty of food. I accepted, with reservations in my mind. You see, I’d been seeing these fantastic ham and cheese sliders posted on Pinterest for quite awhile, and I was really hankering to make them. I called her the next day and asked if I could go ahead and make them for the Super Bowl party. She of course said it was OK, but warned me it really wasn’t necessary. Well! I am so glad I did make them! They were a fantastic hit, and I’m chagrined I made half of them with just turkey and Swiss cheese and mayo. The issue is we had a few picky kid eaters at the house, but two of the three tried the ham ones with the Dijon/Worcestershire/Onion sauce and ended up loving them! So I ended up with some turkey ones left to bring home, but my daughter took those for school lunch the next couple of days, so it worked out. The original recipe for this came from King’s Hawaiian website, recipe here. My adaptation was to use fresh onion instead of dried, less butter and deli meat (a pound per 12 rolls is a bit overkill on the meat, but certainly feel free to add that amount if you want).  A lot of the recipes on Pinterest use poppy seeds instead of sesame. Poppy seeds are very expensive, did you know that?

These are a cinch to make and can be easily halved per the original recipe. But a double batch will fly off the plate!  So why not bookmark this page for a great party/potluck idea? I’m just adding the recipe below for the Ham and Swiss sliders, since the Turkey and Swiss just didn’t do it for me.

Pan of Ham and Swiss and Turkey and Swiss Sliders

Pan of Ham and Swiss and Turkey and Swiss Sliders

Baked Ham and Swiss Cheese Sliders

2 12-packs King’s Hawaiian Original Hawaiian Sweet Dinner Rolls
1 stick butter
1 cup chopped onion
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 pound thinly sliced deli ham
Sliced swiss cheese to fit, about 10-12 slices
2 tablespoons sesame seeds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Using a large bread knife, cut the entire block of rolls in half, keeping the tops and bottoms intact. Lay the bottom halves in a 9 x 13 baking pan (the two fit perfectly!). In a small bowl, microwave the butter, onion, Dijon, and Worcestershire for two minutes, covered. Bowl and steam will be HOT! Carefully uncover and spread half the mixture on the bottom of the rolls. Layer the ham and cheese, then add the tops of the rolls. Mix the sesame seeds into the rest of the butter mixture, then spread the rest of it on top of the rolls. Cover tightly with foil, and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 5 minutes more. Separate sandwiches with a sharp knife. Serve hot to your hungry guests immediately!

Edit: I forgot I to tell you I sprayed the baking pan lightly with oil to prevent sticking!

Turning 50 and Baking Wontons

1 Dec
Baked Turkey and Stuffing Wontons with Cranberries and Gravy

Baked Turkey and Stuffing Wontons with Cranberries and Gravy

Well, the day finally arrived and I survived. I’m now officially the Big Five-O. The actual day was Tuesday, but after planning and hosting our Leftover Thanksgiving Turkey Potluck at work, and then being whisked off to what I thought was a simple beverage after work with a dear friend before going out to my birthday dinner with my family that turned out to be a surprise birthday party planned by my husband, the week has just flown by and now here I am finally getting a chance to write something for my blog.

I wish I had something fantastic and new to post for you to cook. But quite frankly, our meals this past week have consisted of pretty standard fare. My husband grilled steaks one night (in the freezing cold) and baked potatoes while I cooked up some garlicky white beans. I made Mom’s Meatloaf with mashed potatoes and steamed broccoli another night. One night we reheated some Spinach Lasagna from the freezer and made salads. Last night we went out to dinner for the second time in one month, which is unheard of in this household!

Baked Turkey and Stuffing Wontons

Baked Turkey and Stuffing Wontons

Oh, and the Baking Wontons bit in my title. Well, I did bake some Turkey and Stuffing Wontons for the potluck, which looked so pretty aside the gravy and cranberry dipping sauces, but quite frankly, they were nothing to write home about. I’m pretty sure they would have been a hit by adding some cream cheese to the filling, maybe even some yummy Laughing Cow Garlic Cheese that I actually had in the fridge, but hindsight is always 20/20. But I did take some pictures of them for you, and we can all pretend they were scrumptious together. One of my birthday presents was a shiny new muffin pan, to replace my rusted 20-year-0ld pan that had finally worn out so much even cupcake liners started sticking to it. I plan on cooking some of those neat hashed brown and egg muffins in them this weekend that seem to be all the rage on Pinterest these days.  You can look forward to that post soon! We are heading into the busy Christmas Holidays, and I hope you all find time to rest and relax in between all the hubbub and take time to truly enjoy your family and/or furkids. Cheers!

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