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Leftover turkey recipes: Going cold turkey can be a treat for the taste buds

Make the most of festive leftovers with mouth-watering recipes to add some spice to the holiday season.

Leftover turkey burgers

What you'll need

130ml olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

200g leftover roast turkey, shredded

200g leftover stuffing, crumbled

Small bunch fresh parsley, leaves finely chopped

30g fresh breadcrumbs

1 medium egg, lightly whisked

4 crusty rolls, split and cut sideways and toasted

4tbsp mayonnaise

1/2 ripe avocado, sliced

Handful of rocket leaves

Method

(SERVES 4)

A healthier burger option that's ideal for lunch over the festive period. You can't beat the joy of crusty bread, moreish stuffing and rich turkey.

The leftover meat needs to be thoroughly reheated until piping hot, and should never be reheated more than once.

Heat one tablespoon of the oil in a large ovenproof frying pan, add the onion and soften over a low heat for five minutes.

Transfer to a bowl and allow to cool.

Meanwhile, finely chop the shredded turkey, either in a food processor or by hand.

Add the turkey, stuffing, parsley and breadcrumbs to the onion and mix to combine.

Season and add the egg to bind.

Shape into four burgers, and chill in the fridge for 10 minutes. Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 6, 200°C, fan 180°C.

Heat the remaining oil in the pan.

Add the burgers and fry for three to four minutes each side until browned.

Transfer the pan to the oven and continue to cook for 10 minutes or until piping hot throughout.

Spread the rolls with mayo, top with the burgers followed by the sliced avocado and rocket, and sandwich with the top of the bun.

Thai red turkey curry

What you'll need

1 tbsp vegetable oil

1 onion, sliced

4 garlic cloves, crushed

Thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeled and grated

2 tbsp red Thai curry paste

1 x 400g tin low fat coconut milk

300ml chicken stock

600g shredded cooked turkey

150g fine green beans, halved

1-2 tbsp soy sauce

1-2 limes, juiced, plus extra wedges to garnish

1 tbsp brown sugar

Small bunch fresh coriander, to garnish

1 red chilli, seeded and sliced to garnish

Rice, to serve

Method

(SERVES 4)

Heat the oil in a large pan over a low heat.

Add the onion, garlic and ginger, and fry until softened, for about five to 10 minutes.

Add the curry paste and cook for a further two minutes.

Pour in the coconut milk and stock and bring it all up to a gentle simmer. Then add the shredded turkey to the pan and cook for 10 minutes. Then add the beans and continue to cook for another five minutes.

Balance out the flavours in the dish by adding the soy sauce with the lime juice and brown sugar to taste. Garnish with some fresh coriander, red chilli and a wedge of lime, and serve with some cooked Thai rice.

This recipe comes from chef and author Dean Edwards

Leftover turkey biryani

What you'll need

1 tbsp oil

Knob of butter

1 large onion, finely sliced

1 bay leaf

6 cardamom pods

4 cloves

4 tbsp of your favourite curry paste (eg Madras)

400g cooked leftover boneless turkey or chicken, cut into pieces

250g basmati rice, rinsed until the water runs clear

750ml hot chicken stock

1/2 lemon, juiced

3 tbsp chopped coriander, plus a few extra leaves to serve

3 tbsp toasted flaked almonds

Natural yogurt, to serve

Mango chutney, to serve

Method

(SERVES 4)

Nothing beats a classic turkey curry, and this fragrant biryani is an inventive and delicious way of using up any turkey leftovers.

Simply serve with natural yogurt and sweet mango chutney for an easy and totally tasty post-Christmas meal.

Heat the oil and butter in a large, deep, lidded sauté or frying pan.

Add the onion, bay leaf, cardamom and cloves. Cover with a lid and cook for 10 minutes. Remove the lid and cook for a further five minutes until the onion is beginning to turn golden.

Stir the curry paste into the onion and cook for two minutes.

Add the cooked turkey meat and stir to coat in the spices. Then stir in the rice.

Pour over with the hot stock and cover with a lid.

Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and cook for 10 minutes.

Remove from the heat, cover tightly with the lid and set aside for 10 minutes until the rice grains are fluffy and tender and all of the stock has been absorbed.

Add the lemon juice to taste, then use a fork to fold through the chopped coriander.

Season to taste.

Discard the cardamom pods, cloves and bay leaf (if you can't find them all, just be sure to warn your guests to look out for them).

Scatter with the remaining coriander leaves and the almonds, and serve with natural yogurt and mango chutney on the side if you like.

Please note: Remember that cooked chicken or turkey that has already been reheated once can't be reheated a second time, so any leftovers of the biryani should be enjoyed cold

Turkey and stuffing sausage rolls

What you’ll need

400g leftover turkey meat

75g cranberry sauce, liquid strained off

400g leftover stuffing

75g button mushrooms, sliced

75g onion, sliced

50ml half fat crème fraiche

1/2 tsp mild curry powder

1/8 tsp ground nutmeg

15g unsalted butter

1 pinch salt

For the puff pastry

500g puff pastry

15g flour, for rolling

4 egg yolks

50ml water, cold

Method

(SERVES 12)

Melt the unsalted butter in a frying pan and fry the onions and mushrooms. Once soft, remove from the pan and drain on a kitchen towel. Leave to cool.

Roll out the puff pastry on a lightly floured surface. Make two 16cm wide and 40cm long rectangles, approximately 5mm thick. Cut the pastry lengthways down the middle and place on a non-stick baking sheet. Leave to rest in the fridge.

Take out your leftover stuffing and dice the turkey into one cm cubes. Place the filling ingredients into a bowl (including the leftover turkey meat and stuffing) and mix well until combined.

Spoon the filling into a piping bag with a 1.5cm nozzle. Remove the pastry from the fridge and carefully pipe a thick, neat line of the filling down the length of the pastry, leaving a 1.5cm gap between one of the edges of the pastry and the filling. Let any little ones have a go at piping in this step. If you don’t have a piping bag, use a teaspoon to gently place spoonfuls of mix neatly down the centre of the pastry before continuing.

Mix the egg yolks with the water in a bowl. Lightly brush the 1.5cm strip of pastry between the edge and filling with egg wash. Fold the portion of the pastry that has not been brushed with egg wash tightly over the filling and press down well along the egg-washed strip to seal. Any excess pastry will be trimmed off later.

Repeat the process with the second sheet of pastry, then place both sheets in the fridge to firm up. After 10 minutes, take the pastry out of the fridge and trim off any excess along the join. Repeat for the second sheet.

Brush all the pastry with more egg wash and put in the fridge for 10 more minutes. After that time, remove from the fridge and apply a second coating of egg wash.

Preheat the oven to gas 5, 180˚C, fan 160˚C. With a sharp knife, cut each of the rolls into 8x5cm mini rolls. Return them to the non-stick baking tray.

Place the tray in the centre of the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes or until the mini rolls are a deep golden brown colour.

Remove from the oven and allow the rolls to cool for a couple of minutes before serving.

Boxing Day turkey and raspberry salad

Fresh raspberries and shaved asparagus turn an everyday rice salad into something more exotic and festive. 

What you’ll need

200g easy-cook brown rice

50g wild rice

6 small red onions, cut into wedges

1tbsp olive oil

100g red cabbage, thinly shredded

200g cold roast turkey, diced

150g asparagus, trimmed

175g raspberries

Large handful of rocket leaves

Dressing:

2tbsps redcurrant jelly

2tbsps sherry vinegar

1tsp Dijon mustard

Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

(SERVES 6)

Preheat the oven to 200oC (400oF), gas mark 6. Bring a medium saucepan of water to the boil, add the brown and wild rice, bring the water back to the boil then simmer for 20-25 minutes until just tender.

Drain into a sieve, rinse with cold water and drain again. 

Meanwhile, add the onions to a small roasting tin, drizzle with the oil and roast for 25-30 minutes until softened and golden around the edges.

To make the dressing, add the redcurrant jelly, vinegar, mustard and lemon rind and juice to a small saucepan. Season with salt and pepper then whisk over a low heat until the dressing is smooth and the jelly has melted.

Leave to cool. 

Add the rice, onions, red cabbage and turkey to a large salad plate or bowl.

Drizzle over the dressing and lightly toss together. Shave the asparagus into thin strips by laying the stems on a chopping board and running a swivel-bladed vegetable peeler along the length.

Sprinkle over the salad with the raspberries and rocket then serve.

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