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Create tasty follow-up to holiday feast

Create tasty follow-up to holiday feast

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Associated Press

Leftovers are a serious part of the holiday feasting, tasty follow-ups to look forward to, prolonging the treat.

Usually, leftovers are built into the cook’s master plan – after all, when we’re calculating quantities who among us would plan to have not quite enough?

So there they are, reserves of ready-to-eat goodies that may also be easily tweaked into smart new offerings, limited only by cooks’ energy levels and imagination.

Here are some ideas for using those leftovers. The following suggestions can be starting points for your own variations.Breakfast betsFor scrambled eggs with a twist, stir leftover vegetables in creamy sauces (such as green bean casserole, creamed peas and onions, broccoli with cheese sauce) into beaten eggs and scramble as usual.

Stir mashed sweet potatoes into pancake or waffle batter for a sweet and hearty breakfast variation. Don’t throw away your cranberry sauce. It’s a perfect replacement for jam or jelly. Add a touch of honey to it and serve on top of pancakes or waffles for a great breakfast surprise.Dinner delightsUse leftover stuffing and shredded turkey to make “stuffing patties.” Bind with a beaten egg, shape into patties and fry on both sides in a little vegetable oil. Serve with turkey gravy.

Try a turkey-vegetable stir-fry seasoned with soy sauce and chili oil. For a Southwestern flavor, toss leftover shredded turkey with taco sauce to moisten. Fill taco shells, sprinkle with shredded Cheddar cheese and heat.

You don’t have to go to the deli to get a mouthwatering turkey Reuben. Simply place leftover sliced turkey, Swiss cheese, sauerkraut and Russian dressing between slices of rye bread. Grill, turning once until cheese melts.

Turkey can substitute for chicken or other poultry in several recipes. Use leftover turkey in dishes such as Caesar salad, hash, fajitas and chicken a la king.

Leftover turkey carcasses make savory, comforting soups. Place the turkey carcass in a large pot and cover with water. Add two stalks of sliced celery, two sliced carrots and one chopped onion. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to low.

Cover and simmer for at least two hours or until meat falls off the bones.

Remove bones and cartilage and chop remaining turkey meat. Add salt and pepper to taste and add cooked rice or noodles to complete the soup.

A versatile turkey is ideal for takeout sandwiches, or may be served over a bed of lettuce for a lighter meal. It is made with tangy Dijon mustard, cider vinegar and crunchy chopped celery, and has regional salad variations. The recipes are from Cutco Cutlery Co.

Gobbling Good Turkey Salad3 tbsp. cider vinegar

2 tsp. Dijon mustard

1/2 tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. ground black pepper

3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

4 cups cooked, diced turkey

2 celery stalks, finely choppedIn a medium bowl whisk vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper together. Slowly whisk in olive oil. Add diced turkey and celery; toss to mix well.

Serve turkey salad on your favorite bread for sandwiches, serve over salad greens, or fill avocado or tomato halves. Makes 4 servings.

VariationsNorthwest Turkey Salad: Prepare turkey salad as above. Stir in 1 large red apple, cored and finely chopped, 1/4 cup finely diced red onion, 1/4 cup slivered toasted almonds, chopped, and 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley. Serve over green leaf lettuce.

Florida Keys Turkey Salad: Prepare turkey salad as above. Stir in 1 large navel orange, peeled and coarsely chopped, 2 scallions, chopped, and 2 tsp. grated orange peel. Serve salad over watercress.

New England Turkey Salad: Prepare turkey salad as above. Stir in 1/2 cup cranberry relish (or leftover cranberry sauce), 1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped and 1/4 cup raisins, optional.Copyright 2001 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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