The place God calls you is the place where your deep gladness and the world's deep hunger meet.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

On A Lighter Note: Leftovers

It's been a little heavy lately so I thought I'd share something on a lighter note...

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Had you asked me a year ago if we would be here, as five, in the specific company which we found ourselves, I would have shaken my head in denial.

But here we are. (More on that very soon.)

We had our BBQ-ed turkey, our Stove Top stuffing (apparently it's better than anything homemade?! um, okay), our organic gravy (seems a little oxymoronic in proximity to the Stove Top doesn't it?), our roasted potatoes and the veg.

What?! Back the truck up...BBQ-ed turkey? Yes!!! Don't diss it 'till you've tried it.

Okay, now that I've relived my high school vocabulary, let me detail this out. Since I was a teen and our friends shared their "super moist, no fail BBQ turkey" recipe with my Dad, it's the only way we've done ours. Never a dry piece of meat.


On a turkey.

Plus, the oven is free for the whatever form you like to bake or roast it.

Lovely, isn't it?!

BBQ-ing your turkey takes about a bazillion times less than baking it in the oven, too. So, bonus: you don't spend your day trapped in the house...or the kitchen for that matter. Ours was about 20 lbs (yeah, apparently I over-estimated by a landslide on that one). It needed only three hours...and seeing as our BBQ is a little temper-mental, the temp ranged from 375 - 650.

It's super simple, with the only drawn back being that you cannot bake your stuffing in it...this was also not a problem for us seeing as apparently we...that right: we like our Stove Top.

I digress.

Grab a roasting pan, throw a cooling rack or roasting rack in it. Chuck the turkey on top (this could be hard if it's the size of ours but you get the picture). Pour a thin layer of water in the base of the roasting pan. Baste it with olive oil and season it with salt and pepper. Throw it on the BBQ and all you need to do from here on out is check it every once in awhile to ensure there is still water in the bottom of the roasting pan - this ensures the moist bird...seriously - even the white meat! Baste the bird and season every fifteen minutes or so, for the last hour. Like I said, ours was about 20lbs and it was a very reasonable 3 hours.

Okay, onto the leftovers. Around here leftover turkey sandwiches (including said Stove Top and gravy as well as that oh so loved cranberry sauce) are a hit the following day.

After that, no one in this neck of the woods wants nothing to do with the bird until the following turkey meal holiday.

This does not bode well for all that leftover meat.

And, seeing as I'm not one to be wasteful, it seems I have to get creative.

I've finally come to the conclusion that turkey soup just ain't gonna happen. I can make it but no one will eat it. And doesn't that just seems like a waste of freezer space to you?

I usually squeeze out one other supper meal before I can tell people are going to go on strike around here. My go-to has, in the past been Rachael Ray's recipe. But we're not big pasta folk so last night I tried something a little out of the ordinary but it went over particularly well...or at least people were really polite. I'm going to go with the former. Kids aren't really that polite when they don't like something, let's be honest here.

I found this Turkey Quesadilla recipe and while it took a little longer than I would have liked, it was more than enough for two meals so we'll be seein' this dish again.

I didn't have the all peppers or onions mentioned so I chopped up a red pepper and several stalks of broccoli. (I told you I don't like to waste.) I also cut out the chipotle and ancho chillis simply because they don't adorn my pantry spice shelf. I didn't slide the tortillas through hot oil before placing the meat concoction in them because that simply seemed like a waste of oil and calories to me. They worked fine. I'd say make sure your sauce doesn't reduce too much...that would be my mistake. Yeah, that's right...I'm a Mama and therefore imperfect.

I also used less cheese at the end than is called for. Because, though this family could live on cheese alone it just seemed a bit much. I substituted a bit of fresh parmesan to give them a little extra kick...

Turkey Cream Cheese Enchiladas...
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 orange bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle chile pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ancho chile pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, cut into pieces
  • 5 cups shredded cooked turkey
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce, or to taste
  • 22 (6 inch) corn tortillas
  • 1 cup vegetable oil for frying
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese, divided


  1. Preheat an oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease 2 9x12 inch baking pans.
  2. Heat the butter and olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in the onion and chopped green, yellow, and orange bell peppers; cook and stir until the peppers have softened and onion has turned translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the kosher salt, black pepper, chipotle pepper, ancho pepper, cumin, and paprika. Cook and stir until seasonings start to become fragrant, about 5 more minutes.
  3. Pour in the sour cream and heavy cream, and add the cream cheese. Stir well to combine, and cook over low heat until mixture is heated through and creamy, about 5 minutes. Remove pan from heat and allow mixture to cool about 10 to 15 minutes. Divide mixture, and reserve half for topping.
  4. Combine shredded turkey with 2 1/2 cups of shredded Cheddar cheese in a large bowl. Add in half of the cooled cream and pepper mixture, and stir lightly to mix. Set aside.
  5. Heat vegetable oil in a skillet over medium heat until the oil is hot but not smoking, about 2 minutes. Slide one tortilla at a time into the oil and allow to heat through, about 20 to 30 seconds, until the tortilla is hot and pliable. Stack the warmed tortillas and cover to retain heat.
  6. To assemble the enchiladas, place 1/4 cup of creamy turkey filling in a line down the center of each tortilla, roll the tortillas, and lay 11 enchiladas, seam sides down, into each prepared baking dish. Top each dish with half of the reserved cream and pepper mixture. Bake the pans in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until enchiladas are heated through and sauce begins to brown and bubble.
  7. Remove the pans from the oven, sprinkle each with about 3/4 cup of shredded Cheddar cheese, and return to the oven to finish baking, about 15 more minutes, until topping is melted, browned, and bubbling. Let stand about 10 minutes to rest before serving.

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