Foxgloves & Fireflies: Cooking with holiday leftovers


Cooking with leftovers can be as easy as popping something into the microwave or it can be a new adventure in creating with what you have on hand.

If you’ve tired of turkey sandwiches, here’s something you might not have tried. My daughter and her husband once told me that they ate theirs standing at the stove because it was so good they couldn’t wait to get it from there to the table.

You can substitute noodles for the rice, and chicken for the turkey, depending on what you have on hand at the time. I used noodles and turkey.

Turkey Tetrazzini


  • 2 cups turkey
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced (about 1/4 cup)
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced (about 3 cups)
  • 1 stalk celery, finely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1/2 cup crinkle-cut frozen carrots, thawed
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup half and half or heavy cream
  • 1 3/4 cups turkey or chicken broth or stock
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry / optional
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 dash cayenne pepper, optional
  • 2 cups cubed cooked chicken
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 8 ounces (1/2 of a 1-pound package) vermicelli pasta, broken into pieces, cooked and drained (or noodles)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Heat oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat.  Add the onion, mushrooms, celery and carrots and cook until the vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally.  Remove the skillet from the heat.
  2. Heat the butter in a 10-inch oven-safe skillet over medium heat.  Stir in the flour.  Gradually stir in the half-and-half and broth.  Cook and stir until the mixture boils and thickens.  Stir in the sherry, thyme, parsley and garlic powder.  Season with the cayenne pepper/optional.
  3. Stir the turkey, onion mixture, peas, vermicelli and cheese in the skillet.
  4. Heat the broiler.  Broil 4 inches from the heat until the turkey mixture is hot and bubbling and the top is browned.


Turkey Sandwiches with Apricot Sauce


  • 1 cup finely chopped onion (1 large)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 2 cups Shredded Turkey
  • 3 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
  • 3 tablespoons apricot preserves
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 4 whole wheat hamburger or sesame seed buns, split and toasted


  1. In a large skillet, cook onion and garlic in hot oil over medium heat about four minutes or until tender. Stir in shredded turkey, mustard, apricot preserves, vinegar and cayenne pepper.   Simmer, uncovered, about five minutes or until desired consistency.
  2. Spoon about 1/2 cup turkey mixture on each bun bottom. Top with red onion if desired. Add bun tops. Serve with salad or chips.


Easy Turkey Pot Pie


  • One large can Veg-All, original
  • 1 cup sliced celery
  • 2/3 cup butter
  • 2/3 cup chopped onion
  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • One large can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 3/4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 1/3 cups milk
  • 4 cups cubed cooked turkey meat – light and dark meat mixed
  • 4 (9-inch) unbaked pie crusts


  1. Preheat an oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Place the Veg-All and celery into a saucepan; cover with water, bring to a boil, and simmer over medium-low heat until the celery is tender, about eight minutes. Drain the vegetables in a colander set in the sink, and set aside.
  3. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat, and cook the onion until translucent, about five minutes. Stir in 2/3 cup of flour, salt, black pepper, celery seed, onion powder and soup; slowly whisk in the chicken broth and milk until the mixture comes to a simmer and thickens. Remove from heat; stir the cooked vegetables and turkey meat into the filling until well combined.
  4. Fit two pie crusts into the bottom of two 9-inch pie dishes. Spoon half the filling into each pie crust, then top each pie with another crust. Pinch and roll the top and bottom crusts together at the edge of each pie to seal, and cut several small slits into the top of the pies with a sharp knife to release steam.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven until the crusts are golden brown and the filling is bubbly, 30 to 35 minutes. If the crusts are browning too quickly, cover the pies with aluminum foil after about 15 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.


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