11.21.2012

Thanksgiving Leftover Recipes

(Turkey Shepherd's Pie with Leftover Mashed Potatoes) 

House cleaning has begun, and I have been planning and shopping for our big Thanksgiving gathering.  Turkey, ham, mashed potatoes with gravy, stuffing, sweet potato casserole, and scrumptious pies...the list grows by the minute and excitement builds.  

And this year, it's even more special for me because my best friend and her family are coming.  Our annual tradition was missed the past three years because they are full-time missionaries to the Philippines.  And it may be another three years before they return for their furlough.  So, I'm going to relish every single minute with them as we build another sweet memory.  
(Stuffing Stuffed Mushroom Caps)

My family are not lovers of leftovers.  So each year, I'm conjuring up ways to get them to eat Thanksgiving meal redux.  Here are some creative ideas to share with you for your leftovers this year.
You will also find these photos in Miss Sophie's column in The Savannah Morning News. 


(Turkey, Cranberry Sauce and Brie Sandwich)


I am so very grateful to have another Thanksgiving with you all!  
Have a Happy, Happy Thanksgiving my dear friends!

Stuffing Stuffed Mushrooms 

 24 Mushroom caps, cleaned
 1 cup leftover stuffing
 1/4 cup grated parmesan,
 2 tablespoons each olive oil
 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
 1 minced garlic clove

 Mix all ingredients in a medium-size bowl. Stuff into 24 button mushroom caps; top with more parmesan and olive oil. Bake 15-20 minutes at 400 degrees. Serve hot.

Turkey, Cranberry Sauce, and Brie Sandwich 

8 slices thick sliced bread
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup left over cranberry Sauce
1 pound sliced left over turkey
1/2 pound brie cheese, thickly sliced

 Lay 4 slices of bread and top with a few slices of turkey. Spread cranberry sauce over turkey slices, then cover with 2 to 3 slices of brie, enough to cover the turkey and cranberry sauce. Top the sandwiches with remaining 4 slices of bread. Spread softened butter on outer sides of sandwich.

 Heat a large cast-iron or other heavy skillet over medium-low heat and cook 2 to 3 minutes until the bread is golden brown and the cheese begins to melt. Flip and cook 2 to 3 more minutes to brown the bread. Brush on more butter if needed. Cut the sandwiches in half and serve hot.  Makes 4 generous sandwiches.


 Turkey Shepherd's Pot Pie with Leftover Mashed Potatoes 

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 cups leftover turkey meat
2 cups of frozen vegetables
2 cups leftover mashed potatoes, heated in microwave 2-3 minutes
Salt and pepper to taste

*Note: if you have left over gravy, about 2 1/2 cups, it can be substituted for the white sauce.  Add dried thyme, meat, and vegetables, and proceed with the remaining instructions.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Melt butter in a medium sauce pan. Add onions and cook until translucent, 2-3 minutes. Whisk flour into butter and onions and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes. Slowly whisk broth into flour until smooth, add thyme and bring to slow simmer. Add meat and vegetables. Simmer for 10-15 minutes.

Transfer turkey mixture to a deep-dish pie plate or shallow casserole dish placed on a baking sheet. Spoon warmed mashed potatoes over top, and, using the back of a spoon, make an even layer. Place pie on a baking sheet and bake 20-25 minutes, until top is golden brown and filling is bubbly.

11.14.2012

Pre-Thanksgiving Panic?


This image was posted by my friend Cyndi on FB describing her pre-Thanksgiving panic.  And I had the same sinking-gut feeling, too, when I realized that Thanksgiving is NEXT week.  Bah!  It really couldn't be!  

And I had been feeling pretty smug with the whole Thanksgiving meal thing since I had already photographed this "Thanksgiving Feast with Miss Sophie" feature for our local newspaper two weeks ago.  These photographs and recipes will be printed this coming Sunday, but since you are my super special friends, you get to peek early.  But alas, pretty photos don't equal pretty food on the plates.  

 Despite the hours of planning, shopping, cooking, and cleaning the house for the big meal next week, it will be so worth it.  Because when you are surrounded by your loving family and friends, they are what matters most in life.  So let's take a big, deep breath and see how we can get through next week with smiles in our hearts and on our faces.  
We have so much to be thankful for, don't we? 




Here are some great recipes and helpful hints for your upcoming holiday feast:


11.07.2012

Roy's Spicy Sausage and Rice


I live in a sleepy  bedroom community with a population of 2800. Though bustling downtown Savannah is only a 15-minute drive away, Bloomingdale is a small town where things haven't changed a whole lot in the last several decades.  


Within this tiny city's boundaries there are a few beauty shops, one gas station, one BBQ restaurant, a post office, and we just got our second traffic light three years ago.   And just a block away from our little town hall, there lies a little treasure of a place for me.  Meet my local butcher, Roy White, and his mama, Darlene, and daddy, Roy Sr.   

Roy grew up watching his daddy cut meat, and learned the trade along with his brother, who is also a butcher in another town.  Roy's love for life is contagious, and his knowledge of his trade so vast.  He can tell you where the meats come from to his shop, and how he takes it and makes different cuts.  And he loves to make sausages.  
The recipe Roy uses has been passed down from his grand-daddy: not cluttered with various exotic ingredients and fillers, but good ol' country style where sausage tastes like it ought to, simple and delicious.    Roy makes mild, hot, smoked, Italian, garlic, polish, bratwurst and chicken sausages. 

 As I spent a few hours with Roy last week, I learned so much from him.  Not just about making sausages, but about living a thankful life, working hard, and loving God and people.  I think that's the best recipe of all for a simple and delicious life.  Thanks, Roy!

Roy was featured in Miss Sophie's weekly column in Savannah Now along with my photos.  Click here to view.  

The Butcher's Block is located at 102 U.S. 80, Bloomingdale, GA 31302  Phone: (912) 748-6060


ROY’S SPICY SAUSAGE AND RICE
Serves 4
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
½ small onion, chopped
1 pound Roy’s Spicy Smoked Sausage, sliced
2 cups chicken broth (homemade preferred or canned low-sodium)
½ teaspoon seafood seasoning (Old Bay, Zataran’s or your favorite seasoning)
1 ½ cups long grain rice, uncooked, rinsed and drained

1. Heat oil in large, non-stick skillet on medium-high heat. Add peppers and onions; cook about 2 minutes until slightly wilted. Add rinsed rice and stir to mix.
2. Add sausage, seafood seasoning, and chicken broth. Stir and cover.  Bring to boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cook until all broth is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Fluff rice with fork and serve.  Add salt to your taste if needed.