Monday , 28 May 2018

Kyra’s Kitchen: Rescue Those Thanksgiving Leftovers; Some Delicious Ideas

By Kyra Effren, TSB Food Writer

According to government figures, millions of dollars of perfectly good food is thrown away each year – and I suspect much of it is after holiday meals when one can no longer face turkey – or the cranberry sauce or the vegetables at yet another meal.

Here are some recipes to the rescue! They are not ‘hash rehashed’ but are delicious in their own right.


Sweet Potato Cookies [adapted from] These cookies originate from Malawi in Africa and I look forward to leftover sweet potatoes so I can make them.  They are a snap made in the processor.

1 cup cooked sweet potatoes
¼ cup milk
1 egg
4 tablespoons [2 oz] soft butter
1 ¼ cups flour [lightly spooned into the measuring cups] 2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 375°.
Pile the sweet potato, milk and egg into the processor and pulse on and off a couple of times until the sweet potato is mashed.
Add the remaining ingredients and process until you have a smooth batter.
Drop tablespoonfuls onto a baking paper-lined cookie sheet and bake for about 15 minutes or until puffed and slightly browned.
(Note: They take well to freezing. Freeze in a single layer on a cookie sheet, then store in a plastic bag.)

Turkey Soup and Variations
What to do with those bones and skin and leftover turkey parts? Make soup! Wonderful for the looming cold days!

First make the stock….
Bones, skin and turkey bits from the turkey
1 large onion, skin on, quartered
3 stalks celery, cut into large chunks
3 large carrots peeled, cut into large chunks
Parsley stalks
And some rind of parmesan cheese if you have it on hand
1-2 chicken or beef cubes

Place the ingredients in a large saucepan or stock pot.
Cover with water to about three inches above the contents.
Bring to boil then lower the heat and simmer gently, uncovered for about four hours.
Cook down to 2/3 of the original liquid. 
(Note: The size and shape of the saucepan will determine how long this will take.)
Cool and strain the stock into a one or more containers and freeze.

NOW you can throw away the leftovers!

When you are ready to create a soup, just gather any vegetables of your choice – carrots, zucchini, butternut squash. 
Heat the stock and add the chosen vegetables and simmer gently until the vegetables are soft.
Puree and add salt and pepper and any other seasoning you fancy. 

You can also add sour cream or Greek yogurt to produce a cream soup.

You can of course also make a vegetable pasta soup by adding chopped up vegetables and pasta to the stock.  Serve with grated parmesan.

Cranberry Butter
An unusual and delicious way to use up all that uneaten jellied cranberry sauce.

1 ½-2 cups jellied cranberry sauce
¼ cup butter
1 apple, peeled, cored and grated
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice – You know… the spice that is ALSO left over!

Combine the sauce, butter and apple in a small saucepan. Bring to the boil and simmer until thick.
Place in a clean jar and enjoy with toast – or biscuits and cheese

Turkey with Peanut Sauce
2-3 cups leftover turkey pieces– brown and white meat

½ cup peach or apricot jam
½ cup cream or half and half
½ cup peanut butter
2 tablespoons soy or teriyaki sauce
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon garlic salt
½ teaspoon onion powder

Pre heat oven to 350°.
Combine the sauce ingredients in a bowl, and stir until well blended.
Place the turkey pieces in a casserole dish.
Pour over the sauce.
Bake for about 15-20 minutes.
Note:  May be frozen. Defrost in refrigerator and reheat in the microwave or in a 250° oven.
Pumpkin Pie Pops
Pumpkin pie, crust removed – cut into small wedges

1 lb dark chocolate, chopped into small pieces (The amount will depend on how much pumpkin pie you will be using. One pound chocolate will coat a whole pumpkin pie.)
Craft sticks

Refrigerate the pumpkin pie wedges until cold.
Insert a craft stick gently into the wide end of each pie wedge.
Place on a baking paper lined plate or cookie sheet and freeze.
Melt the chocolate in a shallow dish.  Microwave about one minute on High then stir until smooth.
Coat the frozen wedges with the melted chocolate. (Spread with a knife or spatula for the best results.)
Return to the freezer.
To serve: Remove from the freezer about 10 minutes before serving.


About the Author
McKinney resident Kyra Effren is a contributing writer for’s “Food” section.  She is a retired food stylist and contributing writer for the “Food” section of Dallas Morning News. In 1975, Effren opened Cours de Cuisine Cooking School in Dallas and in 1978, she was awarded The Commanderie des Cordon Bleu in France for her contributions to French cooking.   She has edited multiple cookbooks and served as recipe tester for a number of cookbooks including both of the Mansion on Turtle Creek cookbooks by Dean Fearing and baking books by Nick Malgieri.

Kyra welcomes any and all reader comments and suggestions.  What would you like to have for dinner?


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