Tuesday, February 4, 2014

"Hey Grandpa, What's for Supper?" Turkey Casserole...

I suppose I could have entitled this post "Turkey Leftovers Part II", considering my post several weeks back on Turkey Pot Pie. If you're looking for a super easy and tasty way to use up some leftover chicken or turkey, you have landed on the bulls-eye! On Saturday night, I baked a turkey. We ate a little of it but ultimately decided to cover it and put it in the fridge to have after church the next day. We went to church. We came home. Then, we ate......and ate and ate through Sunday lunch and supper as well as Monday lunch and supper. The hubby and I both took turkey, dressing, gravy and the other usual suspects to work today for lunch and we STILL had some leftovers lurking in the fridge. Puppy and Leonard even enjoyed some, of course. Now, I frown on wasting food, or anything else for that matter...so I had to use up the rest of this ol' bird (he could have been young, though....or "he" could have been a "she"...but I digress). To me, leftovers are the epitome of frugality PLUS they pose a challenge to my creativity that I actually appreciate.

Peering into the fridge, I remembered that I had run out of flour the other night making little muffin-tin pizzas. Darn. That put a damper on my plans until I saw the bag of corn meal hanging out patiently, beckoning me to pick it up. Sure - - why not. And so began my new "recipe": turkey casserole. I didn't think of taking a picture until I had dumped a big scoop of casserole and an even bigger scoop of cranberry sauce onto my plate a bit haphazardly. I could have staged it better for a prettier picture, I guess, but you'll get the idea. With its delicious cornbread crust, doesn't it look yummy?

Turkey Casserole

First, preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9 by 13 pan (I used glass).  Then, mix up some cornbread batter:  2 to 2 1/2 cups cornmeal and 1 egg, plus enough milk to make it "mushy" and enough water to make the mixture pourable. Next, in another bowl add the following and mix together :

Can of creamed corn ( I felt like the "cream" in the creamed corn probably kept it moist
Can of green beans
About 2 cups of leftover turkey, cubed
About 1 cup leftover stuffing

Now, pour only enough of the cornbread batter on the bottom of the pan to cover it. Add turkey / veggie mixture and cover with remaining cornbread batter. Bake for 45 minutes. After I removed mine from the oven, I poured the leftover turkey gravy (had about 1/2 cup, which I watered down to make 3/4 cup so it would pour easier) over the top of the whole thing. 

I served my Turkey Casserole with a simple lettuce & cheese salad, cranberry sauce and rolls. And guess what........we still have a half a pan left!!!!!! It's like a miracle turkey or something. "Clark, that's the gift that keeps on giving..." To freeze or not to freeze? That, dear readers, is the question. I did find a really neat illustration on The Culinary Chase that humorously illustrates the various areas on a turkey that makes for the best leftover uses. Check it out:

Of course, I didn't use the "suggested" cut of meat for my recipe. For tonight's casserole, I went with the "anything goes" approach. Meat was flying (pun INTENDED) into the bowl from wings, legs, back and anywhere else from whence I could scrape it. The final verdict: Hubby said, "That's good, babe!" (usually won't eat the dark meat) and cleaned his heaped-up plate. Son said, "Yeah, Mom it was fine" and chased it with a Hershey bar, chips and popcorn. Personally, I don't know if I can handle any more turkey for a few more weeks, so tomorrow might be a Hamburger Helper night on Ridgewood Circle.

Have a fun, frugal and fabulous night, from our house to yours!