Cook's Corner – by Lisa Tindell

Published 5:43 pm Wednesday, November 26, 2008

By Staff
Turkey can find new life
With the average turkey weighing in at 16 or 17 pounds, it's hard to imagine a Thanksgiving meal without leftovers.
I'm not sure how things are at your house, but I can't present any kind of turkey, dressing or even dumplings to my family anytime after noon on Friday after Thanksgiving.
Finding suitable ways to use up leftovers has been a challenge for many women for many years. I can't tell you how many times I've thrown out perfectly good turkey meat and even dressing that just simply wasn't going to be eaten at my house.
It really breaks my heart to throw away good food so I have vowed this year to cut back on the amount of food I prepare. If you're related to me, you probably know what a big deal that is for me.
Anyway, I've decided to include some recipes on how to use up some of the left over Thanksgiving dinner dishes you'll have in your refrigerator Friday morning.
The first recipe is one that is pretty much the same as a recipe I've made using chicken. It's just abut the same as turkey for the purposes of this recipe. Actually it's more of a method instead of a recipe, but if you have Buffalo chicken lovers in your home, this one is sure to be a hit.
Thanksgiving Pizza
1 12-inch pizza crust
1 5 oz. can tomato sauce
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 cups shredded, cooked turkey meat
1/2 cup Buffalo Wing sauce
1/2 small purple onion, sliced thinly
1/2 green pepper, sliced thinly
1 small can sliced mushrooms
Louisiana-style hot sauce to taste
Heat oven to 425. Place prepared pizza crust on cookie sheet or pizza flat. Mix tomato sauce and wing sauce to combine. Spread sauce evenly on crust. Sprinkle cheese over entire crust. Layer shredded turkey and vegetables (as desired). Drizzle hot sauce over entire pizza. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes until crust is golden brown. Additional cheese may be added during last five minutes of cooking.
Here's another pizza recipe that sounds wonderful as well. I love to taste the sweet, tangy flavor of cranberries with any kind of nuts, especially almonds. Give this a try and you may be pleasantly surprised.
Turkey-Cranberry Pizza
1 12inch pre-baked Italian pizza crust
1 1/2 cups whole-berry cranberry sauce
2 cups shredded turkey
4 oz. Brie, cut into small chunks
3 green onions thinly sliced
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat to 450 degrees. Place crust on cookie sheet and spread 1 cup of cranberry sauce over the crust. Toss remaining 1/2 cup cranberry sauce over turkey. Top pizza with turkey, Brie, onions and cheese. Bake until crust is crisp and cheese melts, 10 to 15 minutes. If a pizza wasn't quite what you had in mind for using up those left overs, this next recipe is one that might use up a little more of the turkey. This recipe is enough for two dishes. Freeze one and you'll have a quick meal during those busy holidays that are just around the corner.
Cheesy Turkey Bake
2 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
4 tsp. dry minced onion
2 cups frozen peas, thawed
2 cups uncooked rice
4 cups cooked turkey, cubed
2 cans condensed cheddar cheese soup, undiluted
2 cups milk
1 tsp. salt
2 cups crushed Ritz-style crackers
4 tbsp. butter melted
Bring brother, water and onion to a boil. Reduce heat and add rice. cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, fluff rice with a fork. Divide rice between two greased 9-inche square baking pans. Sprinkle each with cooked turkey and peas. In a separate bowl, combine soup, milk and salt until smooth. Pour over turkey. Toss crushed crackers with melted butter and sprinkle over top of each casserole. Freeze one casserole for up to three months. Bake the second casserole at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes or until golden brown. To prepare frozen casserole: Thaw in refrigerator for 24 hours. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 45 to 50 minutes or until heated through.