Friday, December 30, 2011
It had been a while since I made turkey. I've been fortune to skip Thanksgiving cooking duties the last few years, and the last few Christmases I've gone off the grid, experimenting with short ribs, pork loin and other non-traditional meats.
But since I can never resist experimenting a little, I decided to make a stuffed turkey breast instead of a whole turkey. I stuffed it with herbs and bacon, and it was delicious and very tender. (I promise to share that recipe next time a holiday rolls around).
The butcher claimed I needed at least a 6-7 lb breast for 5-6 people, but we were left with a ton of leftovers. And since one of my new years resolutions is to avoid wasting food, I needed to find a use for them. I have a million food magazines with a million ideas for turkey leftovers, but none of them inspired me. Most involved chopping up the turkey and creating some sort of casserole with leftover mashed potatoes and/or or cranberry sauce. Blech.
Since the turkey already had an herb-y taste, I wanted to keep the flavor profile the same. So I bought some yummy ciabatta rolls and made a BLT type sandwich with herbed mayo. It was SO good, and it didn't scream "leftovers" the way that some other recipes do. Plus it was easy. Here's what was in it:
Thinly sliced tomato
Bacon, nuked until crisp
Slices of leftover turkey
Herbed mayo (simply chop up whatever herb or herbs you have on hand and whisk together with a little mayo. I used sage, but plenty of other ones would work...thyme, oregano, tarragon...)
Slice the ciabatta rolls in half and tear out some of the inner bread to make it more light. Spritz with olive oil and broil for a few minutes until crispy. Spread a thin layer of the herbed mayo on both sides of the bread. Layer on the other ingredients. Close the bread and either cook in a panini press, or just push down hard with your hands until it flattens out a little bit (what I like to call the lazy girl's panini).
I really looooove making gourmet sandwiches at home--it's such an easy, satisfying meal. Ever since I've discovered the ciabatta roll, I've been hooked. I know it's not the healthiest grain in the world, but it freezes really well, so it's easy to stock up in the freezer and have them on hand as a vehicle for leftovers, eggs, last minute guests, or just about anything you can think of.
Happy New Year!