Last Sunday I showed you how to cook a Thanksgiving meal for two with a little bit leftover to enjoy another day. Today I sharing a fun way to utilize Thanksgiving leftovers, inspired by my grandmother and her ability to make soup out of anything.
When I first decided to make a noodle soup with leftover turkey, I realized that gravy is literally reduced stock (assuming you cook down the turkey juices to make gravy) and therefore could be reconstituted in this soup. Take a moment to bask in my glorious realization. Of course you could use premade stock or a store-bought stock concentrate but if you have gravy you may as well use it! After how delicious my gravy turned out, I couldn’t see how it could possibly be a bad idea.
One year ago: Gluten-Free Ooey Gooey Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake
Two years ago: Pecan Chocolate Chip Gooey Butter Cake
Normally for Single Serving Sunday I try to share recipes that only make one serving, but with the upcoming Thanksgiving feast I decided to do something special – a Thanksgiving meal that serves two. Many recipes for Thanksgiving produce a magnitude of servings, but what about the people out there only cooking for two, or four? This menu I have prepared easily serves 2 with leftovers. Because who doesn’t want leftovers from Thanksgiving? That being said, the turkey could serve four but if you have hearty eaters you may want to double the sides.
This dinner consists of a slow cooker turkey tenderloin with gravy, Greek yogurt-rosemary rolls, bagel-bacon stuffing, roasted brussels, twice baked sweet potatoes, cranberry-pomegranate sauce, and pumpkin crème brulee for dessert. Take a moment to be jealous.
My turkey tenderloin came out so juicy and flavorful that it will be hard to convince me to cook a whole turkey in the future. It literally fell apart when I lifted it out of the pot. By using a slow cooker I was also able to do whatever the heck I wanted in the oven, which is a huge perk for those of us with only one oven (one day I hope to be spoiled with a double oven). Even the gravy was amazing after cooking in all those delicious juices.
As you are aware, I have a habit of adding Greek yogurt to anything I possibly can so it shouldn’t be a surprise that it shows up here in dinner rolls. The rosemary really sold me on these rolls. If you don’t like rosemary, please substitute for another herb because they will rock your world with their subtle herby-ness. You can also prep these the day beforehand and refrigerate before the last rise. The next day, take them out of the fridge about 30 minutes before you want to bake them.
Then there’s the stuffing. I’ve seen stuffing made with all types of bread but this was the first recipe I had seen using bagels. I originally set aside two corn muffins for stuffing, but those were thrown into the freezer once I discovered I could use a bagel instead. I freaking love bagels! And I was not disappointed by the trade-off, especially since there was bacon involved.
For a green side I chose brussels sprouts. Only a couple Thanksgivings ago I discovered that I no longer hated them and actually became obsessed. As a result, they are nostalgic to me at this time of year. Just a simple roasting and a drizzle of balsamic is all they needed.
Growing up we usually had both regular mashed potatoes and mashed sweet potatoes but knew I would burst if I tried to add both onto this already long lineup. I went with a twice baked sweet potato that is topped with pecans and coconut. Although it is less sweet than a marshmallow topping, it has a crunchier topping that will make you forget about those puffy white things (no offense marshmallows, I still love you).
No Thanksgiving dinner is complete without some cranberry sauce. This version uses pomegranate juice for a more complex flavor. This can be made the day beforehand or even a few days before to minimize the amount of work you have to do on the big day. But if you do have to whip it up the same day, rest assured that it will only take 20 minutes.
Of course, once you’ve stuffed your face you’ll still find room for dessert, right? Especially for pumpkin crème brulee. I know you may initially think it’s a crime to not have pumpkin pie but it’s basically pumpkin pie and crème brulee all in one. Are you really going to be upset by having both?
Now for some tips on how I timed everything in order to be hot and ready all at the same time. An hour before turkey is done cooking (mine only took 4 hours), take rolls out of fridge (if prepared the night before), toast the bagel for stuffing, and prep the brussels sprouts. Bake the stuffing and brussels at the same time and with 20 minutes of cook time remaining, add the sweet potatoes and rolls to the oven. At that time, remove the turkey from the slow cooker and prepare the gravy. Slice up the turkey and serve! Then once your belly has digested a little to make room for dessert, torch the creme brulee just before you’re ready to dig in.
One year ago: Buckeye Cupcakes
Two years ago: Apple Blackberry Pie
Mini meatloaves return! After discovering that I actually like meatloaf if prepared in a miniature form (and therefore less squishy), I wondered if it was only due to the texture of if it had something to do with the flavor variations I have tried. So this time I tried out a more classic flavor.
And the verdict? I gobbled these up too! After an entire life of shunning meatloaf, it’s as if a whole new world has been opened up. Sure enough it’s the size that matters.
What’s your favorite kind of meatloaf? I want to try other variations in mini form!
It is a rare day to find flights for under $300, even more so under $200, but yesterday was one of those days and I snatched it up as fast as I could confirm the time and place of events for that weekend. This flight purchase was for my friend Amber’s wedding in October, another of which I am a bridesmaid! The flight actually ended up being free because I had accrued enough miles to do so. I should have signed up for the Amex Delta Skymiles CC a long time ago. Imagine all the free flights, free 1st checked bag, and group 1 seating I could have been enjoying all these years!
But anywho, to go along with the theme of frugality, here is a pizza taco recipe that I was able to make almost without a trip to the grocery store. Lately I have been trying to cook more with the items I already have stocked, and surprisingly for this meal I had every ingredient on hand except for the ricotta. That goes to show how well stocked my kitchen is for a girl living with no one else besides her cat. Sometimes I try to estimate how long I could survive without leaving my home, and appreciate that I do not need to test it for real because I covet fresh fruit far too much.
P.S. This recipe is a great, quick weeknight meal!
One year ago: Easy S’mores Ice Cream Sandwiches
Gnocchi is supposedly a filling pasta and most people I know can only eat about 8-10 morsels before claiming to be “full”. Yet I can house an entire package by myself without feeling the slightest discomfort. I am not claiming this to be a good thing, just a fun fact about my belly.
This gnocchi dish however was in fact very filling and for once managed to only eat the recommended serving size. Actually, finishing one serving left me feeling quite full and satisfied. And it was a quick prep recipe too, which I am in dire need of these days!
P.S. Today is actually National Waffle Day, but I didn’t have time to whip up a recipe for the occasion. Just sharing this info in case you wanted to celebrate on your own .
When I made these potato nachos, they made me think of my friend Christina because she believes that a potato is the best food on the planet. In fact, when I texted her to inform her of this and of what I was making for dinner she thought it sounded incredible. Now that I am posting the recipe I hope she makes it, because it’s also relatively quick and easy to prepare. Maybe she will cook it as the inaugural meal in her new apartment, since her kitchen will finally be bigger than a closet O:-)?
When grocery shopping I always bring reusable shopping bags and have never run into a cashier that seemed confused by them. However, half the time I bring them into other stores such as Target, Marshalls, etc. the cashier starts looking for a bar code tag even though the first thing I said to them upon approaching was “Hi, I am using my own bag today”. Reusable bags are common enough these days to not have it be so odd to bring one into a regular department store. Besides, I’m not going to avoid plastic bags at the grocery store just to acquire them elsewhere. I do use them for my small bathroom trash can and really should work on an alternative, but I don’t need very many to meet that call to duty.
Which brings me to a cool thing happening on the west coast (other than my brother, sister-in-law and nephew moving there in a month) – bans on plastic bags! It started in San Francisco in 2007 and has slowly spread to other major cities over the years such as Los Angeles and Sacramento. Chicago, Portland and Dallas look like they might be next. So start busting out those reusable bags if you haven’t already!
Oh and food? Yes you are here for food not my ramblings and I am here to tell you to make these hot dogs. They are regular turkey hot dogs topped with Mexican inspired deliciousness. It involves a salsa made from corn, jalapeno, avocado and some seasonings. Then some chipotle peppers come out to play mixed with Greek yogurt for a perfect cream topping. I even served them with some spicy sweet potato fries, which were also dipped in any leftover cream.
I don’t go out to eat often, but when I do I rarely leave with leftovers. And what I mean by this is that I either inhale it all or I get a box to go and somehow end up leaving it on the table, much to my dismay later on. This problem of mine is particularly annoying when I purposely ordered enough food to cover two meals. I have to make a conscious effort to hold onto my to-go box when getting ready to leave or else it’ll never make it. One time I remembered right as I was walking out the restaurant door, but it was already too late. The waiting staff was just too fast and efficient for me .
The best thing about cooking and eating at home? All my leftovers stay with me. In fact, most of the time when I make recipes that serve multiple people, I portion out the serving I’m going to eat and then divide the rest amongst lunch-box-sized containers for lunch that week. This makes me particularly happy when I get to enjoy awesome things such as these sloppy joes more than once.
Sloppy Joes don’t have to come from a can. And they also don’t always have to be made with the same traditional seasonings either. When I saw this recipe using hoisin sauce I had to make it. And I am glad I did because it totally beats any canned sloppy joe sauce any day.
There are times when I go to the grocery store and somehow leave without actually getting everything on my list. And then there are times when I cross every last thing off, only to get home and realize I didn’t buy enough of something or forgot to put something on the list in the first place. Enter improvisation. When making these stuffed shells, I substituted broccoli for shredded zucchini because I failed to buy any, and also some of the ricotta for Greek yogurt because I didn’t buy enough! Some people say you shouldn’t admit to screwing up and instead say it was all planned out from the beginning. However, I prefer admitting how awesome my creative skills under pressure because these shells were still awesome.
I know I have been slacking on the Superbowl recipe sharing this week so I am here to make it up to you with some awesome sliders and a giveaway (at the end of this post)!
Potato rolls and bread have always been a favorite of mine, so when I found out Alexia had sweet potato rolls I jumped on the opportunity to review them. And decided to make sliders out of one of my favorite burger recipes.
Normally I would serve these with sweet potato fries, but decided to change it up with the sweet potato buns and then served with some of Alexia’s Oven Reds instead. I think these buns were made for these sliders, and may not return to regular buns. The turkey sliders are mixed with applesauce, maple syrup, and crumbled bacon, and then topped off with a maple-dijon sauce that I made with Greek yogurt (instead of mayo in the original recipe I posted). The sweet potato roll is like a happy little hug around all that flavor, but still holds it own. If there hadn’t been the exact amount of sliders per roll, I may have eaten a roll by itself! Which means I now have to go out and buy more so I can do just that.
One year ago: Superbowl XLVI Recipe Roundup