Cook: Gobble gobble is weekends refrain

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Having feasted on Thanks-giving dinner just a day or so ago does not give the cook dispensation from preparing three meals a day the following weekend. Enter leftovers, my favorite part of Thanks-giving cooking.

Leftovers in my house don’t result from poor judgment. I plan carefully for those extra amounts of stuffing, vegetables and cranberry sauce.

While all leftovers usually find their way into the weekend menu, the turkey takes the spotlight: turkey soup, turkey chili, turkey salad and, of course, a bounty of turkey sandwiches. If your leftovers create leftovers, store slices of turkey in plastic wrap and then in foil, and freeze for another delicious turkey meal in the future.

Don’t forget the turkey carcass. Break it down into several pieces and simmer with vegetables for a delicious turkey stock that you can use now or freeze.


Turkey Salad with Dried Cranberries and Arugula

Serves 4-6


1 Tbs. Dijon mustard

2 Tbs. rice vinegar

1⁄2 cup olive oil

1⁄2 tsp. dried tarragon


4 cups diced cooked turkey

1⁄2 cup dried cranberries

2 celery stalks, thinly sliced

4 cups arugula, torn into bite-size pieces

salt and pepper to taste

In a small bowl, whisk together mustard and vinegar. Slowly add the oil and whisk until mixture is emulsified. Stir in tarragon.

In a large bowl, combine turkey, cranberries, celery and arugula. Toss with dressing and salt and pepper to taste.


Turkey and White Bean Chili

Serves 6

3 Tbs. olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped

3 Tbs. chili powder or to taste

28-oz. can tomatoes, drained and coarsely chopped

3 cups diced cooked turkey

2 cups cooked white beans

salt and pepper to taste

1⁄2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

In a large shallow saucepan, heat oil. Cook onion, garlic and peppers until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in chili powder and add tomatoes. Bring to a boil and add turkey and beans. Simmer 10 minutes. Taste for salt and pepper. Sprinkle with cilantro.


Turkey Sauté with Autumn Vegetables

Serves 8

4 Tbs. oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 large red pepper, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp. ground cumin

1 Tbs. curry powder or to taste

28-oz. can tomatoes, coarsely chopped

1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1⁄2-inch dice

2 cups corn kernels

3 cups diced cooked turkey

1 cup golden raisins

1 tsp. dried thyme

salt and pepper to taste

1 cup toasted slivered almonds

chopped cilantro

In a large skillet, heat oil. Add onion and pepper and sauté until vegetables begin to soften. Add garlic, cumin and curry powder and stir 1 minute. Add tomatoes and cook until bubbly. Add butternut squash and cook about 5 minutes. Add corn, turkey, raisins and thyme and cook another 10 minutes. Taste for salt and pepper. Sprinkle with almonds and cilantro.

Louise Fiszer is a Palo Alto cooking teacher, author and the co-author of “Jewish Holiday Cooking.” Her columns alternate with those of Faith Kramer. Questions and recipe ideas can be sent to j. or to [email protected].