What To Do With Leftover Turkey: Recipes From 1887

Rechauffe Dinners.

Before the Christmas turkey will have had time to get cold; in fact, almost before it is cooked, the January number of Ballou’s Monthly will have reached most of its readers. Endeavoring always to have our household department seasonable, and consequently serviceable, the above subject seemed particularly appropriate.

As a general thing, one does not feel much enthusiasm over next day dinners; there is a feeling that one is eating to live, which is as bad, in its way, as living to eat. The half denuded carcass of the festive biped is not appetizing in appearance, but suppose you tempt Tom, who does so “hate” cold turkey, with some of the following dishes:—

Turkey Ragout.—Cut the cold turkey from the bones as neatly as possible, slicing the white meat, if any, rather thickly, and removing every particle of skin from every portion. Put into a saucepan the bones, well-broken, a sliced onion, two stalks of celery, a few sprigs of parsley, and any gravy that may have been left; cover with a pint of cold water, and stew gently for an hour, but do not allow this to reduce much in quantity; strain into an earthen bowl; return the saucepan to the fire with a tablespoonful of butter, into which, as soon as it melts, stir an equal amount of flour; when turning rather brown, pour the hot gravy slowly into it, stirring the while; do not boil up any of the stuffing with the gravy, as it is apt to spoil the flavor. There should be two-thirds of a pint of this gravy. Season with salt and pepper, and lay in the meat, which must get hot through without being allowed to boil. Add a few drops of lemonjuice, pour out on a flat dish, and garnish with diamonds of toast. x\. cupful of whole or chopped mushrooms, stewed for fifteen minutes in the gravy before putting in the meat, is a delightful addition.

Where not enough cold fowl remains for the above dish, it may be disguised as follows: Chop very finely the bits of meat, and for two cupfuls of the minee, put over the fire a gill of the stock made as above; when it boils, stir in a tablespoonful of flour wet with a gill of cream. When this thickens, add the mince, and season rather highly with cayenne. While this is in preparation, make and bake two squares of good paste; put the hot mince between them at least an inch thick, and send to table.

Turkey Scallop is so savory a dish, that its frequent appearance will be a matter of rejoicing. We are indebted to a venerable and sable auntie, long ago famous for her skill in cooking, for this recipe.

As in the preceding recipes, a pint of gravy is made, and the meat chopped fine. In the bottom of a pudding-dish, previously wellbuttered, put a layer of cracker-crumbs, then a layer of the minced turkey, seasoned and dotted with bits of butter; continue this until the dish is nearly full, and pour in enough gravy or stock to almost cover the contents. It is better to add this gravy to each layer. Have ready a crust of cracker-crumbs soaked in milk, seasoned and mixed with two beaten eggs; spread this smoothly over the top; dot with bits of butter, invert a piedish over it, and place in a moderate oven. As soon as it begins to bubble at the sides, remove the cover and brown. Oysters and their liquor are a pleasant addition.

The possibilities of croquettes and salads are too well-known to need description, but two delicious soups which are not so well-known, can be made from cold poultry. Reserve the white meat, or, if there is none, a few pieces from any portion; crack the bones well, add the gravy, a sliced onion, and several stalks of celery; cover with two quarts of cold water, and simmer for three hours. Chop fine the meat you have reserved, rub to a paste with the yolks of two hard boiled eggs, moistening with a little of the soup. Mix this with the chopped meat and a few breadcrumbs, to make all hold together, and form into little balls; strain the soup, season with salt, white pepper and minced parsley, drop in the force-iueat balls, simmer for ten minutes, add a cup of rich cream, made hot and slightly thickened with flour. This may be slightly varied by substituting for the force-meat balls, a cupful of celery cut into bits and cooked in the soup for thirty minutes before adding the cream, as the soup must not be allowed to boil after the latter is added.

You may so prepare a brown giblet soup as to make it almost equal to green turtle. Make a stock from the bones as above, and, if you can get it, add a couple of calves’ feet, or a ten-cent knuckle of veal. Cook the giblets, which you have reserved for this purpose, in salted water for an hour; take them out, chop the gizzards fine, and mash the liver to a paste, moistening with a little of the soup. Or, to save trouble, the giblets may be boiled in the same vessel with the soup, and taken out when tender. Make a roui by putting a tablespoonful of butter in a saucepan, and when it boils stir in a tablespoonful of browned flour: when these are smoothly mixed, add very slowly half a cup of the soup, the pounded liver and chopped gizards, a small glass of brown sherry, and the juice of half a lemon. Stir this Into the remainder of the sou)), and give one boil. Qurter two hard-boiled eggs, put them in the tureen, and pour the soup over.

Minced fowl with macaroni is too nice a dish to omit from this list. Make a white sauce by stirring over the fire two tablespoonfuls of butter and one of flour until they form a smooth paste; add gradually a scant pint of boiling milk, season with salt, white pepper, and a trifle of nutmeg. Cut your cold fowl in pieces, heat in this sauce, and serve in a border of boiled macaroni.

The legs and second joints of cold roast fowls, when grilled, are highly esteemed by English epicures. Score them closely, season with pepper, salt, and cayenne, and broil.

Cold broiled chicken is nice deviled. Baste the pieces with butter, heat on a gridiron, and pour over it a sauce made of one tablespoonful of made mustard, two of Worcestershire sauce, and three of vinegar.

Those fond of curried fowl will not refuse one made in this way: Season the pieces of cold boiled or roast fowl, fry quickly, and lay on a hot dish: slice an onion, and fry in butter until red; add a cupful of stock, a teaspoonful of sugar, and a table spoonful each of curry-powder and flour; rub these latter smooth with a little cold stock before adding them to the sauce; put in the pieces of chicken, and let them boil two or three minutes; add the juice of half a lemon, and pour into the centre of a dish. Surround with a border of boiled rice.

Source: Ballou’s Monthly Magazine, 1887

Index: Historic Christmas Recipes

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