Sunday, November 27, 2005

Use Up Your Leftovers: Curry Turkey Shepherd's Pie

I was looking for something a little different to do with Thanksgiving leftovers, and found a recipe for a shepherd's pie with curry seasoning that sounded delicious. So, inspired by this recipe from Ready Steady Cook, I created my own version (really just a modified version of the classic Joy of Cooking recipe).

The beauty of this recipe is that you can use any combination of leftover vegetables and meat and create a tasty dinner.

Ingredients:
- diced cooked turkey, about 1-2 cups
- mashed potatoes*, about two cups
- one onion, small dice
- vegetables** (pick several)
---- two carrots, diced
---- one stalk celery, diced
---- 1/4-1/2 cup peas
---- 1/4-1/2 red bell pepper, diced
---- green beans, cut into pieces
---- cooked potatoes, diced
---- mushrooms, cut into pieces
- turkey gravy***, about one cup
- curry powder, 1 teaspoon - 1 tablespoon
- salt and pepper

Cook onions until translucent.
Add in any uncooked vegetables and cook briefly. If you like your vegetables soft, you might want to parboil them.
Mix in any cooked vegetables and the cooked meat.
Mix in the gravy. It should coat all the meat and vegetables, but not be too soupy.
Stir in the curry powder, pepper, and, if desired, salt, to taste.
Transfer to greased 8x8 baking dish and top with mashed potatoes.
Dot top of potatoes with butter or spray with cooking oil.
Bake at 400 degrees until potatoes brown on top .
(Actually, I ended up turning the oven to broil to finish off the browning).

Let cool at least 5 minutes, then serve warm with a tasty beer.

Notes
* I didn't serve mashed potatoes this Thanksgiving, so I made one packet of Betty Crocker butter & herb mashed potatoes instead. Two cups covers an 8x8 baking dish with a relatively thin layer of potatoes. If you are a potato lover, you could use 4 cups.

** I used onions, carrots, celery, peas and bell pepper with one cup of turkey, making the resulting pie heavy on the veggies relative to the turkey.

*** Condensed cream soup could be substituted for the gravy.

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