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Holiday Leftovers

Island Epicure

Some of us were still holding packets of diced or shredded Thanksgiving turkey meat when the remains of a Christmas bird demanded attention. If that’s what’s taking up a lot of space in your freezer, these ideas for deliciously creative dishes that will incidentally free up some space could prove useful, healthful, and nutritious.

Turkey Tetrazzini
Preheat oven to 350
4 or 5 servings

1/2 pound linguini or spaghetti
Drizzle of olive oil
1 to 1 1/2 cups diced or shredded turkey or chicken meat
1/2 pound mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 Tablespoon olive oil

2 Tablespoons butter or olive oil
1 1/2 Tablespoons flour
1/4 cup boiling water
1 cup whole milk or 1/2 cup 2% milk plus 2 Tablespoons cream
1 Tablespoon dried onion flakes, optional
1 teaspoon dried tarragon

1/2 teaspoon salt
Top: Grated Parmesan Cheese

Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drizzle and toss with a little olive oil so it won’t stick together. Reserve.
Sauté mushrooms in oil. Skim from pan with slotted spoon. Reserve. Adding a little more olive oil as needed, or melting butter in pan, stir-cook the fat and the flour until the flour changes color. Add the onion flakes if using. Pour in the boiling water, stirring until you have a smooth, rapidly thickening sauce. Add the tarragon. Thin the sauce with the milk. Stir half the sauce into the  meat and the mushrooms and the other half into the pasta.

In a baking dish layer half of the pasta/sauce mixture, then the meat/sauce combo, then the other half of the pasta/sauce mixture. Top with grated Parmesan. I leave the amount to your taste. Bake until the mixture is reheated through and the cheese melted.

Serve with a tossed salad and a vinaigrette dressing.