Quanti Avanzi (So Many Leftovers)!


I don’t know about everyone, but I LOVE leftovers!  They make for an easy lunch the next day or save on a night of cooking!  And leftovers that lend themselves into being transformed to a new dish are always an extra bonus….and I feel like I am doing my part to be GREEN (something that has become something of an obscession for me!!!) by wasting NOTHING!

This Christmas we cooked a turkey.  Turkey is always one of those things, that if you don’t have a LOT of people to eat it, is guaranteed to give you leftovers.  Well, this one was no exception.  We ate about half the turkey on the night we cooked it, and then the rest we converted into more things.  The first thing I did was cut off all the extra meat that I could from the carcass, and I put it aside.  Then into a large pot of water I added the carcass and made stock from it.  I put in lots of celery and onions, a couple of bouillon cubes, and some salt and pepper and boiled it slowly for a couple of hours.  Once it was done, I strained everything…leaving a good tasty broth behind.  This broth bowl I put into the refrigerator – the cold helps the fat congeal on the top so that it can be skimmed off easily (this part is gross, but it leaves behind a fat-free broth!!).  I then placed it  into freezer containers and froze it for use when I need a good broth stock! 

Once the broth was taken care of, I attacked the carcass one more time to remove any meat left behind.  With all the scavenged meat, I made “Polpettine”!!  So, into the Cuisinart I added all the salvaged turkey meat, some chopped parsley, a few eggs, some parmesan cheese….and pulsed away until it was all chopped finely.  I then formed the meat mixture into meatballs in “football” shapes about 4 inches long by 2 inches wide.  I rolled these in fine breadcrumbs, patting the breadcrumbs in firmly.  I placed these in aluminum foil, wrapped them up, and placed them in ziploc bags for freezing.   Another meal waiting for a time when I need a quick dinner.  I will defrost the meatballs ahead of time and fry them in a little bit of olive oil until they are browned and a little crispy!  Yummy!

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