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After-Thanksgiving Panini

Tasting Marion’s 7 Best Thanksgiving Leftovers – Make an Encore

Invite friends over for a casual Friday night after Thanksgiving supper. Great wine, a warm fire and leftover turkey dishes, such as pizza, panini, small fried potato and green onion bites, plus a dish of pasta. Use your leftover olives, prosciutto, salami, cheeses, ricotta (drizzle honey on it), crusty bread from yesterday’s antipasti and create a delicious appetizer. Impromptu nights like this can be so much fun with friends, or even if it is just the two of you, light some candles and make it romantic. Enjoy!

Sweet Potato Pie

This creamy sweet potato pie is subtly spiced and slices easily!


  • Yesterday’s leftover sweet potatoes
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 unbaked pastry shell (9 inches)


Mash the sweet potatoes until very smooth; cool to room temperature. In a bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and mix well. Add milk, two cups mashed sweet potatoes, vanilla, cinnamon and salt; mix well. Pour into pie shell. Bake at 425°F for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350°F and bake until set or a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 35-40 minutes longer. Let cool. Store in refrigerator.

Turkey Porcini Tetrazzini


  • 2 pkg dried porcini mushrooms or fresh if you are lucky enough to find them
  • 3 ½ cups large pieces roast turkey
  • 1 lb Pappardelle
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp finely chopped shallots
  • 1 tsp chopped thyme leaves
  • 1 pinch pepper
  • 3 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp cognac
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup Parmigiano cheese, grated
  • 1 cup bread crumbs


Preheat oven to 325°F. Soak mushrooms according to package directions, at least a ½ hour, reserving all the liquid. Chop the mushrooms, then toss with large pieces of roast turkey in a large bowl.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and sauté shallots until softened, about 5 minutes. Add thyme leaves and pepper and cook until the shallots become golden, about 2 more minutes.

Stir in all-purpose flour and cook until browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the cream, turkey, mushrooms, cognac and reserved porcini liquid. Deglaze the bottom of the pan and season with salt. Heat just to boiling, then pour everything over the cooked pasta and mix. Transfer to a baking dish, cover with lightly buttered aluminum foil and bake for 25 min.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix Parmigiano cheese with bread crumbs. Remove foil from casserole and sprinkle with cheese mixture. Continue to bake until golden, about 10 minutes.

Leftover Individual Turkey Pot Pies


  • Your own pie crust recipe or store-bought
  • 2 cups leftover turkey, shredded
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • ½ cup flour
  • 2 ½ cups chicken stock
  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • small handful parsley, roughly chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 egg


In a large heavy skillet or saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot and celery, and cook until soft and golden. Sprinkle in the flour and cook for an additional minute, then whisk in the stock vigorously to avoid any lumps. Whisk in the milk and bring to a simmer, then turn the heat to low and allow to thicken, stirring often, for 10 minutes or so. Stir in the turkey and parsley, then season to taste with salt and pepper.

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Arrange six 10-oz ramekins on a baking sheet. Roll out the pie crusts on a floured surface until large enough to make rounds to cover the ramekins with a little extra around the edges. Extra dough around the edges can be balled up and rolled out again, as necessary. It should be about 1/4” thick.

Spoon the filling into the ramekins and cover with the crust rounds. Tuck the edges back under and slash the top to vent it. Beat the egg in a small bowl with a tablespoon of water, then brush it onto the crust surfaces. Bake until the crust is golden and the filling is bubbling, about 25 to 30 minutes.

Potato & Scallion Mini Pancakes


  • 4 cups leftover mashed potatoes
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup scallions, chopped
  • coarse salt
  • 2 cups vegetable oil


Combine mashed potatoes, 1 beaten egg, flour and pinch of salt in medium bowl and mix until thoroughly combined; then add the scallions.

Take 1/3 cup of mashed potato mixture and cup in your hands and flatten to a pancake about ½” thick. Repeat and make mini pancakes.

Heat the oil in 12” non-stick skillet. Fry the pancakes in batches, making sure not to crowd the pan. Drain on paper towels. Season with salt and serve hot. Make a dipping sauce if you like.

After-Thanksgiving Panini


  • 2 slices of your favorite bread, ½” thick
  • Olive oil for brushing
  • 2 slices Asiago cheese
  • 1 tbsp cranberry sauce
  • 2 or 3 slices leftover turkey breast
  • Arugula


Preheat an electric Panini maker to 400°F. Brush one side of each bread slice with olive oil. Lay the bread, with the oil side down on a clean work board. Spread the top of one slice of bread with the arugula and cranberry sauce. On the other slice, place the Asiago cheese on the bread, followed by the turkey slices. Top with the other bread slice, oiled side up.

Place the sandwich on the preheated Panini maker and cook until the bread is golden, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer the sandwich to a cutting board and cut in half. Serve immediately.

Crostone con i Funghi


  • 6 half inch thick slices crusty Italian bread
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 5 cloves garlic: 1 cut in half, 4 finely minced
  • 6 oz Taleggio cheese, cut into four 1/8” thick slices
  • 1 lb assorted fresh wild mushrooms, cleaned and cut into 1/4″ slices
  • 1 ½ tsp coarse salt
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


Preheat a gas or stovetop grill to high heat or preheat broiler with an oven rack positioned about 6 inches below the heat source.

Generously brush both sides of bread with about 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Grill until toasted with a just a little color on both sides. Transfer to a baking sheet and rub both sides of toast with the cut garlic. Discard garlic. Top each toast with Taleggio and set aside.

Heat the remaining olive oil in a 12” skillet over high heat. When oil is hot enough, add mushrooms and salt. Don’t stir until steam starts rising from sides of pan. Sprinkle with minced garlic and sauté quickly, stirring frequently until the mushrooms begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the parsley, stir and taste for seasoning. Add more salt, if necessary. Set aside.

Just before serving, place toast under broiler until the cheese melts. Transfer to individual dinner plates, top with mushrooms and serve immediately

Stuffed Peppers


  • 2 large red peppers (make as many as you need)
  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • ½ onion, diced
  • 1/4 red pepper, diced
  • 1 cup leftover turkey, shredded
  • 2 cups marinara sauce
  • 2 cups uncooked baby spinach
  • 1 cup leftover risotto
  • ½ cup Provolone, shredded
  • salt and pepper


Gently cut the tops off the peppers and scoop out the core and ribs. Trim the inside of the top and wash out the peppers. Steam for 7 minutes, or until just tender. Oil a baking dish and preheat the oven to 350°F. In a skillet, heat the oil to medium low and add the onion and the diced red pepper. Sweat for 5 minutes, or until soft. Add the turkey, marinara, plus salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a gentle simmer to heat through, then add the spinach and stir until just wilted. Remove from heat and fold in the rice and half of the Provolone cheese. Add the mixture to the pepper bottoms and place in a baking dish. Top with the remaining cheese and pepper tops. Bake for 30 minutes and serve.