Side Dish ‘n’ Saturdays: Eat – Freeze – Toss – Your Thanksgiving Leftovers

Sorry to say, folks, but those great Thanksgiving leftovers should get eaten, frozen, or tossed after today to avoid anyone getting sick.

Cooked turkey freezes very well. I shred ours and store it in cup-sized containers to throw into soups and casseroles, like Turkey Noodle Soup or Turkey Pot Pie.

Most mashed potatoes and stuffing also freeze well. Scoop them into portions before freezing so that you only have to thaw one portion at a time.

Toss your veggie casseroles, they do not freeze well or you can eat for dinner.

As for desserts we don’t usually have any left. If you somehow haven’t managed to eat all your pie by today, you have a good excuse for serving it for dinner tonight!

Mashed Potato Soup

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Serves 4

A drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
6 slices bacon, chopped
4 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, chopped
4 tablespoons flour
1 quart chicken stock
2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
2 cups shredded leftover turkey (optional)
8 ounces yellow cheddar cheese, shredded
Chopped chives, for garnish

In a medium pot or Dutch oven, heat a drizzle of Extra virgin olive oil over medium-high heat. Add bacon and cook until crispy. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate and reserve.

Drain off excess bacon fat from the pot and add butter. When it is melted, add the onion and cook until softened, about five minutes. Sprinkle flour into the pot and cook with a wooden spoon for one minute. Whisk in the chicken stock and bring to a bubble. Cook until slightly thickened, about 2-3 minutes.

Whisk in mashed potatoes, then stir in the cheddar cheese with a wooden spoon and cook until the potatoes are hot and the cheese is melted.

Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with the reserved bacon and chopped chives.

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