Listen, we’re not going to sit here and pretend our favorite Thanksgiving leftovers meal isn’t the overstuffed sandwich we make Friday morning while surfing the web. We’re also willing to acknowledge that everyone’s version looks different depending on the holiday they’ve had and their nostalgic preferences.
One thing we do know a little bit about is finding delicious solutions to leftovers that don’t quite fit into a sandwich, and whose integrity can’t stand up to the microwave’s harsh magnetrons.
Since this year and this holiday looked entirely different for many of us, we shifted our leftover focus to repurposing those Thanksgiving side dishes that may get forgotten once the table is cleared. If you're up for it, try making this leftovers dinner that 1. doesn't resemble the original feast itself and 2. will exercise your quarantine home-cooking muscles.
Recipe and photography by Kourtney Paranteau
Sweet Potato Tortellini en Brodo with Infused Rosemary Salt
The yam or sweet potato are eye-catching root vegetables that are non-negotiable on most Thanksgiving spreads, but degrade on a reheat. This rendition on Italian tortellini en brodo (tortellini in broth), swaps out spinach and sausage for your leftover orange-hued roots.
Makes 4-6 servings
- 4 cups broth, warmed
- Egg pasta dough rolled out into sheets (We really love the recipes from Pasta Grannies, Flour + Water Pasta, and Mastering Pasta)
- 2 cups cooked, mashed sweet potatoes or yams
- ½ cup ricotta cheese
- ½ cup asiago cheese
- 1 Tablespoon Jacobsen Salt Co. Pure Kosher Sea Salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 5 leaves of fresh sage, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, picked
- 1 teaspoon saffron threads
- 1 teaspoon Infused Rosemary Salt
For the broth:
We always recommend making your own stock or broth whenever you roast a turkey, chicken, pot roast etc. Make a habit of saving any celery, carrot and onion scraps to throw in a pot along with your carcass, add enough water to just cover the bones and boil with a pinch of salt, pepper and bay leaves, then reduce to a simmer for a minimum of six hours.
However, if you don’t have the time, scraps, or patience to slow cook your own stock, 4 cups of store-bought broth will work, too.
For the filling:
First, run your yams or sweet potatoes through a ricer to ensure their texture will be silky and to remove any lingering stringy bits (if you already did this pre-Thanksgiving, there’s no need to repeat yourself). Add your cheeses and seasonings and mix with a wooden spoon until all of the ingredients are equally distributed.
Make your favorite pasta dough and roll it out into four long fresh sheets. Set yourself up for success by gathering everything you’ll need for a seamless workstation. Get out a shallow bowl of water, a towel, and cut a piece of thick paper into a 2-inch strip. Now, working with each sheet of pasta, measure 2"x2" squares and slice with a pasta/pizza cutter or paring knife.
Fill each tortellini with a teaspoon-sized ball of the yam mixture, and with a dampened finger, wet the perimeter of your pasta square. Next, draw two diagonal corners together and seal. With the remaining sides, press them together so the pasta forms into a little triangular pouch. Set aside on a baking tray sprinkled with semolina flour. Repeat until pasta and/or filling run out.
Boil a pot of well-seasoned water and let it come to a rolling boil. While your pasta water is heating up, heat your broth on medium or until warmed to your ideal soup temperature. Gently place tortellini into the boiling water and when they begin to float up (about two minutes), they’re cooked through. With a slotted spoon, transfer 5-6 tortellini into bowls with broth waiting for them, then finish each bowl with thyme, saffron threads, and Infused Rosemary Salt.
Triple Green Casserole with Jacobsen Co. Taco Seasoning
Our post-Thanksgiving cupboard always leaves us with a half-used box of crispy fried onions and a crisper bin of vegetable stragglers. This recipe takes advantage of what we assume you'll have left behind in your kitchen after the holiday, and reimagines the classic green bean casserole as a trio –not just a solo act– with the addition of brussels sprouts and spinach. If you happen to have more of one of these, feel free to substitute, switch or bolster any of the quantities.
Makes 4-6 servings
- 3 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 red onion, sliced into long, thin crescents
- ½ cups fresh green beans, cut in half with tough ends removed
- ½ cups fresh brussels sprouts, cut in half
- 1 cup fresh spinach
- 3 Tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 Tablespoon Jacobsen Co. Taco Seasoning
- ½ cup whole milk, or any other leftover dairy milk
- 1 cup Parmesan, asiago or any other hard, cow’s milk cheese, grated
- ½ homemade or store bought broth
- 1 teaspoon Jacobsen Salt Co. Pure Kosher Sea Salt
- ½ teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 1 cup crispy fried onions
Preheat the oven to 350 and grease an 8x8 casserole dish. In a large saucepan or cast iron, melt butter on medium-high heat, add onions until soft and melted (about five minutes), then, thinking about your most hearty veggie to your most delicate, add your brussels sprouts to the pan. Cook for five more minutes before adding your green beans.
While the green beans soften, stir in the garlic, Taco Seasoning, Kosher Sea Salt, and cracked black pepper. Once your green beans have begun to slouch, reduce heat to medium low and pour in both liquids and spinach, stirring vigorously as your spinach will cook quickly. Remove from heat and add half of your cheese and ¾ cup of the crispy fried onions. Transfer mixture to a prepared casserole dish and top with remaining cheese and crispy fried onions. Cover with tin foil and cook for twenty minutes, before removing foil and finishing for 15 minutes, or until the top turns golden brown.
Cosmic Dancer Cocktail
Whip up this autumnal and visually stunning rendition of a Cosmopolitan that finds a sophisticated home for some of your leftover cranberry compote.
1 serving, double as needed
- 2 ounces vodka
- ¾ ounce fresh lemon juice
- ¾ ounce Jacobsen Co. Honey Syrup
- 1 heaping bar spoon of cranberry sauce/jam
- 1 sprig of Rosemary
Over ice in a cocktail shaker, measure your liquids and cranberry. Shake for 20 seconds or until your arm is slightly tired and your shaking hand(s) feel the chill of the ice. With a bar strainer, decant over a coup and garnish with a rosemary sprig.