The Saratoga Sun -

Open-facing leftover turkey

Use all that turkey for this delicious post-Thanksgiving dish


December 4, 2019

Thanksgiving is over and what is the big thing on every one’s mind? What do I do with all the left over turkey? Well, ok, maybe it isn’t the biggest thing, but certainly there may be a concern about how many left overs are in the refrigerator.

A few years ago I happened upon a great recipe for open face turkey sandwiches that my family LOVED. The turkey leftovers disappeared within a day. The amount of napping increased, no kids fought and all had a happy holiday.

I am joking.

Turkey does contain a chemical that people have long blamed for being sleepy during the holidays. L-tryptophan is an amino acid the human body needs but cannot produce its self. The body uses tryptophan to make niacin which is important for digestion, skin, nerves and the production of serotonin; a brain chemical that helps create a feeling of well-being. Foods such as poultry, cheese, yogurt, fish and eggs contain this amino acid. Chicken, as it turns out, has more tryptophan than turkey. (See for more information.) So, your sleepiness during the holidays probably has more to do with the fact you stayed up late preparing a wonderful meal for your loved ones to enjoy than consuming turkey.

This recipe has two parts. The first is a seasoning mix. Save an old seasoning shaker to put the extra seasoning in. It goes great into other dishes, eggs or just save the mixture for next time you want to make a delicious gravy.

Gravy Seasoning Mix


2 1/2 tbsp Salt

2 tbsp Garlic Powder

1 tbsp Black Pepper

1 tbsp Onion Powder

1 tbsp Cayenne Powder

1 tbsp Dried Oregano

1 tbsp Dried Thyme

Combine all ingredients throughly.

Great Gobbler and Gravy.


1 qt Chicken Broth

4 tbsp Unsalted Butter

8 oz Portabella Mushrooms, thinly sliced

1 tsp Chopped Fresh Thyme

3/4 tsp Salt

1/4 tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper

3 tbsp All purpose Flour

1/4 cup Finely Chopped Yellow Onion

1 tbsp Gravy Seasoning Mix

10-12 oz Left Over Turkey


1. Heat a small sauce pan over med-high heat and melt the butter.

2. Add the mushrooms, thyme, salt and pepper. Sauté until the mushrooms are golden and have released their liquid. (About 3 minutes)

3. Add the flour. Stir and cook until flour begins to brown. (About 6 minutes)

4. Add onion and sauté until soft.

5. Whisk in chicken broth, 1 tbsp gravy seasoning mix and salt to taste.

6. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to med-low and simmer until thickened.

7. Add turkey

8. Laddle over a slice of your favorite bread and serve.

It is best to use a bread like an Italian or French bread as they do not immediately turn to mush under the gravy.

You can omit the salt in this recipe and use unsalted chicken broth. It will be just as good.

However you make it, I hope you enjoy this open face turkey sandwich and may it help you reclaim some space in your refrigerator.


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