So, Thanksgiving has come and gone but you’re going to be working off your food coma for the rest of the week. And, if your family is anything like mine, you are going to be subsisting solely on leftovers for the rest of October.
I like leftovers as much as the next guy but it can get pretty tiresome to be reheating the same combination of turkey, sweet potatoes, turnips and stuffing every day.
Fear not friends, I’m here with a solution. Allow me to introduce: the Turkey Dinner Sandwich. You might be thinking, “Yvonne, you’re not pulling the wool over my eyes. The name alone suggests that this is merely the contents of my Thanksgiving plate reconstituted between two pieces of bread.” To which I reply, “Oh, no, my dear, this is zero waste cooking at its finest.”
Yes, you will need to employ your remaining turkey (or Cornish Hen), and any leftover slices of bread that went unused in your stuffing. To that, add in some slices of brie, arugula and the best damn cranberry sauce you’ve ever had. Put it all together with a smear of mayo, dijon mustard, buttah yo’ bread and slide it into a griddle pan primed with that duck fat you have sitting around after making your Fingerling Potato Confit.
Prepare to be amazed. Honestly, this is one of the best sandwiches I’ve ever put in my mouth and I’ve put A LOT of sandwiches in there.
Upgrade your holiday leftovers into the best damn sandwich you've ever tasted. Make this cranberry compote to wow your friends and family at your next holiday feast and then make it work overtime in this panini.
- 2 slices egg bread or whatever you have on hand
- 2 tbsp butter softened
- 1 tbsp mayonnaise
- 1 tbsp dijon mustard
- 3 slices brie
- 1/4 cup arugula
- 1/4 cup cranberry compote
- 3/4 cup leftover turkey or Cornish hen
- 1 tbsp duck fat or olive oil
- ⅓ cup finely diced red onion
- 2 tbsp water
- 2 cups fresh cranberries, divided
- ¾ cup dry red wine
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 large apple or almost-ripe pear peeled and grated
- 2 tsp freshly grated ginger
- 1 cinnamon stick
For compote, combine onion and water in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil. Meanwhile cut ½ cup (125 mL) of cranberries in half; set aside. Stir remaining cranberries, red wine, sugar, apple and ginger into onions. Add cinnamon stick.
Bring to a low boil, stirring frequently. Adjusting heat as needed, briskly simmer mixture, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Stir in reserved cranberry halves; simmer another 5 minutes. Cool, cover and refrigerate until needed. (Compote will yield approx. 2 cups and can be made 2 to 3 days ahead.)
Butter one side of each slice of bread.
On reverse of buttered side of one slice, spread mayonnaise and dijon mustard. Top with brie (to cover full width of bread), cranberry compote, arugula and turkey. Place second slide of bread on top, buttered side up.
Heat stovetop grill pan with cast iron panini press (or preheat electric panini press) over medium heat.
Add duck fat or olive oil to hot grill pan and replace cast iron panini press. Place sandwich, buttered side down, on the greased grill pan and top with panini press. Grill for 1 minute or until bottom side of sandwich is nicely toasted and brie is melty. Remove panini press and carefully flip. Replace panini press and cook for an addition minute.
Remove sandwich from pan, slice in half and serve immediately - ideally alongside your favourite Pumpkin Beer, I like Great Lakes Brewing Saison DuPump.
Cranberry compote recipe from: Bentz-Crowley, Marilyn. "Stuffed Pork Tenderloins with Fresh Cranberry Compote." Food & Drink. Holiday 2009.