Left overs

After the Holidays people generally have a ton of left overs. I'm mostly talking about ham and turkey... at least in my family.

We always have turkey for Christmas dinner (sometimes ham, too), and we always have ham, black eyed peas, and greens on the first. It's tradition.

Well... this holiday, I decided to get creative with the left overs. I thought I'd share the deliciousness that came out of my experimentation..

Ham and Chicken Gumbo
Tonight I made Ham and Chicken gumbo. Scott told me he had never had gumbo, so I wanted to show him how delicious it was. I used the leftover ham from the New Year's dinner and my mom and her husband added the black eyed peas to theirs. It was really a hit.
The recipe requires:
-6 slices of bacon.
-2/3 cup chopped onion.
-2 minced garlic cloves (or 1 teaspoon of already minced garlic)
-1 cup of cubed, fully cooked ham.
-1 cup of cubed, fully cooked chicken.
-2 tomatoes, sliced.
-1/2 tomato
-2 cups (1 can) chicken broth.
-1 teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce.
-1/4 teaspoon of salt.
-Hot pepper sauce (Tabasco) to taste/smell.
-Pepper to taste.
-Hot cooked rice.
-2 Tablespoons of butter.
You chop the bacon into 1/2 inch pieces and stick them in a large skillet, just until crisp. You then add the onions and cook until bacon is crisp and the onion is soft, stirring constantly. (This is all over medium heat).
Then you add the garlic, ham and chicken and cook for a few minutes, still stirring constantly.
Next you add the diced tomatoes and the chicken broth. You take the half tomato and squeeze it in your hand above the skillet, letting all the juices and juicy insides fall into the pan. Toss the remainder of the tomato in the garbage. Stir it all together, then add the Worcestershire sauce, salt, hot pepper sauce, and pepper. Bring it all to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes.
Towards the end you can add a little flour (or Wondra) to the soup to make it a little thicker. This is optional and depends on you, though.
Once you start the simmer you should put on the rice. When the rice is finished, add the 2 tablespoons of butter and stir it all together. This will give your rice a creamy texture and will add to the delight of the meal.

MMMMMM... It was a hit.

Almond-Turkey Casserole
We had a lot of leftover turkey from Christmas dinner. Of course we were eating turkey sandwiches galore, but it was still taking a while to get rid of it. I decided to make a little casserole out of it. It was amazing.
This is what you need to make it:
-2 cans of cream of mushroom soup, undiluted.
-1/2 cup mayonnaise
-1/2 cup sour cream
-2 tablespoons chopped onion
-2 tablespoons lemon juice
-1 teaspoon salt
-1/2 teaspoon white pepper
-5 cups cubed cooked turkey
-3 cups cooked rice
-2 celery ribs (chopped up)
-1 can (8 ounces) sliced water chestnuts, drained
-1 cup sliced almonds
-38 crushed butter flavored crackers
-1/3 cup butter, melted
-1/4 cup sliced almonds
What you do:
Get a large bowl and combine the soup, mayo, sour cream, onion, lemon juice, salt and pepper. After you have all that combined (stick your finger in it and taste how delicious it is already ;-)), stir in the turkey, rice, celery, water chestnuts and almonds.
Transfer it to a greased casserole dish (or a cake pan). Combine topping ingredients and sprinkle over the turkey mixture. Bake it, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown.

Now I didn't think it would be THAT good... but it was amazing. I mean AMAZING. Perfect amount of crunch and zing mixed in with all the great flavors. MMMM..

I LOVE cooking and baking. It is a HUGE passion of mine.

Scott loves that I love to cook, too. ;-)

Well.. speaking of cooking... a request for some peanut butter rice krispie treats has been made, and I'm just the girl to fill it.

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