Turkey and Potato Puff (or Cottage Pie)

Use up some of that leftover turkey from your feast to make cottage pie – a moist, flavourful meal-in-a-pan; tender bits of turkey or chicken swimming together with juicy mushrooms in a tasty gravy, all snuggled under a mashed potato blanket. These leftovers are all dressed up for dinner. (Skip to recipe)
leftover turkey and potato puff or cottage pie

Easter was lovely – we went up north to Valhalla to spend it with Raymond’s parents. It snowed all the way up there – with some of the worst roads of the winter . . .  was cool and cloudy most of the weekend, but when we came back home, spring had arrived, kind of. The roads were like summer roads and most of our snow has disappeared.

Except the stuff in our yard, naturally. It’s always the last to go. We’re on the north side of a poplar bush, and that’s what we get for it.

spring is almost herespring is almost here

But we did see the swans up in the Valhalla area – flocks of them feeding in the fields, and pairs of them flying overhead. They are back from the south to nest – so it must be spring, whether the weatherman says it is or not! The swans are a glorious sight to behold, and unfortunately I never had camera in hand when I saw them.

We came back home with lovely leftover Easter feast care packages from Raymond’s mom; turkey and mashed potatoes – a big bag of each.

For dinner tonight I made a kind of shepherd’s pie, or rather cottage pie (since shepherd’s pie is traditionally made with lamb). Whatever you call it, it was a very tasty way to enjoy that turkey again.

* * * * *

Kitchen Frau Notes: If you don’t have ground allspice, nutmeg would be a delicious substitute.

And obviously, chicken would work equally well here.

leftover turkey and potato puff - or cottage pie

Leftover Turkey and Potato Puff (Cottage Pie)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 lb. (454gms) mushrooms (6 cups quartered)
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sweet rice flour (or all purpose flour)
  • ½ teaspoon white pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 cups (480ml) chicken stock
  • ½ cup white wine (or more chicken stock)
  • 4 cups (500gms) diced cooked turkey or chicken

Puff Topping:

  • 4 cups (1 litre) packed, cold mashed potatoes
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon  salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Heat the olive oil in a heavy bottomed saucepan or skillet. Quarter the mushrooms and add them to the oil along with the onion and salt. Cook until the mushrooms have released their juices (the salt will speed that up) and the juices have cooked dry and the mushrooms start to turn golden.

Sprinkle with the sweet rice flour and stir until you can’t see any more white. Add the pepper, thyme and allspice.

Stir in the chicken stock, about a quarter cup at a time, letting it come to a boil after each addition and stirring constantly. Add the wine (or more chicken stock).

Cook until thick. Gently stir in the diced turkey.

leftover turkey and potato puff - or cottage pie

Pour the turkey and gravy into a 2½ quart casserole dish or baking pan.

Make the potato puff topping: Pass the potatoes through a potato ricer to fluff them up, or fluff them with a fork. Add the eggs, onion powder, salt and allspice, and mix to combine.

Spoon the potatoes into a heavy-duty plastic zip-top bag. Cut off one corner to make a half inch (1 cm) hole.

leftover turkey and potato puff - or cottage pie

Pipe the potato mixture back and forth across the turkey stew, in lines touching each other to totally cover the whole surface of the dish.

piping the potatoes onto the turkey and potato puff (cottage pie)

Or just use your fingers to plop raggedy bits of mashed potato all over the top of the turkey and gravy until it is mostly covered, then scrape a fork over the top to smooth it out and make textured lines. Lightly sprinkle with more allspice if you wish.

piped potatoes for the turkey and potato puff

Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until the edges are bubbling and bits of the potatoes are golden.

Serves 6. We had it with sauteed Swiss chard – yummy.

Guten Appetit!


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Turkey Fricassée over mashed Potatoes with Spring Vegetables

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spring is coming

the first squill shoots



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10 Responses to Turkey and Potato Puff (or Cottage Pie)


    You make me wish I had leftovers……………But one of the Safeway chickens would work for lazy old me. lol thanks for another great recipie

    • Margaret says:

      You’re on to something! Those chickens are really handy when a person’s too busy to cook, but doesn’t want to resort to packaged food – they’re like a healthier kind of fast food. They’d work great in this recipe! Thanks.

  2. Vivian says:

    Hmmm…just had an idea regarding the piping of potatoes (or icing for that matter) out of a ziploc bag. Anyone with pinking shears (remember those from when we used to sew our own clothes?) could probably cut the plastic corner and make decorative “star” extrusions…like with Wilton star tips.

    • Margaret says:

      That would be worth a try. (Though if the potatoes mixture is stiff, the pinked plastic bag edges might not keep their shape). My mom had a pair of those scissors and I always loved playing with them!

      • Vivian says:

        Just read Richard Blais’s cookcook where he runs his riced potatoes (mixed with COLD butter) through a tami or really fine seive…producing an extra smooth mash. I think I will try it with the pinked bag. Will let you know.

  3. Barb Bamber says:

    That sounds like the perfect Easter dinner, having leftovers is so awesome and what a great recipe for enjoying the dinner all over again in another dish:) Looks like you’ve had the same weather as us. It finally rained instead of snowing yesterday, so we hope that’s the last of the snow!xx

    • Margaret says:

      Yes, we still have a few streaks of snow along the treeline and in shady spots in our yard – we are all SO done with the long winter this year! But I am hopeful – there is a flush of green along the ditches. Yay!

  4. ingrd says:

    That recipe looks absolutely scrumptious, even my Irish husband would love it, meat and potatoes!! PS, what is a squill?

    • Margaret says:

      There’s something about meat and potatoes and men that seems to go together, isn’t there?! Thanks. Squills are these little bulbs that produce lovely tiny white star-shaped bells with a fine blue line in them, or bells that are all blue, and they have been thriving for me. They’re the first bulbs to come up in my yard every spring and are a really welcome sight this year! (Their latin name is Scilla siberica, or Siberian Squills and they’re a member of the hyacinth family, but very cold-hardy.)

  5. Vivian says:

    I’ve always known them as Scilla, and yes, they are up here as well…I am waiting for the sky blue ones under the plum tree. Such hardy little souls.

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