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.
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.
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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
- 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
- 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.
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.
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.
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. Lightly sprinkle with more allspice if you wish.
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.
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