Every Thanksgiving evening, when the family is done with the turkey, I get the carcass and some aromatics boiling for a soup - don’t we all? But there was so much meat left on this huge bird that I had plenty for leftover meals (stuffing, turkey, gravy and mashed for breakfast!), soup, AND one more thing. So I did a little take on turkey tetrazzini. It’s absolutely delicious and doesn’t actually taste so much like a Thanksgiving leftover. Try it with chicken if you were smarter than me and had a smaller bird.
A note about a few of the ingredients: Fava beans, if you don’t know much about them - they’re my favorite bean - sweet and less mushy than most. They’re a bit of work, however, but worth it. You have to take them out of the pods, then blanch them lightly to pull the skins off.
Fideos are simply spaghetti noodles cut in 1 inch pieces, and they work perfect for any casserole where you want the sides and bottom to be a bit crunchy on the edges. You can break spaghetti if you can’t find fideos in a box.
For the Turkey Tetrazzini
8 ounces fideos (cut spaghetti noodles)
4 tablespoons butter
8 ounces Cremini mushrooms quartered and stemmed
1 cup peeled fava beans
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves or ½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves
⅓ cup dry sherry or dry white wine
⅓ cup flour
2 cups chicken stock
2 cups milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon grated nutmeg
2 cups cooked turkey cubed
For the Topping
1 cup panko bread crumbs
¼ cup Parmesan Cheese
4 tablespoons butter melted
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Cook the noodles in heavily salted boiling water for 1 minute less than package directions state. Drain noodles and set aside.
Melt 4 tablespoons of butter in the 13x9 pan and mix in the boodles. Salt and pepper them and spread them across the bottom of the pan.
Put the mushrooms on a cookie sheet into the oven for about 15 minutes - 20 minutes until the liquid leaches from them.
Wipe any moisture from the pan and brush the mushrooms with a little olive oil and salt them. Cook for another 15 minutes. (This is the best way to get the most caramelization and flavor from mushrooms, sliced or quartered).
Turn the oven down to 350.
In a saucepan, put half the butter, add in garlic, cooking on medium for about a minute.
Add in the sherry wine (or equal amounts for dry white wine) and cook until the liquid evaporates.
Slowly add in chicken stock, milk, nutmeg, salt, and pepper, and bring the sauce to a simmer, and simmer for 5 minutes.
Whisk in Cheddar cheese and turn off the heat.
Add the mushrooms, turkey and fava beans to the cream sauce and stir to combine. If the mixture seems too thin, add a little more cheese.
Pour mixture gently over the noodles into the casserole dish.
Prepare bread crumb topping by mixing together the bread crumbs, Parmesan and butter together. Cover the casserole with the topping.
Bake the turkey tetrazzini until bubbly and golden, for 20-25 minutes, watching that the breadcrumbs don’t burn. It’s hard to see in the picture below, but the fideos get nice and crunchy on the edges like the rice dies in a good paella.
Hopefully you have some wine leftover that your Thanksgiving guest brought over in thanks for all your hard work :)
But if not, pick up the Lloyd Carneros Chardonnay as a nice complement to a leftover dish that doesn’t feel so much like leftovers.