Thanksgiving dinner brings back memories of my big family getting together at our house or my Aunt Irene’s. We had the typical south Louisiana Thanksgiving fare, complete with a tableful of homemade desserts. I can remember tables, or seating of some kind, all over the house. Mama would get up before daylight “to get the turkey on.” She baked it on the back porch in an electric roaster. That old roaster lasted forever; I even used it for years after I got married. Since then, I’ve bought two of them. The new ones just don’t last as long.
Luckily the recipes do, and my daughters and I will serve some of those same dishes today that I had growing up.
And, as good as the turkey will be today, I can’t wait for tomorrow’s leftover turkey sandwiches.
There are sandwiches, and then there are sandwiches.
My favorite used to be a turkey sandwich with Durkee’s Famous Sauce, lettuce and tomatoes on toasted white bread. Now I’ve expanded my sandwich repertoire with artisan breads — there are so many great ones now at grocery stores — cranberry sauce, chutney or preserves and good cheeses. I’m offering a few suggestions below to rev up your day-after sandwiches.
Thankfully, my New Orleans friends introduced me to Turkey Poulette. That’s an open-face turkey sandwich, topped with cheese sauce. For years, it was a popular hot lunch item at several New Orleans restaurants.
There are many versions of that recipe because each restaurant added its own twist. Today, some home cooks use “doctored up” canned cream of mushroom or cream of chicken soup instead of making the veloute cheese sauce. In many recipes, chopped, hard-boiled eggs are often added on top or in the cheese sauce.
And, in case you want to do something more than sandwiches, I’m including a turkey casserole with brown and wild rice.
I hope your Thanksgiving Day brings back good memories of meals past, and so do the day-after sandwiches.