The Christmas aftermath: what to do with the leftovers.

If this is supposed to be the year that you make everyone love brussel sprouts, then good luck, we hope it works. But, if it doesn’t and you’re left with a little green mountain taking up space in your fridge, don’t worry. Keep the turkey carcass, the leftover ham, cold tatties and the cheese board odds and sods that guests were too polite to take, because with a few additional store cupboard ingredients, you can turn those lonely ingredients into something that will rival the Christmas lunch they came from.

SOMETHING NEW –  for those already tired of classic Christmas tastes

Turkey Curry


SOMETHING MORE FAMILIAR – for those not ready to say goodbye to festive foods just yet

Christmas Dinner Hash

Mince Pie-Cream Sundae

The Classic Sandwich

Hard-To-Beat Stock


Turkey curry


2 tbsp vegetable oil
knob of unsalted butter
2 tsp garlic powder
1 diced onion
1 tsp ginger
650g (1.5lb) cooked turkey, shredded
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp ground coriander
200ml (7floz) coconut milk
100ml (3floz) plain yoghurt
250ml (9floz) turkey or chicken stock
sea salt
ground black pepper
handful of chopped coriander
any cooked vegetables you fancy using up

  1. Put the onion and all spices except cumin and coriander in a large pan with the oil and sweat for 5 minutes. Add the turkey meat, cumin and ground coriander and mix well.
  2. Pour in the coconut milk with half of the stock and gently bring to the boil for 5 minutes. Add the remaining stock and simmer for 15 minutes.
  3. Add in the yoghurt and simmer for a few more minutes before adding any cooked vegetables and dried fruit (particularly sultanas) that you may have left over. Chopped carrots and parsnips go well, as do green beans. Warm them through for a further 5 minutes, and serve over rice.



500g leftover meat, cut or pulled into large chunks
1 clove garlic, peeled
Butter for greasing
40g butter
2 heaped tbsp plain flour
300ml chicken stock, warm (see below for our hard-to-beat stock recipe)
170ml dry white wine
150ml double cream
200g hard, strong cheese (that’s the cheeseboard gone!)
1tbsp Dijon mustard
1tbsp wholegrain mustard
Handful fresh herbs (parsley, tarragon, chives, chervil)
50g breadcrumbs

  1. Heat the oven to 200°C.
  2. Grease a large baking dish with butter, then cut the peeled garlic clove and rub the cut side all over the buttered dish. Lay the leftover meat in an even layer in the dish.
  3. Now make the sauce. Heat the butter in a heavy-based sauce pan over a low heat, and as it starts to bubble a little, add the flour and stir well. Continue cooking for a minute or two until it has changed colour a little and smells biscuity. Add the flour a little at a time, using a whisk to gradually incorporate it. Add the white wine, cream and a big twist of pepper, and simmer for 5 minutes. Then add the cheese, mustard and herbs, and simmer for another 5. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
  4. Pour the sauce over the meat in the baking dish, top with the breadcrumbs and grated cheese and bake for 30 minutes, until bubbling and golden


Leftovers Hash

Christmas dinner hash


Any leftover meat (duck, turkey, ham)
Roast potatoes

1. Fry the leftover cabbage in butter until it starts to get crispy, adding the leftover potatoes and seasoning with salt and pepper. When everything is hot and golden, squash it down with a potato masher. Cook for five minutes.

2. Repeat the last step, breaking everything up and squashing down once more. Maybe add a little bit of butter and cook until its golden brown, before breaking it up again and adding the leftover meat with a good dash of Henderson’s relish and a bit of gravy.

3.Mash it down again and cook for a further five minutes and then slide onto a plate. Top with a fried egg.


Mince pie-cream Sundae


Ginger pig mince pies
Vanilla ice cream
500ml double cream (whipped)
Zest of one orange
Any leftover nuts, preferably almonds or pistachios (chopped)
Rum or brandy to taste

1. Crush the mince pies and divide (roughly) into six or eight portions. Layer the first on the very bottom of a tumbler glass, and add a small splash of brandy or rum (taste it and make sure it’s not too strong)

2. Mix the orange peel in with the whipped cream to make an orange cream. Layer on top of the mince pies and smooth out. Add one small scoop of ice cream and press down inot the tumbler.

3. Repeat step one and two until nearing the top of the glass, then use up the last of your ingredients in one final layer tis time making sure that the top layer consists of whipped orange cream. Sprinkle the chopped nuts on top to serve, and perhaps add one last splash of brandy or rum.


The classic sandwich


Any leftover turkey or meat (shredded or left in big chunks)
Any leftover potatoes, slightly warmed
Warmed gravy
Sauce: Cranberry sauce/piccalilli/chilli jam
Warmed ciabatta roll

1. Warm the roast potatoes in the oven so they firm up. Meanwhile warm any leftover gravy on a gentle heat, stirring occasionally.

2. Cut the ciabatta roll in half, but not all the way through, then assemble the meat, stuffing, potatoes inside with lashings of gravy and whatever sauce you choose.

 Hard-to-beat stock


Turkey/chicken/goose/duck carcass
2 onions, peeled and cut into large chunks
1 leek, well washed and cut into large chunks
2 carrots, peeled and cut into large chuncks
2 celery sticks, cut into large chunks
Any veggies peelings that you’ve saved
10 peppercorns
2 bay leaves
2 sprigs of thyme

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas mark 6. Place all the ingredients in a large roasting tin and roast for 15-20 minutes until just changing colour.
  2. Transfer ingredients into a large stock pot. Cover with 3-4 litres (5 ¼ – 7 pints) water and bring to the boil. Remove any scum that comes to the top, partially cover with a lid, then gently simmer for 2 hours.
  3. Strain the stock into a clean pan. If you want really rich, thick stock, simmer this liquid further. However, for a lighter stock, leave to cool, then remove the fat from the top and discard. The stock is now ready for use, or freeze it in small tubs and use it for gravy, casseroles and soups.