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Thanksgiving leftovers: Turkey tacos
Matthew Mead
Thanksgiving leftovers: Turkey tacos

Y es, there’s always the classic turkey sandwich on white bread, with or without some crispy bacon and tomato, to help solve the bird problem after Thanksgiving. Why not, though, get a little creative and transfer that sandwich into a soft taco?

You can still use that bacon and tomato (as in salsa) but you also get to play with more vibrant flavorings like chili and fresh cilantro. Using a corn tortilla instead of a flour one also contributes its own taste and texture to the whole.

This recipe makes use of what would be leftover on my Thanksgiving table: celery and shelled walnuts or pecans. Use what you have: Cooked mushrooms, creamed onions, green beans, slivered almonds.


Consider turning those tortillas into hot enchiladas. Fill each with slivered turkey, refried beans, shredded cheese, diced poblano peppers. Lay the enchiladas in a lightly greased casserole, cover with tomato sauce, top with more grated cheese and bake at 350 degrees until warmed through, about 25 minutes.

To drink, beer is always a good option. “I would go with an earthier, spicier hefeweizen — a lighter-bodied style to match the simplicity of the turkey, but one with a more spice and alcohol to duel with the salsa-and-jalapeno zip,” says Josh Noel, my colleague and a beer writer. “Or else a bock, which has a nice balanced roundness, and should also stand up to those tacos nicely.” Iced tea or Mexican fruit sodas also work.


Prep: 15 minutes Cook: 12 minutes Makes: 4-6 servings

12 (6-inch) corn tortillas

2 cups shredded turkey

3/4 cup jarred chunky tomato salsa, plus more for garnishing

4 ribs celery, thinly sliced

1 small can (4 1/2 ounces) chopped green chilies or 2 jalapeno peppers, thinly sliced

1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

3 strips cooked, crisp bacon, crumbled

1/2 cup shredded cheese

1/2 bunch cilantro, coarsely chopped

1. Combine shredded turkey and 3/4 cup salsa in a microwaveable container; heat on high until heated through, 1-2 minutes. Keep warm.

2. Lightly toast tortillas on both sides in a dry skillet over medium heat, about 30 seconds each. Place the tortillas on plates. Divide turkey among tortillas, mounding down the center of each. Top with the celery, chilies, nuts, bacon and cheese.

3. Spoon as much extra salsa as you like over the filling; top with cilantro. Fold tortillas over into a taco form. Serve.

Nutrition information per serving: 353 calories, 13 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 76 mg cholesterol, 29 g carbohydrates, 32 g protein, 450 mg sodium, 5 g fiber

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