As Anthony Bourdain once famously said about being wasteful, “Friday’s fresh fish specials, become Sunday’s fragrant fish Chowder”. The idea of waste not, want not is a motto among all great chefs, as it was in 1984, when Mrs. P. began to develop the recipes for the Inn’s restaurant. Wanting to create the feeling of coming home for the holidays whenever her guests would visit the Inn, she felt Roast Turkey should be on the menu. Cooking turkeys gave the Inn that holiday aroma and sent guests from her dining room to their guest rooms satisfied and ready to relax. As there are always leftovers from a holiday meal, Mrs. P. took on the task of converting what was not consumed from the carving board, to what could be consumed with enjoyment the next day. Hence, Stroudsmoor Turkey Turnovers were created. These puff pastry pockets are filled with a special white meat turkey stuffing, and finished with Stroudsmoor’s Classic Turkey Gravy (which is simmered for hours by the gallons every Monday morning at the Inn).
If you have had a TT at the Inn, and would like to give it a go at home, here is the recipe from our house to yours . . .
- 1 lb. margarine
- 1 lb. flour
- 2 qt. diced onion (white)
- 2 qt. diced celery
- 1 pt. half and half OR heavy cream
- 2 tbsp. Kosher salt
- 1 ½ tsp. black pepper
- 2-3 cups of diced cooked turkey (or chicken breast if cooking the turkey is not your forte)
- In a heavy aluminum Dutch Oven (or cast iron covered pot) melt margarine, and sweat (to lightly cook) onions and celery – onions will be translucent when done.
- Gently incorporate the flour, adding salt and pepper as you fold in the onion and celery mixture.
- Continue mixing these ingredients with a wooden spoon for about 5-10 minutes (constantly stirring).
- Add cream, cook an additional 3-5 minutes.
- Let cool.
- Add diced turkey (or chicken), stir into the mixture, and form into balls (about the size of a tennis ball).
- Prepare sheets of puff pastry in advance of creating the mixture (this Stroudsmoor Recipe is for another day) or purchase premade puffy pastry squares at your favorite grocer like Wegman’s or Giant.
- If pastry is not already Cut into 6” squares, do so – one for top and another on bottom.
- Place your turkey mixture in the center of the bottom square.
- Stretch the top layer over the turkey stuffing and crimp the edges together with your thumb, index and middle fingers, ensuring that the edges are sealed tightly – quick tip: touch the edges with a tiny amount of water to help them seal closed.
- Egg wash the pastry top (optional) and cook at 375 degrees for 20-minutes or until golden brown. Serve topped with SCI Turkey Gravy and our favorite cranberry relish. The perfect tribute to holiday leftovers! The recipe makes 12 turnovers, so don’t be afraid to freeze a few in an air-tight container for that warm holiday feeling on another day.