Thursday, December 6, 2012

Easy Tasty Turkey Potpie

Every year after roasting a turkey and making tons of giblet gravy, I look forward to the leftovers.  Not that I don’t enjoy the original meal, because I do, but one of my very favorite things is potpie.  And leftover roast of any fowl is likely to see itself again as potpie in our house, if there are indeed any leftovers.  It is also a well-established fact that leftover roast beef or lamb turns into shepherds’ pie here.  Also a fact, but less well-known, is that I don’t have a recipe for any of these.  Pie interiors depend upon what is leftover.  You got mashed or roasted potatoes?  Excellent.  Buttered carrots or peas?  But, of course.  Brussels sprouts or green beans, cooked with garlic and bacon.  You betcha.  I’ve even been known to throw in some maque choux.  About the only turkey dinner things I won’t throw in there are stuffing (soaks up all the gravy) and jellied cranberry sauce and candied yams for the obvious reason:  too sweet.  So, as you can imagine, it would be hard to follow a recipe.

This year though, at the request of a reader on Facebook, I tried to quantify the amounts and not use just leftovers that you might not have.  Feel free to substitute for the potato and carrot if you do have already cooked, leftover vegetables. Also, play free and loose with the amounts.  Potpie is the most forgiving of meals.  This one is for you, Denise from Succasunna, New Jersey!  You’ve been on my mind and I apologize for the delay.

Also, lovely people:  Consider this your heads up to make lots of gravy if you are planning a Christmas turkey.  So you can make potpie!

Yep, those are frozen peas, still frozen.
And congealed gravy.  It's all good. 
Ingredients for a three-four person potpie
8 oz or 230g leftover turkey, off the bone
1 cup or 240ml turkey gravy – still chilled is good.  No need to warm.
1 medium carrot
1 medium potato
1/2 cup frozen or leftover peas
1 fresh red chili – optional
1 sheet puff pastry or enough to cover an 8in x 8in or 23cm x 23cm pan
1-2 cups or 240-480ml turkey stock or salted water for cooking carrot and potato
Sea salt
Black pepper

Preheat your oven to 400°F or 200°C.

Peel and dice your carrot and peel and cut your potato into small cubes.

Cut the turkey into medium pieces and set aside.  Chop the red chili finely, if using, and set aside.

Cook the carrot and potato in leftover turkey broth or salted water until just tender.

Remove the carrot and potato to a mixing bowl with a slotted spoon so you can save the stock for soup, if using.  Otherwise, drain the pot of the salted water and put the carrot and potato into a mixing bowl.

Add in the turkey, chili and peas.  Stir well.

Add in the gravy and give it a good couple of grinds of fresh black pepper.  Stir well.  Taste the mixture and add a little salt, if needed.

Spread the mixture evenly in your pan.  Do not be concerned that it looks dry because remember that your gravy will turn liquid again when heated.

Top with the puff pastry, tucking the ends under, if necessary, to get side to side coverage.  Push the pastry gently up against the sides.

Poke holes in the pastry with the tip of a sharp knife to let the steam out.

Bake in your preheated oven for around 30 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and you can see the filling bubbling up a little bit around the edges.

Serve alone or with a mixed green salad.



  1. This looks so good! I'm sad that I don't have any leftover turkey or chicken to try this out immediatly.

  2. Karen (Back Road Journal)December 7, 2012 at 4:34 AM

    Your potpie is so beautiful that it makes me want to buy a turkey just to make your recipe. So happy that I stopped by because it sounds like we both like making the most of leftovers for a potpie.

  3. Thanks, Karen! You could just roast a chicken and do the same thing. I love using leftovers in the next day's dish, tossing roasted vegetables with pasta or perhaps making whatever into soup. Nothing goes to waste and it's all delicious. So happy you stopped by as well!

  4. Oh YUM!! This is just an incredibly delicious looking dish........and your potatoes and carrots are chopped soooooooooo darn uniformly!

  5. Thank you! You made me laugh, Kelli! They are fairly square, aren't they?! It's just that when the chunks are too big, you don't get a bite of everything in each forkful. I am all about making the bites come out even so you don't have anything leftover at the end of each serving. It's a thing back from childhood when we had to clean our plates. : )

  6. Mmmm there's nothing more comforting than a good pot pie! Looks amazing, and well worth roasting up a chicken or turkey just for this!

  7. I completely agree, Katherine! My grandmother always said you can't roast just one chicken. It needs a friend in the pan for more flavor so chicken usually gets this treatment too, unless we have a crowd for dinner.

  8. I haven't had enough turkey leftovers yet to make turkey pot pie but I love making chicken pot pie or Shepherd's pie with leftovers. In the past, I've used Pillsbury biscuits (the flaky ones) for the topping but always looking for something different so will try the puff pastry next time!

  9. I haven't had enough turkey leftovers yet to make turkey pot pie but I love making chicken pot pie or Shepherd's pie with leftovers. In the past, I've used Pillsbury biscuits (the flaky ones) for the topping but always looking for something different so will try the puff pastry next time!

  10. Hi, Sandy. I went through a crazy puff pastry phase where I used puff pastry for everything! Seriously. It's still one of my favorite things and sooo easy. Those biscuits do make a great topping but since I live overseas, sadly, they aren't an option for me. Give the puff pastry a try next time and let me know what you think.

  11. yes, have bought the Pillsbury biscuits in Waitrose (I shop at the Marina mall one) and Spinneys by the eggs section I think. expensive though so I don't buy them too often. I wish they would stock the Pillsbury pie crust but the JustRol ones aren't too bad - sometimes i go for weeks without finding pie crusts and once had to make my own to disastrous results.

  12. Good to know! I need to get out more! Living in the Ranches, it's all very convenient and I haven't explored like I should. Do you know if they have Crisco anywhere? That's what I need for my homemade flakey pie crusts.


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