How To Turn Third Day Leftovers Into Hand Pies

Fresh Ideas for Thanksgiving Leftovers

Our bellies are still groaning from all the indulgences of our last few days of feasting. Thanksgiving itself was packed with explosions of flavor and there's nothing better than a turkey sandwich on day two, but by day three—turkey and all the trimmings can be the last thing on your mind. Turn your tasty, yet redundant leftovers into hand pies!

We're pretty sure that we're able to eat turkey until our head falls off, but not wanting to actually test that theory, but the third day after the initial holiday feast, we're done with the whole massive feast idea. One of our favorite ways to keep the leftovers pulling double duty, even when we're a little lack luster about them is to make them into hand pies.

We like anything in pie form and these are no exception. With bits of each left over layered into the tender crust, each bite, whether eaten straight from the oven, or thawed after being frozen for a few months, provides a burst of flavor along with the memories of a day spent with friends and family.

Our hand pies usually last 6 months or so when wrapped tightly in plastic and then foil (or a seal-a-meal bag), although truth be told, they never really get a chance to last that long. They're perfect for a quick meal on nights we don't want to cook and are too tired to go out, plus they're easily packed for lunches and taken to work.

Leftover Handpies
yields 10-12 pies

• 1 Make a recipe of Pâte Brisée. Double up the recipe to make extras, it's amazing how far leftovers will stretch with this method. Just make sure to keep dough chilled until ready to use.

• 2 Make sure meats and vegetables are cut into bite size pieces and set out along side other remaining leftover dishes. Most things go great inside hand pies, everything except mashed potatoes that is. They make things a little dry and starchy. All other veggies, stuffings, meats, gravies and sides are welcome to the hand pie party.

• 3 Roll out Pâte Brisée into a 1/8" thick round. Cut (we used our cracker jar lid as a template) 6-7" circles. If your circles still feels a little thick, go over it a few more times with your rolling pin.

• 4 Add 2-3 Tablespoons of each ingredient to one half of dough circle, adding the filling in long stripes, so each bite of the finished product contains a small amount of each addition.

• 5 Fold remaining dough over fillings and crimp and roll dough up on itself as you work your way around the edge. Cut three small slits in the top of your dough to allow steam to vent while cooking.

• 6 Combine 1 egg and 3 tablespoons milk in a small bowl and brush onto the tops of each hand pie, making sure to coat the crimped edges as well.

• 7 Bake in a 375 degree oven for 15-25 minutes (sometimes the more moist ingredients will retarded the crisping and browning process), checking every 5 minutes after the 25 minute mark.

If you'll be freezing them, make sure you allow them to come to room temperature before wrapping and storing in your freezer. They're a perfect bite of Thanksgiving anytime you have a craving and are a perfect way to finish up the leftovers hanging around your refrigerator! Enjoy!

More Fresh Ideas for Thanksgiving Leftovers:
How To Pan-Fry Leftover Bread Stuffing
Quick and Easy Turkey Pot Pie
Sweet Potato & Cornbread Hash with Veggie Sausage Gravy

(Images: Sarah Rae Trover)