Hye Thyme Cafe: Thanksgiving Ravioli : Repurposing your holiday leftovers

Welcome to the Hy
e Thyme Cafe. Although not all of my recipes are Armenian, the name is a little nod to my Armenian grandmother who is no longer with us. The Hye refers to all things related to her homeland, and she represents all things food-related to me, so the two just seemed to go together. I can't even claim that my Armenian recipes are truly Armenian, since Greece, Turkey, Armenia, Lebanon, Syria, and even Egypt share so many foods that they've all sort of morphed into one over thousands of years.

Whether you like to cook, bake, have never done either, or just like to play with your food...come on in and join me! :)

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Thanksgiving Ravioli : Repurposing your holiday leftovers

Thanksgiving Ravioli : Hye Thyme Cafe

I am a HUGE fan of a good Thanksgiving Sandwich. My whole crew is, to the point where we actually cook an extra turkey on Thanksgiving, just to make sure we have enough leftovers for everyone to have one or two. You know, those monster sandwiches where you stuff turkey, dressing, cranberry sauce, and whatever else you may have salvaged from Turkey Day between two slices of your favorite bread. If you haven't tried it, you don't know what you're missing!

Anyhow, I got the idea to try this ravioli as sort of a riff on Chicken and Dumplings. After eating a full-on Thanksgiving feast, followed by a few days of Thanksgiving sandwiches, I was turkeyed out! I couldn't stand to even look at it anymore, so I wrapped the rest and threw it in the freezer. Given the choice between the Ravioli and a Thanksgiving Sandwich, I'd go with the sandwich most times, but this is a fun way of changing things up.

If I was making these right after the holiday, I would have had gravy, dressing, and homemade cranberry sauce to work with, but since those are long gone, I threw together a small amount of dressing and a pot of gravy and popped open a tiny can of cranberry sauce.

When I make ravioli, I like to use Tyler Florence's recipe but, of course, if you have a recipe you like, go with what you're comfortable with. I used to use a rolling pin for the dough, but I now have a pasta maker, so I can run my dough through that now. Click here for Tyler's recipe. He suggests cutting it in half and working with them one at a time, but I find that to be too much - by the time I roll it out thin enough, it's so long, I have to cut it in half, and by the time I get to the end, it has already started to dry and crack when I'm trying to seal the ravioli, so I do it in thirds.

Thanksgiving Ravioli : Hye Thyme Cafe

Because I didn't have any dressing left, I just picked up a box of Stove Top and made a small amount per the box directions, adding some minced celery, onion, and a bit of Bell's poultry seasoning. With the turkey, I diced it into smallish chunks, then sort of rubbed it between my fingertips to shred it and mixed in a few tablespoons of gravy for moisture. Thinking about what else you might typically have as Thanksgiving leftovers, I also made squash ravioli, seasoning some butternut squash with just a bit of rubbed sage. So, for the Turkey Ravioli, I lined my pasta with small piles of turkey every two inches, topped that with a bit of cranberry sauce, and topped it off with a little dressing. I kept the squash separate.

Thanksgiving Ravioli : Hye Thyme Cafe
Thanksgiving Ravioli : Hye Thyme Cafe
Thanksgiving Ravioli : Hye Thyme Cafe

If it had been Thanksgiving, I would have had those nice pan drippings to work with, but I did still have a can of turkey broth. If you're making your gravy from scratch, chicken broth is fine. I whisked together 3T each of butter and flour, cooking them over medium heat to create a roux, letting it achieve a sort of cappuccino color. Then I sprinkled in a bit of Bell's poultry seasoning and slowly whisked in 2c of the turkey broth. I let that come up to a boil to thicken, and whisked in a bit of Gravy Master, salt, and pepper.

I was debating what to use as a garnish for these and was first thinking to toast bits of dressing, but then it occurred to me that pecans are often a part of Thanksgiving, whether on yams or sweet potatoes, or in a pie, so I decided to chop a handful of pecans and toast them in a dry pan with just a pinch of cinnamon and brown sugar. Be sure to pour them out as soon as they are browned and fragrant so the residual pan heat doesn't burn them. I also usually have dried cranberries on hand, so I decided to throw on a few of those as well.

Thanksgiving Ravioli : Hye Thyme Cafe
Thanksgiving Ravioli : Hye Thyme Cafe

Thanksgiving Ravioli : Hye Thyme Cafe

Thanksgiving Ravioli : Hye Thyme Cafe

Whether you decide to try these or would rather stick with the Thanksgiving Sandwich, I hope this post at least inspires you to get in the kitchen and play with your food!

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