Jane’s Turkey Hash

If, like us, you roast a turkey for your family’s Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, you may already follow our after dinner tradition of simmering the turkey carcass to create a delicious broth and salvage some tender meat. While Jerri offers suggestions, I carve the last few pieces of meat from the bones and break the carcass into pieces. Then our roles are reversed, and I suggest how much meat should be included in each package that we will freeze for sandwiches or to make turkey a la king.

Eventually the turkey bones end up in the roaster with some water. We bring it to a boil, turn down the heat and simmer them for a couple of hours. When the broth has cooled to a warm room temperature, we remove the last bits of meat from the carcass and strain the broth.

The result is a quart or so of really flavorful broth and two or three cups of turkey meat. Since the meat has already given up some of its flavor to the broth, it is not the best meat from the turkey, but it works just fine for making turkey hash, particularly if you have some sliced turkey left over from the roast.

This recipe is another one from Jane Marsh Dieckmann’s Use it All: The Leftovers Cook Book, which Jerri’s niece Susie loaned to us. Turkey hash is easy to make, tastes good and helps make room in the freezer for other leftovers.


1 1/2 cups diced turkey or leftover turkey salvaged from the carcass
1 cup cooked diced potatoes
1/2 cup cooked chopped celery
1 T minced parsley
1 T finely chopped chives or a scallion
1 cup gravy or sauce
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
3 T butter or olive oil


If you don’t have any leftover boiled potatoes, peel and chop one or two raw potatoes into a half-inch dice. Spread them in a pie plate, cover it with waxed paper and microwave on high until the potatoes are soft enough to pierce with a fork, about four or five minutes.

Clean and chop the celery into a quarter to half-inch dice and microwave it in a covered bowl until it is starting to soften, two or three minutes.

Clean and finely chop the parsley and chives or scallion and if necessary warm the gravy so it is liquid enough to mix with the other ingredients when you assemble the hash.

Make sure that the turkey is cut into pieces no larger than a half-inch dice and put it into a mixing bowl. Add the potatoes and celery along with the parsley, chives or scallion. Blend everything together, then stir in the gravy, salt and pepper.

Set a skillet or frying pan over moderate heat and coat it with the butter or oil. Transfer the hash to the skillet or frying pan. Stir to prevent burning, but allow the hash to crisp a little as it heats.

Serve hot and pass the ketchup.

NOTES: The first time I made this recipe, I used all the leftover gravy from our Christmas dinner. Nearly two cups of gravy produced a kind of stew. It wasn’t really hash, but it tasted fine and used up another leftover.

Since we don’t always have leftover gravy in the refrigerator or freezer, I make a satisfactory substitute with chicken bouillon. Dissolve a chicken bouillon cube in three quarters cup of hot water, season with dashes of sage and thyme and thicken with a tablespoon of corn starch dissolved in a quarter cup of cold water.

Chicken Stroganoff

Although there were twenty or thirty bottles and cans of dried herbs and spices in my mother’s kitchen cabinet, I can remember only four that she grew herself One was mint, which she tended in a flower bed near the house. As I recall, she used it only to make mint jelly, though I may be wrong about that.

On one side of the garden were several chive plants, which grew in the same row with the winter onions. Because of her I still love cottage cheese flavored with chopped chives. Mom also used chives in soups and roasts, and she added them to lettuce, tomato and cucumber salads.

She planted two or three parsley plants, which provided important flavors to soups, meats and other vegetables like boiled and buttered new red potatoes. The fourth herb was dill. On the same day we planted the hills of cucumbers, we planted a long row of dill seeds. Dill was of course the primary flavoring ingredient in her dill pickle recipes, and she used it occasionally in other dishes.

Although dill is grown and used in countries as far apart as India and Iceland, I have always associated it with northern European cooking. I even think of dill pickles primarily as a way German and Slavic housewives preserved the cucumbers they grew in the short summers of the northern hemisphere. However, dill may have actually been brought to northern Europe by Roman soldiers and settlers. Archeologists and food historians have found evidence of dill being cultivated in Celtic Britain after the Roman invasion.

Since dill was thought to have medicinal properties it was added to wines and other foods to cure diseases or give people more energy and strength. Roman gladiators are said to have rubbed their bodies with fresh dill to give them more strength and it was added to wine as an aphrodisiac.

However, I like dill for the subtle flavor it adds to many of my favorite foods including pickles, potato salad, cabbage rolls, poached salmon, fish soup and this recipe for chicken stroganoff derived from the Use It All Cookbook by Jane Marsh Dieckmann.


1 medium onion (about 3 inches in diameter)
3 T butter/margarine
1/2 lb. mushrooms
1 T flour
1/2 salt
2 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. basil, crumbled
1/4 tsp. thyme, crumbled
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup dairy sour cream
1/4 cup Swiss cheese
2 cups diced cooked chicken
2 tsp. lemon juice
2 T chopped fresh dill
8 oz. noodles


Clean and chop the onion into a quarter-inch dice. Clean and thinly slice the mushrooms. Chop the chicken into a half-inch dice. Grate the cheese and wash and chop the dill. Start heating water to cook the noodles.

Melt the butter over medium heat in a large saucepan or Dutch oven and sauté the onion until it just begins to turn gold. Add the mushrooms and cook for three or four minutes, stirring constantly. Blend in the flour, salt, paprika, basil and thyme and cook for two minutes. Lower the heat and gradually stir in the chicken broth and wine. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture bubbles and thickens.

Reduce the heat to very low, cover, simmer for five minutes and remove the pan from the heat. Blend in the sour cream and cheese. Add the chicken, lemon juice, and dill. Heat thoroughly over low heat, but do not boil.

Serve over hot cooked noodles with a cucumber and tomato salad and good bread.

NOTES: You can substitute leftover turkey for the chicken. I use rounded tablespoons of dill. Sauvignon blanc or chardonnay wines are both good choices for the recipe and to serve at the table. This recipe makes four generous servings.