Turnovers from Leftovers

January 25, 2016
What's on hand? A refrigerator full of bits and pieces, nothing sufficiently interesting
to constitute a lunch. But wait! One of the leftovers is a chunk of homemade pie-
dough--and as we all know, you can improve almost anything by encasing it in pie
These are the bits and pieces I took from the fridge: two (cooked) rashers of bacon;
a quarter-cup of cooked kale; a cup of sauerkraut cooked with onions, apples, and
sliced sausage; three hardboiled eggs left from the six that I had rolled in ghee and
Indian spices. There was also a bit of roast chicken.
Here's how it went: I chopped the hardboiled eggs with Indian flavours and set them
aside in a little bowl along with some of the (chopped) roast chicken. I drained the
sauerkraut, pulled out the slices of sausage and diced them, then chopped the
bacon and greens into small pieces and mixed them into the sauerkraut. Below are
the two bowls of fillings:
Preheating the oven to 425 degrees, I rolled out half the pastry, cut this irregularly
round slab into four pieces, and rolled one of the four pieces into a more-or-less
rectangle, keeping the other three pieces cool in the refrigerator until I was ready for
them. The sauerkraut filling went at one end of the rectangle, while the other half
was folded over to enclose it. For whatever reason (gluttony, most likely) I tend to
over-fill my turnovers, which makes it hard to seal them. The solution is to remove
some of the filling before pressing the edges together to make a neat package.
When the pastry was relatively neat and tidy, I secured the seal by pressing the
tines of a fork all around the edges. I set this turnover into the fridge while I prepared
the remaining turnovers, always keeping the dough chilled until I was ready to roll it
out. Half of the turnovers had the sauerkraut filling, half the chopped egg and
When all the turnovers were ready, I put them on a baking sheet (lined with
parchment paper for easy clean-up) and baked them for about 15 minutes. Since
the fillings were already cooked, it was just a question of bringing the pastry to a
golden brown and crispy finish.
Both kinds were delicious.
I was lucky to have the pastry on hand. If I had not been so lucky, we would have
had to eat the Indian-spiced eggs just as they were, accompanied by the leftover
sauerkraut. But the turnover versions were so delightful that it would almost have
been worth it to make a batch of pastry from scratch.
Obviously, these sauerkraut and Indian-spiced-eggs versions are just examples.
Next time you want to jazz up your leftovers, sort them into appropriate flavours and
turn them into turnovers.


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