Yesterday I roasted my famous mummy wrapped turkey, and it was every bit as good as I expected it to be. I made turkey stock and silky homemade gravy and was happy to have leftovers. One year I got really clever and made this.
Today, however, I decided on a whim to make mini-turkey pot pies. Hearty enough, yet small enough to be restrained and lovely. I whipped together a sage pie crust using my half of my basic recipe. A bite of this little pie with a bite of cranberry sauce and I was back in Thanksgiving heaven but on a much smaller scale. A reasonable and restrained scale that had a special feel good moment to it.
We have Thanksgiving at grandmother’s house (my husband’s mom). It’s all his side of the family, none of mine, and while it’s always fun, there is always a part of me that is missing. It’s not my kitchen. It’s has its own good time, but it also has its uneasiness. I’m not close to most of the people, and it only makes me miss the people I’m missing that much more.
Yesterday was my brother’s birthday. He is no longer around, but I couldn’t help but feel his presence and long to be sharing my Thanksgiving with him. I’m going to be cooking a red dish in his honor next week in a Red to Remember Event for World AIDS Day. I’ve asked other bloggers to join me as I round up the Red to Remember Recipes. If you blog, and want to join us,go here for details.
Today, when I rolled out the dough, and put these little pies together, I enjoyed the quiet moment by myself, my own kitchen, my home, my life and my memories. I know Thanksgiving is supposed to be a day of gratitude, but it has also morphed into a national family day. People get together whether they want to or not and they connect at least this one day a year.
I was connected to my brother every day, not just for one day a year. When we were children, we were left alone a lot, which in the big picture was a good thing, because we grew up competent and confident. Until I learned how to cook, we ate those little turkey pies that were purchased in the frozen section. It was our training for how to turn on the oven.
We both grew up to be fairly good cooks, enjoying cooking for fun, maybe therapy. I’ve become so competent in the kitchen that I barely remember cutting the turkey, chopping the onion and celery and rolling out the dough. It just happened effortlessly because I was in my zone, doing what makes me happy and doing it just for myself, thinking how much my brother would have loved to pop over to eat one of these. We would look at each other and know exactly which of the 43 addresses we lived at where we most ate those little turkey pies. I can tell you where the fridge was and how they looked in that freezer.
Tell me, are you one of those people that enjoys the holidays but thinks about those no longer around? Do certain foods drum up moments so vivid you know where you were standing when you ate one?
I had to show you the sides of these beautiful ramekins. I’ve been looking for over-sized ramekins for a while and found these at Marshall’s.
I chopped an onion, some celery and carrot and sauteéd in a pan. In went the left over turkey, followed by gravy and some chopped sage. I made a circle of pie crust, adding in some fresh sage to the flour and using a Williams Sonoma Decorative Cookie cutter. The turkey mixture went into extra large ramekins, crust was added and twenty minutes later, we had this lovely lunch.
- ½ recipe of pie crust (add 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage to flour first)
- 1 teaspoon oil or butter
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 celery stalks, chopped (microwaved for 3 minutes)
- 2 carrots cut into coins (microwaved for 3 minutes)
- 2 cups chopped turkey
- 2 cups turkey gravy
- ½ cup frozen peas
- 2 teaspoons freshly cut sage
- milk for brushing on pie crust
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Add butter or oil to small pan. Add onion, celery, carrots, and saute until all vegetables are softened.
- Add sage. Add turkey, gravy. Heat through.
- Cut pie crust into circles that fit your ramekins. Add in optional decorative pie crust additions if you choose to.
- You can always add in optional vegetables or more if you want to.
- Pour into ramekins. Top with pie crust. Brush with milk.
- Bake at 400 for twenty minutes or until crust is golden brown.