Yum, Yum: Making the best of leftover turkey

It’s happened again. We’ve been eating delicious turkey, stuffing and all that comes with it this past holiday weekend. Reality, however has settled in… what to do with the leftovers? You can only consume so much turkey with the fixings. Time to get a little more creative. We polled the fourth floor, and came up with our top ways to use the pounds of turkey mom has given to us (thanks, ma!).


Grilled Turkey, Brie and Apple Sandwich



Image source.



Ingredients
Serves one.
1 cup of turkey meat (white or brown) cut up into 2” slices.
1/2 an apple, cut in thin slices
3 1” strips of Brie 
2 slices of your favourite bread. We dig a twelve-grain slice.
Butter (to taste)
Dijon mustard (to taste)


Preparation
Gently fry turkey on a non-stick pan until golden-brown.
Butter bread and spread Dijon mustard on one half.
Layer apple slices on bottom slice of bread.
Alternately place cheese slices and warmed turkey slices on bread.
Place on baking sheet, bake in oven at 250 C for 9 minutes or until cheese is melted.


Let cool for a couple of minutes, and enjoy.


Turkey Soup
This is probably the most popular fourth floor recipe for leftover turkey, and a few of us have different opinions about the best turkey soup. This one won.

Image source.



Ingredients
Serves about four people


Leftover turkey bones and drippings. Every great soup starts with homemade stock – it’s easy.
Half a yellow onion, cut in to quarters
2 large chopped carrots
2 sprigs of parsley
25g of  fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
2 celery stalks
Freshly ground pepper and salt to taste
Shredded turkey meat (enough for four servings)
100g pasta/noodles (per person), cooked and drained


Preparation
In a medium sized pot, pour 1 inch of water and warm on medium heat.
Add leftover bones and drippings, and bring to a boil.
*Mom’s tip: Boiling the bones and drippings in just an inch of water concentrates the flavours and helps make for a richer broth.
Once bones have boiled for 15 minutes, remove from pot.
Add 3 cups of water.
Add onion, parsley, thyme, bay leaf, salt and pepper. 
Bring all ingredients to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until carrots are tender.
Toss in shredded turkey and stir to warm. 
Place cooked noodles in bowls and ladle hot soup over top. Serve with toasted garlic bread immediately.


What are you favourite leftover turkey recipes? Comment below or tweet us @rockitpromo.



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Yum, yum: DIY Whoopie Pies

Carly was feeling domestic again, and decided to take on the project of baking her very own version of the uber-trendy dessert, whoopie pies, complete with her very own expert (Bubbie), photographer (Dad) and intern/clean-up crew (Mom). Success or #fail? Read on to find out. 

Like most good cooking blogs, this one begins with a trip to the mall. To get your Bakerella on, buy whoopie pie mix, courtesy of Williams-Sonoma. You’re well on your way to success, and no one needs to know that it’s not from scratch.

Back at home, take your mix and line it up with your other ingredients. That’s one egg, lots of butter, and a jar of Marshmallow Fluff. Smile big for the camera.


Beat the butter until whipped. For those of you that forgot to leave the butter out for optimal room temperature whipping purposes, feel free to microwave the stuff. I did. Then, mix ingredients together:

 
Add egg.
Pour in mix.

Beat until there’s no more nasty clumps. 
If your mix looks weird, call in the expert. It is likely that you forgot an ingredient. Just sayin’.
Pour in forgotten ingredient (in this case…milk). Beat again.
Spoon clump-free batter into 16 cookie shapes on parchment-lined baking sheet .
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes at 350 degrees Celsius. Wear chic oven mitts with your stripe-on-plaid outfit, and take out when fluffy. It is also not a bad idea to pre-heat the oven (oops).

On to the filling: it’s Marshmallow Fluff time. Use the whole jar. 

It’s a sticky situation, so have your expert on hand.

Let’s put these whoopies together now, people. Begin with one chocolate cookie. 

Spread the icing over the cookie, and top off with a second cookie. If I made the icing bit look easy, trust that it isn’t.

Press cookies into place, and show off your new polish change in Blue My Mind by OPI.

Enjoy them, but not too many of them. It will hurt your stomach.

Serve these special thank-yous to your crew. 

Special shout out to my expert baker (Bubbie), photographer (father) and clean-up crew (thanks, Mom).

Yum, yum: Delicious soups

We’ve been chatting lots about cold weather noshes, like coffee and hot chocolate. We asked the crew on the fourth floor about another delicious way to warm you from the inside – soup. There are a million varieties of soup and a hot, steamy bowl is just the thing to make you feel warm and cozy when the snow is blowing outside. 

Our favourite picks were a surprising mix of restaurant faves and recipes from mom. Enjoy!

Alana: The absolute BEST soup I’ve ever had was at Auberge du Pommier. Their Cappuccino de Truffe soup is served like a cappuccino (obviously), but filled with pureed mushroom and truffle soup with velvet shank cream and a hunk of parmesan cheese (that you put in your soup to melt). It’s also accompanied by a delicious Parmesan biscuit. It’s pricey at $19, but in my opinion, worth every penny, especially for a nice treat. You won’t find a better mushroom soup out there – trust me!

Debra: I adore the lentil soup at Mashu Mashu in Forest Hill Village. It’s hearty, thick and great on it’s own or with pita and hummous. I used to live across the street and loved going in regularly to get this soup.  

Rachelle: The Senagalese Peanut Chicken from Soup Nutsy. It’s filling, spicy and has tons of flavour. The crunchy peanuts are a nice touch. Soup Nutsy bowls are always awesome, and this is one of the best.  


Lara: I’m not a very big soup person, it just never appeals to me. However, if I do have soup, it is from a few places. I like the pea soup from United Dairy Bakery. I also dig a good bowl of pho, but haven’t yet found a great vegetarian option. Any suggestions?

My favourite soup is my mom’s incredible curried cauliflower soup. You wouldn’t know its cauliflower, and the drizzle of honey on top is a not-too-sweet surprise and cuts the curry. The rich flavour comes from how long the cauliflower is roasted for. Yum.


Michelle: I am not really a huge soup person, but I do love a classic chicken noodle soup once in a while. I mainly eat soup when I am feeling sick, and I will make myself Lipton Chicken Noodle soup and break up a lot of soda crackers into the bowl and let them get a bit mushy. For some reason it is the only thing I can eat when I am feeling under the weather. It makes me feel all warm and cozy so I can rest and get better quickly!


Carly: When in culinary doubt, I see only two options – Google Martha Stewart or head to the nearest Pusateri’s. This gourmet foodie shop has the best PB + J party sandwiches, red velvet cupcakes and asparagus soup. Made with puréed asparagus and a little something spicy, this green soup will fill your daily veggie requirements. Add some cheese, and trust me, this is no cup of Campbell’s.


Christina: My favourite soup is A. Walters’ (a.k.a. my mom’s) homemade potato leek soup. The name doesn’t sound appealing, nor does it look particularly appealing, but it tastes fabulous. It’s thick, a little nutty and warms the heart on a cold winter day. Added benefit? Both my brother and sister aren’t fans, so it leaves more servings for me when I go home for a visit. Ma Dukes is usually great about making extra (thanks, Mom!) and sends it back home with me. 
 
Abby: I am a huge Thai food fan, so I regularly crave the shrimp lemongrass soup from Thai Paradise, a tiny little restaurant in Baldwin Village. It’s pretty authentic, spicy, and the shrimp are so fat and tasty. I love the complex flavours of the soup; lemongrass has got to be one of the most delicious seasonings ever. My mouth is now watering.


Lisa: I don’t care what anybody says! My mom makes the best soup in the whole entire world (ahem… Lara and Christina…). My fave is mushroom. Made with cream, loads of mushrooms, a little flour, some butter, and salt and white pepper to taste. Simple. Savoury. Super fattening. It’s so good. I would tell you all to try some, but she lives in North Bay. 
 

Where do you get your favourite soup? We want to know!

A visit from…Shopgirls Gallery Boutique

Even though we’ve already posted our holiday gift ideas (part 1 and part 2) with gift ideas from our fab clients, we still wanted some more for our best girlfriends, moms and sisters. We invited clients Michelle and Ashley from Shopgirls Gallery Boutique up to the fourth floor to give us some more great ideas for our holiday gifts. You can never give too much! 
 
We came to visit the rock-it promotions ladies up on the fourth floor, and brought some of our favourite things from our shop with us. We take great pride in our collection of cute clothing, fun home items and gorgeous little decor pieces. Plus, we only feature Canadian artists and designers. 

Toronto Buildings Napkin Set by Avril Loreti, $16 each

The holidays can sometimes drive people to drink (or eat too many cookies, cakes, slices of mincemeat pie…you know). Not just for celebratory reasons, but often as an escape from the over-crowded shopping malls, where you manage only to pick up impersonal gifts that leave you and your wallet feeling empty.

These gifts show you’ve put a little thought into someone’s personality and will make giving more fun than receiving. Everything at Shopgirls has an interesting back story. Come in and ask us to share them with you! An interesting story is so important when purchasing something one-of-a-kind.


Tansy & Co.‘s desk clocks are a much cooler way to count down the minutes to 5 p.m. than your digital computer clock.

 Desk Clocks featuring original photography from Tansy & Co., $55

We love how fuzzy and warm Rachel F.’s recycled fur hats and earmuffs are. Plus, you can feel good about wearing them (or giving them).

 Recycled fur accessories by Rachel F., from $65 

This glass decanter is a visually interesting way to serve wine, and is a good idea for the hard-to-shop-for person (like the in-laws that literally have everything). 

Balance Glassworks Decanter, $180

This key necklace is handmade and one-of-a-kind. Perfect for your best friend or sister.  

Multi-key Necklace by Ashley Winnington-Ball, $240

And, to wrap up your visit (pun intended), we carry lovely hand-crafted stationary and will wrap your purchase for free. If you can’t make it to the store, shame on you. (just kidding.) You can shop online to find exactly what you’re looking for.  
We have so much fun picking and choosing the items for our store, and sharing them with rock-it was even more fun. Who doesn’t love giving a gift that will elicit gasps of appreciation?  Happy shopping!
Shopgirls Gallery Boutique
1342 Queen Street West, Toronto
416-534-7467

Yum, yum: Matt’s Mom’s Zucchini Quiche

We loved Matt’s mom’s banana bread so much that we wanted to share another recipe from her. She immediately responded “yes!” and sent us this lip-smacking quiche. We made it that night, and it turned out very well. Mom’s recipes always do.

She told us, “I love this recipe because it’s fast, and a nice, light meal served with a salad. Enjoy.”

Thanks, Mom!

Matt’s Mom’s Crustless Zucchini Quiche

3 cups (approx.) zucchini cooked, chopped and well drained*
3 eggs (well beaten)
½ cup oil
1 cup Bisquick or pancake mix
¼ cup diced onion
1 clove garlic, finely chopped (optional)
Salt, pepper, chopped fresh parsley and basil to taste

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Celsius.

2. Grease and flour bottom of baking dish (round or square, close to 8×8” size).

3. Sprinkle zucchini, onion and garlic on bottom of dish.

4. Mix all other ingredients together in a bowl. Pour over vegetables.

5. Bake for approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until firm.

6. Cool for a few minutes before cutting and serving.

*You can also use cooked mushrooms, leeks, chopped spinach or cauliflower, instead of zucchini.

Photo courtesy of  thelocalcook.com

Meet Our Team: Rachelle

Every Friday, you’ll either meet one of our team or one of our clients on the fourth floor.
Rachelle
After earning a Bachelor of Arts in English and working her first job in Montreal’s ‘shmata’ district, Rachelle went south of the border to pursue her big city dreams in New York City. She attended the Fashion Institute of Technology, and then scored some major PR experience with Bloomingdale’s and Stuart Weitzman. Rachelle returned home and landed a gig as PR manager for La Senza, and then managed such brands as Le Château and Liz Claiborne at a Montreal-based PR agency. Now she’s not only a PR-powerhouse, but also a savvy new mom who still loves social trends, pop culture and chocolate.

How long have you been part of the team?
I have been part of the team for two years, which I have to say have flown by. Being from Montreal originally, it’s been a great way to get to know the people, places and things in Toronto.

How do you like to relax?
Reading the New York Times (Sunday Styles) accompanied by a Montreal bagel and schmear.

Last song played on your iPod?
Smile by Michael Jackson. 

What is your guilty pleasure?
Drinking Tim Horton’s coffee in bed while watching The Dog Whisperer.
   
Best part about being a publicist?
Never a dull moment.

A little more from the fourth floor:
Designer – Diane Von Furstenberg
Store – Teatro Verde
Book – She’s Come Undone by Wally Lamb
Snack – A spoonful of Nutella
Season – Summer, the hotter the better
Sexy – Red lipstick
Inspiration – New York City
Drink – Vodka soda with a twist of lime
Motto in two words – Be yourself

Follow her on Twitter! @racstark