How to refresh Christmas leftovers: Part One | HerCanberra

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How to refresh Christmas leftovers: Part One

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Happy Boxing Day!

Welcome to the national holiday of sitting on the couch, watching the cricket, dialling up the aircon and looking blankly into the fridge. Christmas lunch is lots of fun to plan (we hope yours was!) but it can turn into an expensive exercise if you’re feeding a lot of people, amirite?

So today, instead of saying hello to the random collection of leftovers you’ll be eating cold straight from the fridge for the next week (or worse, turfing into the trash), why not use them to make delicious meals that you’ll actually want to eat?


Let’s start with a Christmas staple – The Roast Turkey

It’s delicious, to be sure. But let’s face it, it’s got a lot of competition on the Christmas table these days. You’ve got your Christmas ham, roast chicken, roast pork. And lots of people do seafood too. So there’s probably gonna be a bit of Big Bird left once everyone’s had a crack at all the other goodies.

You can make turkey and cranberry sandwiches. Which are nice. And BORING AS HELL.

Or you can transform your leftover gobbler into golden, crunchy turkey and cranberry croquettes, filled with oozy camembert and served with a nice green salad. Jk. That’s totally a garnish. Just focus on the deep-fried bits.

Chances are you’ll have a few varieties of soft cheese and 16 jars of cranberry sauce lying around the house (or is that just me?). So all you’ll need then is an onion, some milk, a few eggs, flour, breadcrumbs and some oil to fry up these delectable little suckers and cram them into your festive face.

Turkey, Cranberry and Camembert Croquettes


Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 30 mins
Serves: makes around 24 croquettes


  • 180g roast turkey, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries, finely chopped (or you can use 1/4 cup cranberry jelly)
  • 1/2 cup camembert, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 brown onion, finely chopped
  • 2/3 cup of plain flour
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 eggs, whisked
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs (plain or panko crumbs)
  • 400ml vegetable oil for frying
  • Rocket to garnish
  • Cranberry sauce for dipping


  • Heat the olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring until they soften (about 2-3 mins).
  • Stir in the flour with a wooden spoon till combined, then the milk until it’s all incorporated. Remove from the heat and mix through the turkey, cranberries and camembert till well combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Spread mixture out on a flat surface and let cool (about 10 min).
  • Shape the mixture into egg-shaped balls. One at a time, dip them into the whisked egg then roll in the breadcrumbs. Arrange croquettes on a baking sheet on a sheet of grease-proof paper.
  • Heat the vegetable oil in a large frying pan or skillet to 180C. Once the oil has reached temperature, carefully lower your croquettes in one at a time (taking care not to overcrowd the pan – cook in batches if needed).
  • Fry for around 2 minutes on each side until golden brown. Carefully remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and rest on paper towel. Serve with a rocket and cranberry sauce for dipping.

Another ingredient that’s not quite as traditional as old Big Bird, but still gets a good run on Christmas tables and throughout the holidays is smoked salmon.

Smoked salmon is the perfect thing to serve during summer. It’s no fuss, it tastes great served chilled and it can be served as a starter, a side dish, or in a cute little canapé that you and your guests can wash down with a glass of bubbly before lunch (yes, I said bubbly before lunch. What of it?).

It’s also bloody pricey. So the last thing you want to do is buy a bunch of it and have to throw it out if it doesn’t all get eaten.

Boxing Day brunch is a bit of a tradition at our place, and I like to do something a little different from the usual bacon and eggs, (not that there’s anything wrong with that…mmm bacon), particularly if we have family or friends over.

I love potato and salmon together. As Manu likes to say, they’re ‘a marriage in heaven’. And seriously, how good are potato rostis?

If you’ve got some eggs laying around and some leftover potatoes that weren’t gobbled up in your Christmas lunch, you’re pretty much set to make this delicious smoked salmon brunch stack.

It’s got all the right textures and flavours – crispy potato on the bottom. Soft, runny egg on the top. Finished off with a slice of smoked salmon, a dollop of crème fraîche and some dill.

So there you have it – two easy, mouth-watering meals that’ll make your Christmas leftovers go further, save you cash and see you eating your way through the holidays stress-free.

Smoked Salmon Brunch Stack


Prep time: 10
Cook time: 15
Serves: 4


  • 4 slices of smoked salmon, broken into strips
  • 3 floury potatoes, finely grated (using a grater or mandolin)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • 4 eggs, room temperature
  • Crème fraîche and fresh dill to serve


  • Grate the potato and wrap it in clean kitchen towel, squeezing out as much liquid as you can, then put into a bowl and season with salt and pepper.
  • Bring a large saucepan of water to a gentle simmer and add the white vinegar and 1 tsp of salt.
    Crack each of your eggs into saucers or small, shallow bowls ready to poach.
  • Heat the oil in a large frying pan to around 180C (medium-high heat) and when it reaches temperature, carefully spoon in the potato (around 1 tbsp per rosti). Gently press it to flatten a little and fry for around 4-5 minutes on either side until they are golden brown and crispy and the potato is cooked through. Remove and rest on a plate lined with paper towel to drain any excess oil.
  • Carefully make a whirlpool with the water in the saucepan using a whisk or wooden spoon and gently lower your eggs into the centre, one at a time, making sure the saucer is very close to the water as the egg slides in.
  • Put the lid on and poach for 3 minutes for runny eggs and 4 minutes for soft yolks but not too runny. Remove eggs with a slotted spoon and rest on a plate lined with paper towel.
  • Assemble your brekkie stacks with a potato rosti on the bottom, then a poached egg, and finally some slices of smoked salmon. Finish off with a dollop of crème fraîche, some salt and pepper and fresh dill to serve.

Enjoy! Now dial up up the volume on the cricket, start filling that kiddie pool you bought for the backyard, relax and enjoy!

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