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Turkey Salad {Grill-wiches}

Grilled Turkey Salad

Grilled Turkey Salad

Sandwiches are what I grab from a takeout place or a drive thru window for a quick lunch. I usually don’t want to a sandwich for dinner. That is unless I’ve made some really awesome soup and we need something to make it a heartier meal. But once in a while I get the urge to for a grilled sandwich and can’t resist piling on an interesting mix of ingredients.

I decided to make a new category of sandwiches for just those times. Grill-wiches is my new feature and accessible from the drop down bar on the top of Lady Melady’s blog. It will list all of the past sandwich posts as well as the new ones.

I’ve finally decided on which Panini press to add to my already overburdened shelves of small appliances I use in the kitchen. I read reviews until I was having nightmares of being pressed between two removable metal plates that were dishwasher safe. Should it have controls on both sides of the grill, should it be adjustable heat, does the top plate fall off because it’s defective? So much to consider!

When I find a local store (or resort to Amazon.com) to purchase my “final answer”, I will learn to use it and begin posting new “grill-wiches”. For now, I’m using my flat griddle pan with a handle that I use for so many things I’d be lost without it. Fried eggs and pancakes, I’m talking about you.

My P.S. (Poultry Stockpiler/spouse) filled our larger freezer so full of turkeys around the holidays that we may have to roast one a month to get them eaten by next Thanksgiving. Not really a problem, we love turkey and it’s become a versatile protein in so many dishes.

My favorite way to eat turkey, and my sister Linda has become a huge fan of this too, is to simply chop it up finely, add green onions, mayo, a shake of garlic powder then salt and pepper to taste. We eat it on bread, buns, pita, crackers, cucumber slices or even celery sticks, depending on how seriously we’re counting carbs that day.

Turkey Salad

Turkey Salad

I’ve been avoiding mayo so when I chopped up my turkey last night to make a spread for sandwiches, I used a cup of Greek yogurt. I added a tablespoon of lemon juice and a ¼ cup milk and that made it almost like mayo. I was out of green onions (that almost NEVER happens at my house; I blame winter on this apocalypse) and not wanting a strong onion taste just used onion powder along with the garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste.

I like a lot of pepper on my turkey sandwiches, turkey can be so bland if it doesn’t have some acid and black pepper to highlight the flavors. For crunch I wanted to add cucumbers because I have a bounty of them right now. They must have been on sale and my P.S. (Personal Shopper/hubby) stocked up. I knew the salt would draw out the moisture and make my turkey salad wet and runny, so I waited to add them when I was ready to eat my sandwiches.

I stirred my ingredients and put them into a storage container and refrigerated them overnight. The next night I diced up my cucumber finely.

I also diced up some green onions that I’d picked up on my way home. I was not to be denied my green onion fix, even though I’d already added some onion powder to the turkey salad.  And because I will put grape tomatoes in nearly anything (food-wise, I mean!) I cut a few in half and added them to the salad.

Butter one side of the bread and sprinkle shredded parmesan on the other side

Butter one side of the bread and sprinkle shredded parmesan on the other side

I spread a good layer of butter on 4 slices of bread. I’d heated my flat griddle to medium-high heat and now placed the bread buttered side down on the pan. I sprinkled all 4 slices with some cheese, this time Monterey Jack, and let the slices brown while the cheese melted.

When the slices were crisped on the bottom, I spread a good layer of turkey salad on two halves then covered them with the remaining halves. I didn’t want my turkey salad to be warm; I just wanted my bread crispy and grilled. Not like toaster crispy, but butter grilled into the bread crispy. There’s a huge difference in taste and maybe the crunch as well.

Spread turkey salad onto on half of the grilled bread slices

Spread turkey salad onto on half of the grilled bread slices

I sliced the sandwiches kitty-corner. Do they use that word where you live? I’ve been teased about it so it may be a Northern word. It means corner to corner, I’m not sure where the kitty came from. We not only slice kitty-corner, we can live kitty-corner or walk kitty-corner to or from something. Some say catty-corner is correct, but I’ve never heard that one until recently.

Grilled Turkey Salad Sandwiches

Grilled Turkey Salad Sandwiches

I served the sandwiches with a pasta salad I made from more of the leftover roast turkey. It was a turkey kinda night at our house. I’ll post that separately sometime soon. The turkey salad lasts for two or three days in the fridge, but the cucumbers I added the night we first ate the sandwiches did get a little soggy. You could avoid that by only adding them to the portions you’re eating each night, but I didn’t think ahead. It wasn’t a problem; the sandwiches were still good with slightly soggy cukes.

Grilled Turkey Sandwiches

Grilled Turkey Sandwiches

Turkey Salad Grill-wiches

1 cup roast turkey; finely chopped
1 cup Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¼ cup milk
¼ cup green onions; chopped (or onion powder or other onions you prefer)
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
1 teaspoon pepper (or to taste)
¼ cup grape tomatoes; halved (optional)
¼ cup cucumber; finely diced (optional)
Leaf lettuce or fresh spinach (optional)

Stir ingredients together well and refrigerate overnight in a covered container.

When preparing sandwiches, add grape tomatoes and cucumber if desired.

Butter slices of bread on one side and place on heated griddle or skillet. Sprinkle with shredded cheese of choice and fry until bottom of slices is browned and crispy.

Remove from heat and spread with turkey salad. Top with lettuce or fresh spinach if desired. Cover with second slice of grilled bread, cut and serve.

Salad recipe makes approx. 6-8 sandwiches, depending on how you fill them

Tip: If you don’t plan to eat the salad all in one sitting, you might want to add the cucumbers to just what filling you’re using. Cucumbers will get wiggly and limp when the salt in the salad wilts out the water content. The salad also gets watery when that happens.Tiara Logo

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