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Good Question: What Foods Are Good Leftovers?

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MENDOTA HEIGHTS (WCCO) — On Thursday night, no doubt most of us have already turned our Thanksgiving leftovers into at least one turkey sandwich and turkey soup might already be simmering. It got us thinking about what makes the perfect leftover. Why is some food so good on the second day?

You either love or hate them, but after a massive family meal, you’ve probably got a lot of leftovers.

“Turkey, stuffing, mac and cheese, all the stuff is great leftovers,” said Jason Ross, who teaches future chefs at Le Cordon Bleu in Mendota Heights.

Ross says there are two main categories of foods that taste good the next day.

“There’s foods that taste good the next day that we serve the same way we would normally,” said Ross. “Like a braise or a soup — that’s because the flavors get to meld.”

There are other foods that are more about texture and context, which shouldn’t be served the same way.

“Roasts are almost always better the next day, but not served the same way. I wouldn’t take a roast beef, reheat it the oven and serve it the same way I would like on Thanksgiving — same thing with a turkey,” said Ross.

Sliced beef or sliced turkey has more surface area, so it takes a sauce or salt better.

“When you slice it thin you automatically get tenderness,” Ross said.

Thanksgiving leftovers shouldn’t stay in the fridge too long, so after a couple of days, if you still have food leftover, stick it in the freezer. It will stay good for a long time and you can use the ingredients for other recipes.

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