A true Canadian classic leftover dish, a Hot Chicken or Hot Turkey sandwich. Moist turkey, soft toast, fresh peas and tangy gravy. Perfect on a cold evening and to use up leftovers.
When you were small do you remember doing on the trips with a grandparent? I do, and to this day I think it has influenced the way I travel in general. My grandfather was always keen to go on an adventure, and even if he saw a road he didn’t know where it went he suggest why don’t we go and explore it. To this day I still suggest to whoever I’m travelling with why don’t we explore is down this road.
When I was about 10 years old my grandfather took me for a trip to the town of Truro, about an hour north of Halifax, Nova Scotia. No, I’ll be perfectly honest there isn’t much to do in Truro. If you look at it on a map you will see that its main claim to fame is essentially being a junction to go in different directions in the province. But my grandfather had a plan.
Rather than turning into the town, we took a little detoured and headed down a small road towards the water. You see Truro is at the very end of the Bay of Fundy. And he wanted me to see the title more. I won’t bore you with the details but essentially because the be a fun day is shaped like a cone, as the tide comes in the water pressure builds up creating almost rapids and a wave and this travels for hundreds of kilometres ending up near Truro.
It was pretty cool although frankly, I think I was also just excited to spend the day with my grandfather. After that, we went to this little motel called the Palliser. It was a classic Hotel that was built for a bygone era. It only actually opened for the spring and summer closed for the winter. They also had a restaurant.
It was on this trip that I had a type of sandwich that is a lesser-known Canadian tradition than say a smoked meat sandwich, the hot chicken sandwich. Essentially it is an open-faced sandwich which uses rotisserie chicken, on some thick bread add some peas and drench in gravy. In cold autumn and winter days, it is delicious.
Sadly, the Palliser restaurant is now closed, its owners retired and frankly, there wasn’t enough business to sustain it these days. So, to reminisce a little bit I put together my version of this, however, I’m using turkey instead of Chicken. So, it’s a hot turkey sandwich recipe rather than a hot chicken sandwich recipe! Although I’m in the UK, I still make my family celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving, so I had quite a bit of turkey that needed to be used.
You start with some really good bread and some freshly carved turkey. The gravy however it special, as it has some special spices to it. In a pinch, you can just use your leftover gravy or even stuff from a jar. It is meant to be a great dish for using up leftovers, but for my grandfather, I wanted to make something a bit more special.
This dish is all about using your leftovers, but if you have any dry hard apple cider, that would be a nice treat to cut through the richness of the dish.
When I made this particular hot turkey sandwich, I was blasting my Kitchen Rock playlist.
There are a lot of great dishes to use up leftover turkey and chicken, or even to get your turkey or gravy made. Here are a few to give you some inspiration.
What equipment do you need to make a hot turkey sandwich?
A chopping board and a knife. To heat the peas and the turkey, you might need a microwavable bowl. A good pot for making the gravy is important unless you are using pre-prepared stuff.
What ingredients do you need for making a hot turkey sandwich?
- A thick slice of bread per plate (I’ve gone for a brown seeded loaf here, but Texas toast is a classic)
- Cooked green peas
- A cup of chopped roast turkey (or roast chicken) per person
- About 1/3 cup of gravy per person – See recipe below!
Can this be made gluten-free?
You can try this with your favourite gluten-free bread, just bear in mind that the gravy will be soaking into it. So, the bread needs to be able to hold up to it! Also, watch out for the flour in the gravy recipe, you might be better off trying this gluten-free gravy recipe.
Hot Turkey Sandwich
- 6 slices Texas Toast (or thick cut bloomer)
- 6 cups Shredded roast turkey
- 3 cups Frozen peas
- 3 tbsp Butter
- 1 tbsp Tomato ketchup
- 3 tsp Chicken stock granules
- 1 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp White sugar
- 3/4 tsp Ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp Allspice
- 1/4 tsp Dried basil
- 1/4 tsp thyme
- 1/4 tsp dired mustard
- 1/4 tsp onion granules
- 3 cups water
- 2 tbsp cornflour or cornstarch
- 1 tbsp vegtable oil
- Add all the ingridents, except for 1 tbsp of water and the cornflour, to a pot and bring to the boil. Reduce and simmer for 20min.
- Mix the cornflour and remaining water, remove the bay leaf and add cornflour mix. Stir until thickened.
- Heat your turkey by placing in a microwavable bowl, and heat for about 1 min until it is all warm. You can also heat this in the oven, but watch out for it drying out. Cook the peas to the packaging instructions.
- Toast the bread, and lightly butter one side. Top with turkey and peas. Then pour gravy over and eat at once!