Leftover Turkey Curry, inspired by Bridget Jones’s Diary

Intrigued by the sound of Turkey Curry after reading Bridget Jones’s Diary, I did some research on the dish and came up with a simple recipe (that even Bridget Jones herself could make) perfect for holiday turkey leftovers. 

In the beginning of the book by Helen Fielding, Bridget is invited to a “Turkey Curry Buffet.” Bridget’s mother tells her (in reference to Mark Darcy) that, “I think he might be coming to Una’s New Year’s Day Turkey Curry Buffet, actually (11).” Bridget wonders “why she didn’t just come out with it and say, ‘Darling, do shag Mark Darcy over the turkey curry, won’t you? He’s very rich (11).’” The Turkey Curry Buffet scene is also recreated in the movie, when Bridget’s mother nudges her to offer Mark Darcy a gherkin. 

Bridget Jones’s Turkey Curry is minimal in ingredients, steps, and calories (which are recorded at the beginning of Bridget’s diary entries). I do so prefer this book, and even though I love the movie as well, I’ve yet to find a movie that is better than the book... though I’m still holding out hope that I’ll find the exception. I'd highly recommend a read of Bridget Jones's Diary.

Leftover Turkey Curry, inspired by Bridget Jones’ Diary

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped 

6 cloves of garlic, minced

2 tablespoons ginger

1 tablespoon garam marsala

1 tablespoon turmeric

1 tomato, diced 

1 cup vegetable broth 

1 lb cooked (leftover) turkey, shredded

1 cup coconut milk (or whole milk)

Salt and pepper

Optional: basmati rice or naan bread and fresh cilantro as garnish

  1. In a large frying pan, cook the onions in the olive oil on low heat for about ten minutes, until lightly browned. 

  2. Add the garlic, ginger, garam marsala, and turmeric and cook for about one minute, until evenly combined. If the mix appears dry, add more olive oil a tablespoon at a time. 

  3. Add the tomato and vegetable broth and bring to a light simmer on medium heat for about 15 minutes, or until the tomatoes have softened quite a bit. 

  4. Place the mix into a blender, being careful that it’s hot, blend until smooth and return to the pan. 

  5. Add the turkey and coconut milk*, mixing well until blended. 

*If you do not have coconut milk on hand, as someone like Bridget Jones may not, then you may substitute whole milk, but it won’t be as curry-ish. That coconut flavor really does make a difference. 

  1. Simply cook through on medium heat, giving the turkey time to heat up, for a minute or two. Season with salt and pepper. 

You may eat your Turkey Curry as is, but if you want to level up this dish, you may cook some basmati rice to go along with your curry, or get some fresh naan bread, which is excellent for dipping into your curry. I’d guess that Bridget Jones would buy some naan bread over cooking her own rice. Some fresh chopped cilantro on top will add some brilliant flavor, but in an effort to stay true to what Bridget herself would have laying around her refrigerator, I skipped the cilantro. And as I was out of rice and bread, I actually used egg noodles, which worked out nicely. I wouldn’t wait until New Year’s Eve to use your leftover Thanksgiving (or even Christmas turkey)... more like the day after Thanksgiving as a fun way to kick off the holiday season. 

Works Cited

Fielding, Helen. Bridget Jones’s Diary. Penguin Books, 1996.

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