I started this week out with healthy Turkey Soup! Last week went bye so fast! I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving break! We had a much needed restful break, but dang, it did go fast! My son Tyler made a comment this morning that he couldn’t believe it was back to school already and in the same breath, he asked me when were we going to decorate for Christmas? I took a sip of my coffee and a big deep breath and told him not yet! Mommy needs some time to catch up with it all. I wish I had a button to slow things down, but then again I guess if everyone could, they would! Lol!
One of my favorite things about Thanksgiving is all the leftovers. Every year, I make this delicious but simple Turkey Soup after our big feast. Just put the leftover turkey carcass in a stockpot full of water, with onions, celery, carrots, parsley and peppercorns. Smartly cooking every last ounce of meat from the bones and turning it into soup. The last bits that were clinging to the bone will give this turkey soup all the flavor it could ever need.
Whether you want to make a simple chicken noodle-style soup like I did or a thick stew or a broth, it’s all up to you and your taste!
Well, I guess it’s time to start decorating for Christmas!
Ali in the Valley
Veggies and Leftover Chopped Turkey
2 quarts turkey or chicken broth
1 turkey carcass (all meat removed)
1 1/2 onion (halved, plus 1 onion, minced)
1 carrot (halved lengthwise, plus 2 carrot, minced)
1 whole stalk celery (plus 2 more stalk, minced)
2 bay leaves
3 cups turkey meat
2 garlic cloves (smashed)
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 cups leftover cooked Thanksgiving side vegetables (potatoes, broccoli, sweet potatoes, green beans)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley (thyme, sage leaves)
Remove all the usable turkey meat from the turkey carcass. Break up the leftover bones of the carcass a bit, so they don’t take up as much room in the pot. Put the leftover bones and skin into a large stock pot and cover with cold water by an inch. Add any drippings that weren’t used to make gravy, and any giblets (except liver) that haven’t been used already. Add a yellow onion that has been quartered, some chopped carrots, parsley, thyme, a bay leaf, celery tops, and some peppercorns. Bring to a boil and immediately reduce heat to bring the stock to a bare simmer or just below a simmer. Skim off any foamy crud that may float to the surface of the stock. Add salt and pepper, about 1 tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp of pepper. You can always add salt to the soup later. Cook for at least 4 hours, uncovered or partially uncovered (so the stock reduces), occasionally skimming off any foam that comes to the surface. Remove the bones and veggies and strain the stock, ideally through a very fine mesh strainer. If making stock for future use in soup you may want to reduce the stock by cooking it longer, uncovered, at a bare simmer, to make it more concentrated and easier to store.
Prepare the turkey soup much as you would a chicken soup. With your stock already made, add additional fresh chopped carrots, onions, and celery in equal parts. Add some parsley, a couple cloves of garlic. Add seasoning – poultry seasoning, sage, thyme, marjoram and/or a bouillon cube. Cook at a bare simmer until the vegetables are cooked through. Take some of the remaining turkey meat you reserved earlier, shred it into bite sized pieces and add to the soup. You may also want to add some chopped tomatoes, either fresh or canned. Add salt and pepper to taste. And a dash of hot sauce. Enjoy!