Sunday, December 12, 2010

EDU: Leftover Turkey Soup

So I made this soup the weekend after Thanksgiving, when everyone was home with their family and I had the pleasure of coming back to Boston for work on Friday. This unfortunate situation was not without its perks. I enjoyed the pity of my entire family and my mom gave me almost all the leftovers, including the turkey carcass. I've heard time and time again that there is nothing like a soup made with from homemade stock. I didn't disagree, but I also didn't have an entire afternoon to simmer and stir watery bones. Well I'm happy to report that it is just as delicious as those pretentious foodies would have you believe. Here are the ingredients:

  • 1 leftover turkey carcass
  • 3 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 2 celery ribs, diced
  • 1 cup butter, cubed
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups half-and-half cream
  • 1 cup uncooked long grain rice
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon granules
  • 3/4 teaspoon pepper

This is the turkey carcass I have been speaking of. It was terrifying. I did not have high hopes at this juncture. Add just enough water to submerge the turkey and boil for about an hour.

So I did. In the meantime I cut up the veggies I would be using and did some laundry. Carrots, onions, celery, the usual suspects. Here they are:

After a few minutes, the stock really smelled promising. So promising in fact that I heard my downstairs neighbors talking with each other about how awesome it smelled when I was taking my laundry out of the dryer.

Awesome indeed. I pulled out the bones and poured the rest through a pasta strainer.

Who knew water and muscle fibers could make such wonderful music together? The broth looked amazing, and the turkey was falling off the bone. I was flabbergasted with how much meat there was. I discarded the bones and thanked them for their service.

I cooked the veggies in butter, and they did their thing.

I stirred in a cup of flour to thicken, added the broth slowly and brought things to a boil. Once the flour and broth were playing nicely, I added all the other goodies. Half and half, turkey, chicken bouillon, rice, salt/pepper. Simmered the whole mess for a half hour to cook the rice and ladled it out.

Here's the finished product with oyster crackers.

It was delicious. Thick, creamy, hearty, all those wonderful adjectives. There was a lot going on, but it melded really nicely, and I don't think it would have been half as good if I used canned chicken stock. The fat and connective that dissolved into the broth added flavors that you can't get in a jar, and I'm definitely staking claim on the Christmas turkey when I go home.

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