turkey stock and soup

Amys Gluten Free Pantry

We have a post Thanks­giv­ing tra­di­tion that wouldn’t be the same with­out Turkey Soup. It started with my mother-in-law, Anka, and I’m happy to carry the tra­di­tion for­ward. As much a tra­di­tion as Thanks­giv­ing itself, the day after offers a casual, com­fort­able respite for any­one who couldn’t attend the day prior. So many of us find our­selves hav­ing to be two places for the hol­i­days, this tra­di­tion frees peo­ple up to slow down a bit and spread out their time with family.

Another tra­di­tion for our fam­ily is that my husband’s brother, Steve flies in from Munich each year for his two-week fix of Amer­i­cana. Born in the states, he left for board­ing school at 13 and has lived in Europe ever since. More “Amer­i­can” than any of his sib­lings, he can simul­ta­ne­ously watch foot­ball, read the San Diego Union-Tribune sports page and lis­ten to sports radio. We talk Euro­pean and Amer­i­can pol­i­tics, he mixes drinks and tells us about the babies he’s deliv­ered and we all give him a hard time about his cre­ative tri-lingual translations.

The great thing about hol­i­days, is that tra­di­tions are some­thing you can delib­er­ately ini­ti­ate, or they can sim­ply hap­pen on their own. Before com­ing to this coun­try, my in-laws spent five years in a British refugee camp. Noth­ing was wasted, not even a but­ton or a piece of string. So I have every con­fi­dence that our tra­di­tion of turkey soup was borne of Anka’s reluc­tance to throw away a per­fectly good turkey car­cass that could be trans­formed into a nour­ish­ing and deli­cious soup for her family. This hol­i­day sea­son, start a new tra­di­tion or sim­ply take a moment to appre­ci­ate the ones that have emerged along the way.

Prep time: 25 min­utes
Total time: 4 hours
Yield: 8–10 servings

for stock:
1 turkey car­cass

4 large car­rots, cut into thirds
6 stalks of cel­ery, cut into thirds
2 large yel­low onions, skin removed, cut in half
2 whole gar­lic cloves, skin removed
4 bay leaves
2 tsp. salt
15 whole pep­per­corns
10–12 c. water depend­ing on the size of your turkey

for soup:
6–7 c. left­over turkey meat, shred­ded into bite-sized pieces
3 T olive oil, divided
3 large car­rots, chopped (about 3 cups)
8 stalks cel­ery, chopped (about 3 cups)
2 medium yel­low onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
1–2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. freshly ground pep­per
2 tsp. Hun­gar­ian paprika
(omit for night­shade allergy)
10–12 c. turkey broth
4 scal­lions, thinly sliced on a diagonal

For stock:

  1. Cover turkey car­cass with water and add onions, car­rots, cel­ery, bay leaves, pep­per­corns and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce and sim­mer for 3 1/2 hours, skim­ming the fat from the top of the pot.
  2. Remove car­cass with tongs, then pour stock through a fine sieve (or wet cheese cloth) and dis­card solids.
    NOTE: I typ­i­cally make my stock the night before so that once it cools, I put it in the fridge overnight, then scrap off the solid cold fat that has sep­a­rated to the top. If you make stock the same day you use it in soup, a short cut to remove the fat from the stock is to cool it in batches in shal­low con­tain­ers like casse­role dishes, then pour through a 4 cup fat sep­a­ra­tor. (Use­ful in a vari­ety of dishes, turkey stock can be sub­sti­tuted for chicken broth, or frozen for up to 3 months in plas­tic containers).
For soup:
  1. Heat oil in large stock pot. Add car­rots, cel­ery and onions and saute until translu­cent and soft, about 8 minutes.
  2. Add half of the salt, pep­per and paprika and stir.
  3. Add stock and bring to a boil. Reduce to sim­mer for 5 minutes.
  4. Add meat and remain­ing sea­son­ings. Heat through and taste and adjust for seasonings.
  5. When ready to serve, ladle into bowls and top with a sprin­kling of scallions.

Posted in holidays + special events, soups | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

One Response to turkey stock and soup

  1. Judith says:

    I loved the descirp­tion you gave of Ste­vie, very accu­rate!
    Love, Judith

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