Every November for the last 7 (or 8 we're not sure, lol) years I've had a turkey dinner with a group of wonderful girlfriends. We all met working for the same theatre company and have stayed in touch through the years. Even though most of us have moved on to different career paths we always make sure to take the time to have this meal and bend each other's ears. There's always a lot of wine and a lot of conversation. We've been through weddings, breakups, babies, real estate deals, job losses, travel...you name it. I love having this annual tradition to count on.
You know it's a good party when you forget to take pictures. I almost always forget to take pictures at this party. One thing I didn't forget to do this year was save the carcass and make a delicious turkey soup.
What you'll need:
FOR THE STOCK
1 Turkey Carcass, broken into 3 or 4 pieces (with lots of leftover meat on it, including the wings, if you can manage it). My favourite way to do a Turkey lately is by using the super easy pre-stuffed, cooked from frozen Butterball Turkey.
2 Celery Stalks, roughly chopped, including leaves
3 Onions, quartered, skin on
3 Carrots, roughly chopped
3 Parsnips, roughly chopped
6 cloves of garlic, peeled
6 stems of Parsley
1 TSP Dried Thyme
2 Bay Leaves
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
12 Cups Cold Water
FOR THE SOUP
2 Bunches of Carrots
Salt and Pepper to taste
1. In a large stockpot, combine all of the stock ingredients.
2. Bring to a boil, skimming the foam (fat) off the top as it boils.
3. Reduce heat to minimum, cover and let simmer for 5 hours. Your house will smell a m a z i n g.
4. Strain thoroughly, reserving as much of the turkey meat as you can to chop or shred and add to the finished product.
|Get your stock started first thing in the morning.|
|BOOM! Five hours later, delicious stock!|
5. I like to chill the stock (either in the fridge or outside) over night. The next day, skim off any fat that has gelled at the top.
6. Add chopped carrots and onions and shredded or chopped turkey to the stock. Season to taste. I like to keep the veggies big, especially the onions because that's the way my mom makes her turkey soup, with big onions that curl up and scoop up some of the liquid.
7. I always have my first bowl plain, as is. Eventually I'll mix it up and add flat leaf parsley or a squeeze of lemon for acidity or creole seasoning and egg noodles.
This also freezes beautifully, so making a big batch like this is totally worth it.
What are your "must haves" in your homemade Turkey or Chicken Soup? Let me know, and I'll give them a try when I make this soup again on Boxing Day! I can't wait!