Friday, November 25, 2011

Thanksgiving Leftover Turkey Soup

Post Thanksgiving, aka Black Friday, has been a relaxing, yet semi-productive day!

Yesterday Jordan and I hit three Thanksgivings, but of course, we did not pace ourselves and only really ate at the first one.

We did, however, get some lovely leftovers. One of my best finds would have to be the turkey carcass from Jordan’s brother’s house. I was helping with clean up, and they were going to throw the bird remains away! Since no one else was interested in making soup with it, I decided to step up and offer to take it off of their hands.

As you may know, I was a vegetarian for quite some time. I am now back to my omnivorous ways, but I still try to limit my impact of animal eating by at least making use of as much as I can- hence, my compulsive need to repurpose the carcass.

So this morning I started my turkey soup making.  This is only my second attempt making a soup with a carcass- so I am sure my routine could use some refining, and from some internet sources I read, many people add in a lot more steps, but, frankly I think mine came out just fine.

Ingredients used:
·      1 Turkey carcass(I only used half of mine, and froze the rest for a later time)
·      1 Red onion
·      1 Yellow onion
·      4 ribs Celery, chopped
·      ~ 2 pounds Carrots, chopped
·      4 tiny Red potato, quartered
·      2 medium Idaho potato, chopped
·      1 Italian pepper, chopped
·      1 cup Frozen peas
·      ½ cup Frozen corn
·      2 cups dry Egg noodles
·      1 cup dry Lentils
·      5 cloves garlic, sliced
·      Thyme
·      Rosemary
·      Black pepper
·      Parsley
·      Oregano 

(As usual- I just used whatever veggies I had around- no real need for mixed colors of onions/ potatoes etc, they just happened to be hanging around) 

1.     I started by making the stock by placing the carcass in my crockpot with water, the veggies that were stuffed inside (in this case red onion, celery, and parsley). I also threw in an additional yellow onion (quartered) and a few carrots (roughly chopped).  I simmered this for a few hours. 

2.     During the interm, I chopped up some of the other veggies and threw them into the pot as I went.  I also added the spices and garlic at this time.

3.     After a few hours of simmering I removed the bones from the stock. Some of the meat had already fallen off, but I picked at the carcass and removed the rest of the meat before throwing it away. I gave the weird bits that I wasn’t quite sure what they were to Leo, who was quite appreciative. 

4.     I added the meat back into the stock.  ** This is where my methods varied from a lot of others I read, many people make the stock, strain it, cool it, remove the fat etc, and get rid of the veggies and stuff they used in the stock.. but I just kept it in there. I only had a little bit of fat on the top so I just skimmed that off in the crock pot. 

5. I then added the egg noodles and lentils.
6. I then continued simmering the soup on low for most of the day. I decided I wanted it to be a bit thicker of a soup, so I removed some of the large pieces of potatoes, carrots, and celery and placed them in another bowl and blenderized them with an immersion blender, then added the pureed soup back into the crock pot.

Here are a few pictures of the end result. I was surprised how much meat was actually in the soup considering it was only what was on half of a turkey carcass- and what was going to be thrown away! 

What are you making with your Thanksgiving left overs?? 

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