Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Turkey Into Soup

Well, the Green Death is all et up, as is the pecan pie (that went fast), pumpkin pie, peach pie, peach cobbler, stuffing (we ate that for 3 meals/day for quite some time...)... and I'm sorry to say the mashed potatoes served the birds. That is, they were all calorie-infused what with butter (a lot) and cream cheese (a lot). They were intended for a potluck that wasn't, and while reheating them in the crock pot worked grandly, keeping them warm in said crock pot for ... a day or two... probably wasn't the best idea. I tossed them when they began to turn a toasty brown shade.

But the turkey! It continues to bless us.

On Sunday I took to it with a knife, dicing up a gallon ziploc full of bits, and mostly filling another with larger chunks. These went into the freezer to make pot pie and other yummy things later. I removed the skin (and attached quills, ahem) and fed it to the cats and dog, and broke the remainder up and put it in my roaster thing. Does anybody know the name for that? My mom used to call it "the Nesco", but this one isn't a Nesco brand. It's like a giant, rectangular, steel, thermostatically-controlled crockpot. Great for roasting, and making big bunches of whatever. Anyways, into this contraption went the skinless bird - lots of meat, and all the bones. I turned it to just over boiling (212 degrees or so) and let it simmer that day. And night. And yesterday. Wait, did it really cook that long? Hm. Well, as long as it's kept at least 140 (the magic bacteria-inhibiting temperature) it's fine. I didn't boil it all that time, but kept it hot. This morning I turned it off for a few hours, and then did the tedious task of separating everything within it. I get out several bowls of varying sizes, and sort accordingly: Bones Which Might Kill The Dog (Hubby requests I not feed her such, otherwise I would), Nice Meat Which We Will Eat, and Weird Creepy Stuff For The Dog. What's left is a murky, bit-infused broth, which is remedied by pouring through strainers/sieves/filters until it's fairly nice. This is a step my mom didn't (doesn't?) do, and it's made all the difference in the world to me in the palatability of homemade soups. I'm also much pickier between Meat and Weird Creepies. (Sorry Mom)

At this point I looked at the clock and freaked out because we were making an unusual Tuesday trip to town - consisting of grocery shopping at Costco, portrait-taking at Sears, and a dentist appointment. And if that's not a perfect schedule for a masochist, I don't know what is. But don't worry: we survived, if barely. Organique only screamed and cried when it was her turn to have her picture taken. And ran around. And left the studio. And tripped and banged her head, which of course, resulted in more screaming and crying, only this time with a nice mark upon her forehead.

But we were talking about soup. Tomorrow I will dice some carrots, de-insecticide some celery, then dice it, cut up an onion, toss in some (more) bay leaves, thyme, maybe savory or sage, and eventually some peas, and have tastey soup. Oh, and probably some barley, and a pound of salt. Hubby doesn't think it's food if a spoon can't stand straight up in a bowl of it. I don't think it's food if it isn't nicely salted.

Once upon a time I let my turkey carcasses end up in the trash. Now I never do (perhaps because so much effort and expense goes into raising and readying the buggers), and I encourage you to try it, if you haven't. It's wonderfully nutritious, perfect for the season, and makes several meals with the addition of a few cheap veggies and a grain.

1 comment:

MamaJ said...

Didn't you read about my harrowing Sears picture-taking experience? There's something about that place, I tell ya! I am sure they'll turn out great, though!

The soup sounds yummy!!