Wednesday, January 7, 2015


In anticipation of these cold winter days I had removed my Thanksgiving turkey carcass from the freezer and set about to make my hubby's favorite Thanksgiving leftover - turkey soup.

Here is the label if you would like to copy and print for your use.

View from the living room, looking at the backyard and the trees along the creek.

I am going to go step-by-step on how to make this soup, it is really not that complicated and by using a few veggies and some grains and a turkey carcass that most folks toss away, you have a wonderful, nutritious soup for several meals.  Using this same principal you can make several soups, including chicken, turkey, bean, lentil, you could even keep steak bones in a bag in the freezer (had a good friend who did this) and make beef soup, etc. Just keep them in the freezer until ready to make your soup.  This was about a 15 pound bird so I had to use (2) stock pots but with a chicken you would only have to use one pot.  While raising my family I had a big restaurant stock pot but gave it away so when I do turkey soup I just use (2) pots.  First you will clean out the turkey carcass, making sure to get all the stuffing out of the bird that remains.  I just run water through the bird.  Next you will need to break it apart, pulling off the wings and legs if still attached and then separating the body.  In your stock pot you will put the bird (or in my case 1/2 in each pot), some peeled and roughly chopped garlic, a few bay leaves, a scant handful of black peppercorns and then some chunks of carrots, celery and an onion or two quartered. This is a good place to use tired veggies as  you are not going to eat them much like when making stock.  Fill your pot to almost the top, bring to a boil, turn the heat down and go do something else.  Let this just cook until the meat falls off the bones.
Here are my two pots before they came to a boil.....
After a couple of hours this is what your soup will look like.  Turn off the heat and let it completely cool.  Next (over a large container I use the big yellow Tupperware bowl) strain the liquid and pull out the meat and set aside.  Discard everything but the broth and the meat. Any fat in the broth will be easy to skim off before adding the rest of the ingredients to the soup.
Take the strained broth and put back into the stock pot (skim off the fat) and add your grains.  I like to add brown rice, wheat berries and hulled barley but you can add any grains you like.  All three of these take quite a while to cook so I bring them to a boil and turn the heat down and let them cook until they are done. You could add noodles.  I added about 3/4 cup of some nice Lebanese couscous, the big pearly kind. But remember if you are adding pasta you do not want to overcook the pasta - I put the couscous in the very last and cooked only until it was al dente. If I were adding noodles I would cook them separately and add them to the heated soup just before serving, you don't want to end up with gruel, you want soup.

You are now ready to start to assemble the soup. Pick the meat off the bones, personal preference as to how you chop the meat - I like to just shred it and then do a rough chop so that every piece is a bite size piece. Next (these are all approximate amounts because it depends on how much meat, broth etc. that you have) dice about two cups of onions (or shallots or leeks), two cups of carrots and two cups of celery.  Into a large pan put a little olive oil and start with the carrots, saute for a bit then add the onions, next the celery.  Once you have these sauteed add about 3/4 cup finely chopped parsley and let that cook for a bit. Add the meat and the cooked veggies to the stock with the grains, salt and pepper to taste.  I ended up with (8) jars (24oz jars) soup for dinner and soup for the freezer. Make your label and date (my date was on a little label on the back).  Add a crusty piece of bread and a little salad and you have a yummy winter tummy warmer. 

 If you are using leftover cooked meat in soup, consume within 2-3 days.  All other soup will last up to a week refrigerated, six months in the freezer. Bon appetit!


Lebanese couscous, Williams-Sonoma
Dexas Flexible cutting board, Williams-Sonoma
Grains, Whole Foods. grocery or health foods store
Stock pots, Williams-Sonoma
Label design software, Corel Draw, CorelDRAW Home and Student Suite X6 - 3 Users
Label, Avery full sheet label, Avery® White Full-Sheet Labels for Inkjet Printers with  TrueBlock(TM) Technology, 8-1/2 inches x 11 inches, Pack of 25 (8165)
Canning jars, Amazon, Ball Wide Mouth 24-Ounce Jars with Lids and Bands, Set of 9
Pantry Labels, Martha Stewart at Staples
Pantry Label font, Embassy BT
Recipe source, from me!

Thank you for stopping by.



  2. Yes it does Anonymous - it's cold all over the USA and good, nutritious, hot soup is a good thing. As always, thank you for stopping by. jj