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Oct 9, 2000 01:57 PM

Turkey Stuffed with a Rabbit and Steak Smothered with Chops

  • p

I have discovered two food items that are referred
to in a number of Hollywood films of the Thirties and Forties that don't seem to exist today. They are: a turkey stuffed with a rabbit and steak smothered in chops (what kind of chops is never mentioned). In "Pride of the Yankees," Babe Ruth, playing himself, orders a steak smothered in chops at a big restaurant. In "Band of Angels," Clark Gable tells his cook to make his friend a turkey stuffed with rabbit and the friend says, "and a steak smothered in chops"! And there are lots more references! I can't even find older people who've heard of either dish. Does anyone have any clues? Thanks.

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  1. My Dad used to order steak somothered with chops and the chops were chopped onions (he was born in 1914). Although turkey stuffed with a rabbit is unfamiliar - there's an earlier thread on turkadin (sp?) which is a turkey stuffed with a duck, stuffed with a chicken, etc. What was the old joke? You get down to the fig stuffed with the almond and throw the rest away?

    5 Replies
    1. re: bryan
      Gabriel Solis

      No, not a joke (though I like that punchline--and it reminds me of a very funny true story about a New Englander in California trying to come to terms with the tamale, but I digress). I've seen recipes for this item in a number of books, including the one I often turn to for basics, the 1949 edition of Fannie Farmer. (all must be whole, skin on, boned for the preparation to work, it seems). Never had the inclination to try making it, though.


      1. re: Gabriel Solis

        So would this sort of be like a gallantine? Is the thing deboned or what?

        1. re: bryan

          The name comes from combining the words 'turkey',
          'duck' and 'chicken'. You can mail order a
          Turducken from suppliers in New Orleans.
          Anyway, I think the mail order version is
          indeed deboned and it's a turkey
          stuffed with a duck stuffed with a chicken
          stuffed with a quail, etc. And between each
          animal is a savory dressing (various types
          are available I think). I guess you could say it's
          somewhat reminiscent of a gallatine only
          gigantic and quite costly. Every time I'm
          tempted to order one I "chicken" out because of
          the price.

          1. re: christina z

            We got turduckens the past two Thanksgivings. They are great. Turkey-stuffing-duck-stuffing-chicken. Definitely a good change of pace. Great foil for gewurtztraminer.

            We got ours from a butcher that I think is called the Gourmet Butcher Block. They are they ones who supply John Madden with his 8-legged turkey for the game he calls on Thanksgiving. They also have various other stuffed meats and fowl.

            Someplace on the Net is a good listing of butchers that ship turduckens.

            Also, I have heard stories of a South African version called an osturducken that adds an ostrich breast as the outer layer. Can anyone confirm or deny?

            1. re: Bob W.

              Well...kinda. Has anybody heard that goofy holiday thing they do on Morning Edition every year, where Bob Edwards hosts dinner (Thanksgiving? Christmas?) with each course done (through the magic of audiotape) by a different celebrity chef? Paul Prudhomme is last, bearing the aforementioned chicken inside a duck inside a turkey. Always struck me as a bit over-the-top.

              Who knew you could get 'em mail-order? Whatta country.