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Turkey Soup

Well, the birds are history. Following in my mother's footsteps, I made "carcass soup" on the day after T'giving. We had 2 turkeys, a regular ol' Butterball & a smoked turkey. I used both, and the broth is incredibly rich. The smoked turkey gives it a whole other dimension.

My hubby took a big container with him on his annual fishing trip to Cape Hatteras -- used it as a base for a veggie soup for the rest of the "boys". He called today to tell me that it was a great success. I made a veggie soup for myself & will have lunch for a week or more.

My mother used to make somethin called "rivvel soup", which I think was a Pennsyvania German soup. It had the usual veggies, heavy on the carrots, but she would put home made "dumplings" (rivvels?), kind of like shorter spaetzle, in at the very end.

Do any of you give the bird a bath in the soup pot?

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  1. I love to make turkey soup from the carcass also. We also always have a smoked turkey but when I mixed the two to make broth, it seemed kinda funny for turkey noodle. The taste was off. So, for several years I only used the regular roasted turkey carcass. I discovered last year though that if I do the smoked turkey carcass seperate, it tastes more like a ham broth. I actually used the smoked turkey carcass yesterday and make a kinda veggie soup with it. I included great northern beans, celery, carrots, potatoes, cabbage and some macaroni. Delicious and everyone loved it

    1. I always process the carcass into stock - sometimes just freezing gallon ziplocks for later use. Today I made the Turkey Mulligatawny soup recipe featured in the Chow e-mail - delightful! And I still have a least 2 quarts to use for a more basic turkey soup. I agree with the poster who noted that smoked turkey stock is a great sub for ham stock - makes a wicked good pea soup. Or a bean soup. Might try it in a black bean soup (since it always needs as much flavoring as you can give it!)

      2 Replies
      1. re: dgreenwood

        I've tried it with beany items, and it was yummy. I took some of the stock & made a traditional veggie soup, but added cans of fire roasted tomatoes. very good. I prefer my soups to be more like a certain food host's "stoups", so I like to add rice or noodles in the bowl if the soup is not already thick, or some barley to the soup itself. This smoked turkey (store bought "Honeysuckle" smoked) was not nearly as strong in flavor as breasts that I have smoked myself. In addition, my sis had discarded a lot of the skin, which I find carries a good bit of the smokey taste. I have one more big container of stock-with-the-off-the-carcass-bits that I put in the freezer. I may take that out as winter progresses & do a split pea. I LOVE split pea. Or lentil. Or bean. Have any of you ever taken a portion of the soup & used your stick blender on it to make a thicker texture to mix in with the rest? It's a good trick.

        1. re: PattiCakes

          a strip of the smoked turkey skin, or better yet, a smoked wing or 2, are a good sub for the traditional ham hock in new-school southern cooking-- example: used in slow cooked greens/collards. it's a useful trick when you're preparing traditional meals, but not all the guests eat pork. i usually try to snag the wings of a smoked turkey and freeze, for this purpose, if i can.

      2. Anyone who doesn't make stock is wasting a lot of good bones & stuff. Many people have water these days ;-) and all you need is a pot, a few aromatics, and a slow simmer overnight and you're done.

        1 Reply
        1. re: HaagenDazs

          My husband requested turkey soup. I made broth yesterday. Skimmed fat off this morning and proceeded to make the mock chicken noodle soup from one of the Moosewood Cookbooks. Except I use real turkey instead of tofu and rice instead of noodles. The soup is flavored with a bit of dill weed and thyme plus garlic etc. It has a wonderful flavor.

        2. Turkey stock makes for great congee.

          1 Reply
          1. re: ipsedixit

            That's what I've been making for the last three years or so. It's very popular!

          2. Every year, right after Thanksgiving, there’s another thread on what do you do with the leftovers? How do you make turkey soup? Every year I read through the old threads and the new ones and am always taken with the originality of the gumbos and the pot pies and the enchiladas. And every year I do what I always do—clean out the refrigerator and the cabinets. After making the stock and adding the mirepoix, I add as many leftovers as I’m willing to part with (this year, chopped Brussels sprouts with chestnuts, gravy, roasted potatoes, and all the turkey I’m not going to put into sandwiches). Then I start on the cabinets: bits of pasta and rice that would never satisfy a complete recipe, canned beans that are approaching their expiration date. And I always add more carrots, turnips, and frozen corn, peas, and lima beans. I can’t really call it a soup; it’s more like starch and veggies in a little liquid.

            But I love it. Good thing, too, since I usually end up with close to 6 quarts of it that lasts me through the winter. I’m sure that next year I’ll again read through the threads, admire the wonderful recipes, and end up with my leftover soup. Satisfying in so many ways.