Thursday, October 13, 2011
Oct 10 BBQ lamb at our friend's house
Oct 11 Penne a la Vodka from Supperworks
Oct 12 Turkey Scotch Broth
The weather was so beautiful all weekend and it really was a perfect Thanksgiving even though we didn't get to spend it with my sister and her family but we will be going there in a week so I will get another turkey dinner then. This is never a bad thing in my books because I adore a turkey dinner. This year we had our thanksgiving dinner with The Neighbours and they kindly gave me the turkey carcass so that I could make soup for all of us. Shack's scottish Aunt Annie made us a big pot of scotch broth when we went to visit her in Aberdeen and that was the first time I had eaten this hearty, comforting soup. I have made it with beef a few times (he doesn't like lamb at all because he is insane) but his favourite is this turkey version so he was very happy about it and was really looking forward to it. This is a recipe that I never really change, I don't try to fancy it up or make it more elegant or infuse elements from some other exotic, ethnic cuisine into it. It's perfect as is.
Turkey Scotch Broth
(you will probably have way more turkey stock so you can either double this recipe and make a ton of scotch broth, or you can use the rest of the turkey stock for other stuff - I freeze mine and use it for sopa de lima at a later date)
1 leftover carcass from a roast turkey, cut up and ripped apart
3 large carrots, cut in four chunks
3 stalks celery, cut into four chunks
2 whole onions, skin on, quartered
2 or 3 bay leaves
10 cups Turkey stock
1 tbls oil
1 cup carrots, diced
1 cup parsnips, diced
1 cup med turnip, diced
1 leek, cut in half and thinly sliced
1 clove garlic
1 bay leaf
1 cup potato diced
2-3 sprigs fresh thyme
1/2 cup pot barley
about 1 1/2 cups turkey from the carcass
kosher salt and pepper
Break your turkey carcass apart in big chunks and put it in the largest stock pot you own. Cover it with cold water until it's covered by at least a couple of inches of water. Add the rest of the ingredients, bring it to a boil and then turn it the heat down until you have a nice, light simmer and let it cook for at least a few hours. I often let it go for about 4 or 5 hours until it's reduced by quite a bit and tastes good. Since this is going to be the base of your soup, if it tastes weak or watery now, it's probably not going to be strong enough. If you don't think it tastes right, let it simmer longer. After it's been simmering for a couple of hours, I start tasting and salting. I also like to make it the day before so I can put it in the fridge and let all the fat congeal on the top so it's easier to dispose of. I also think the stock is tastier the next day. If you can't do that, let the finished, strained stock sit as long as you can off the heat and skim the fat off.
Anyway, when the stock tastes right to you, remove the huge pot from the heat and strain the contents of that pot into another, smaller but still large stock pot. I have my method - I use a large slotted spoon to start taking out the guts of the stock pot little by little and putting them in a mesh strainer that fits over my second stock pot. I have a giant bowl for the fat, bones, vegetable chunks etc and I pick out all of the good meat and put that in a big bowl to use later in the soup. This is kind of messy, tedious work if you are in a hurry so that is just one more reason why, if you can, make the stock the day before so you can let the bones and meat cool before you start picking through it or else you will burn your fingers a bit.
When this is all done, you will have a bowl of good turkey meat, an empty huge stock pot and a second stock pot full of strained turkey stock. Either put that in the fridge to use the next day or try to get as much fat off the top of the stock as you can manage.
Now you make the soup.
Heat the oil in a large soup pot over med heat and sauté the leek, carrot, turnip, parsnip, garlic and bay leaf for about 5 minutes or so, until the vegetables are softened. Add the barley and sauté for another minute before adding in the turkey stock. Bring to a boil and let simmer for about half an hour before adding the potato and the sprigs of thyme. Let cook for another 25 minutes and throw in the shredded, cooked turkey meat and cook for another 5 minutes or so and serve.