The sense of smell is the sense most closely to linked to memory, so it's not surprising that as I was helping my mom make turkey soup this weekend I was instantly transported back to my childhood kitchen. The smell of homemade turkey soup filled our home the days after Thanksgiving and became a staple for my family through the winter months. My mom would make a large batch and then freeze some to enjoy all winter. It was the go-to meal after a cold day on the ski slopes or in the hockey rink, and of course it was a necessity any time a cold or flu came into the household. It seemed to have magic power, not only against the common cold, but also to provide comfort when life became as dreary as the weather. I've written about comfort foods in the past, but this one seems to have comfort cooked right in (I would add it as an ingredient if I could). I have fond memories of helping my mom make this soup, although I am told that this "helper" role was more about trying to snag juicy pieces of turkey than actually helping. So now as an adult, with a daughter of my own who might need some magic this winter, I decided it was the year to learn all the secrets behind this tasty soup. What did I learn? All you need to make magic is a big stock pot, a few fresh ingredients and a whole lot of love... enjoy!
Here's what you'll need:
- Carcass from a 14-18 lb turkey (larger or smaller will work but you may want to adjust other quantities)
- 1-1.5 cups chopped carrots
- 1-1.5 cups chopped celery
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 3/4 cup uncooked rice
Here's how you do it:
- Place turkey carcass in large stock pot, fill about half way with water and then bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer for about an hour.
- Remove carcass and place in large colander to drain. Pull off remaining meat from bones and put meat back in stock pot. Use a slotted spoon to sift through the water to ensure there are no small remaining bones.
- Add carrots, celery, onion, rice, salt and pepper. Bring back to a simmer and cover, simmer for 45-60 minutes, or until the carrots are soft.
- Add additional salt and pepper to taste. Serve with bread and enjoy!