1 turkey pack
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 stalk celery, chopper
1 TBS dried thyme
1 bay leaf
From the turkey pack—drumstick, back and wing—you can make a couple of quarts of stock and also remove several cups of chopped meat from the bones.
Separate the wing joints. Crack the first wing joint into two inch pieces. (That would be the flat one farthest from the body of the bird.) Chop the back into three pieces.
Place all of the turkey pieces in a large heavy bottom pan and cover with water by about two inches. Bring the water to a boil and skim for 3-4 minutes. Lower the heat to medium or medium low and add the vegetables and herbs.
Cook for about 4 hours. The stock should bubble but not boil vigorously.
After a couple of hours start checking the large wing joints and the drum stick. When you can easily remove the meat from the bone take that piece out of the stock and lay in on a plate. When it is cool enough to handle remove the meat from the bone. Return the bones and skin to the stock pot.
Chop the meat and set aside for later use.
When the stock has cooked, let it cool to warm. Pour the stock through a strainer lined with damp cloth. Cool completely and refrigerate. The next day, remove and fat that has risen to the top. Reheat the stock over medium low and reduce it to concentrate the flavor.
Freeze the stock in small portions for later use.
You can use the turkey meat for these two classic recipes:
CHICKEN POT PIE
2 leg-thigh pieces
2 cups peeled, chopped carrots 1 inch pieces
1 cup chopped celery, 1 inch pieces
2 cups chopped onions
1 cup rich chicken stock
2 tsp dried thyme
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper
Place the vegetables and chicken stock in a heavy bottom pan. Add the thyme and bay leaf. Bring to the boil and then lower heat to medium low. Put the chicken into the pan so that it rests on the bottom of the pan with the vegetables surrounding. Add enough water to cover the chicken pieces. Cover with a lid and poach in a 350 degree oven until the meat falls easily from the bone—about 1 hour.
When the chicken is cooked, remove the pan from the oven. Take the chicken from the pan and put aside to cool. Strain the vegetables from the broth. Measure the broth. For each 1 ½ to 2 cups of broth, you will use 2-2 1/2 TBS of flour to thicken the “sauce.”
Place the flour in a bowl. Slowly whisk in some broth. Whisk to eliminate any lumps. Return the broth to the pan. Add the vegetables into the broth with the flour mixture. Cook over medium high heat until the “sauce” is thickened. Season well with salt and pepper and set aside.
Remove the chicken from the bones and cut into 1 inch pieces. Add to the vegetables and “sauce.” You can make the dish to this point the day before.
When you are ready to bake the pot pie, fill the pie dish with the chicken-vegetable mixture. Cover it with a round of your favorite pie pastry. Pinch the edges of the pastry against the rim of the pie plate.
Bake in a 450 degree oven for 10 minutes. Lower the heat to 350. Total baking time will be about 40 minutes.
I prefer pie crusts made with lard for these kinds of dishes. The following recipe is from Cooking From Quilt Country by Marsha Adams.
Lard Crust for Pies
1 cup lard
½ cup hot water
3 cups flour
1 tsp salt
Measure the lard and place it in a metal bowl in a warm spot. Choose a mixing bowl that will accommodate the three cups of flour. Let the lard soften and nearly melt.
When the lard has nearly melted, take ½ cup from a pan of boiling water and pour it over the lard. Let the water and lard mixture cool. Stir from time to time.
Measure the flour and add the salt to it.
Add the flour and salt to the mixing bowl with the lard and water. Stir with a fork. When the liquid was been absorbed by the flour change from a fork to a rubber spatula and continue to press the dough together. Form into a ball, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for three or four hours or preferably overnight.
You will need only about a third of the dough to cover a 9 inch pie dish.
Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Place the pie in the middle of the oven. Put a tray or some foil on the rack below in case the pie bubbles over.
After 10 minutes, reduce the heat to 350. Bake for an additional 30 to 40 minutes. The top should be colored slightly and appear dry and flakey.
Every cuisine or culture makes some type of dumplings. Some are dense and heavy others are light and airy. They are stuffed, plain, large or small. Dumplings can be sweet or savory. Ingredients include some or all of these ingredients: flour, baking powder, yeast, eggs, milk, salt, herbs and mashed potatoes or even cream.
You can use the same chicken preparation for the pot pie in this traditional Chicken and Dumpling recipe. Do not thicken the broth with flour as directed for the pot pie. This is a traditional American style dumpling recipe:
1 cup flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 TBS butter, cold
1 egg beaten
6 TBS milk
2 TBS minced fresh parsley, fresh sage or dried thyme (optional)
Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or quickly with the tips of your fingers. When this mixture resembles coarse meal add egg, milk and parsley. Blend but do not over mix.
Drop tablespoon sized dumplings on the simmer stew you have prepared. Cover the pot tightly and simmer on medium low for 20 minutes. Do not lift the lid during this cooking time.
Serve the dumplings with the stew or soup in which they were poached.
This recipe makes six large dumplings or ten to 12 small dumplings.
Most recipes for chicken pot pie or chicken and dumplings suggest the addition of frozen green peas. I think Brussels sprouts, trimmed and quartered can be used instead of frozen peas.
To refresh frozen snow peas
Drop the thawed snow peas in boiling salted water. When the water returns to the boil, remove the snow peas. Let the air dry. Stir fry the snow peas in olive oil and butter until they are hot. Season with salt and pepper and serve.
Julienne the blanched snow peas (make think slices length wise) and add to turkey noodle soup or any vegetable soup.
Julienne of Snow Peas and “fried” Corn
Place a tablespoon of butter in a non-stick sauté pan. Add a package of thawed corn. Heat over medium-high until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add the julienne of snow peas. Season with salt and pepper. Add a teaspoon of minced fresh rosemary.
For a quick soup:
Bring 2-3 cups of stock to the boil. Add thawed sweet corn and the julienne of snow peas. Add a cup of diced, cooked turnip. Season well with a little dried thyme, salt and pepper. Add 3-4 leaves of choppe Napa cabbage. To make this a one dish kind of stew, finish with a cup of cooked rice or diced cooked potatoes or some cooked rigatoni.
An American Tradition
Your favorite meat loaf (Check FFM recipe files)
Mashed potatoes with and addition of pureed turnip and gravy
What a great winter meal that will remind us of last summer’s bounty and a look at the calendar to remind one that spring will come again.
Frozen Fruit and Canned Peaches
Thaw the fruit and combine it with the canned peaches. Add a half cup of orange juice. Keep this combination in the fridge for snacks or for dessert.
These frozen or canned fruit products are great for smoothies—not to mention good for our health in the winter.
Peel and boil the turnips. Keep the cooked turnips for 3-4 days in the fridge. Dice cooked turnips and add them to soup. Use some when making mashed potatoes. A 2-3 to 1, potatoes to turnips is a good ratio.
Saute onions in butter with dried thyme. Add cooked turnip and carrots. Season with salt and pepper. .