Monday, November 28, 2011

Meatless Monday: 11.28.11

Meatless Monday? I confess, not for me and mine today. We cooked a small turkey on Thanksgiving Day this year. Two guests helped us eat about half of it. We were out of town for two of the next three days. The remains of the feast are in the fridge.

A large part of the mission behind ontheroadtogreenness is to share tips for wasting less while still living well.

I certainly don’t want to waste this turkey, so today I’m turning the carcass and all the meat still clinging to its bones into turkey soup, just as my parents taught me. All non-vegetarians or vegans, read on for the recipe.
OTRTG Turkey Soup
  • Place the turkey carcass into a large pot. You may need to break it into pieces. [Try to save the y-shaped bone, or furculum, in the breast so you can wish on it once it is brittle and dry.]
  • Add cold water to cover.
  • Add several peeled carrots, several stalks of celery with leaves, and a large onion stuck with two cloves.
  • Heat to boiling over medium flame.
  • After a minute or so, skim off and discard the scum which has risen to the surface.
  • Add 1 tablespoon of dried rosemary, a teaspoon of dried thyme, 8 black peppercorns, a bay leaf, and a few sprigs of fresh parsley.
  • Lower heat and simmer until the vegetables are tender and the turkey meat begins to fall off the bones.
  • Lift the carcass onto a plate. 
  • Place a colander over a clean pot. Pour the remaining contents of the soup pot through the colander into the new pot.
  • The next couple of steps are a bit messy. Pick as much meat off the bones as you can. Add back to the strained stock. 
  • Next, sort through everything remaining in the colander. Chop the carrots and celery, as well as the onion if you wish, and add to the stock along with any bits of meat you find. Be sure to remove the small bones and bay leaf; try to remove the cloves and peppercorns. 
  • Add salt to taste.
  • Add some frozen peas and cook just until tender.
  • In a third pot, prepare a box of small pasta (such as tubetti or elbows) according to the directions for al dente.
  • Serve the turkey soup over the pasta in individual large bowls, and top with a generous amount of freshly grated parmesan cheese.
  • A crisp baguette is a good side for this dish.

For me, this is the best part of the Thanksgiving feast, except of course, for the pie.

Enjoy your soup, and please come back next week for the return of Meatless, Meatless Monday.

I often blog on food or food issues on Monday in support of Meatless Monday, one of several programs developed in the Healthy Monday project, founded in 2003 in association with Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Communications. Meatless Monday’s goal is “to help reduce meat consumption 15% in order to improve personal  health and the health of our planet.”

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