I was seized by a new book by Elizabeth Marshall Thomas ( who lives in the town next to me), so instead of baking today, I made a lovely turkey soup with a fat fresh leg the meat man had saved for me. Turkey legs are hard to find this time of year, so I had a standing order with two butchers around here - and one came through for me a few days ago. I like to do a long simmer for stock and then make up a hearty, colorful soup with carrots and kale and the shredded dark turkey meat.
Somewhere on Pinterest I saw that turkey topped the chart for lowest in fat and highest in protein - if I find it, I'll pass it along. I like it better than chicken because the flavor is heartier and less bland , somehow having more substance than chicken. This is a good soup to make on a lazy at-home day, which today happily was for me.
For the stock:
One large turkey leg & thigh
water to cover
4 peeled carrots, sliced
3 stalks celery, sliced
1 large onion, peeled and sliced
2 cloves garlic, peeled but whole
1 t. thyme
3 sprigs rosemary
1 bay leaf
Place all ingredients in a stockpot and barely cover with water. Simmer, uncovered, for about an hour.
When cooled a little, remove turkey to a plate to cool further, then use two forks to pull the meat off the bone. It's up to you, but I like bite size chunks of about two inches. Discard any skin or little bones. Strain the stock through a colander into a large pot, discarding the vegetables. Taste the stock, and if it seems watery in flavor, simply simmer it a little longer before adding the soup makings. Rinse out the stockpot you used for making the stock, add the ingredients, then pour the stock to cover plus a few inches. If you have stock left over, let it cool and then freeze.
For the soup:
3 cups shredded or cut up turkey meat
4 large peeled carrots, sliced
4 stalks celery, sliced in fairly large pieces
kosher salt and pepper to taste
pinch hot pepper flakes (optional)
4 cups kale, torn into medium sized pieces, stalks discarded
Optional: pasta or rice can be cooked along with the soup if wished. I don't wish.
Simmer all until the carrots are tender. Taste for seasoning and enjoy!