Homemade Turkey Soup

Homemade Turkey Soup

Did I ever mention I love to make soup? Not only is it comfort food on a cold, winter day, but the process of chopping up the ingredients and building layers of flavor is so much fun to me. Everybody in the pool! It’s so easy to do and it’s hard to mess up.

A day before I made the turkey soup, I put two turkey thighs (on the bone) in my slow cooker, seasoned them, added a little chicken broth (about 1 cup), and cooked them several hours on low. I refrigerated them until I was ready to make the soup the following day. {Save that yucky congealed broth…You’ll add it to the soup.} You can certainly use any leftover turkey you have if you cooked one recently! I’d recommend sticking with the dark meat for more flavor, though.

The wonderful thing about soup is that you add in what you like and leave out what you don’t like! I’ll tell you what I add in mine and you go from there. Let me mention that I prefer my soup a little thicker, or chunkier, rather than with too much broth. (Doesn’t Rachael Ray call that “stoup”?) Simply add more broth or water if you want more broth. Just make sure to keep tasting it to see if you need more seasoning.

Homemade Turkey Soup by Micha
Ingredients:
2 turkey thighs – seasoned, cooked, meat removed from bones, and cut up or shredded
3 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
1 large onion (I like to use sweet or yellow)
8 carrots (not the baby carrots) – peeled and chopped
2 stalks of celery, chopped
12 oz. of fresh green beans, cut up*
2 large cloves of garlic, minced (or grated in with microplane like I do)
2 cartons (32 oz. each) of chicken broth, or turkey broth if you can find it
2-4 cups water, depending on how you like your soup
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. salt-free garlic and herb seasoning
1 tsp. dried parsley
1  1/2 cups uncooked Ditalini pasta
Salt and pepper to taste
*Any other veggies or additions you prefer. I like to add some frozen corn when I add the pasta.

Directions:
1. Grab a big pot and add your oil, heating it over medium to medium-high heat.
2. While that’s heating, chop up your onion and add it to the pot.
3. Chop carrots and add them to the pot. Keep stirring as you add ingredients.
4. Chop up the celery and add it to the pot.
5. Make sure you are stirring the veggies around so they all get coated with the oil and don’t burn.
6. Cut up the fresh green beans and add them in. If you don’t use fresh green beans and use frozen or canned, add them in with the pasta.
7. Add in the minced garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Stir!
8. When your veggies are softened a bit, add in that turkey “broth” that you have leftover from cooking the thighs. If you refrigerated it, it will be like a gelatin consistency. Gross, but adds flavor!
9. Pour in 2 cartons of chicken or turkey broth (total of 64 oz.).
10. Add in a few cups of water depending on how you like your soup. I add in about 2-3 cups, but you can add 4.
11. Bring to a boil.
12. While you are waiting for the boil, add in your shredded or cut up turkey.
13. Add paprika, garlic and herb seasoning, and the parsley.
14. Let simmer for about 30 minutes or more, and then add in about 1  1/2 cups Ditalini pasta (or any small pasta). Now is also when you can add frozen or canned veggies if desired, like some corn. Simmer for about 15 minutes more.
15. Taste the soup and season with salt and pepper to taste.

P.S. My daughter who doesn’t care so much for pasta loves this soup. She says it’s the Ditalini!

I’m about to go have some leftover soup for lunch now! Hope you try it!
Micha

Stuffing Crusted Turkey Cutlets

Stuffing Crusted Turkey Cutlets

Dear Turkey, I missed you. I don’t know why I ignore you most of the year until I eat you for days upon days in November. I’m sorry. Will you forgive me? All kidding aside, I really felt like having some form of turkey this week so I bought a pack of turkey tenderloins and a pack of turkey thighs. I made the tenderloins into cutlets tonight and the thighs will go into some soup tomorrow.

I had a box of turkey flavored stuffing mix and I thought, “Hey, why not turn this into a crumb mixture with which to coat the cutlets?” So I got out my blender (the food processor was not as accessible) and pulsed away. In a few minutes I had my stuffing-flavored bread crumbs!

Stuffing Crusted Turkey Cutlets mix

Stuffing Crusted Turkey Cutlets
Ingredients:
1 box (6 oz.) Turkey flavored Stuffing Mix
1  1/2 to 1  3/4 lb. turkey cutlets or tenderloins (sliced in half to thin out)
1 cup flour
salt and pepper
garlic powder
onion powder
poultry seasoning
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
Canola or vegetable oil, enough to coat the bottom of the pan

Instructions:
1. Empty the stuffing mix into a blender or food processor and pulse into fine bread crumbs. Pour into shallow dish and set aside.
2. Preheat canola or vegetable oil in skillet over medium to medium-high heat. You want enough in there so your cutlets are submersed on one side, but not swimming in oil or covering the side facing up.
3. Slice tenderloins in half to thin out; No need to slice if using thin cutlets.
4. Season cutlets lightly with salt, pepper, onion powder, and garlic powder.
5. In a second shallow dish, mix 1 cup flour with 1/2 tsp. black pepper and 1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning.
6. In a third shallow dish, beat an egg and add 1/2 cup of milk. Mix together.
7. When your oil is nice and hot, dredge your cutlets in the flour, shaking off an excess. Then they go into the egg mixture, and then into the stuffing crumbs. You want to press the crumbs into the cutlet so the whole piece is covered.
8. Carefully lay your cutlets in the pan. You’ll want to do this in two batches. I had 8 pieces altogether, so I cooked 4 pieces and then did a second batch of 4 pieces.
9. Cook for about 4 min. on each side, depending on the thickness of your cutlet. Remove from oil and drain on paper towel or brown bag.
10. Serve warm and enjoy!

Note: While these tasted very good, I was surprised I didn’t taste more of the stuffing flavor like I thought I would. Maybe next time I will add a little ground sage to the flour mixture. I figured the poultry seasoning would be enough. Live and learn!
Also, I plan on trying this again using chicken breasts and the chicken-flavored stuffing mix!