Category Archives: Soups

Turkey Carcass Soup

Turkey Carcass Soup


This soup is made from what’s left over after serving the turkey: the bones and the meat that clings to them. Our family jokes about the unappetizing name, but the soup is really very good. It’s mild, flavorful, and so satisfying. Serve with homemade bread.

Prepare the meat and broth:
One turkey carcass (or turkey breast carcass), most of meat removed

This is not an exact science. Use the bones and the meat left on them. It’s best not to use a smoked bird, because the flavor is too intense. But, you can use the smoked meat if you use fresh broth.

Cover the turkey with water in a large (8 quart) stock pot. Season with 1-2 t. salt and a few bay leaves, perhaps some dried parsley. If you like, throw in a carrot or two, a half onion, and a stalk of celery, roughly cut. These vegetables will all be discarded after they release their flavor into the broth. Bring to a boil, then simmer at least an hour. Cool, then remove turkey from bones. If necessary, add some of the turkey that you had previously removed to bring up the amount to 4 cups. Strain the broth. You need 4 quarts of broth for the soup.

2 T. butter
2 cups EACH chopped onion, celery, and carrots
4 quarts broth
2 T. chicken soup base or chicken granules (if necessary)
4 oz. rice or small pasta (such as broken spaghetti) OR 2 cups diced potatoes
2 cups English peas (canned or frozen)
4 cups turkey meat, cooked and cut into bite-sized pieces
1 T. dried parsley
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

To make the soup:
In an 8-quart pot: (you can use the same one), sauté vegetables in butter. Add broth, bring to a boil, and stir in chicken base or granules if broth seems too thin. Add the rice or pasta and cook (uncovered) 20-30 minutes. Stir in meat, peas and seasonings. Heat through (about 10 minutes.)
6-8 servings, depending on what else you have

Note: If you have leftover green beans, lima beans, squash, fresh herbs, etc. add them if it makes you happy.


Italian Sub ‘Stoup’

food images
‘Stoup’ is Rachael Ray’s term for a dish that’s a cross between a soup and a stew. Packed with the ingredients found on an Italian sub sandwich, this very hearty stoup really satisfies the stomach and spirit.  I got this recipe from one of Rachael Ray’s ‘thirty minute meals’ shows.

Italian Sub Stoup and Garlic Toast Floaters
1 lb. (4 links) hot or sweet Italian sausage, split and meat removed from casing
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1/4 pound piece stick pepperoni, diced
Diced ham (from deli), 1/2 to 3/4 pound
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 large (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
6 cups chicken stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
2 T. fresh basil or 1 t. dried basil
1/2 pound broken spaghetti or other small pasta
2 cups kale, washed and coarsely chopped (may substitute arugula or Italian parsley)
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Brown sausage in a large soup pot on the stove top, stirring to crumble. Drain off excess fat if necessary. Add onion and cook until soft. Add ham and pepperoni. Cook meats together 2 minutes, then add pepper and cook 2 or 3 minutes more. Add diced tomatoes and chicken stock, salt, pepper, oregano and basil. Bring to a boil. Stir in pasta and boil for 8 minutes. Stir kale or arugula into soup just before you serve it up.

Croutons may be made in the oven or in a skillet.
3 T. olive oil
5 cups cubed crusty bread
3 large cloves garlic, cracked from skin (OR 1 t. garlic powder)
1/2 t. oregano
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Place bread cubes in a jelly roll pan and drizzle with olive oil, garlic powder and oregano, tossing to coat. Bake at 300 about 20-25 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, until croutons are toasty and golden. Sprinkle with red pepper flakes.

OR: In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add whole cracked garlic and cook 1 minute. Remove garlic; add bread to garlic oil, toss and toast the cubes 5 or 6 minutes. Season the toasty cubes with oregano and red pepper flakes.

Ladle up the stoup and float several toasty garlic bread cubes in each bowl. Sprinkle with lots of grated cheese.



Gumbo is a stew that starts by making a roux. Usually flour is stirred in hot oil and/or butter until it browns. After that, vegetables, broth and meats can be added (usually seafood). Gumbos vary according to family and available ingredients.
This recipe is quite similar to what my mother used to make when I was a child in Lafayette, Louisiana. She became allergic to shrimp in her later years and had to leave it out. You could substitute pork or beef sausage or other meats for the shrimp, or add the shrimp to individual bowls at serving time. We sometimes add okra (fresh, frozen or dried) and a pint of canned tomatoes to the gumbo, but you can adjust it according to your taste and what you have on hand.

6 T. butter, shortening, or oil (or mixture)
6 T. flour
1 onion, chopped
1 cup chopped green pepper
1 quart well-seasoned chicken broth (or shrimp broth made from baked, caramelized shrimp shells)
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1 t. lemon juice
1 t. sugar
2 cups chopped cooked chicken
1 cup medium shrimp, shelled and de-veined (or, use cooked shrimp)
Filé (ground sassafras leaves)
Dash red cayenne pepper

Melt butter or oil in large heavy pot. Add flour; cook and stir over medium heat until rich brown. Add onion and pepper; sauté until veggies are limp. (At this point, you could add okra and tomatoes or juice, if desired. Cook several minutes at high heat, stirring frequently, until okra and tomatoes are broken down.) Add broth gradually and whisk until smooth. Add other ingredients; cook at least a half hour. If using raw shrimp, add 3 minutes before serving and cook just until pink. (Add cooked shrimp and chicken at the end and heat through). Serve with rice and crackers. Pass the filé and Tabasco sauce. We usually have baked sweet potatoes alongside the gumbo.