The Family Cookbook
by Doug Anderson
Reprinted from Bulletin 073, November 23, 2003
Hello family foodies, today you are in for a real treat. This week's contributor might as well be writing the column herself, as she is every bit the cook I am (and then some) and probably writes better than I do as well, as this awkward, run-on sentence will demonstrate.
Today's recipe came in its own unique fashion and I think it would seriously detract from its inherit charm to revise it, so I have chosen to pass it along as I received it. Make sure you've checked the rabbit traps and milked the caribou and then sit down and enjoy:
When Alaska days get short and the temperatures drop, I get a hankering for comfort food ... I'd been thinking about turkey soup for a while now, but when I went to the store last night, the only suitable turkey offered was a family pack, on special ... with nine turkey legs in it! What to do? The price was right, so I put it in my shopping cart, bought a locally made loaf of "spent grain" bread, using grains from a local brewery, and selected the vegetables.
A 2 lb. bag of Alaska carrots
A big stalk of celery
5 small Yukon Gold potatoes
1 good sized rutabaga
2 small white turnips
2 fat parsnips
1 medium onion
Four turkey legs went back into the freezer. Three were roasted in the oven for turkey and gravy and for sandwiches. The last two went into a big Dutch oven with one stalk of the celery and all the celery leaves, the medium onion (peeled and chopped) and a couple of carrots (also peeled and chopped). A little salt, some poultry seasoning and some parsley flakes from my pantry went into the big pot, too.
When the turkey in the stewpot was done, I took the meat off the bones (about 2 cups), flaked it and put it into a refrigerator container. I strained the broth, squeezing the juice out of the vegetables to get all the flavor, and adding it back into the broth.
I reheated the broth with a little more salt and a good spoonful of curry powder and tossed in a couple of handfuls of brown rice. I peeled the carrots, reserving a couple to eat raw, sliced the rest into "coins" and added them to the pot. I brushed the potatoes, leaving the skins on, diced them and added them. I peeled and diced the rutabaga and then the turnips, adding them as soon as they were prepared. I peeled and chopped the parsnips, cleaned the leeks and sliced them into thin, round slices. I cleaned and chopped three stalks of celery, adding them at all at once, along with a couple of shakes of cayenne pepper.
I adjusted the salt and let everything get hot. I could have added some peas, but it seemed green enough and the pot was now full ... almost too full for the turkey that was waiting in the refrigerator. I "tested" a bowlful and found it good. Tomorrow, it will be even better, once the flavors have "married."
Whew! That's good. We wouldn't want our flavors "living in sin!" Oops! Hope that one gets by the Editor... Oh well, can't let Hetty have all the fun!
Thanks Jerrianne, for sharing with us a comfort food that goes first class all the way! See you next week, and keep those recipes rolling in!