By Kevin Williams
While this is not an Amish recipe per se, it is in line with what many Amish cooks would do with a leftover turkey: make soup. Reader Karen in North Carolina shared this with us and she said she has made this for over 30 years, and “it never disappoints. Sometimes I’ll roast a turkey solely to make this delicious soup.” Karen wasn’t sure of this recipes origins, but she accurately points out with a bounty of home-canned veggies to pick from, this recipe would be a natural for most Amish cooks. So enjoy!
TURKEY FRAME SOUP
Makes about 4 quarts
1 meaty turkey frame
3 quarts (12 cups) water
1 onion, unpeeled, quartered (the onion skin imparts a lovely color to the broth)
2 teaspoons salt
1 16-ounce can of diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tablespoon chicken bouillon granules (or 3 cubes)
1 ½ teaspoons dried oregano, crushed
½ teaspoon powdered thyme (or one teaspoon dried thyme leaves)
⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 cups of any kind of vegetables (for example, celery, carrots, chopped onion, green beans, canned or frozen corn, etc.; your choice.) I use a 16-ounce bag of frozen mixed vegetables and add chopped celery and onion to make 4 cups.
1 ½ cups uncooked medium egg noodles -OR- ½ cup raw long-grain white rice
Break up turkey frame. Put in large Dutch oven or stockpot with water, unpeeled quartered onion, and salt. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer1 ½ hours. Remove frame onto large cutting board. When cool enough to handle, cut off meat and coarsely chop. Discard bones. Strain broth; discard solids.
Return broth to pot. Stir in meat, undrained tomatoes, bouillon, oregano, thyme, and pepper. Stir in vegetables. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer 45 minutes. Add uncooked noodles or rice; simmer 8 to 10 minutes if using noodles, 25 minutes if using rice. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper if needed. This soup freezes beautifully. Recipe doubles easily for a large turkey frame.
Note: If there is too much fat on top of the soup, it may be skimmed off when the soup is finished. A gravy or fat separator works perfectly for this.