So, Thanksgiving has come and gone (time for Christmas! Whoo hoo!), and you have a bunch of leftover turkey, right? (Unless you ate at my Thanksgiving dinner - the head honcho prefers roast chicken and ham. But I'm cooking a turkey next year. Fried or smoked, it matters not to me. With God as my witness, there will be turkey at my next Thanksgiving dinner!)
So, a fridge full of turkey - now what? Well, there's always the obligatory turkey & cranberry sauce sandwich, but how many sandwiches can you eat?
I have your solution: turkey bone gumbo. It's a recipe handed down to me from my mom and modified a little ('cuz that's how we roll) by Kaytie. It's friggin' delicious.
By the way, you may be wondering how we made this, since there was no turkey at our Thanksgiving dinner. Well, we like this recipe so much that we begged for bones from another house!
(Historical note: The first time we made this was the first time we ever made stock. Now, we make stock all the time! Like pioneers.)
Turkey Bone Gumbo
(makes a lot)
for turkey stock:
2-3 stalks celery
2-3 bay leaves
1 tsp black peppercorns
a few sprigs of fresh thyme
for the gumbo:
1/2 stick butter
1/4 c olive oil
3/4 c flour
2 onions, diced
1 bell pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 tsp dried oregano
1 Tbs dried basil
1-2 Tbs fresh parsley, chopped
1 Tbs powdered sage
hot sauce, salt, & pepper to taste
1 pint heavy cream
2 c chopped turkey
1 lb smoked sausage, cut into bite-size pieces
1 bunch of green onions, diced
Put the turkey bones in a big stock pot. (We had a discussion about this at Thanksgiving dinner this year. What's the most appetizing word for turkey bones? Carcass? Body? Cadaver?)
Chop the carrots, celery, onion, and rutabega into large chunks, and dump them in the pot. Add the bay leaves, peppercorns, and thyme. (Please note: all of this stuff is optional, but it will make the stock delicious!)
Cover everything in the pot with water. Boil (covered) for about 1 1/2 hours. The meat should pretty much fall off the bone.
Strain everything out, and reserve the meat and the broth.
Saute the sausage in a frying pan. Get a good browning on most sides. Reserve the sausage.
Now, make a roux in the sausage drippings. First, melt the butter over low heat. Add the olive oil and flour. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the flour turns light brown and no longer smells raw.
Add the onions, garlic, celery, and bell pepper. Cook until the veggies are wilted.
Add 2 quarts (8 cups) of the reserved turkey broth. (Freeze the rest in 2-3 cup containers for later use when making more turkey bone gumbo, cooking rice, making soup, etc...)
Add the bay leaves, oregano, basil, parsley, sage, hot sauce, salt, and pepper. Bring the whole thing to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, for an hour.
Add the cream. Bring to a boil, and boil until the liquid level reduces by about an inch.
Add the sausage and chopped turkey. Lower the heat to med-low, and cook for 15 minutes.
Add the green onions, and cook for a few more minutes.
Serve over rice.