A week ago, as I fretted over all the details of our Thanksgiving day, my husband teased me that by now it would all be over and done. Well, as time does inevitably pass, his words now ring with sage truth. Thanksgiving is gone, and all that hard work is something of a memory.
Well, somewhat. My fridge being completely full is still very much a Thanksgiving reality.
One of the joys of Thanksgiving is reusing the leftovers in many different ways. Yesterday morning we concocted some leftover mashed potato pancakes. And then, for dinner we enjoyed turkey and fresh cranberry sauce sandwiches on my leftover homemade whole grain bread spread thinly with dijon mustard.
And now, for one of the best parts: making turkey stock from the leftover turkey carcass.
It's a little embarrassing to admit that one of the most exciting parts of my Thanksgiving Day was carefully wrapping up the turkey carcass to save for this very moment. I feel the way I imagine my grandmother might have after hosting family for Thanksgiving: carefully using every little last bit of food and making the most of a holiday in which we honor food and the fall harvest.
Getting past my romantic musings of how Grandma Angie may have felt in Thanksgiving's past, I had also practically set aside some leftover vegetables for the stock: celery, an onion, some fennel, a carrot, some herbs, and some purple carrots from our crudite platter. I think my guests were afraid to eat the purple carrots.
Homemade Turkey Stock
- 1 Turkey Carcass
- 2 carrots, peeled and chopped into two pieces
- 1 onion, quartered
- 2-3 stalks of celery
- 1/2 fennel, halved (optional)
- a bundle of fresh herbs (sage, parsley, thyme)
- 1 bay leaf (fresh, if available)
- a handful of whole peppercorns
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Simmer the stock for 3-4 hours.
Remove from heat and allow to cool. Strain into large tupperware containers.
Once the stock has reached room temperature, place it in the fridge or the freezer. It will store in the refrigerator for 5-7 days, and store in the freezer for about 6 months.
Stay tuned for my turkey and wild rice soup, made with this very stock.