Friday, March 4, 2011


It was time to cook the turkey in the freezer and use up the leftover gravy and stuffing stored there as well. Since I stuff the bird at Thanksgiving, I don't use the carcass for soup--the stuffing makes a cloudy broth. I knew I wanted to make a soup with this carcass and decided to search for something a little different than the usual turkey soup with noodles. On the Food TV website, I found this very different preparation courtesy of a Wes Martin. Printable recipe here.


  • Carcass from one 12-14 pound roasted turkey, picked clean
  • 2 large onions, one quartered and one chopped
  • 4 peeled carrots, 2 coarsely chopped and 2 sliced
  • 4 stalks celery, 2coarsely chopped and 2 sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves, 4 smashed and 2 chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 10 whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more as needed
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups leftover stuffing
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 cups shredded leftover turkey meat
  • 1 cup leftover corn kernels


Put the turkey carcass, quartered onions, coarsely chopped carrots and celery, smashed garlic, bay leaf, and peppercorns in a large stockpot and add enough cold water to just cover, about 2 quarts. Bring the water to a boil, and then reduce the heat to maintain a gentle simmer and cook for 1 hour. Remove from the heat and strain the solids from the broth. Pour the liquid through a fine mesh strainer and reserve; you should have about 10-12 cups broth.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the eggs, flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and some black pepper together until smooth. Add the stuffing and mix until well combined; cover and reserve.
Wipe the stockpot clean with a paper towel. Heat the oil in the pot over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and garlic and cook until soft and translucent, about 6 minutes. Add the sliced carrots and celery, thyme sprigs, and reserved broth and bring to a simmer; cook vegetables are just soft, about 10 minutes.
Roll level tablespoons of the dumpling mixture into balls with wet hands (see note) and drop into the simmering soup; cook until dumplings float, 3-4 minutes. Gently stir in the turkey meat, corn, and season with salt and pepper, and simmer until heated through. Serve immediately.
Note: Moistness of stuffing can vary; if the dumpling dough is too soft to roll, add flour a teaspoon at a time until it is firm enough to hold its shape while rolling.
DSO and I love stuffing. I prepare it with bacon, as my mother did, and he always exhorts me to "Make plenty of stuffing so there's leftovers." Hence, the gallon-sized freezer bag of leftover stuffing. This was the perfect recipe for us and my only admonition is to make sure you add more flour if your stuffing is a moist one, as mine is. I should have added a bit more flour because some of my dumplings didn't hold together. That did not affect the taste in the least. We enjoyed this soup immensely. The dumplings were surprisingly light and fluffy, which I would not have expected from using the stuffing. I will absolutely make this soup again. I imagine it would taste as good whether you make your stuffing with sausage, chestnuts, oysters, cornbread, or any of the other wonderful family traditions.


  1. This looks like a hearty and delicious soup--perfect comfort food. You are making me crave Thanksgiving dinner though. Yum! ;-)

  2. Dumplings with stuffing sounds both fun and delicious. What a fun spin on turkey vegetable soup. Looks great!

  3. Ity's also time for me to resurrect the leftover turkey from the freezer. The stuffing-dumplings are inspired. It alll looks so nourishing and comforting.

  4. stuffing dumplings? sounds heavenly!

  5. I agree with Teresa, "stuffing dumplings sound yummy"

  6. That looks so good. Beautiful. When cold happens, soup happens.



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