What's Up Stock? This Year, Cook That Carcass! | The Food Party! | Laura Stec | Almanac Online |

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The Food Party!

By Laura Stec

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About this blog: I've been attracted to food for good and bad reasons for many years. From eating disorder to east coast culinary school, food has been my passion, profession & nemesis. I've been a sugar addict, a 17-year vegetarian, a food and en...  (More)

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What's Up Stock? This Year, Cook That Carcass!

Uploaded: Nov 16, 2023

It was a great party. Once the guests have gone, leftovers put away and dishes done, you plop down to prop up feet with a deep sigh, exhausted but happy. But then – oh no - what about that bird? Will you really have energy to do something with it tomorrow?

YES. Yes You Can.

This year don't let your Thanksgiving carcass be overlooked or discarded. In the pursuit of flavor, it’s just too valuable. Making stock is easy and fulfilling; a time-honored tradition that offers delicious results and feeds the soul. It just feels good to turn the last beauty of your bird into one more yummy bite.

A slow cooker works great, or a large stock pot. Cover bones with fresh, cold water, bring up to a slow boil, and simmer for a few hours (on low), along with some peppercorns and/or garlic.

this is a small slow cooker (3.5 qt.) - great for small spaces

If you are using a slow cooker, let the mix brew overnight. In the morning, remove bones if you need space and add in fresh vegetables liked chopped onion, carrot, and celery. This way you get the best out of the veggies without overcooking and risking a bitter result.

Reuse more food waste such as the greenery surrounding cauliflower, carrot peels, onion skins and celery bottoms; (freeze in bags until ready to make stock). Stay away from cruciferous veggies like broccoli and Brussels sprouts which can create a musty flavor.

A couple hours later, add in fresh herbs, like sprigs of parsley, rosemary or thyme, and cook on low an hour or so, again getting the best out of the herbs.

Turn off the heat and add in seasonings of choice: salt, pepper, lemon, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco, etc. Let flavors meld for a half hour before straining. Season to taste. Cool completely. Label and store in refrigerator or freezer. I had two carcasses this week and got 10 Bell jars-worth of stock. The first 5 were super bone broth. I slow cooked a batch AFTER it was simmered on the stovetop and still got good flavor.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. Wishing you a great Food Party!

- photos by LSIC

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Posted by Kathy Aragon, a resident of Woodside,
on Nov 16, 2023 at 5:14 pm

Kathy Aragon is a registered user.

We never let a turkey carcass go to waste. My grandmother who grew-up during the Great Depression taught me what to do with it...(1) I put the turkey carcass in a large pot and fill it with water up to the top of the bones, (2) add carrots, celery, and onions for natural flavoring + some ground black pepper. Bring to a boil and reduce heat, letting it simmer for several hours. You can also add some diced rutabagas and barley if desired. Let it cool and strip the carcass of turkey meat, tossing the turkey meat back into the soup pot. If refrigerated, you'll probably have to skim some fat off of the top later.

If you're going to make turkey stock, why not simply make turkey soup and freeze the surplus?

My twrlve-year old has been making turkey soup for the past 2-3 years following a holiday turkey.

It isn't rocket science and simply tossing out the turkey bones is a waste of food.

Of note...use a carcass from a pre-carved turkey. You do not want to use the turkey bones that dinner guests have eaten off their plate like drumsticks. Gross.

Posted by Geri Ross, a resident of Palo Alto Hills,
on Nov 18, 2023 at 12:07 pm

Geri Ross is a registered user.

Being wild animal preservationists, we just toss the turkey carcass over the fence into an adjacent ravine and let the coyotes have at it.

Posted by Caroline Johnson, a resident of Woodside,
on Nov 19, 2023 at 9:09 am

Caroline Johnson is a registered user.

@Geri Ross...an elderly neighbor down the road tosses previously frozen raw chicken parts over a cyclone fence to feed any wild animals who are in the mood for some chicken. I'm not sure if this is a good idea but the coyotes, crows, and hawks don't seem to mind.

Posted by Judy Wong, a resident of Menlo Park,
on Nov 20, 2023 at 2:17 pm

Judy Wong is a registered user.

While going through our freezer, we came across some foodstuffs that are now past date.

Is it OK to toss an old Honey Baked ham and a couple of pounds of outdated bacon over the fence to feed the wild animals? We also have a dried-out three-year old frozen turkey that we forgot about and I imagine the coyotes would eat it as well.

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