Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Doin' the Turkey - One Last Time (for next to nothing)

Yesterday was the end of the turkey.   We paid 88 cents a pound for our 19 pound turkey this year.  That's a great price for good protein.  It fed our family for five meals.  

Additionally, we were able to put away 4 quarts of stock, 1 meal of Turkey Hash, 3 meals of Turkey Gravy and 2 meals of Deviled Turkey Sandwiches.  Fifteen separate meals from one turkey!  Here's how we did it.

 On Thanksgiving night, the bones and scraps were bagged up and placed in the freezer.  Here's how to turn those scraps into stock and the other leftovers into Quick Meals.

Making Turkey Stock

Remove the turkey from the freezer and place in a shallow pan.  Roast the bones and scraps in the oven at 350 degrees F., for about an hour, or until they are very brown.

  Place them in a large stock pot and pour a cup of hot water into the pan you baked them in.  Scrape up the brown bits and pour them into the stock pot.

Cover with water and

....heat..... boiling.....

....then simmer, covered, for about two hours.

Making Turkey Hash

Meanwhile, from the remainders of the bird.....

  Turkey Hash made from leftover dressing.....

plus a matching amount of leftover turkey pieces, chopped small.....

plus leftover gravy....

mixed well.....

and ready to heat. 

Into the microwave for about 5 minutes....

covered.....stirred again....then cooled and put into the freezer for a future quick meal.  When preparing your Turkey Hash, be sure to heat it to at least 160 degrees F., before serving.

Making Turkey and Gravy

Another quick frozen meal from turkey leftovers is Turkey and Gravy.  Carefully cut up all the leftover meat.....

removing any small bones....

and bits of skin.....

mix altogether in a big bowl.  Then, depending upon how much meat there is, make a gravy.  


1/2 c. butter or drippings
1/2 c. All-purpose flour
1 quart, more or less, of stock or broth or water
Salt and Pepper to taste
Garlic and Onion granules to taste

Melt the butter or drippings and add the flour, stirring constantly until smooth and bubbly.  Don't let it burn.  Gradually add the liquid, stirring constantly.  Keep adding liquid until the right consistency is gained.

I used a large electric frying pan and made a double recipe of the Gravy.  The meat was added and heated through.  Let it stand until cooled, then, freeze in meal-sized containers, for up to 6 months.  Again, be sure to reheat to at least 160 degrees F., before serving.

....Turkey Stock (the continuing saga)

Meanwhile, back at the stove....

where the bones and scraps were merrily simmering....

I poured the stock into a very large bowl, through a collander.

Here's the turkey stock, all ready to go.  I wasn't sure exactly how much I had, but I figured there was about a canner full, which wouldn't be too much trouble.  Frozen broth and stock is fine, but canned in the jar, is so much faster and easier to use.

Fill the quart jars to within 1/2 inch of the top.....

clean the rim and set the lids and rings.....

and place....

in the pressure canner.  Process 25 minutes at 10 pounds pressure.

And Finally, Ta-da!!!  Deviled Turkey for Sandwiches

What to do with the bits of meat left on the bones from which the stock was made?  Pick the meat off and place it in a food processor.  Process until fine, add some mayonnaise and sweet relish for Deviled Turkey Sandwiches.  I made sandwiches right away from half of the bits of meat.  The other half, I froze for future sandwiches.  Before I use it, though, I will heat it to 160 degrees F., to make it safe for my family.  Heat it, cool it, and make the sandwich filling.

Voila!  End of the Turkey!


  1. Gosh, that really is using every last bit of Turkey! Lots of tasty meals. I haven't heard of roasting the bones and scraps before cooking them up for stock - I guess they give more flavour then?

  2. They do make a richer fact, the difference between broth and stock, is that roasting process step. The darker you let the scraps get in the oven, the deeper the color of the stock. Turkey is almost always a very good buy. One year, I had the butcher bone the legs, thighs and breast. So, having the bones the day before Thanksgiving, I made my stock right away and made the stuffing with it. Next day, I spread stuffing on the boned turkey pieces, rolled and tied them. I braised the dark meat in the oven and roasted the breast, separately. When done, I sliced the turkey rolls about 3/4 of an inch thick and served them on a platter. I used the remaining stock to make the gravy. This was a Thanksgiving meal that didn't have a lot of work taking the turkey carcass apart at the end.


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