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What To Do with a turkey carcass? (giveaway)

I present to you a recipe from New Orleans Classic Gumbos and Soups book which Turns Thanksgiving Turkey carcass into Irresistible Gumbo.

I received this book a couple of weeks ago and have been reading it like a novel. Not only it is full of mouthwatering New Orleans recipes, it also takes you through the history of Louisiana cooking and describes the background of each recipe.

The book also introduces you to the basics of New Orleans cooking. Now I know how to make a roux, a “trinity”, a creole seasoning, and clarified butter.

 I already made sure I have all the ingredients for Shrimp, Tomato and Corn Bisque. I am so much looking forward to making it.  I also would love to make Duck and Wild Rice soup.

And here is the recipe for the Turkey and Sausage Gumbo:



Gumbo is one of those exemplary dishes that can be made in any number of ways. The emphasis is on the main ingredients: meats, poultry, seafood or almost any combination of them. Roux and the trinity of seasonings create a smoky, dense taste, rich in texture and full of flavor. In south Louisiana, families get together for holidays and cook up a continuous two- or three-day food fest beginning with visits to the farmers’ markets and grocery stores.


1 whole turkey carcass

3 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups corn oil, to make roux

2 large yellow onions, chopped

3 green bell peppers, chopped

4 celery stalks, chopped

2 cans your favorite local beer or an equal amount of stock or water

3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1/4 cup Tabasco or Crystal hot sauce

1 tablespoon corn oil, to sauté sausage

1 pound smoked sausage, thinly sliced and then cut crosswise into half-moons

2 tablespoons minced garlic

1 1/2 gallons chicken and turkey broth, homemade or canned. (This should include the liquid in which the turkey carcass was cooked.)

1 tablespoon dried basil

1 tablespoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Cooked rice, for serving


Cut the turkey carcass in half and, in a large pot, simmer the halves in water to cover until the remaining meat falls off the bones.

Drain and reserve the cooking water. Remove the meat from the bones and discard the bones. Shred the meat. (If this does not yield 2 to 3 cups of turkey, add any poultry meat.)

In a heavy saucepan, make the roux by heating the 2 cups of corn oil over medium heat, adding the flour and cooking, stirring frequently, until the roux reaches the color of milk chocolate. Be careful not to let it scorch. (Completing the roux will take anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes. Cooking slowly on low heat is the secret to succeeding with roux.)

Add the chopped onions, peppers and celery to the roux. (This will temporarily stop the cooking process.) Cook the roux until the vegetables are tender, stirring constantly. As the vegetables cook, their sugar will be released and the roux will darken even more as the liquid evaporates. Stir in the beer (or stock or water), the Worcestershire and the hot sauce.

In a large Dutch oven or the original soup pot, sauté the sausage and garlic in one tablespoon of oil until the garlic is translucent and soft. Carefully add the roux mixture to the pot, stirring. (It will spit and sputter.)

Add the turkey broth and stir in the basil, oregano, thyme and cayenne pepper. I’ve seen Chef Robert add the leftover turkey gravy to the gumbo. Simmer, covered, for one hour, then add the shredded turkey and cook for 20 minutes more. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper as desired.

YIELD: 2 gallons

SERVES: 16 to 20

From New Orleans Classic Gumbos & Soups by Kit Wohl, © 2009. Used with permission of the publisher, Pelican Publishing Company, Inc.

Pelican Publishing is generously giving away New Orleans Classic Gumbos & Soups cookbook by Kit Wohl to one lucky winner.  

To enter, you need to have a valid U.S. address.

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This Giveaway ends on December 20th, 11:59pm EST, 2010. The winner will be chosen randomly. I will email the winner, who will have 72 hours to contact me or a new winner will be chosen.

This giveaway is closed.

The winner is #28 –  Theresa D

Review/giveaway disclaimer: I received no monetary compensation for this review. I received New Orleans Classic Gumbos & Soups cookbook for review purposes. The opinions expressed are entirely my own

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