Loving your leftovers (Christmas edition)

Well, that’s that, then, for another year.  Christmas is over.  Hands up whoever is feeling like they never want to see another morsel of turkey ever again (at least until next year)?

And hands up who has an abundance of turkey left over, in your fridge, looking a bit sorry for itself.

Yep, me too.

Over the next few days I’m going to blog about what I’ve done with my Christmas leftovers, and maybe it will provide some inspiration for what you can do with yours.

So, today, I’m sharing what I did with my turkey bones, and no, I didn’t just chuck them out. 

I don’t like waste.  At all.  I hate throwing food away, and if I can do something with the rubbishy bits, then I do.  And instead of just chucking out the carcass after a roast dinner, I boil the bones up to make stock.  It’s easy and the stock tastes miles nicer than a cube (and it’s not full of revolting MSG)

Unfortunately, I didn’t take any photos of my turkey stock making efforts but if you can imagine bones boiling in a big old pot of water then you’re pretty much there.

Pick off as much edible meat as you can from the carcass.  Pop this meat in the fridge for other meals and put the bones in a large pot of water (for a turkey carcass I use at least 6 pints, for a chicken, at least 3.) .  I stuck a couple of clementines inside the turkey cavity this year (like the M&S ad) for a bit of extra festive cheer, so they went in the pot, too.  If you didn’t, you can pop in a quartered onion, a stick of celery, a few peppercorns if you like, and a carrot.

Bring the boney water to the boil and simmer for 3 or so hours.  The water will turn a creamy colour as all the goodness is extracted from the bones.  It will also reduce down and this is good, as it makes for very concentrated stock.  So you don’t need to worry about having pints and pints of stock on your hands.

After a few hours simmering, turn off the heat and allow to cool before straining through a sieve.  You can now throw away the carcass happy that you’ve made some delicious stock that will contribute to at least one other meal.  When it is completely cold it will be quite gelatinous, but this is exactly what you want.

You can keep it in the fridge for a week or so, or you can portion it out and freeze it, which is what I have done.  Fat will settle on top, and is very easy to skim off.

This stock adds delicious flavour to soup or risotto.  Why not give it a try next time you roast a chicken?

Tomorrow… Quick yummy turkey lunch.




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