For Easter Sunday this year I was in charge of making a turkey. This was a big step up for me, considering two years ago I messed up two of the easiest jobs there are for a Holiday Dinner... bread and salad. Yes, I screwed up bread and salad.
So I'm happy to report that I did not mess up the turkey. It turned out very good!
Now there is one great benefit of being in charge of making the turkey...you get to keep the left-overs, and let's be honest...aren't the left-overs the best part of a turkey? So I picked the bird clean and had about 5 cups of lovely turkey. I had it in mind that some kind of turkey chowder would be nice, so I hunted the web for recipes. I found several different variations, each with an aspect that sounded good to me - heavy cream, bacon, Parmesan cheese. So I tried my own version using my fav parts of each recipe.
Here is the recipe I used today
Turkey Corn Chowder
4 pieces of bacon
1 large onion, chopped
2 ribs of celery, diced
(honestly I think my dicing and chopping are exactly the same)
3 large potatoes, cubed
2 cups chicken or turkey broth (I used the drippings from my turkey)
2 cups half-n-half
2 cups whole milk
1 can whole kernel corn (15 oz)
2 cans cream style corn (14 oz)
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
about 5 cups cooked turkey, cubed
Start by cooking bacon to crisp in the bottom of a large pot. Remove bacon to paper towels, leaving drippings in pot. Add in onions and celery, simmer on medium heat for about 5 minutes.
Add in all ingredients. I started with the potatoes, then broth, then corn, so that my milk would not scald the bottom of the hot pan. (I also quickly blended the whole corn with my cream so that I could make the chowder creamier, then added to the pot) Add turkey. Crumble up bacon and add to pot. Add black pepper to taste.
Let it come to a slow boil, then turn down heat to low and allow to simmer for at least 30 minutes. Potatoes should be soft.
(My neighbors were over just before dinner, so I enlisted them as taste-testers, and I'm pleased to say that the 1 yr old gobbled up a whole bowl! And because this makes such a big pot of chowder, I brought over a big bowl this evening to share. Mrs. Neighbor called about 3 minutes later to say hubby was enjoying it very much! So it has been taste-tested and approved!)
Here are a few ingredients and variations you may try.
I'm looking forward to trying this again using lass dairy (dairy gives me insomnia and acne). I think I'll check out the cookbook "The Sneaky Chef" for ideas on using a creamed cauliflower instead - I have a feeling the half-n-half would provide enough "creaminess", and adding another vegetable would be nice.
Some recipes did not add the bacon to the pot, but suggested crumbling atop the bowl.
Other ingredients you may add - fresh garlic, jalapeno pepper, sweet potatoes.
Other suggested spices - dried chili pepper flakes, dried thyme.
If you have any other ideas or a favorite chowder recipe to share, please do!
(from experience...while the bacon is cooking is a bad time to check on the children. Bacon burns very quickly!)