Tom Turkey is firmly trussed up and placed on a platter. A large man with a sharp knife is standing nearby, using his steel to hone its edge to razor sharpness... A femme fatale approaches the hapless bird...
"At last Tom...I have you where I want you..."
"Rosie...I should have known...Do you expect me to talk?"
No, Tom...I expect you to feed a party of six then make delicious leftovers..."
Can you tell I went to see the new James Bond movie? If you haven't seen it yet - go right now. I have always been a big fan of the Ian Flemming books and this movie goes right back to what made those books exciting when I read them all those years ago. It even makes up for Moonraker - well, almost. (Quick trivia quiz: What famous children's book did Ian Flemming pen?)
So after Tom got done feeding us for Thanksgiving, his bones sat in the fridge waiting for me to make a huge pot of turkey broth. For me, the leftovers are better than the dinner - mostly because it means I can relax and enjoy the food. My post thanksgiving feed usually includes a huge pot of turkey potato soup. But not this time!!
In a diabolical twist, I decided to make...
TURKEY NOODLE SOUP!!!!
Yes, something that broke with tradition for two reasons. One, because the soup had noodles in it and two, because I had the energy to make homemade noodles to put in it.
Homemade noodles are extremely easy to make. They also require you to have the forearms of Popeye. The dough is very stiff and if you are not used to putting your arm muscles to good use on a regular basis, you can find it a little tiring. I figured it was a fine way to burn all those Thanksgiving day calories.
5 cups of all purpose flour
5 T butter, melted and cooled
(Yup - only three ingredients)
Measure flour onto a clean working surface and create a well in the center.
Place eggs and melted butter in well.
Start working the eggs and butter into the dough.
Keep adding flour from the outside edge of the well until all the flour is incorporated into the dough.
Knead the dough until it holds together. It SHOULD look like this.
Divide the dough into manageable portions and start rolling out the dough. Use either a rolling pin and your mighty thews or a pasta roller. You may have to roll some and then let the dough rest, as it will be fairly springy. You want the finished sheets to be between an 1/8 and a 1/4 of an inch thick.
(I make mine 1/4 inch. I like substantial noodles. That's how I put hair on men's chests. And some women's too.) Lay out the sheets and allow to dry somewhat. Either pasta drying racks or just regular cookie racks can work.
When dry to the touch, roll up the sheets and cut into 1/8 to 1/4 inch strips. Uncurl the noodles and allow them to dry some more. You want the surface to be dry so they don't stick together. Once again, if you are lucky enough to have a pasta drying rack, use that. I just put mine on a cookie rack and tossed occasionally to circulate air.
In the old days, you could dry these completely and then store in a cool dark place. My mom used to take her tea towels outside, cover the clothesline with a layer, hang her noodles over the lines, then cover with another layer of towels. They would bake hard in the summer sun. Me? I bag them up and freeze them if I am not using them right away. Use in about 3 months.
Note: you can cut these into 2" squares and make what are called "slip dumplings". They take forever to cook, but man are they awesome. I have been told it is a Pennsylvania Dutch recipe.
Rosie's You Can Only Die Twice Turkey Noodle Soup
4 Quarts of homemade turkey stock, unsalted
1 pound of carrots, sliced into 1/4 thick rounds
1 pound of celery, slice into 1/4 thick pieces
2 large onions, cut into large dice
Half a batch of homemade noodles
Several big handfuls of chopped turkey
Salt, pepper to taste
Herbs (I used some dried thyme, bay leaf, sage and parsley, but anything you like can go in)
Note about the stock: I threw everything but the kitchen sink into the stock when I was making it - carrots, onions, celery, parsnips, parsley stems, fresh thyme, a couple dried hot peppers, peppercorns - everything except salt, that is. Taste your stock and season accordingly!
Melt butter in a large soup pot and saute the onions and celery until onions are translucent. Toss in carrots and saute briefly. Add stock and bring to a boil. Toss in noodles and dried herbs, salt and pepper. Cook until noodles are done. Toss in the already cooked turkey just before you are ready to serve.
You can also buy Mrs. Reams egg noodles in the freezer section if you don't want to mess with making your own noodles. Of course, you won't burn off any calories that way.