Country Living Series

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Canning turkey stock

The morning after Thanksgiving was foggy and full of hoarfrost.



I saw a solitary male quail acting as sentinel over his flock.


It was a good day to do some canning. On Thanksgiving night, Don deboned the turkey carcass and put it in our largest stock pot, then filled it about 3/4 full of water. I added a splash of vinegar (which was an excellent reader suggestion -- it draws nutrients out of the bones) and let it simmer all night and most of the next day.


I rough-strained the stock through a colander and started filling jars. My canner holds 18 pint jars at a time, and I knew I had at least two batches' worth.


Scalding and draining the Tattler lids.



Lids on.


First batch in the canner.


Because my stock has meat scraps in it, I pressure-can it for 75 minutes (for pints) at 13 lbs, which is the correct pressure for our elevation (not quite up the pressure in this photo).


First batch out of the canner. It was too late in the evening to start a second batch, so I added some more water to the pot with the carcass and let it simmer all night again.


The next day I canned up another batch.


Altogether I ended up with 29 pints of hearty turkey stock for future recipes. Not bad for something that might otherwise be called garbage.


I hope everyone did something similarly useful with their turkey carcass?

23 comments:

  1. Broth is in the fridge, will be heating it and canning it on Monday. Yum.
    Paintedmoose

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  2. Carcass is in a bag in the freezer until I have opportunity to deal with it next week. ;) I've been known to take the carcass home from my in-laws' house just to keep it from being tossed!

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  3. Carcass is in a bag in the freezer, waiting for me to have the opportunity to deal with it this week. I've even been known to bring home the carcass when we go to my in-laws' house, if they're not going to use it! ;)

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  4. Not quite as useful as you, but I did can up 7 pints of shredded turkey meat...

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  5. I've done broth before. I have to freeze mine as I don't have a canner.
    The meat that we don't freeze is fed to the cats.
    Do you toss the bones after, or?

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  6. We had ham this year, making ham and cheese pie for dinner tomorrow. I will then use the bone to flavor a pot of beans.

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  7. I believe the Ball Book of Canning says if you just have bits of meat, you don't have to pressure can for the full 75 minutes. In fact, if memory serves me, I think it is just canned like broth. Would be a timesaver!

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  8. We buy a fresh turkey and the smallest I could get was just under 14 lb, so we have lots of turkey leftover (it was just the four of us). I had lots of broth from our brined bird with a delicious orange flavor so I let the fat come to the top and I gave it and the well picked over carcass to our 8 laying hens along with the carrots, celery and orange it was stuffed with. I picked up the bones that were dry and cartilage free Friday morning when I cleaned their pen in preparation for the storm that is on its way. I figured the girls could use some extra calories and they didn't disagree.
    I'm glad I did because someone let their border collie/lab pups roam, probably while visiting a local, and they got to my hens Saturday afternoon while the girls were enjoying the sunshine and a dirtbath in my circle drive. Even though we were out with them, it only took a few seconds for massive injuries to occur. It took us three hours to find the scattered injured birds and we never could locate the owners, who also never appeared to us to be out looking for their really cute, otherwise extremely well behaved, and loving pups. I have a "hen-hospital" set up in our tackroom because it's heated and the most badly bird may not make it but she's eating and letting us clean and anoint her wounds.
    Anyone have any suggestions on treating the girls? Sorry to hijack.

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  9. My broth always turns out cloudy and white. What am I doing wrong? Yours is a beautiful golden color and quite clear. Seems like such a simple thing to mess up on.

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    1. Some of mine comes out a little darker. I think maybe it's the seasoning. I will also, like Patrice, boil the carcass twice. The broth is not as rich looking the second time, but jus as good!
      Kelly in K'ville, NC

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  10. I take the meat that is boiled off the bones and sift through it carefully for small bone fragments, I can up the broth in pints, and then I save some broth out, put 1/3 turkey, 1/3 celery left over from making stuffing, 1/3 carrots in the jar and top with broth. I can that up and it is the best turkey soup, just add noodles. With the bones, the big leg bones I do crack before putting them in the broth pot, and when I am done canning everything up, I put the bones in the oven at 175 and cook them till they are very very dry and brittle, put them in the food processor and grind them up, and put that is a zippy bag or a jar and that is the bone meal I use in the spring when i plant my garden. 1 TBS for every well started tomato plant, 1/2 TBS for smaller fruit plants. Nothing goes to waste here

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  11. I always make stock, even if splurge on a rotisserie chicken...And like Kris C, have been known to take the carcass home from my parents if we visit on the holidays (they actually have come to learn to save it for me, even if we visit the next day!) I did ham and a turkey breast, so I have a very nice ham bone in the freezer for a ham and bean soup on a cold day!

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  12. Okay, I went turkey crazy this year. Our local Publix had turkeys for 59 cents a pound with a limit of two turkeys per customer. I bought two and cooked them both up at Thanksgiving. After we ate all we wanted, I canned the meat and made broth and canned it too.

    Then on Friday, I went back to Publix (grocery stores are practically deserted on Black Friday and make for wonderful shopping) and bought two more. On my way home, I remembered a Publix that is on a different route and decided to take them in also. Stopped to pick up two more of the store brand turkeys and found they were out. The store worker pointed at a case of Butterballs and said, "Take them from there, and I'll ring them up at 59 cents a pound for you." I took the two largest ones they had, each more than 25 lbs. So for the last few days I've been roasting, picking, chopping, simmering turkeys and canning the resulting meat and stock. We're set for soups, stews and casseroles for some time to come. Yum.

    NOTE TO SIDETRACKSUSIE: When our dog grabbed one of our chickens that flew over the fence, she was pretty torn up. I washed her wounds with iodine and pretty much kept her in a quiet, warm place with plenty of water and food. I pretty much thought I was just giving her a peaceful place to die, because she had horrendous tears in her skin that I was sure could not heal. Amazingly enough, they did, with very little help from me. The skin just grew back together and eventually the feathers came back too. I think the main thing is to keep them warm. She seemed to like sitting under a heat lamp while the wounds were still raw. Good luck.

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    1. Thank you very much, Kay.
      The only other advise I have been given is to butcher her. She's a good layer and that's why we have them. I can get chicken for cheap at the store, but an egg everyday from a bird that eats bugs (when in season, lol) is such a great deal.
      She's in the heated tack room in the dog kennel and her appetite is very, very good. Hubby let her walk around while I "scooped the poop" and freshened food and water and she was alert and pecking at everything. She is featherless on the lower half of her back and is laid open on either side of her spine, along with other puncture wounds. The other girls are doing better also, one had a leg that she could barely use but she came up to me this morning wanting me to hurry up and put the scraps out. None of them can run, yet, which is their usual pace when they see us. No eggs have been laid since this happened, but I think that's probably normal.
      Thanks again.

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    2. Kay:

      I agree with your accessment. Chickens are remarkably resillant. We have had a couple get tore up by dogs as well. Horrible skin tears as well. I move the wounded ones to a dog kennel in the house where i could keep an eye on them with small feeders for food and water. The only thing i put on them was a thick coat of triple antibiotic cream. Within weeks they were healed, albeit featherless, but even those came back eventually.

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    3. We cleaned her wounds and put the triple antibiotic ointment on, and she spent the first evening picking it off and rubbing it off her beak onto the back of the dog kennel. Her efforts made the wounds look almighty awful but she debrided some hanging skin that I didn't have the heart to cut.
      She didn't eat much last night, either she's not feeling up to it or she's holding out for more special treats. She did come out of her kennel and walk around the tack room while I cleaned and she drank lots of water.
      When the blizzard lets up, I'm going to take her apples and some other goodies.
      Thank you, Lisa.

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  13. One of life's necessities - homemade stock! I think it has to be in the top ten list of pantry essentials. I put it right up there with flour and baking powder. Is there anything that doesn't taste better with homemade stock?

    SIDEBAR: I love the hoarfrost pics. I've said it before --- Hoarfrost is our reward for living in frigid climes.

    Just Me

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  14. I was horrible this year and fed ours to the hog. I had already cooked the entire meal and was pooped and just wanted everything cleared as quickly as posible. I'm just going to thing that I gave the pig one of her last good meals. She's going in the freezer pretty sooon so I guess "technically" I processed the carcass. I promise I'll do better at Christmas :-)

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  16. I canned 5 quarts of stock from the turkey remains and a nice pot of turkey and rice soup. I also keep a container in the freezer for any chicken leftovers or drippings and such and can it when it's full.

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  17. Quick question - When making stock do you use the skin too? Or just the carcass bones?

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    1. I used the skin, bones and whatever was left in the baking pan.

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  18. We simmer the carcass (bones, skin, meat bits) overnight, then strain off the broth and cook it down in another pot. When it's reduced, freeze in ice cube trays, pop out into freezer bags, and use as many as you need later.

    More water is added to the carcass and it is cooked overnight or longer and slightly cooled. Then moosh up the bones, discarding any that aren't soft, cook again with saved carrot peels, other misc. vegetables and saved drippings. When well done, hit this with the immersion blender, cook in some cornmeal or whatever to thicken, cool, freeze in ice cube trays, pop into WELL LABELED bags in the freezer. These dog popsicles save a ton on dog food. They love it and do so well on it.

    A pot of chicken and noodles accidently got started once with dogsicles, thus the importance of "well labeled".

    brenda from ar

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