9-22-11 Dinner Blog
Last night’s story actually started Wednesday night. To get a jump on Thursday’s dinner and knowing the flavor would be better if the soup had time to marinate, I gathered all the ingredients and within 10 minutes everything was in the slow cooker.
I purchased pre-chopped vegetables to save time, so it was a matter of dumping the veggies, dropping in 2 smoked turkey thighs, and measuring out the water and seasonings. Super easy! Then I turned the crock pot on high for 4 hours. Before I went to bed, I put the crock pot in the refrigerator over night. The soup was not ready, but at least the flavors had begun to cook, and, around noon I took the soup out of the refrigerator and turned it on high for 6 more hours. If you are going to be gone all day, you could probably finish cooking the soup on low for about 10 hours…
While I usually only shop once during the week, I did not want to get fresh bread on Sunday to use on Thursday. So yesterday afternoon, I went to the local bread shop and purchased whole wheat sourdough bread – I had them slice it to save time. It was a quick trip in and out, I didn’t buy anything else!!!
By 4 p.m., the house smelled amazing! Due to sports, our family dinner was scheduled for 7 p.m. To make sure we sat down right at 7, I pulled the smoked turkey thighs out of the soup at about 6:15, discarded the skin and bones, shredded the meat and returned the meat to the soup. This took about 10 minutes – the meat just fell off the bones.
Once we were ready to sit down, I portioned the soup and stacked 5 pieces of bread on a plate (we had a guest for dinner).
Two thumbs up all around! A 10 from my son, a 9.5 from our guest, who is my brother and would never miss a chance to diss me, a 9 from my husband, and a 9 from my toughest critic, my daughter. Wow!!! It was quite satisfying. The adults had an additional small portion, but the kids were quite satisfied with one bowl.
You learn something new every day. You can teach an old dog new tricks… Yes, I am talking about myself… I made some changes to this recipe, out of necessity, that really enhanced the flavor. I used to use ham hocks, but the store was out. I explained to the butcher what I was making and he suggested smoked turkey thighs – said I wouldn’t tell the difference and I might even like it better. A bit salesy?! He was right! I love using the smoked turkey thighs and will try them in place of ham hocks in all future recipes that call for ham hocks. Nothing against ham hocks except that they are bit more fatty.
The one thing about smoked turkey thighs is that they use salt in the process. As a result, I used very little additional salt in the recipe. No one asked to add salt. The flavor was just right!
I owe you the recipe for this. It is too good to pass on! Stay tuned…