Home Living Cooking In the Kitchen No more boring turkey sandwiches: Spice up those leftovers...

In the Kitchen
No more boring turkey sandwiches: Spice up those leftovers with this tasty southwest soup

Editor’s note: Kayleigh, who is expecting a baby this month, is on family leave. We are reprinting some of our favorite “In the Kitchen” columns  while she is on leave. This one was originally published on Nov. 29, 2014. 

Whew! Turkey day is over. It’s the busiest cooking day of the year for my family and me with 95 mouths to feed — yes, I said 95; that wasn’t a typo.

This glorious feasting day is something I look forward to every year. One hundred pounds of turkey and 50 pounds of potatoes later, this girl is not lifting a finger in the kitchen at home for at least two days. Plus you can imagine the leftovers that get brought home. You’d think it’d be enough to carry us over until the next holiday.

Now I’ve got a turkey carcass and a bunch of turkey jammed in the fridge. But what’s next?

Turkey sandwiches? Blah. Most leftover offerings are just unappealing.

It’s time to go after the non-traditional, spicing things up and giving that leftover turkey a run for its money: turkey soup with a southwestern flair.

Most of the ingredients are already in the fridge and pantry. Even better, you can make this soup early in the day and throw it in the crock pot for later. I have to say this one was a winner with my husband.

If you didn’t win the coin toss for the turkey carcass, don’t worry. You can use chicken stock instead. Also, there are many ways to go about serving this soup. I topped ours with sour cream and cheddar cheese, but you could go all-out and serve this on top of Spanish rice or even fry up some flour tortillas and crumble on top.

Southwest Turkey Soup

Serves : 6-8


3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large spanish onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 16oz. can black beans
1 16oz. can red beans
1 32 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 6 oz. can tomato paste
2 teaspoon cumin
2 teaspoon coriander
6 cups turkey stock (recipe to follow)
1 bag of frozen sweet corn
3 cups of leftover turkey, shredded or cubed
Salt and pepper to taste

• In a large soup pot heat the oil on medium. Add the diced onion and sauté until the onion is softened. Add the garlic, cumin and coriander. Stir until fragrant. Add the can of tomato paste. Cook the tomato paste ,stirring, for at least 1-2 minutes. Add the beans, and canned tomato. Stir until all ingredients are well combined. Add the stock. Turn the heat up to medium high and bring to a simmer. Stir in the corn, cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the turkey. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Tear some cilantro leaves and sprinkle on top. serve immediately or store in a crock pot on low for later.

Stock ingredients:
1 bunch of cilantro
1 lime, halved
1 bunch of garlic, halved
1 tablespoon pepper corns
1 large onion, peeled and cut into quarters
1 turkey carcass

• If necessary break down the carcass into pieces and put in a large soup pot. Add the rest of the ingredients. Cover with water, at least 12 cups. Bring to a boil. Allow to cook until the liquid is reduced to half. turn off and remove from the heat.

• Carefully strain the liquid into a large bowl or new pot. Set the bowl of liquid aside, this is your stock for the soup. Saving the remains, pick out any good turkey pieces and save for soup. Discard the rest of the remains

horizontal-rule red 500px

baig kayleigh
Kayleigh Van Vliet Baig was born and raised in Riverhead, where she lives with her husband Tahir.

Kayleigh has been in the culinary industry for the last 13 years, working in kitchens on the East End. She also is a personal chef.

Look for In the Kitchen with Kayleigh every Saturday on RiverheadLOCAL.com.

Got questions? Recipes? Ideas? [contact-form-7 id=”26578″ title=”Write to Kayleigh”]

Kayleigh Van Vliet Baig
Kayleigh is a sous chef at the Meadow Club in Southampton. A Riverhead native, she is married and the mother of a daughter born in December 2016. Email Kayleigh