With the holidays fast approaching it’s time to start thinking ahead to those holiday meals. However, I decided today to think even further ahead.
After the holidays have settled and everyone has eaten all of left over turkey sandwiches they can tolerate, it’s time to shred and divide up the rest of the turkey to go into the freezer for use in other recipes. It can be used in place of beef or chicken to make casseroles, taco meat, and chili later on for example.
However, I reserve some to immediately make something just a bit lighter, comforting, yet still hearty for right after all of the feasting has come to an end.
Plus, it is made in the slow cooker (crock pot) so I get a break from all the holiday oven baking and stove top cooking.
Plus, if I am not up for chopping and shredding a bunch of fresh vegetables or there aren’t any left that need to be used up, I simply substitute 2 cups of frozen Normandy Blend vegetables — so I only have to chop up an onion and a bit of celery and open a bag of fresh spinach. Nothing could be simpler!
Tam’s Savory Slow Cooker Turkey and Rice Stew
2-1/2 cups of cooked, shredded turkey
6 cups vegetable broth
2 cans (14.5 ounces each) no added salt diced tomatoes — Do not drain
1 small can (8 ounce) tomato sauce
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup zucchini, diced
1/2 cup yellow squash, diced
1/2 cup uncooked wild or brown rice
1/2 to 1 small garlic clove, crushed
1 teaspoon rubbed sage
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground black or white pepper
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon tarragon
1/4 teaspoon rosemary
1/4 teaspoon celery seed
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon fennel or caraway seed
1/2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar; or 2 teaspoons wine or apple cider vinegar
2 cups baby spinach leaves
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Use a 6-quart or larger slow cooker.
Add the olive oil, garlic, and seasonings. Stir to moisten seasonings and form a paste.
Add diced tomatoes and tomato sauce. Stir well to mix.
Add the onion, celery, carrots, squash, and zucchini.
Add the broth and shredded turkey.
Add the wild rice and vinegar. Stir well.
Add the baby spinach on top of the mixture. It will look like a lot, but will it wilt down while cooking. Press it down a bit if required to put on the lid.
Cover, turn on cooker to high, and wait for about 30 minutes to 1 hour until spinach has started wilting. Stir to incorporate the now somewhat wilted spinach. It will wilt and cook down even further as the stew slow cooks.
Cover, reduce heat and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours while you get a good night’s sleep or just until the rice and veggies reach the desired tenderness.
Give it a good stir and ladle into bowls.
If desired, and if you have left over holiday dinner rolls, you can serve those with it, just have it with some crackers, or serve it with nothing at all. It is perfect all by itself!