Easy, Now. (Or Later? Why Soup is Good For the Busy Soul)



You can find recipes for the perfect turkey everywhere. And anyone can build a great day-after-Thanksgiving turkey sandwich (hint: it’s all about the mayo), but when you are staring back at that gigantic leftover … uh…carcass, you might be tempted to toss it out and just cut yourself an oversized slice of apple pie.

Don’t. I mean don’t throw out the turkey. Go ahead with the pie. But that leftover turkey makes some of the best soup of the year; and even if you are turkeyed-out, you can pop this easy soup into the freezer for a weeknight dinner that’s both hearty and healthy. Plus, this recipe can easily be modified for the gluten free crowd out there – simply swap out the pasta for rice, and the white flour for almond flour.

Epicurean’s Now Or Later Turkey Soup

Prep time: 25 minutes | Cook time: approximately 1.5 hours | Servings: 10-12


  • Large turkey carcass (it’s such an unappetizing word but…)
  • 5 quarts cold water
  • 1 cup celery cleaned and chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 6-7 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup parsley, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 4 cups fine egg noodles
  • 1/4 cup butter (1 stick)
  • 1/4 cup flour


  • Place turkey carcass, water, celery, onion, bouillon cubes, salt and pepper in a large stock pot
  • Heat to boiling; reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 hour
  • Remove the turkey, place on a platter and let cool
  • Add the parsley, peas, carrots and pasta
  • Heat to boiling; reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes
  • Meanwhile, pull meat from bones and return meat to soup pot
  • Add liquid if needed (either water or chicken stock, taste to check seasoning)
  • Heat to boiling; cook uncovered for 10 minutes
  • Melt butter in a small frying pan; stir in flour and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the flour browns
  • Slowly stir the flour mixture into the boiling soup
  • When the soup returns to a boil reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes

I keep a couple of boxes of cornbread mix in my pantry at all times so that if I am desperate and the cupboards are bare, I have an entire meal at the ready – soup in the freezer and cornbread from a box makes me almost as happy as apple pie.






submitted by Stephanie Blackford


Dish Duty


With the holidays upon us, one might wonder what is appropriate when it comes to clearing the dishes after a meal. Really, darlings, its quite simple – but it seems to cause some commotion and chaos at times. A few rules to help you be a proper host and a gracious guest:

As the Host:

It is your responsibility to lead the charge when the discussion of dishes presents itself. Are you adamant that the dishes should be left until later? Then do your guests the favor of saying so clearly but firmly. A simple “Thank you for the offer but I insist. Let’s move into the dining room for coffee and dessert.” Comfortable with help? Put some parameters in place and be specific, such as “Yes, let’s do a quick clear but leave the washing and loading until later” or “Great! I’ll start the coffee – do you prefer to wash or dry?” will suffice. Be direct and polite, but stand your ground. I personally cannot stand people cleaning in my kitchen. I’ve considered velvet ropes (for the holidays) and yellow police caution tape (for every other day) to keep over-eager hands quiet. In recent years I’ve relaxed my stance a bit, which may be age or the fact that I keep my doggy bowl full of cabernet.

As the Guest:

Do not leap up and start the dish clearing process! This is not a fire drill my dears, this is a celebratory meal! This is not your house and this is not your decision. Take your hint from the host and listen, truly, to what he or she says. Of course make the effort to stand and help AFTER the host does so, but if you are told to sit, sit! If your offer to help is accepted, state your plan “It was a wonderful dinner. I will start clearing plates” or “Would you prefer help washing or would it be helpful if I started handling leftovers.”

As either a guest or a host, the most important thing is to be kind, be respectful, and be in the moment. Little puppies joining you this year? Consider a few board games or puzzles to keep them happy and content. Sitting next to a Great Dane? As her about her favorite childhood memory or her Thanksgiving tradition. Stuck with Bull Mastiff? See the afore mentioned tip about keeping your bowl filled to the brim. Happy holidays.

Cordially yours,


Parker Presley

Parker Presley is known in certain social circles as the preeminent expert in etiquette and invites you to contact him with even the most embarrassing question or tricky situation so that you, too, may be top dog in any setting. Please contact him at parkerpresley@epicureancg.com.

Sit! (Good Dog) | How to Navigate the Holiday Table


So much time and effort is put into creating the perfect holiday meal, but when you and your guests are doing the soft-shoe shuffle around the dining table, things can get a little tricky. Do you sit first? Last? Do you wait for the hostess to sit down? Do you sit next to your spouse? Across from Steve-I-Am-Louder-than-Anyone-Here? Miles away from the 18 month-old who is not only teething but practicing his right hook?

The easiest and kindest thing to do as a host is to put together place cards. If you are part of a couple and hosting guests, the host and the hostess should sit at the head of the table. The male guest of honor and/or the eldest male should be seated to the hostess’ right and the female guest of honor and/or eldest female should be seated to the right of the host. The remainder of the guests should then be seated in a male/female alternating fashion.  Separating spouses is best, allowing for more interesting conversation among diners. And think how happy Steve-I-Am-Louder-than-Anyone-Here’s wife will be with this rare opportunity.

If you are a single poodle hosting an event, you should be seated at the head of the table and the female guest of honor should be at the other end. Again, guests should then be seated in a male/female alternating fashion. Female guests should be seated first with the hostess as the last lady to be seated. The men should follow suit with the host as the final guest to take his seat.

This holiday season, be thankful for true friends, a strong family, divine food and the comfort and joy that comes with good manners.

Cordially yours,

Dude Looks Like A Lady

Parker Presley

Dude Looks Like A Lady

Parker Presley is known in certain social circles as the preeminent expert in etiquette and invites you to contact him with even the most embarrassing question or tricky situation so that you, too, may be top dog in any setting. Please contact him at parkerpresley@epicureanCG.com.