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Alva's "Jook" - Chinese Style Turkey Soup

User Rating 5 Star Rating (1 Review)


Karl Newedel/StockFood Creative/Getty Images
Here is a great recipe for the turkey season. This recipe was submitted by Don McDiarmid Jr., who writes: "If you make this soup once, you will never again cook a turkey without thinking about the "jook" that will follow."

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours, 45 minutes

Total Time: 4 hours


  • 20 lb turkey with 95 percent of the meat stripped from it*
  • 4 celery stalks, chopped, plus the celery tops
  • 1 large chopped round onion or two medium onions
  • 4 - 5 slices of fresh ginger (about 1/4-inch thick), peeled
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 large cans of Swansons clear chicken soup
  • 1 bunch parsley, bottom stems cut off
  • Extra water or chicken soup to cover turkey meat and bones while simmering
  • 2 cups medium grain raw Oriental rice, such as Hinode
  • 1 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1 tsp dried cilantro
  • 1 TB sesame oil
  • 3 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1 head Chinese mustard cabbage, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Garlic salt, optional 


Put the carcass in the pot with the first 6 items and cover bones with the liquid. Heat on high until the soup comes to a full boil. Lower heat and medium simmer with the lid on, until most of the meat scraps fall off the carcass, about 3 hours. Then, using a slotted spoon or strainer, take all the bones and the rest of the solids out (not the turkey meat) and discard them.
After their removal, add the rice, Chinese five-spice powder, dried cilantro, sesame oil, and carrots. Let the soup cook, covered, for at least another 30 minutes or more, simmering on on low heat, until the rice is fully cooked and the soup starts to thicken (let it thicken). Add the bite-sized, sliced mustard cabbage and cook for 5 more minutes, then serve.
Serve in bowls and add thinly chopped green onion and minced Chinese parsley over the top as a garnish. Grated fresh ginger may be served on the side.
The author adds: This soup gets better every day. Just bring it to a full boil every day for a minute or two. The raw rice will soak up a lot of liquid so you might wish to add more chicken soup, or cut down 1/2 cup on the raw rice, but it is supposed to be a bit thick.
*If your turkey is too small, try getting together with a neighbour and combining carcasses. If necessary, break down the bones from the turkey a bit to fit into the pot.
User Reviews

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 5 out of 5
Tastes like my memories of Thanksgiving, Member virginia650

As I grew up, my father always made a turkey soup from the Thanksgiving turkey carcass. It was thickened with vegetables and rice and he never used a recipe. I never could make my soup taste as good as his until I came across this recipe. Now my turkey jook matches my memories of Dad's and my kitchen smells like I remember my kitchen as a child. I have a recipe now to pass along to my children. Hopefully it will become a family tradition for them. Thank you for giving me back a piece of my childhood. This is indeed Chinese comfort food.

1 out of 1 people found this helpful.

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