I’m in need of some comfort today.
I just cooked my first Thanksgiving dinner…for 15 people. My feet hurt. I’m exhausted. The kitchen still has remnants of flour and sugar sprinkled here and there, and the dishwasher is packed to the brim with clean dishes just waiting to be put away (my most-loathed household chore). I think I’m just now coming down from the stress. As per usual, I put too much pressure on myself to make it “perfect.” It’s hard to create everyone’s “perfect” version of Thanksgiving, ya know? My favorite version is the one I grew up with (I’m sure this is true for most people). It’s tricky trying to capture your version of those “home” flavors and simultaneously translate those flavors to those who might have a slightly different version of the “perfect” Thanksgiving. Tricky, tricky.
So, after hours spent planning, shopping for, brining, roasting, whipping, mixing, pouring, and serving the food…all while being my type-A-personality self…I’m spent (side note: I may have self medicated with a couple glasses of my new fav sangria).
That said, it was totally worth it. I think it was a success! Thanksgiving is such a wonderful holiday, not only for the gathering of family and the reflection on our blessings, but also for the shared celebration of FEASTING. It’s basically the best meal of the year. I totally overestimated just how much food we would need, though. Rookie mistake. I have gigantic containers of turkey, gravy, taters, and stuffing in the fridge. And I can’t wait to eat them all over again. Mmm.
Back to my need for comfort. This soup is the answer. I LOVE pot pies of any sort. Chicken pot pie is one of the best comfort foods in the world, if you ask me. The only problem: it’s not something you should eat every day. It’s a little too rich and indulgent for that. So, many moons ago, I decided to come up with a way to serve it that cut down on the guilt. A soup calling on those same flavors was the answer. That’s when chicken pot pie soup was born.
This time, I made it with turkey and veggies – it’s the perfect way to use up those Thanksgiving leftovers. It’s creamy, comforting, and loaded with healthy ingredients. And it really DOES taste like the filling of a pot pie.
Because I can’t go completely carb-less, I decided that this soup needed to be served with some sort of biscuit. It was a good decision. The biscuits are airy and light, but still quell my cravings for buttery crust. Now, I must admit, I made two mistakes with my biscuits (hence their slightly flat appearance): I didn’t put the butter and cream cheese in the freezer long enough (impatient much?), and I rolled the dough too thin before cutting them out. Luckily, they still tasted great. Don’t be like me, though. Chill your ingredients for the full 30 minutes and keep the dough about 1 inch thick. Your biscuits will be glorious (read: way prettier than mine).
I will definitely host Thanksgiving in all its hectic glory again…as long as I can sit on my butt for the entire following day, curled up with a bowl (or two!) of this soup.
Turkey Pot Pie Soup with Cream Cheese Biscuits (makes 8 servings)
For the Soup:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 large onion, diced
3 carrots, diced
4 celery stalks, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
3 sprigs of thyme, chopped
¼ cup flour
½ cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
2 cups low-fat milk
4 cups of leftover turkey breast meat, cut into chunks
2 cups frozen peas
1 cup frozen corn kernels
½ cup heavy cream
Salt and pepper
For the Biscuits:
¾ cup all-purpose flour
¾ cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1½ cups cake flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
¾ teaspoon baking soda
4 oz cream cheese, cubed and frozen for 30 minutes
4 tablespoons butter, cubed and frozen for 30 minutes
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon buttermilk
Sea salt, for sprinkling
1. For the Soup: Melt the butter and oil in a large stockpot. Add the veggies and sauté until tender, about 10 minutes. Add in the garlic and thyme and cook for another 2 minutes (At this point, you should prep the cream cheese and butter for the biscuits by cubing them and placing in the freezer).
2. Add the flour and stir to coat the vegetables. Increase the heat and whisk in the white wine and mustard. Slowly add in the stock, whisking constantly. Add the milk and bring to a simmer. Add the diced potatoes and turkey breast. Simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.
3. Add the frozen peas, corn, and heavy cream. Simmer for another few minutes and then keep warm until ready to serve.
4. While the soup is simmering, make the biscuits: place the flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine. Add in the cream cheese and butter cubes and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
5. Pour everything into a large bowl and stir in the buttermilk. Stir until incorporated. Turn out on a floured surface and knead until everything comes together.
6. Shape the dough into a rectangle and roll gently with a rolling pin so it is even. Cut into desired biscuit shape and place the biscuits on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush the tops of the biscuits with extra buttermilk, sprinkle with sea salt, and bake at 450°F for 12-15 minutes or until they are puffed and golden. Top the soup with biscuits (or serve on the side).
Biscuit recipe adapted from here.