One-Pot Wonders

My Mother’s Garlic Soup with Turkey

November 25, 2009
3 Ratings
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

While most mothers stuck with the more traditional variations of chicken noodle, my memories of sick days home from school include two very important remedies: garlic soup and The Price is Right. My mother’s original version contained no meat, but after Thanksgiving last year, she whipped up a batch using leftover roast turkey. And without any ail besides an unhealthy case of stomach expansion, I felt all the comfort of my days being doted on in front of the television come back, even without Bob Barker. —PhoebeLapine

What You'll Need
  • 1 whole head of garlic
  • 1 ½ quarts chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup brown rice
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • ½ tbsp rosemary or thyme, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 cup roast turkey, roughly torn or chopped
  • 1 egg yolk
  • Juice of half a lemon
  1. In a small saucepan, bring 1½ cups of water to a boil. With the back of your knife, crush the head of garlic so the cloves separate from the base. Add to the boiling water and blanch for 2 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to remove the garlic, and let rest on the cutting board until cool enough to touch. The skin will come off extremely easily.
  2. In a medium casserole or soup pot, bring the chicken stock and the garlic cooking water to a boil. Add the brown rice, garlic cloves, herbs, and a pinch of cayenne. Simmer over medium heat with the lid on for 40 - 45 minutes, or until the rice is cooked. Add the roast turkey and simmer for 5 more minutes. Take the soup off the heat.
  3. In a shallow bowl, beat the egg yolk. Slowly whisk in a ladle of the broth to temper it. Make sure to add a very small amount at a time as to not cook the egg. Once fully incorporated, add to the soup with the lemon juice. The egg yolk should give the soup a subtle, silky quality, while the lemon adds brightness to the rich, sweet aroma of boiled garlic.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • ArcticBlade
  • marcandanna
  • lapadia
  • luvcookbooks
  • Kelsey Banfield
    Kelsey Banfield
Phoebe is a writer, gluten-free chef, culinary instructor, award-winning blogger, and author of The Wellness Project. You can find her healthy comfort food and gluten-free finds on

8 Reviews

ArcticBlade January 2, 2014
An instant favorite for me, my wife and our 12 year old, but next time I'll use a little less lemon juice. An excellent way to use turkey leftovers.
marcandanna November 30, 2013
I'm wondering if I can make this the night before I serve it? Will the rice get too mushy? Sounds delicious!
rpepper November 27, 2012
I love this soup and will make it often.
lapadia November 29, 2010
Made this soup last night, an excellent way to use some of the leftover Thanksgiving turkey....delicious! Thanks for sharing it.
pudu March 2, 2010
Love this recipe!
luvcookbooks December 1, 2009
my this sounds delicious
like the garlic peeling method, new to me
Kelsey B. November 29, 2009
This is such a great recipe! I remember those days, home sick from school. My mother administered the chicken tortellini soup & Cosby Show re-run cure.
pauljoseph November 25, 2009
Excellent recipe