December 12, 2012

Turkey Aspic (Piftie de curcan)

This dish, Turkey Aspic (Piftie de curcan in Romanian) is a traditional winter dish. I remember my Mom making this for Christmas... If you are from the ``old country`` you might remember this dish as being part of your holidays too... 
In Romania, people would make this dish from different kinds of meat (usually, pork) just around the winter holidays, when people were stoking up with meats for the winter... Winter time provided the cold needed for this dish to set and keep (specially for those living the country side that did not have refrigerators) and so, it had to be done when the weather was cold.  It became one of the traditional dishes served for Christmas. Now days, even though we don`t need the weather to be cold for it, this dish got stuck with me as a winter time dish. 
This dish can be served as an appetizer or as part of the main meal.  


2-1/2 kg. (5-1/2 lb.) turkey wings
12 cups water
1 tbsp. salt
5 whole black peppercorns
1 large onion
2-3 carrots
1 parsnip
1 head of garlic
2 pkg. gelatine
Paprika, optional

Place turkey wings into a large stockpot. Cover with enough cold water that meat is fully immersed. Add salt, peppercorns and onion; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and cook for 2 hours or until meat is tender.

Add carrots, parsnip and garlic and cook until vegetables are cooked. By this time meat should be well done. (I like it when meat separates easily from the bone).

Remove vegetables from the broth into a bowl. Remove  all the meat to another  bowl. De-bone meat and remove skin; discard bones and skin.

Divide the meat between 2 serving dishes, (about 2 quarts each) covering the bottom of the dishes with as much meat as you like.

Dissolve gelatine in 1/4 cup of water; add to broth and stir to dissolve. Using a strainer pour broth over the meat. Repeat with the second dish.

Sprinkle paprika on top (optional) and set it aside to cool then place dishes in the refrigerator and let harden overnight before serving.

To serve  cut into squares or invert on a platter and garnish with cooked and sliced carrots if you like. .

piftie-curcan (2)

Makes:8-10 servings

Note: Keep refrigerated until ready to serve to prevent softening.
Leia’s Culinary Treasures

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