Enjoy your turkey in a few new ways, from soup to dessert

As Jews, we are given many reasons to celebrate, and as Jews, we complement our celebrations with food.

In addition to our festivals, our weekly celebrations of Shabbat, our High Holy Days, Chanukah, Purim and Passover, we also have our life events. Baby namings, brit, weddings, b’nai mitzvah — even funerals, which although sad, honor and celebrate life. Then as Americans, we celebrate the July 4, Labor Day and, of course, Thanksgiving.

And as always, with our celebrations, food is an integral part of our festivities.

This week, I’m including dishes that are very easy to assemble and that use easily found ingredients.

The Cranberry Orange Teacake is a delicious treat on a holiday morning, toasted with butter, or as an afternoon snack with tea for visitors. This is the weekend to enjoy turkey, so I’m offering a couple recipes that involve turkey in very quick, simple ways.

Turkey Salad | Serves 6

1?2 cup mayonnaise
2 Tbs. lime juice
2 Tbs. tomato salsa
1 tsp. ground cumin seed
4 cups chopped, cooked turkey
1 small bell pepper, finely chopped
2 Tbs. chopped cilantro
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 tsp. salt
Combine all ingredients. Serve on toasted pita or crackers.

Turkey, Mushroom, and White Bean Soup | Serves 10

1 cup water
2 oz. dried mushrooms
8 cups chicken or vegetable stock
3 medium carrots, finely chopped
1 large onion, finely chopped
4 stalks celery, finely chopped
2 Tbs. tomato paste
4 cups cooked turkey
3 cups cooked white beans (2 cans, drained)
1 Tbs. coarse sea salt
1 Tbs. sugar
1 tsp. freshly
ground pepper
Bring the water to a boil, and pour over the mushrooms. Allow the mushrooms to soften for 30 minutes. Drain and rinse well to remove any sand. In a large soup pot, bring the stock to a boil, and add the carrots, onion, celery, tomato paste and the drained mushrooms. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, cover and simmer until the vegetables are soft, about 20 minutes. Add the white beans, turkey, salt, sugar and pepper. Simmer 10 minutes to meld the flavors. Serve warm.

Cranberry Orange Teacake | Makes 1 large loaf

4 oz. unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
zest of 1 orange
3?4 cup orange juice
1?4 cup whole milk
1 Tbs. Sabra or other orange liqueur
1 3?4 cups flour
1 1?2 tsp. baking powder
1 cup chopped cranberries
Beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, orange zest, orange juice, milk and liqueur.
Sift together the flour and baking powder and add to the other ingredients. Mix gently and thoroughly. Stir in the cranberries.
Pour the batter into a parchment-lined or lightly greased 9×5 loaf pan, and bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for 60 minutes. Cool completely before removing from the pan and serving.

Rebecca Ets-Hokin is a certified culinary professional. Visit her Web site at www.GoRebecca.com. She can be reached at [email protected].