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Nutted Wild Rice Soup
Deeply woodsy and autumnal in richness, this soup is a wonderful meal in itself, with the crunch of toasted walnuts, the sweet-tart of cranberries, and the chewy bite of wild rice. This is surely one way to use up the Thanksgiving turkey that won't remotely resemble leftovers--a true salute to New World Foods. Serve hot as a meal to 4-6 people
Begin by rinsing the wild rice in hot water, then draining well. Then, in a Dutch oven, melt butter over medium heat and toss in the walnuts (or pecans) when it is sizzling. Sauté until crispy, about 5 minutes, then remove the nuts and reserve them. In the same butter, stir in the wild rice, green onions, and garlic, and fry over medium low heat for about 10 minutes, until the wild rice is toasted. Pour in the chicken stock; stir in the tomato paste; and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.
Stir in the cranberries, reserved walnuts, and meat chunks and continue to simmer for 15-20 more minutes. Finally, increase the heat to medium high, and stir in the cornstarch liquid and the sherry to thicken. Season to taste.
When ready to serve, ladle into bowls and top with minced celery leaves or parsley. Dribble a spoonful of sherry over each portion before taking the plates to the table.