"Plain fresh bread, its crust shatteringly crisp. Sweet cold butter. There is magic in the way they come together in your mouth to make a single perfect bite."--Ruth Reichl

Turtle Soup (In memory of my Daddy...Harris Duhe') Recipe

  Tried it? Rate this Recipe:


This recipe for Turtle Soup (In memory of my Daddy...Harris Duhe'), by , is from A Taste of Our Family, one of the cookbooks created at FamilyCookbookProject.com. We help families or individuals create heirloom cookbook treasures.

Harriet Duhe' Melancon
Added: Friday, February 9, 2007


1 1/2 pounds turtle meat
2 3/4 teaspoons salt
3/4 teaspoon cayenne
6 cups water
1/4 pound (1 stick) butter
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 cups chopped onions
1/4 cup chopped bell peppers
1/4 cup chopped celery
3 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1 cup chopped, peeled, and seeded fresh tomatoes, or 1 cup chopped canned tomatoes
1/2 cup Worcestershire Sauce
1 tablespoon lemon zest
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup dry sherry
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1/2 cup chopped green onions
4 hard-boiled eggs, finely chopped

Put the turtle meat in a large saucepan with 1 teaspoon of the salt, 1/4 teaspoon of the cayenne, and the water. Bring to a boil. Skim off any foam that rises to the surface. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the meat to a platter. Let cool for a few minutes, then cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Set aside. Reserve the stock. You should have about 6 cups.

In a large saucepan, combine the butter and flour over medium-high heat. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon for 10 to 12 minutes to make a dark brown roux, the color of chocolate. Add the onions, bell peppers, and celery. Stir occasionally for 2 to 3 minutes until the vegetables are slightly limp. Add the bay leaves, thyme, and garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and the turtle meat. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 6 minutes. Add the Worcestershire, the remaining 1 3/4 teaspoons salt and remaining 1/2 teaspoon cayenne, the reserved turtle stock, lemon zest, lemon juice, and sherry. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the parsley, green onions, and eggs and simmer uncovered, for about 45 minutes. Remove the bay leaves.

Personal Notes:
Personal Notes:
I put this recipe in because of my daddy. I remember when he use to go to the Spillway ... and hunt turtles. Snapper! He would come home and I was so fascinated watching him clean those things. I don't think I remember the whole process but I do remember he would use a large stick to make the turtle bite it and he would pull its head out as far as he could and then chop it off. I know ... that sounds horrible but it was how he did it. He would always warn Harris and me not to play with the head because he swore they could still bite ... even if they were detached from the body. I then remember him carving out the skin around the legs and removing the shell. I'm not sure why but I also remember him having boiling water ready and when he had the skin cut back from around the legs and the neck cavity he would pour boiling water over the entire turtle.

Now I'm sure you are wondering after watching all that yuck why would anyone want to eat that...but I swear it's a very delicous and tender meat when cooked properly. Daddy said "It taste like 7 different meats...chicken, beef, pork....! You get the picture! I just thought it taste like turtle.

I remember one time Daddy had gone to the Spillway and came home with several turtles. He had them in sacks in the shed outside, he was tired and decided he would clean them the next day. Later that evening ... I think it was Ducie who went out to check on the turtles ... and they had eaten their way out of the sacks and were all over! It was a night to remember, Daddy, Ducie, Sluggo, Mr. Lynn Bourgeois (our neighbor) were all over the neighborhood with flash lights (bull eyes) the one you wore fitted on your head...in search of the missing turtles. I don't remember how many they retreived, but they did manage to come home with some! Funny how foods can stir memories!

This one is for you Daddy!




Learn more about the process to create a cookbook -- or
Start your own personal family cookbook right now!  Here's to good eating!

Search for more great recipes here from over 500,000 in our family cookbooks!


Bookmark and Share




Cookbooks are great for Holiday Gifts, Wedding Gifts, Bridal Shower ideas and Family Reunions!

*Recipes and photos entered into the Family Cookbook Project are provided by the submitting contributors. All rights are retained by the contributor. Please contact us if you believe copyright violations have occurred.

Search for more great recipes here from over 500,000 in our family cookbooks!