Cooter (Turtle) Stew
- 2 to 3 pounds cooter*
- 2 quarts water
- 4 tablespoons cooking oil
tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 large onions, peeled and chopped
- 2 tablespoons
- 10 peeled, seeded tomatoes or 2 large cans tomatoes
- 1 small
can tomato paste
- 3/4 cup chopped celery
- 1 cup green spring onion tops
- 1 pinch each paprika and cayenne
- 4 bay leaves
- 1 1/4 cups good sherry
(not cooking sherry)
- 1 tablespoon molasses or brown sugar
- 6 to 8 hardboiled
- 3 potatoes, peeled and cubed
- Seasoned salt and fresh ground
pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup crumbled bacon
* Substitute dark-meat chicken, catfish, veal, or all three.
- Cover meat with water and parboil on medium heat for 20 minutes.
- Set aside to cool and then trim to small chunks. Skim fat from broth and set
- Heat oil to just short of smoking. Stir in flour and cook, stirring constantly,
for 15-20 minutes to make a dark roux.
- Add big onions, garlic, tomatoes and tomato paste.
- Add 4 cups of reserved broth and meat and cook 30 minutes on medium-high.
- Add celery, spring onions, seasonings, bay leaves, sherry and molasses or brown
sugar and cook 30 minutes. Add water to thin stew, if needed.
- Add chopped eggs and cook for 1 1/2 hours.
- Add potatoes and cook 20 to 30 minutes longer, until potatoes are tender.
- Taste and add seasoned salt and pepper.
- Sprinkle bacon over top. Remove bay leaves.
- Serve in large bowls with a salad on the side and hot bread, preferably corn
bread made in a black iron skillet.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.