Turkey Oola (turkey part deux)



(Mexican turkey and dumplings–a  Thanksgiving leftover staple.  This is the slow cooker version of chilaquiles. )

For years, we hosted Thanksgiving at our home for relatives.  We would have from five to 30 guests for dinner.  The next day, we traditionally went to a movie (for years–Harry Potter). While at the movie, this dish would cook in the slow cooker. We’d come home to a steaming bowl of Turkey Oola!
The origins of Turkey Oola! are from my mother.  I’m not sure where she got it.  She either made it up or she and her girlfriends passed the recipe around.  Nevertheless, it is much anticipated.

This dish is the capstone to the T-Day experience.  The big bonus is that you really do not need a recipe—it is more a method.  In fact, you don’t even need a slow cooker.  You just need a variety of ingredients, some heat, and a covered casserole.

Basic ingredients:

  • 4-5 flour tortillas
  • 3 T butter
  • 3-4 C chicken broth (look here to make your own broth)
  • 2 C diced turkey (or chicken)
  • 1-2 C shredded cheddar cheese or pepper jack cheese
  • 1/2 C diced red pepper
  • 2 T diced jalapeno (omit if you do not want it spicey)
  • 1 can Ro-Tel diced tomatoes and green chiles (10 oz can)
  • 1/2 C diced green onions
  • 1/2 C diced red onionos

Topping options:

  • cilantro
  • bacon
  • diced jalapeno
  • lemon or lime wedges
  • avocados
  • shredded lettuce or cabbage
This is a layered dish. Divide up your ingredients into the number of layers you want (3-4 layers is optimum).
In a slow cooker:  spread a thin layer of butter on the bottom of the cassarole. Put one layer of torn flour tortillas, then turkey, cheese, Rotel/veggies.  Repeat this 2 or 3 times, ending with a topping of tortillas covered with cheese.  You can make as much or as little of this as you want.  If you want to make sure you get the dumplings, you need 3 layers of tortillas.  Once done, pour chicken broth over the casserole until you see the liquid beginning to appear at the sides, but not to cover.
Cover and cook in crock pot/slow cooker on medium for 3-5 hours. You can always add broth if it looks too dry.  You will know it is done when it is bubbly and moist looking.  Let it rest for 10-15 minutes, as it is hot, hot, hot usually.
Talk amongst yourselves about the latest Harry Potter movie while it cools off some.
Serve in bowls with some shredded lettuce or cabbage to top. Diced jalapeno, crispy bacon and some avocado are great additions with some lemon or lime squeezed over.
Hint:  while this is good on the first day, it actually gets better the next day!

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