Turkey Stew with Prunes and Pearl Onions

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  • Servings: 4

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  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 turkey drumsticks (about 14 ounces each)
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
  • 4 thyme sprigs
  • 2 rosemary sprigs
  • 3 cups turkey stock or low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup pitted prunes (6 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup brandy
  • 1 cup white pearl onions (1/4 pound)

How to make this recipe

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large enameled cast-iron casserole. Add 2 of the turkey drumsticks to the casserole, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat until browned all over, about 8 minutes; transfer to a plate. Reduce the heat to moderate and repeat with the remaining 2 drumsticks and salt and pepper. Discard the fat.

  2. Add the wine to the casserole and cook, scraping up the browned bits on the bottom, until it has reduced to 1/2 cup, about 10 minutes. Tie the thyme and rosemary into a bundle and add to the casserole along with the drumsticks and stock and bring to a simmer. Cover and braise in the oven for 1 1/2 hours, turning the drumsticks occasionally.

  3. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, soak the prunes in the brandy until plump, about 30 minutes. Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil. Add the pearl onions and blanch for 2 minutes, then drain and let cool slightly. Trim the root ends of the onions and slip off the skins. Heat the remaining 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a small skillet. Add the pearl onions and cook over moderately high heat until lightly browned, about 5 minutes.

  4. Add the onions, prunes and any remaining brandy to the casserole. Cover and braise for 1 hour longer, or until the turkey drumsticks are tender.

  5. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the turkey, prunes and pearl onions to a platter. Discard the herb bundle. Skim the fat off the cooking liquid, then simmer the liquid over moderate heat until reduced to 1 1/2 cups, about 30 minutes. Return the turkey, prunes and onions to the casserole, simmer until hot and serve. Discard the turkey skin before eating.

Make Ahead

The stew can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.


One Serving 503 calories, 9.0 gm total fat, 2.1 gm saturated fat, 34 gm carb.

Serve With

Boiled noodles, steamed rice or boiled potatoes.

Suggested Pairing

A berry-flavored Zinfandel has the right amount of fruitiness and sweetness to complement the rich fruit-based sauce here. Pick a lighter example that won't overwhelm the turkey.

Contributed By Photo © Dana Gallagher Published January 2003

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