Mock-Mock Turtle Soup

Not to be confused with knock, knock jokes.

Green turtle soup was served in 18th century England. Turtle meat became too expensive to use and calf heads were substituted, then oxtails. This does not appeal to us at all. How about you?

In America, hunting turtle meat for your soup, your meatballs, or anything else, is illegal in some states. And don't even think about eating anything endangered! Best to leave the meat on the turtle.

That's why this is Mock Turtle Soup, or "imitation" Turtle Soup. Turtle soup with calf heads was an imitation of the real thing. We substitute ground beef, and so we are actually imitating the imitation and therefore have Mock-Mock Turtle Soup.

1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. butter + 2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 lbs. lean ground beef or buffalo
1 garlic clove, mashed
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. thyme
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp. allspice
1 Tbsp. flour
3 C. hot water
3 C. chicken stock
1 can finely chopped tomatoes
salt and pepper
One lemon, peeled and processed in blender
2 hard-boiled eggs, coarsely chopped
Jar of whole cloves
Fresh parsley or cilantro (optional)
Sherry (optional)

Brown onion in the butter and oil, add the ground beef and brown. Don't overcook. Add the spices and herbs, then stir in the flour until it bubbles, adding more butter and oil as needed. Pour in the hot water and stock and bring to a boil. Add the remaining ingredients, except the cloves, egg, and ravioli. Simmer for 2 hours.

Cook ravioli according to package directions. Poke one clove into side of each ravioli to resemble turtle head. Stir gently into soup.

When ready to serve, ladle into bowls, stir in chopped egg, a teaspoon of sherry, and top with parsley. OR put a cruet of sherry on the table, for atmosphere if nothing else. Eggs, parsley (or cilantro), and sherry may be put on the table to add to soup if desired.

Want to hear a mock-mock joke?

    Who's there?
    Turtle? That doesn't make any sense.
    Okay by me, just don't make any soup either.

Cue the groans...

Did you try them? Submit a picture of this recipe to webmaster (at) dragonandturtle (dot) com.