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Snapper Turtle Soup

5 lb Turtle
2 Celery stalk; with leaves
2 md Carrots
1 lg Onion
2 Bay leaves
1 Garlic clove
Thyme, fresh; sprigs
Parsley, fresh; sprigs
Salt; to taste
Pepper; to taste
4 tb Butter
2 tb Flour
1/2 c Sherry
3 Egg; hard-cooked

Cut off the turtle's head and stand it upside-down to drain. After it has bled well, scrub with a stiff brush. Drop into a kettle of boiling water to cover, and cook until the skin and upper shell peel away easily. Discard this water and cover turtle with fresh water. Add the vegetables and herbs, and salt and pepper. Simmer gently for two hours then strain, reserving the broth. Remove shells and skin and pick out the meat, being careful not to break the gall sac (located in the liver). Cut the meat into small pieces and brown in butter. Blend in the flour, then the strained stock and simmer it until tender. To serve, pour into a tureen with the sherry and garnish with sliced eggs. If you prefer, float a few slices of egg on each plate of soup.

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