Friday, November 21, 2008
I don't know bout you but I'm getting ready for the big feast next week.
Ive ordered my desserts- 50 cupcakes- Bakers Cafe style(Magnolia and Sprinkles- you got noting on them), along with Carrot Cake, Chocolate Cake, Kahlua Cream Cheese Cake- and scones- all done by baker Ingrid of the fantastic former Bakers Cafe..
I am going out and getting my turkey tomorrow at Turco's .May I suggest a Maple Crest Farm Turkey??Those are my favorites- and voted the best by Cook's magazine a few years back.
Then I go to William Sonoma and get a turkey brining bag. I BRINE the turkey ala chef Chris Schlesinger. I have been making this recipe for 8 years now. The bourbon really does the trick..
Brining the Turkey ALA Chris
2 gallons cold water
2 cups Bourbon(I use Wild Turkey- in his honor)
2 cups plus 2 tbl. course salt(Kosher is good for me)
1 cup sugar
Put all the ingredients in brining bag and stir till sugar and salt are melted.Put the turkey in the brining bath. For safety's sake- put the bag in a big pot and let the turkey sit in the brine for 18-36 hours( I do 36 hours)If you have a pot big enough for the turkey and don't have a bag- you can just put brine the turkey in the big pot.
Pat the turkey dry and do as you usually do- for me ,I stick sage leaves under the skin,slather in butter, stuff the bird with some apples and onions, shake Bells Poultry Seasoning over the bird and stick him in a 350d oven -breast side first-uncovered till golden- about the first half hour or so,then cover with foil till done. be watchful- some times the brined turkey takes a bit less than the usual turkey to cook.
It will be the BEST most tender bird you've ever had.When you make the gravy- you will need NO SALT- it actually might be a bit salty-so adjust as you go.
My friend Faith's mom used to make Stuffing Balls- she was Italian- so I do that as well.They are delicious- crunchy on the outside-soft on the inside. And what a conversation piece. It works with any stuffing recipe, but I once again, use Chris'-its delicious. And, as Martha Stewart said on her show when he did it all up- You use CREAM in your Stuffing and not chicken broth????
Cornbread,Apple and Sausage Stuffing
Homemade Cornbread(use your favorite recipe- or buy one made from the bakery)
1 lb sweet sausage
1 cup(2 sticks)unsalted butter
4 medium red onions, finely chopped
8 celery stalks
4 Granny Smith Apples-peeled, cored and chopped
1 cup dried cranberries
1 1/2 cups half and half
1/2 cup chopped fresh sage
In large pan over medium heat,cook sausage till done,transfer to small bow, set aside.
Melt butter in same pan. Add onions and celery till translucent- about 15 min. Add apples, and cranberries, stir till combined and cook 5 minutes. Add half and half ad cook, stirring for 3 minutes. Add sage and remove from heat. Add broken up cornbread and sausage. let cool slightly- so you don't burn your hands. Form stuffing balls- about the size of a small orange. Bake in oven till crisp- about 30-45 minutes-as an added bonus- our some of the turkey juices over the balls when they first go in.
Next up- sides-Mushroom casserole and make ahead mashed potatoes.
Look for them on Sunday- which will be my 100th POST!!!
I'll be giving away Ina Garten's newest cookbook to one of you as a thank you for reading my jibberish.