Since I enjoyed a roast beef and roasted veggie dinner yesterday, courtesy of my friend, my fresh turkey was soaking in brine all that day to be slow roasted today while I went out to get a Christmas tree and do errands. Here’s my way to make even the white meat succulent.
The day before, rinse out the bird well after removing neck and organ meat package that you will cook up to treat your dogs.
Soak the turkey (preferably a fresh one, and even better a kosher bird that is cleaner) in a large pan of salt water (I use sea salt) with your favorite fresh herbs chopped in. My herb garden still had lots of parsely, sage, rosemary and thyme.
When you are ready to cook the bird, remove it from the brine and slosh some white wine in the cavity and over the top. I had a mild mannered chardonnay on hand so I used that.
Stuffing: equal parts
cornbread (I saved the outer crusts of one I made this week) and
whole wheat / multigrain bread that you have cubed and dried in the oven at 300 degrees about 15 minutes on cookie sheets.
Chop finely equal parts of
lemon juice and zest, dried cranberries.
Add chopped garlic and fresh herbs such as those listed above.. Add one frozen roll of mild sausage that you have defrosted and defatted by working a same amount of water into it before simmering and straining out the fat. Brown sliced almonds and add them. Season with flavored salts and white pepper. Add hot chicken broth to coat stuffing. Fill large cavity and neck area with stuffing.
Melt a little butter and pour over the breast of the bird (since I stuff it it’s breast side up otherwise it would be down) Season outside of bird with flavored salt. Cover with foil or use a metal covered roaster pan.
Expect to roast the bird at 275 degrees 4-6 hours depending on size.
Allow bird to sit 15 minutes before carving so juices stay in meat.
Strain liquid in pan, remove fat on surface and add broth to increase amount. Thicken to a thin gravy with cornstarch and water. Adjust seasoning but taste it first since the brining of the bird may make the gravy salty enough already.
Served with whole wheat parker house angel biscuits:
Mix in large bowl
5 cups whole wheat pastry flour,
1 TB baking powder,
1 tsp. baking soda,
2 Tb gluten,
¼ c. sugar,
1 tsp. salt.
In another bowl mix
2 Tb. Dry yeast with
½ c. warm water; add
3 c. buttermilk and
1 c. oil or melted butter.
Knead well or use bread machine’s dough cycle to do it for you (I’m lazy so that’s what I did). Allow to rise once in bread machine and have it knead it again, adding a little flour if the dough ball looks too soft and doesn’t form a ball, then remove.
Cut strips you pinch into small pieces and roll into balls. Three to each buttered muffin cup so you have pull apart rolls.
Allow to rise until double in bulk with cloth over them in warm area of kitchen.
Bake 375 degrees c.,10 minutes.
Can freeze leftover dough but don’t hold it too long in freezer or yeast fails. Dough will keep in refrigerator up to a week after the first knead.
The buttermilk gives the rolls a soft creamy, light texture even though you use whole wheat.
My guest treated us to a Kendall Jackson chardonnay wine with the turkey; it was dry, fruity and oak aged. Perfectly balanced and not sweet.
Last change: 9/11/2011 - RVC