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BostonTiger thanksgiving feast, not lost to time

Posted on: January 11, 2019 at 11:42:44 CT
Grasslands MU
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Boston Tiger Thanksgiving Recipe

The Menu
Appetizers
Assorted olives, tiny sweet pickles, dill pickle spears, pepperoncini, mixed nuts
Vegetable platter - baby carrots, celery, red and green peppers, radishes, broccoli florettes, cauliflower florets, grape tomatoes, Knorr spinach dip
Fruit Platter � fresh pineapple, sliced kiwi, assorted berries, sliced apples, sliced pears, fruit dip ramekin
Main
Brined Spatchcocked Roasted Turkey
Roasted Burgers' City Ham
Sides
Bread and Cornbread, Savory Sausage, and Turkey Cracklin' Dressing
Mashed Potatoes and Gravy
Traditional Green Bean Casserole
Braised Shredded Brussels Sprouts and Mustard Greens
Reames Noodles with Turkey Giblets
Green Peas and Corn
Mom's 24-hour Fruit Salad
Cranberry sauce in a can (hey, that's how I roll)
Lion House Dinner Rolls
Dessert
Pumpkin pie
Pecan pie
Apple pie
Whipped cream

RECIPES AND TECHNIQUE

Ham
Follow directions on Burger's Ham, with addition of pineapple rings with maraschino cherries in center of slices, held with toothpicks.

Turkey
I like to brine the bird to bring flavors and moisture into the bird. My preferred method is to brine a 15-LB bird for 24+/- hours then completely rinse and dry and place in fridge, loosely covered with a clean towel for 24 hours to completely air dry the skin. This will greatly aid in the crisping of the skin roasting.

Brine
1 1/2-GAL water
1 1/2-CUP Kosher salt
3/4-CUP White sugar
1-TBS fresh ground black pepper
1-TBS poultry seasoning
1-TBS rubbed sage
1-TBS dried thyme leaves, chopped through with knife
1-TBS dried rosemary leaves, chopped through with knife
8-EA dried bay leaves, crumbled
Juice of 3 oranges
Zest of 3 oranges (thoroughly wash oranges, zest/ peel just getting
the outer skin and not the pith, then juice)
2-EA medium yellow onions, chopped
8-EA garlic cloves, crushed

Put all in a stock pot, bring to a boil stirring a bit, then cool. Can
reduce water to 1 gallon and add 1/2-GAL equivalent in ice after comes
of heat to cool more rapidly. This brine needs to be below 40F before
adding bird. I Generally place bird in smallest container it will fit
in to reduce amount of brine needed. The bird should brine about 24
hours for a 15-LB bird (a little more or less, depending on size.)

Before placing the bird in the brine, you will want to aggressively
separate the skin from the flesh. Start at the neck/ breast area. It
will be slow going at first, but you will eventually get the feel of
getting your fingers then your hands under the skin. You will be
surprised at how much of the bird you can do this with. You are NOT
removing the skin, just loosening it. The brine will have a very hard
time working into the tissue without doing this.

You will want to turn the bird every few hours for consistent brining.
If you want really crisp skin, I would recommend starting to brine two days
before cooking, removing from brine 1 day before and thoroughly
rinsing (you do not want any of the brine on the surface of the skin
as it will darken too fast and might aid in scorching the skin - the
water/ salt, and flavors have been brought into the tissue of the bird
with the brining.) Dry the bird, inside and out, with paper towels,
getting it absolutely as dry as possible.

Place a cookie cooling rack on a half sheet (or in your turkey
roasting pan), place the bird on the rack, and cover with a clean
towel and place in the fridge for one day to air dry.

Remove from fridge two hours before you plan to roast to bring to room temp.

I will make a compound butter with one stick of unsalted butter, room
temp. Finely chop/ mince 1-TBS fresh sage, 1-TBS fresh thyme, 2-tsp
fresh rosemary, 2-TBS fresh parsley, and 1-tsp fresh ground black
pepper. Using your hands, smear the flesh of the bird UNDER the skin.
If there is any butter leftover, place in the cavity of the bird (if
you are not stuffing or spatchcocking.)

I generally throw some vegetable scraps (onion ends, celery trimmings, the
oranges after squeezing the juice) into the cavity for some additional
internal moisture. I generally do not stuff the actual bird.

Lightly brush the entire bird with olive oil before placing in oven. Baste the skin a couple additional times with olive oil when roasting to add in browning and crisping the skin.

Spatchcocking the Bird
If brining, you can do this either before or after. Doing it before brining has the advantage of making the backbone available for making stock sooner.

With a sharp knife, cut down each side of the spine of the bird and remove. A good pair of kitchen shears can also aid in this process. Use spine in broth preparation. Place turkey on work surface, cut side down and firmly press down on breast to break the breastbone and flatten the bird. This flattening will aid in allowing the bird to cook faster and more uniformly.

Roasting the Bird
Arrange on wire rack over roasting pan (so that the bottom of the bird has air beneath it and is not in direct contact with a flat metal surface. I generally place chunks of onions, celery, and carrots under the wire racks to roast in the drippings of the bird. Prep the bird as outlined above and place into a 450F preheated oven for 40 minutes, basting in a little more olive oil at the 20m and 40m mark. Reduce temperature to 375F and cook about another 30 minutes. Check thigh temp and remove from oven when instant read thermometer registers 160F when inserted in the thigh (taking care to not touch the bone when checking temp.)

Let rest at least 20 minutes. (Use a lipped pan to rest the bird so any juices that do escape can be added back to your gravy. I usually carve on a jellyroll pan so that I don't lose any of the juices.)

Making the Gravy
Gravy is a very subjective item. I do not profess that my method is the best, but it is what I like. The recipe I will give will make about 2-CUPS gravy.

2-CUPS Low Sodium Chicken or Turkey Stock
2-TBS Fat (pan drippings, rendered fat from cracklin's, butter, oil)
2-TBS all-purpose flour
1-tsp fresh thyme or 1/2-tsp dried
To taste Salt and Pepper
Optional some of the pan-roasted vegetables pureed

Remove the vegetable from the turkey roasting pan, NOT scraping the bottom of the pan (any bits that remain stuck on the bottom of the pan should stay there.) Pour off the rendered fat and juices from the pan into a Pyrex measuring cup. After a few minutes, the fat will rise to the top and the juices will be at the bottom. Determine how much fat you have and add back the amount you need to the roasting pan, with the pan on the stove over a burner. (Skim off any unused fat and either throw away or reserve for another use. Then pour the juices at the bottom of the Pyrex back into the gravy once you have added the stock.) Bring the pan to high heat and sprinkle in the flour, constantly whisking to make rough. Reduce heat to mediums and continue to whisk and cook for at least two minutes. I personally prefer a gravy lighter in color so I cook it the minimum two minutes (you need that time to remove the flour taste.) Add the stock to the hot pan and keep whisking rapidly. This will aid in deglazing the pan of all those flavor bits. Add more stock, if necessary, to get your desired consistency. I tend to make the gravy on the thinner side as everyone tends to want to add it to not only the potatoes, but the stuffing and turkey, as well. Add a teaspoon of fresh thyme and cook for a couple minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add the giblets to the gravy if you like (I cook the gizzards, heart, and liver with the turkey necks when making the general stock for the meal. I discard the liver as I think it is too strong a flavor in the finished gravy but finely slice the heart and the gizzard. On the gizzard, take care to remove the white �skin� as it is extremely tough.) This method gives so much flavor that you don't need a real thick gravy for substantial flavor. Sometimes I process some of the roasted vegetables in a food processor to a puree and add it to the gravy, allowing me to add even more stock for a gravy with less fat per serving. It is very tasty but the texture is a little but grainier.

You can keep the gravy on a very low simmer for 15 or 20 minutes, stirring often. Add additional stock as the liquid reduces to keep the desired consistency.

Making general stock
For the Thanksgiving meal, you need a lot of stock, It is better to have too much than too little. You can buy stock from the store, but if you do, I recommend very low sodium so that your recipes don't need to be modified � the salt content of stock is highly variable.

From the turkey, you will have the neck and the giblets (heart, gizzard, liver.) These make a great stock and will probably make enough stock for your gravy. If you want/. Need more (in my case, for dressing and noodles) you will need to make more, if you don;t already have some on hand or in the freezer. I am lucky to have a couple very good specialty poultry shops that I trust to buy extra necks (that is the meat I prefer to add to my dressing), gizzards (very flavorful for stock and adding to the gravy), and carcasses (they bone/ filet/ separate breasts off whole turkeys.) I usually end up buying two carcasses, 1-LB gizzards, 3 extra necks, and the skin from one large bird (for making cracklin's for the dressing.) I have to stress that I really TRUST these shops and know that they take care to immediately refrigerate all the �extra� parts from their butchering. I can usually buy the carcasses and skin for 33 cents/LB, the necks for 1.29/LB, and the gizzards for .99/LB. It is well worth it as the stock is pure, intense, and salt-free.

In a large pot that is oven safe, I add the carcasses, broken up into smaller pieces, necks, and gizzards, toss in a few tablespoons of oil, and roast for an hour or so at 375F, turning a few times to get an even roast. Remove pot from oven and fill with water to cover and place on stove. Bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer. Simmer for two hours, skimming any foam that might develop in the first half hour. Remove the necks and gizzards after about 40 minutes. After they cool, check to see that the neck meat can be easily picked off the little bones (add back to stock for a while longer if not coming off easily.) Pick the meat from the necks and reserve for the dressing. Slice the gizzards, removing the white �skin� and reserve for the gravy. This can be done two days ahead of time. And reserve in fridge. If you store the stock in the fridge, the next day all the fat will have risen and solidified at the top. You can then easily skim and reserve the fat for other uses. You want a fat-free broth. The gravy and dressing will not be fat-free, obviously, but the fat in the gravy should be bound to the flour in the roux, not be free form in the gravy � this may cause the gravy to �break.� If you haven't made stock in this way before, you may be alarmed to see that the liquid under the fat layer (that you skim) is actually like jelly when you pour it out. That is pure flavor goodness � it is from the gelatin in the carcass and represents a very rich stock. The leftover stock is reserved to add to the stock made from the carcass of the bird being eaten for the meal and I then usually make Turkey and Dumplings at some point after the main meal.

Mashed Potatoes
I am not going to give many instructions here, other than some general tips and proportions that I use.

2-LBS Yukon gold potatoes
1/2-CUP unsalted butter (1 stick)
1/4-CUP heavy cream
1.40CUP whole milk (or other milk)
2-tsp Kosher salt in boiling water
To taste salt and pepper

I am a traditionalist. Peel and cut potatoes into 1-inch cubes and immediately pace in water 9can be done up to a day in advance if kept cool.) Rinse the potatoes several times until water remains clear denoting all of the starch that can be leached has been leached. With potatoes just covered, add salt and bring to boil and then simmer for about 15 minutes, checking with fork for tenderness. Drain and return to pan over low heat to really dry the potatoes. Meanwhile, have the butter and cream/ milk in a pan just under a simmer. Either using a hand mixer or potato masher, process potatoes, gradually adding the hot mixture until at desired consistency. You can keep hot in a warming oven for a couple hours with a foil cover that has been pierced with a knife to let some moisture escape, as needed. You can also leave over a gentle water bath cor up to two hours.

Savory Bread and Cornbread Stuffing with Sage Sausage, Turkey Neck Meat, Mushroom, and Turkey Cracklin's

2-EACH loaves cheap sandwich bread, toasted dark and sliced into 1-inch cubes. Can do the night before.
1-EACH 10-inch round pan cornbread, crumbled, tossed in 4-TBS melted, unsalted butter and place on baking sheet, bake in oven for 30 minutes at 350F. Can do the night before.
3-EACH turkey necks, cooked to make broth, meat picked and reserved.
1-LB turkey skin,laid flat on baking sheet, salt and pepper, bake at 350F for 30m +/- to render, rendered fat reserved for sauteing vegetables
1-LB Sage pork sausage, crumbled and browned
4-CUPS more or less, turkey or chicken broth
3-STICKS unsalted butter
2-EACH large leeks, white parts only, cleaned and cut into rings
4-EACH medium yellow onion, finely diced
8-EACH stalks celery, finely diced
2-EACH green bell pepper, finely diced
12-CLOVES garlic, separated, peeled, crushed and finely minced
4-EACH bay leaves
1-LB white button mushroom, chopped
4-TBS fresh sage leaves, finely minced
2-TBS fresh thyme, finely minced
2-tsp fresh rosemary, finely minced
1-TBS poultry seasoning
1-TBS Kosher salt, to taste
2-tsp fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
4-EACH large eggs, well beaten, as a binder

Crumble cornbread, toss with melted butter, spread on sheet pan, and bake in 350F oven for 30 to 40 minutes to slightly brown and dry out. Can be done a day in advance. Toast all bread, slice into 1-inch cubes. Can be done a day in advance. Place all bread into a bowl and cover with a clean towel.

Lay turkey skin out on jelly roll pan, fat side down. Liberally salt and pepper, Bake at 350F for 30 to 40 minutes to render until very crispy and golden. Reserve fat for sauteing. Cut cracklins into strips for use later in stuffing.

Prep all vegetables. Can be done a day ahead and keep refrigerated in an airtight container. (Mushrooms need to be done at time of sauteing.)

In a very large frying pan, add 4-TBS, more or less, rendered turkey drippings and bring to medium heat. Crumble in sausage and stir through for a couple minutes. Brown and remove from pan with slotted spoon to leave drippings behind. Add all vegetables except mushrooms. Season, add bay leaves, and saute until vegetables are softened and starting to brown. Add mushrooms and saute another few minutes. Cool to room temp and remove bay leaves. Combine with sausage.

Prep fresh herbs and combine with dried herbs and seasoning.

In the large bread mixing bowl, add vegetables, sausage, and herbs and seasoning and toss. Sprinkle in all but 1/2-cup of melted butter and mix thoroughly. Add neck meat and toss. Gradually add the broth, taking care to not over-soak the mixture. Add the beaten eggs and mix through. Place in baking dishes in a very light and fluffy manner (not packing it at all, leaving the top irregular with lots of nooks and crannies. Sprinkle the remaining butter over the dish, just before roasting. Place, uncovered, in a 350F oven for 30 minutes and then broil for 10 minutes or so to crisp up the top. Add cracklings for last two minutes to heat through.

Reames Noodles
This is a simple recipe. 1-LB Reames frozen egg noodles, two turkey necks or two chicken thighs, 4-TBS butter, and water to cover. Place in crock pot and cook on low for 4 hours, checking and adding water, as needed. Remove meat, cool, pick meat, and add back to pot. Add four tablespoons butter and salt and pepper to taste. Cook another hour or so. (I am very excited that Reames Noodles are now available in Massachusetts.)

Braised Shredded Brussels Sprouts and Mustard Greens

4 slices bacon, cut into lardons and rendered, reserving
2 pounds Brussels sprouts
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped, or to taste
3 heaping tablespoons chopped cilantro stems (optional)
1 large shallot
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 pound mustard greens, ribs removed and coarsely torn


Pull off outer leaves of the Brussels sprouts and reserve. Thinly slice sprouts, discarding stems.
In a food processor, blend butter, jalapenos, cilantro stems, shallot, sugar, salt and pepper until it becomes light green puree.
In a very large saute pan, melt the jalapeno butter. Add Brussels sprouts and leaves and saute for 3 to 5 minutes, or until bright green, tossing frequently to combine. Add mustard greens and saute until wilted, tossing frequently to combine.

Green Bean Casserole
I just use the recipe as exactly stated on Durkee Onion package.

Greens Peas and Corn (simple for the kids)
1-LB freezer giblet corn and 1-LB freezer baby peas, Place in microwave-safe container, add 2-TBS unsalted butter, microwave until hot. Salt and pepper to taste.

Mom's Fruit Salad
Dressing
2 egg yolks
2 tbs. sugar
2 tbs. white vinegar
2 tbs. pineapple syrup
Dash of salt
Over double boiler, heat and whisk until thickened; let cool to room temp; reserve.

1 cup heavy cream, whipped to stiff peaks, reserved

Fruit, Nuts, and Marshmallows
2 cups pineapple chunks, in syrup, drained but reserve juice
2 cups seedless grapes, red, halved
2 cups mandarin oranges, drained
2 cups whole walnuts
1 large jar maraschino cherries, red
1 package mini marshmallows

Reserve some oranges, walnuts, cherries, pineapple, and grapes for top decoration.

Place remaining fruits and nuts into mixing bowl. Mix egg mixture in with fruit and nuts and then fold in whipped cream. Let stand in refrigerator in serving bowl for two hours and then decorate the top. Cover again and serve at least 24 hours later (can make up to two days in advance.)

Lion House Dinner Rolls

2 cups warm water (110 to 115 degrees)
2 tablespoons dry yeast
2 teaspoons salt
1 egg
2/3 cup nonfat dry milk powder (instant or non-instant)
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter or 1/3 cup shortening
5 -5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Prep Time: 2 hrs Total Time: 2 1/2 hrs

In large bowl of electric mixer, combine water and milk powder, stir until dissolved.

Add yeast, then sugar, salt, butter, egg, and 2 cups flour.

Mix on low speed of mixer until ingredients are wet, then 2 minutes at medium speed.

Add 2 cups more flour; mix on low speed until ingredients are wet, then for 2 minutes as medium speed. (Dough will be getting stiff and remaining flour may need to be mixed in by hand).

Add about � cup flour and mix again, by hand or mixer.

Dough should be soft, not overly sticky, and not stiff.

(It is not necessary to use the entire amount of flour.)

Scrape dough off sides of bowl and pour about 1 T. vegetable oil all around the sides of the bowl so it is covered with oil.

Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise in warm place until double in size.

(My note here- I just sprayed a clean large bowl with vegetable spray and put my ball of dough in there, turning to cover the dough with the vegetable spray.).

After dough has risen, sprinkle cutting board or counter with flour and place dough on floured surface.

Roll out and cut rolls in desired shape and size. (I like three small balls placed together for clover)

Place on greased (or parchment lined) baking pans.(I put clovers in muffins pans)

Let rise in warm place until rolls are double in size (about 1 to 1 � hours).

Bake at 375 for 15 to 20 minutes or until browned.

Brush with melted butter while hot.

Pie crust
(make two double batches, two crusts needed fro apple pie and one each for pecan and pumpkin)
Can be made up to two days in advance to the point it is placed in fridge to firm up. Must roll at time pies are assembled.

Crust (single)

1 1/4-CUPS all-purpose flour
1/4-tsp salt
7-TBS unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
3-TBS lard, chilled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 to 5-TBS ice water.

In a food processor, briefly pulse together the flour and salt. Add butter/ fat and pulse until mixture forms chickpea-size pieces (3 to 5 one-second pulses). Add ice water 1 tablespoon at a time, and pulse until mixture is just moist enough to hold together.

Form dough into a ball, wrap with plastic and flatten into a disk. Refrigerate at least 1 hour (up to two days) before rolling out and baking.

Pumpkin Pie
I use Libby's prepared pumpkin and follow the recipe on the can for spices and evaporated milk.

Pecan Pie
I use the recipe on the back of the light Karo syrup bottle.

Honey-Thyme Apple Pie

Honey Apple Pie with Thyme
from NYTIMES

4 Golden Delicious/ Honeycrisp apples, peeled and cored
3 Granny Smith apples, peeled and cored
1/2 cup honey
6 thyme branches
1/4 cup unsalted butter ( 1/2 stick), cut into small pieces
2 tablespoons instant tapioca
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
3/8 teaspoon salt
Dough for 2 9-inch pie crusts

Simmer honey in pan for two minutes w/ thyme. Add 3 gd/hc, 3 gs, and butter and simmer 10 minutes. Remove thyme, add all other ingredients and mix. Add last gd/hc apple in thin slices in mix.

Make pie and sprinkle top w/ sugar. Place in preheated 425F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce to 350F and bake for additional 45 min.

Whipped Cream
2-CUPS Heavy Cream
2-tsp vanilla extract
1-tsp almond extract
2-TBS white sugar

Whip cream until very soft peaks just start to form, Add extracts and sugar and whip to between soft and hard peaks. Serve. Needs to be done at time of service. Alternative � whipped cream in a can.

Knorr Vegetable Dip
I use the exact recipe from the package (traditional vegetable soup mix flavor.)

Fruit Dip

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup marshmallow creme
2 cups frozen whipped topping, thawed
1/4 cup unsweetened pineapple juice

Mix all together and chill for at least four hours, preferably overnight.
Real whipped cream is not a good substitute as it breaks down.

Conclusion
Cooking Thanksgiving Dinner is a lot of work, but I find it very rewarding. I start a couple days early and then the assembly and finish on Turkey Day isn't
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BostonTiger thanksgiving feast, not lost to time - Grasslands MU - 1/11 11:42:44
     awesome, thanks dude (nm) - TigerJackSwartz MU - 1/11 12:28:01
     That recipe makes my top 100 Tigers lists look short (nm) - FIJItiger MU - 1/11 11:52:53
     the hero we need, but don’t deserve (nm) - pickle MU - 1/11 11:49:09
     that dude rulez. - colonel angus beef KC - 1/11 11:45:27
     This looks like something great to have - Newcatbirdseat MU - 1/11 11:44:04




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