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Let's Talk Turkey!
Cooking For Fun

We believe that Thanksgiving should be
all year round! On this page you'll find
some of our favorite recipes for the
special holiday, or any day of the year!


Here are some links to great sites about
Thanksgiving cooking!

Swanson's Broth

The Swanson Broth site offers new ways
to prepare meals and entertain
guests with a selection of recipes,
cooking tips, and wine selections that all go
better with broth.

Want to order your turkey ready to serve?
Try Hot Cajun!
They also sell all the supplies to
fry your own turkey.

Kids Domain

Some art projects to keep the kids occupied
while the dinner is cooking :-)

Woodbridge Vintage Barrel Chips

Some turkey trivia from the folks at Woodbridge.

Red Hot Chili Paper

A Thanksgiving Turkey Menu
from The Red Hot Chili Paper.

Not Just for Kids

Lots of turkey fun here! Poems, stories,
and even a turkey hunt!

Epicurious...of course!

Visit and enjoy their Thanksgiving Menu Maker.

Butterball University

Couldn't have a links section without this one!

Carving Tips

This is from Epicurious, too!


Visit this pilgrim site from Plymouth. Tours, recipes and
what to see and do in Plymouth.

Leftovers? Ideas from The Mining Company

Got the leftover blues? Visit this site and
find lots of ideas how to recycle that bird!

Jeanne's Thanksgiving Page

This lady has loaded her page with Thanksgiving ideas!

Turkey Hotlines!

Dial 911 - 24 Hour Turkey Emergency Hotlines

Butterball: (800) 323-4848
Foster Farms: (800) 255-7227
Reynolds: (800) 745-4000

A Few Turkey Tips

What size turkey should you buy?  1.5 lbs per guest to ensure that you'll have generous servings for Thanksgiving, as well as leftovers to enjoy later.

Always truss (tie) the bird before roasting. Trussing will keep the turkey's legs tight against the body, creating a larger pocket for the stuffing and ensuring that you will get a more even roast through-out the bird. More importantly though: Trussing will seal in the turkey's natural juices.

Don't forget to remove the giblets, neck, and liver! Save for gravy.

After the turkey is completely defrosted, thoroughly rinse the inside and outside of the bird with cold water. With a paper towel, lightly pat the turkey's outside and body cavities until thoroughly dry.

You should brush the outside of the bird with clarified butter to compensate for the lack of natural fat in turkeys.

Season the outside of the turkey with salt, Bell's seasoning, or your other favorite herbs and spices.

Roasting Tips

The trick to a good bird is to have the breast meat moist yet have the legs cooked through. To achieve this, preheat the oven to 450, put the prepared bird in and then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees. Cook the turkey for about 15 to 20 minutes per pound. Occasionally place a thermometer between the leg and the base of the turkey without touching the bone. Your turkey is done when the thermometer reads > than 165 degrees.

The chart below gives the temperature and approximate time needed to slow roast a whole, thawed, stuffed bird.

  5 - 10 lbs       2 - 3 hours
10 - 15 lbs       3 - 4 hours
15 - 25 lbs       4 - 5 hours

Recommended is to cover the turkey in cheesecloth soaked with your turkey baste during the majority of the roasting period. This allows the baste to be absorbed by the bird, and not roll off or evaporate during basting periods. Remove the cloth after 1/2 of the roasting time has passed.

Ensure a moist an juicy turkey by placing a tray of water in the oven through-out the roasting process. Occasionally check and refill the tray.

Baste at least once every half hour with pan juices and melted butter. Obtain an baster with an injector needle from a grocery or cooking store. Use it to pump the turkey full of your heavenly baste and pan juices.

When there is about 1/4 of the roasting time left, consider covering the turkey with a sheet of tin foil. This will prevent the skin from burning, protect the breasts, and prevent the juices from evaporating.

Some folks roast their bird upside down for the first half of the roasting period in order to keep the juices in the breast meat. You shouldn't need to do this if you follow our other roasting tips. Plus most professional chefs don't recommend this.

Heat (not boil) 1 cup of white wine (Chardonnay) or a pint of Guinness. Pour it over the turkey after 1 hour of roasting. This is the secret to marvelous gravy: use the drippings as your gravy base.

Another idea: During the last 10 to 15 minutes of the roast, baste the turkey with honey. Not only does this taste great and help to seal in the flavor, but it also adds a beautiful glaze to the bird.

After cooking the bird, remove it from the oven, cover it in tin foil and let it cool for at least 30 minutes before carving so that the bird can reabsorb the juices. Carving the turkey right out of the oven will cause the juices to seep out prematurely.


Dotties' Turkey Stuffing
Single Recipe:
1 tbsp farina
2 tbsp oatmeal
3 tbsp bread crumbs
5 handfuls cornflakes, crushed
1 egg added to dry ingredients
Onions, a good amount - the more the better
1 1/2 cups boiling water

Triple Recipe:
3 tbsp farina
6 tbsp oatmeal
9 tbsp bread crumbs
15 handfuls cornflakes, crushed
2 eggs added to dry ingredients
Onions, a good amount - the more the better
3 cups boiling water

Bev says this is so good, they always triple it cause everyone wants to take some home :-)

Saute onions in oil and seasonings. Add boiling water and let reboil for 1 minute. Pour over the dry ingredients and mix well. Add the giblets, and turkey liver. If you're going to use them, saute them in a little bit of oil and onion, then add to the cereal mix. Bake for 1 hour at 325 F, outside the turkey in a greased baking dish.

Note: We do not stuff the turkey, but make the stuffing seperately.

CFF Shared by Bev from her Mom, Dottie

Roast Turkey Breast With Garlic Sauce
1 Turkey Breast (skin-on) completely thawed if frozen (5-6 pounds)
3 tbsp olive or canola oil
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper -- freshly ground
16 cloves garlic -- peeled and crushed
1 1/2 cups low-sodium turkey stock -- or chicken stock
2 tsp fresh lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. Remove any excess fat from the turkey
breast. Place the turkey, skin side up, in a shallow roasting pan. Brush
the olive or canola oil all over the turkey breast and sprinkle with about half the salt and pepper. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and roast in the oven about 45 minutes.

Remove the turkey breast from the oven and remove the foil. Place the
crushed garlic cloves around the turkey, making sure to coat the cloves with the pan juices. Roast the turkey about 1 1/4 hours, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part attains 180 F degrees.

Remove the skin from the turkey breast and transfer the meat to a serving platter. Cover the turkey breast with aluminum foil to keep warm. Spoon off all the fat from the pan, leaving only the pan juices. Place the roasting pan over moderate heat and stir in about 1/2 cup of the chicken or turkey stock, and heat until bubbling. Transfer the mixture to a blender or processor and puree until smooth. Return the mixture to the roasting pan and bring to a boil again, over moderate heat. Stir in the remaining chicken stock, the lemon juice, and the rest of the salt and pepper, and simmer about 5 minutes.

Slice the turkey breast and serve with the garlic sauce spooned over the top or on the side.

CFF Shared by Eileen

Cuban Thanksgiving Turkey
1 (12-14 lb) turkey -- preferably fresh
Salt & fresh ground pepper
8 tbsp unsalted butter
1 head of garlic -- break in cloves and peel
1 tbsp salt
1 tsp fresh ground pepper
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp dried oregano
1 cup lime juice  or "sour orange" juice *See note

The day before, remove the giblets and any lumps of fat from the turkey cavities. Wash the turkey well and blot dry. Season the inside with salt and pepper. Loosen the turkey skin from the meat. To do so, start at the neck and tunnel your fingers, then whole hand, under the skin to separate the skin from the breast meat. Slide your hand down to loosen the skin over the thighs, drumsticksm and back. Work carefully so as not to tear the skin.

Prepare the marinade. Mash the garlic and salt to a paste in a mortar with a pestle. Pound in the pepper, cumin, and oregano and last of all the lime juice or sour orange juice. If you do not have a mortar and pestle, puree the ingredients in a blender. Add 3 tbls marinade to the main cavity and 1 tbls to the neck cavity. Place the remaining marinade under the skin. Work over a roasting pan to catch any runoff from the marinade. Place the bird in a large plastic bag with any excess marinade.

Marinate the turkey overnight in the refrigerator, turning several times.

Preheat the oven to 300 F. Thinly slice the butter and place half of the
slices under the skin. Melt remaining butter. Truss the turkey and place it, breast side up, on a rack in a roasting pan. Brush the skin of the bird with some melted butter. Loosely drape a large piece of cheesecloth over the skin, then pour the remaining butter and marinade over the cheesecloth.

Roast the bird for 2 hours. Baste with the juices and melted butter that collect in the pan. Lift the cheesecloth from time to time to keep it from sticking to the bird. Increase oven temperature to 350 F and roast for 1 hour. Increase the heat to 400 F and remove the cheesecloth from the turkey. Roast 15-20 minutes, basting frequently. When cooked, the skin will be golden and the leg juices will run clear when pricked with a fork. The internal temperature should be 185 F on an instant-read thermometer and the drumstick should feel loose when wiggled. Transfer the turley to a platter or cutting board. Let stand for 15 minutes before carving. Strain the pan juices and serve in a sauceboat on the side.

Note: Sour orange is a bumpy green-orange fruit that looks like an orange but tastes like a lime. Limes are often used in their place.

Source: Miami Spice, the New Florida Cuisine


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