Monday, November 15, 2010

Today's Special: Turkey Recipes

With Thanksgiving less than two weeks away, I'm sure you're all getting your brains and bellies ready for some turkey. Whether you'll be cooking a turkey or just eating it, here are some recipes I've tried out that are definitely worth your time.

This was my first real turkey and I have to say it turned out really well! I think the brining made a huge difference in how moist the meat turned out, so don't skip that part! There are a couple changes I think would make this recipe even better. I don't know that I'd spend the money on the candied ginger the brining calls for as I don't think it really affected the flavor. Also, the recipe has you start at 500°F then you cover the whole turkey with tin foil and finish it at 350°F. The only problem with finishing it out this way is the tin foil basically steamed the skin so it wasn't crispy anymore. Next time I would remove the foil maybe 15-20 minutes at the end of cooking and bump the temp back up to 500 deg. to crisp up the skin and give it just a bit more color.

This was also the first time I've ever made my own stock. To do this, I picked the turkey carcass clean and saved it in the fridge until the next day when I could make this. I also saved the raw turkey neck from the turkey cavity. This was very simple to do and although it took a while to cook, it was something I didn't have to sit there and watch. For those of you who have never made stock before, it will solidify (unlike the store-bought stuff), so don't be all freaked out thinking you did it wrong. It'll turn back into a liquid as soon as you heat it up again. This made approximately 6 cups, so not a ton, but definitely a great thing to have on hand!

I made this soup once before with Seth's wild turkey. It was just as good this time around and maybe even better having used the fresh turkey stock I'd just made. The recipe says to add salt to taste... I added at least 2 tsp. This is one of my favorite soup recipes.

Ok I know I probably don't need to say anything about this sandwich given the name of it (and hello, look at the picture.... Mmm) but this was so good! The recipe says to use apricot jam (or a couple other types), and I tried it that way. It was good with the apricot jam, but I thought it was even better using Dijon mustard. And don't be stingy with the apple... cut nice thick slices or you won't be able to taste it.

If you have any turkey left at this point I would be very surprised. If so, lucky you! You can eat more of this stuff! Now some of you are probably like, "Yeah this is great and all, but I don't have to cook a dang turkey. I'm on pie duty." What's that you say? PIES? Pies just happen to be my specialty. Don't believe me? Check these babies out.


It's Me said...

Yummm! I revisited your pie post and I'm jealous I lack your awesome pie "creating" skills.

All the turkey dishes are making me wish Thanksgiving would get here already. I'll have to try the soup one of these days. J.R. and I have different opinions on whether soup should be a meal or not. Ha!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Paul said...

Thanks for the ideas! We usually just make sandwiches, which are fine and all, but it's nitce to shake things up a bit. One of these years I'm going to get ambitous and make turkey pot pie. But not this year.

Rachel said...

Also, you must know that everyone in my office admires your food photographing skillz.