11.02.2012

Blog Feature Friday: Sweet Boutique

I'm so excited to share today's blog feature! I'm just going to let you read the awesome-ness that happens in this post and not tell you a thing about it.

Hi everybody, my name is Stephanie!  I am visiting from my blog, Sweet Boutique.  I am so happy to be here at the copper coconut and hope you enjoy what I have to share.  Thank you Katie for this great opportunity to make some new friends.

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, it is the day where you are suppose to give thanks for what you have, remember why we are free and the voyage made by the pilgrims, but I'm not going to lie.. for me it's mostly about getting to throw a party.  It's like this holiday was made for me.  Big gathering of family and friends, a huge meal where people actually EAT without worrying about calories!  I get to do an obnoxious over the top table...I am telling you it's heaven!

Today I am going to share with you the menu and recipes that I have used for the last ten years or so for our Thanksgiving dinner.  I also put together some printables you can use to spice up your dining table. It's a ready made Thanksgiving!

The Menu


Now let's start with the most important things first.

THE BIRD

I know people are very set in their ways when it comes to talking turkey.  Everyone does it the way their mom did, slow roasting all day, constant basting with the yummy pan juices, but I challenge you to consider changing your ways.

I have been using Alton Browns turkey recipe for years, and trust me there is a reason.
Number one it cooks in 2 1/2 hours, number two NO BASTING!
WHAT you say? NO  BASTING?   Won't my turkey be dry?
Well, actually the opposite.  Turkey is covered in skin (obviously) which is well, waterproof?  So basting your turkey really isn't doing much.  Plus, every time you open that oven to baste the temperate drops causing your turkey to have to cook longer and become dry.  I also prefer Alton's recipe because he uses a brine, this adds so much flavor and moisture to the bird and makes an outstanding gravy.
This bird also has the added bonus of cooking quickly and freeing up the oven for all the delicious side dishes!  Unless you are one of those lucky ducks who have a double or dare I say two ovens!

Alton Brown's Good Eats Roast Turkey Recipe:

Ingredients

  • 1 (14 to 16 pound) frozen young turkey

For the brine:

  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 gallon vegetable stock
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons allspice berries
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped candied ginger
  • 1 gallon heavily iced water

For the aromatics:

  • 1 red apple, sliced
  • 1/2 onion, sliced
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 sprigs rosemary
  • 6 leaves sage
  • Canola oil

Directions

Make sure your turkey is completely thawed, or use a fresh bird.
Combine the vegetable stock, salt, brown sugar, peppercorns, allspice berries, and candied ginger in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Stir occasionally to dissolve solids and bring to a boil. Then remove the brine from the heat, cool to room temperature, and refrigerate.
The night before:
Combine the brine, water and ice in the 5-gallon bucket. Place the thawed turkey (with innards removed) breast side down in brine. If necessary, weigh down the bird to ensure it is fully immersed, cover, and refrigerate or set in cool area for 8 to 16 hours, turning the bird once half way through brining.
(I combine the brine and water and place it in a brining bag with turkey, set it in a roasting pan and keep it in the fridge.)
On Thanksgiving:
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Remove the bird from brine and rinse inside and out with cold water. Discard the brine.
Place the bird on roasting rack inside a half sheet pan and pat dry with paper towels.
Combine the apple, onion, cinnamon stick, and 1 cup of water in a microwave safe dish and microwave on high for 5 minutes. Add steeped aromatics to the turkey's cavity along with the rosemary and sage. Tuck the wings underneath the bird and coat the skin liberally with canola oil.
Roast the turkey on lowest level of the oven at 500 degrees F for 30 minutes. Insert a probe thermometer into thickest part of the breast and reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Set the thermometer alarm (if available) to 161 degrees F. A 14 to 16 pound bird should require a total of 2 to 2 1/2 hours of roasting. Let the turkey rest, loosely covered with foil or a large mixing bowl for 15 minutes before carving.
I know there will be skeptics out there but I am telling you, try it!


Cranberry Chutney
As you can probably guess, I am not a cranberry sauce out of the can kind of girl.  Surprisingly enough I am a Cooking with Mickey, Gourmet Mickey Cookbook Volume II, cranberry sauce kind of girl.  How this happened I don't know, but it is some good cranberry sauce.
50's Prime Time Cafe  Disney-MGM Studios Theme Park
Makes four servings
1/2 cup cranberries, frozen thawed
3 T. sugar
1T. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. cloves
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup celery finely diced
1/4 cup onion, finely diced
1 medium apple, peeled, diced
 2 T. raisins    
                                                                                 
In a medium size saucepan, bring water to a boil.  Add all above ingredients except apples and raisins.  Simmer for 15 minutes.  Add apples and simmer for an additional 10 minutes, or until apples are soft.  Remove from heat and stir in raisins while sauce is still hot.  Cool thoroughly.


Harvest Stuffing

I like to take it back old school (like 1930's) for the stuffing, I use Better Homes and Garden's New Cookbook recipe for Harvest Stuffing.
Hey, if it's been around that long you know it's going to turn out!

1 c. shredded carrots
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup butter
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. pepper
8 cups dry bread cubes
2 cups finely chopped peeled apples
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup toasted wheat germ
1/2 - 1 cup chicken broth

In a large skillet cook carrots, celery, and onion in butter, till tender but not brown.  Sir in salt, nutmeg, and pepper.  In a large mixing bowl combine bread cubes, apples, walnuts ,and wheat germ: add carrot mixture.  Drizzle with enough broth to moisten.  tossing lightly.
*You may cover and bake in a 325 oven for 40 minutes if you like.



Blue Cheese Mashed Potatoes
Now to compliment all this sweetness I like to serve Mashed New Reds with Blue Cheese.   

     3lbs. New Red Potatoes skin on, cut in half
1/2 cup of Sour Cream
6 ounces Blue Cheese
3 Tbs. butter

Cut the potatoes in half (skin on)  and boil until tender.  Drain and mash with blue cheese, sour cream and butter.  Salt and pepper to taste.
(We really like blue cheese, you may want to start with a few ounces, and then add more to taste.)  The pungent flavor of blue cheese acompanies, the sweet cranberry chutney and sweet potatoes perfectly!

Roasted Asparagus
Since our favorite vegtable is asparagus, that is what we usually have.
I do two bundles of asparagus, washed with the white bottoms trimmed.
Toss with olive oil and sprinkle with balsamic vinager and sprinkle with sea salt.
Roast at 400 for 10 minutes.


Sweet Potato Crisp
I know it is popular to do sweet potaoes with marshmellows on top, but that just isn't for me.
This dish is almost more like a dessert than a side dish.  Sweet Potoato crisp is delicious whipped, spiced, sweet potatoes with a sweet pecan crust.
YUM!

2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
4 Tbs. butter
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 Tbs. whipping cream
1/4 cup. packed brown sugar
1/2 tsp. pepper

Boil Sweet Potatoes until tender, add all the ingredients and mix with a hand mixer until light and fluffy.  Place in a small baking dish
(taste for seasoning you may like it more or less spiced).  

In a food processor pulse a few times:
2 T. cold butter
3/4 cup pecans
2 Tbs. brown sugar

Top the sweet potatoes with the pecan mixture and bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until heated through.  

I just printed Fall Salad on the Menu because we do a different salad every year.  Usually something with fruit, nuts, and a light vinagrette.  Also, if you are looking for some great dessert ideas try these:

Homemade Apple Pie
Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake with Caramel Drizzle
Apple Tart


Thanksgiving...the Printables


(right click, save, print)

(You can use the blank ones as place cards)

Here are pictures of the table, see the printables in action?







Happy Thanksgiving, have a wonderful, thankful, holiday!

                                                                      Picture6


Big thanks to Stephanie for this wonderful menu that is already planned for you! Be sure to check out her website for more wonderful ideas!
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2 comments:

  1. Thanks so much for having me Katie!
    Steph
    swtboutique.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh my goodness stephanie in coming to your house for thanksgiving. My mouth started to water after I read the blue cheese potatoes!!! I'm pinning this menu onto Pinterest.

    ReplyDelete

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