Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Gobble Gobble This ain't no Jive Turkey

What is it the thing about the holidays that no matter how much we may plan, prepare, set up a schedule reminder, things just may not always go off  as smoothly as the tactical plan we may have laid out.

Alright, I may not of had the issue of the turkey not defrosting, but mom did mention to me the first bird she roasted, she apparently with all the giblets, neck in their respective bags all inside.  Can't make it up! My disaster, I went to deep fry my bird two years ago, propane died out, then insult to injury after going to get a new tank, the fryer stopped working completely.  Thanks to a few cocktails and Walmart being open there are turkey day miracles.

The holidays can drive you crazy with family and the pressure to perform at your best in the kitchen, but at the end of the day it is really getting to spend some time together and being thankful for for those special people in your life that is what is important.  So let me say take this moment to thank you for spending a little time with me on this crazy little journey.  I'm thankful for the people I've met and what I've learned.  

So Hauʻoli Lā Hoʻomaikaʻi (Happy Thanksgiving) my friend so how better to spend than with some ohana, and maybe with a Hawaiian twist. 

Let's get this party started with a special turkey, brined in pineapple juice, with soy sauce and maple syrup for sweetness. This is a twist on a brine and so easy to try.

Hawaiian-Style Turkey & Brine

4 quarts pineapple juice
2 cups brown sugar
1-1/3 cups soy sauce
1 cup light maple syrup
1-1/2 cups Kosher salt
6 cloves garlic
4-6 whole bay leaves
2 Tbsp crushed red pepper

  1. Combine all ingredients. Place turkey in large dish or container and pour brine over. Cover and allow to brine for 1 hour per pound. Due to the acid from the pineapple juice in this brine you do not want to leave your turkey in the brine for too long.
  2. Before you are ready to cook the turkey, remove the turkey from the brine and discard the brine. Rinse the turkey well with cold water and pat dry. Place in a roasting pan, let the turkey come to room temperature for one hour.
  3. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  4. Place the turkey, breast side up in the center rack. Roast in the oven for about 13 minutes per pound for an un-stuffed turkey, or until the internal temperature of the deepest part of the breast reaches 175°F.
  5. Baste the turkey with the pan juices every 45 minutes. When the thermometer reaches 175°F in the deepest part of the breast, remove from oven and let it rest for 15 - 20 minutes before carving.

Turkey Gravy

6 Tbsp. unsalted butter
6 Tbsp. flour
 4 to 4 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1/3 cup de-fatted cooked rendering from Turkey

  1. Heat butter in a saucepan over medium heat and whisk in flour. Cook, whisking, until roux is nut brown, 10 minutes. 
  2. Whisk in 4 cups chicken broth and turkey rendering. Serve hot.

Portuguese Sausage Dressing

1/2 cup butter 
3 cups celery, finely chopped 
2 cups onion, chopped 
1 -3/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth 
1 tsp poultry seasoning 
1 tsp minced fresh sage
1 Tbsp garlic, minced 
8 oz linguiça (Portuguese sausage)
16 cups crusty white bread,  cut in coarse 3/4-in. cubes 
1/2 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped 

  1. Preheat oven to 375°. Melt butter in a 10- to 12-in. skillet over medium-high heat. Add celery, onion, and sauté stirring occasionally, 2 minutes. Add 3/4 cup chicken broth, poultry seasoning, sage, and garlic. Lower heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until celery and onion are tender, 20 minutes. Meanwhile, cut linguiça in half lengthwise, then slice into 1/4-in.-thick half-moons.
  2. Put bread cubes in a large bowl and stir in celery mixture, linguiça, and parsley. Stir in remaining 1 cup chicken broth.
  3. Spoon dressing into a 4- to 5-qt. baking dish and cover loosely with foil. Bake 25 minutes, uncover, and cook until browned on top, 10 to 20 minutes more. Serve hot.

Green Salad with Papaya-Seed Dressing

1/3 cup rice vinegar
1/3 cup canola oil 
1/2 small sweet onion  chopped, 
1 large sweet onion, thinly sliced into rings 
1-1/2 tsp sugar 
1/2 tsp salt 
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1-1/2 Tbsp fresh papaya seeds
1 lb mixed salad greens 
2 avocados, pitted, peeled, and sliced 

  1. In a blender, whirl vinegar, oil, chopped onion, sugar, salt, and mustard until smooth. Add papaya seeds and pulse until seeds look like coarsely ground peppercorns.
  2. In a large bowl, combine onion rings, salad greens, and 3/4 of avocado slices; pour dressing over salad and toss gently to coat. 
  3. Arrange salad on a large platter and top with remaining slices of avocado.

Macadamia Nut Tart

1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp plus 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar 
1/2 tsp salt 
3/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces 
2 Tbsp melted butter 
1 large egg yolk, plus 1 large egg 
1/4 cup light corn syrup
2 Tbsp dark rum 
1-1/3 cups unsalted macadamia nuts, coarsely chopped

  1. Preheat oven to 375°. In a food processor, whirl flour, 2 tbsp. brown sugar, and 1/4 tsp. salt. Add cold butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add egg yolk and pulse to combine. Add 2 to 3 tbsp. ice water, pulsing until mixture begins to come together in a ball.
  2. Press dough into bottom and up sides of a 9-in. round tart pan with 1-in. sides. Prick bottom of tart with a fork and chill in freezer 15 minutes. Bake crust until medium golden brown, 15 to 25 minutes, and remove from oven (leave oven on).
  3. Meanwhile, in a standing electric mixer on high speed, beat whole egg, remaining 1/2 cup brown sugar, and remaining 1/4 tsp. salt until pale and ribbon like, 7 to 10 minutes. Beat in melted butter, corn syrup, and rum.
  4. Pour sugar mixture into tart shell and sprinkle with macadamia nuts. Bake tart until a knife inserted in center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Cool tart on a wire rack at least 1 hour. Cut into wedges and serve with vanilla or ginger ice cream, if you like.

I found this recipe and loved how this sounded, and it is so different, not only is it a Thanksgiving recipe but an all year round party food.

Kalua Turkey

Serve with white rice, freshly cut pineapple and traditional Thanksgiving side dishes.

1-1/2 cups coarse sea salt or kosher salt
16-pound fresh turkey
1/2 cup liquid smoke seasoning, or more as needed
Water (optional)

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Have at hand a roasting pan with rack that fits inside.
  2. Use all of the salt to rub the exterior of the bird, its cavity and gently under the skin as much as possible. Then pour all of the liquid smoke seasoning outside and inside the bird, rubbing it into the skin to spread it evenly. Place the turkey on the rack in the roasting pan; cover tightly with aluminum foil. 
  3. Roast for 4 1/2 to 5 hours, until much of the skin is lightly browned and a thermometer inserted into the thigh (but not touching the bone) registers 165 degrees. The turkey should be falling off the bone. Uncover, and let the turkey rest for about 30 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, strain the pan juices into a small saucepan. Add water (to dilute) or a little liquid smoke seasoning (to intensify the flavor) as needed. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook for about 5 minutes, then reduce the heat to low and keep warm; its consistency will be thin.
  5. Discard all the skin and remove the bones from the turkey, reserving the bones for another use, if desired. Transfer the meat to a separate large pan or casserole dish or platter. Use two forks or your clean hands to shred the turkey to the consistency of pulled pork.
  6. Before serving, pour the heated pan juices over the turkey and toss lightly to coat. Serve warm.

Thank you @H50BAMF for the great pics to quote a doctor at a meeting I was at last week borrow shamelessly, but always praise with much credit! 

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