Happy Thanksgiving Everyone! I am so thankful for you, fellow bloggers, Mr. Squash, our health and of course -- The Squash House!
I thought while the turkey is in the oven for many of you, that I would share my first turkey brining experience. This year we decided to cook the turkey the day before Thanksgiving along with any side dishes that could be prepared ahead. Today I'm doing the stuffing in a crockpot, rolls and a side dish of Brussels Sprouts. I should have plenty of time to relax before dinner for a change.
SIL in New Jersey emailed just the other day that she brined a turkey and had great results! I've thought about doing it for some time now, so I decided to make a last minute change in plans! You can find the recipe that I used in a video here: http://www.kitchendaily/.com It began as quite an odyssey! Our 5 gallon plastic bucket was not food safe, so after finally getting to the 5th and final grocery store in town, we found a brining bag large enough to fit the turkey and the bucket! Here is the bucket after Mr. Squash hefted it into the frig!
Don't be grossed out by this - it's only the shadows of all the veggies in the brine that fell to the bottom while Mr. Turkey was brining. I only wanted you to see how close we came to having just enough room for him in the bucket! It looks like more, but there is only about 4-5 inches left at the top of the bucket!
Once I took the turkey out of the brine it had to sit for about 30 minutes which gave me just enough time to prepare the basting sauce. First I finely chopped 2 Tbsp of fresh rosemary from my garden.
Then I peeled the rind in large strips from one lemon. Last time I used this peeler I managed to peel my thumb along with a butternut squash! I was very careful this time!
Next was to mince one clove of garlic. This is a head from garlic we harvested this summer - I just love the bright, red color! See that cute little machine? We picked it up on our recent trip to Leavenworth - it's a garlic mincer! You place your clove inside, then roll the wheels back and forth on the counter several times and voila...
...perfectly chopped garlic with no mess! The little chopper comes right out to wash and ready for the next clove! Have you ever seen the "get it or forget it" stories about new gadgets on the news? In my book, this is a definite "Get It"!
Place the above ingredients in a small saucepan along with 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, bring to a simmer and cook for a minute or so. Set aside to cool.
Next cut one large yellow onion into 8 wedges.
Place the onion in the bottom of your roaster, then the rack, then your turkey. Baste your turkey and place in a pre-heated 400 degree oven.
Here is Mr. Turkey in the oven waiting to bring out his wonderful flavor! Bake at 425 for one hour, then reduce the oven to 375, pour one cup of water into the bottom of the pan. Baste with the reserved olive oil mixture every half hour until a thermometer registers 165 degrees. You can find the recipe here: http://www.marthastewart.com/331734/roast-turkey-with-rosemary-and-lemon Martha called for the turkey to be stuffed, but I didn't and still had excellent results!
Wouldn't you know just when I took the turkey out to rest I got a call from an old friend in California. I totally forgot to take a photo of the whole bird nicely roasted, but here he is all sliced and ready to be served later today! I can honestly say it looked as good as the picture in the recipe!
I also made the accompanying recipe for White Wine Gravy: http://www.marthastewart.com/331731/white-wine-gravy I must say that this is one of the best gravies I've ever made! We can't wait to dig into all this later today!