Saturday, November 26, 2011

For the Love of Turkey

This Thanksgivings I had a reunion with my nemesis, the Turkey. Oh Turkey, how I! This bird is my nemesis not because I ever failed in cooking it, so maybe nemesis is not the correct word but the antagonistic feeling I have towards it, makes me declare it a nemesis.

My son requested the roasted turkey for Thanksgiving declaring it "the best lean protein around". In a weak attempt to get out of roasting a turkey, I said as long as we find a small turkey, I would do so. Normally, all we see are huge birds. However, we were at Barons in Temecula- they had not one but 2 small turkey of about 10 lbs each!! Admittedly, a small part of me, deep down, was happy to find the small bird. One's perspective changes when a child leaves for college.You try to make occasions like Thanksgiving they way they want. Dear daughter is home for Thanksgiving. It is the little things... When I look at my son, I see that he will be leaving us for college soon, albiet 2 years time. The departure seems more imminent and real because of `losing' my daughter to college. We were joined in our celebration by A, a dear friend/honoree son of the family, 1st year college returnee, pre-gaming Thanksgiving with us! Nice!

So I look for Martha Stewart Turkey 101 recipe that I used very successfully in the past. I did not have the recipe!! That copy of the 10-12 year old magazine was no where to be found. Turkey is by no means my favorite food. The last few times, we cooked Turkey, I had relegated the Turkey OUTSIDE - to the grill, delegated the grilling to my husband!! Hey, it is the internet world today so no problem... so we thought. Some form of the recipe was found on the internet including Turkey 101 but is not exactly it. Perhaps an improved, edited version. I made do.

I made cornbread, roasted chestnuts and made cornbread stuffing for the turkey
Roasted Chestnut
Baked cornbread for stuffing

Cornbread cubed and roasted in oven

Saute onions, leeks and celery in melted butter 

Assembled stuffing- cornbread, chestnuts, mushrooms, bacon and parsley

Stuffed Turkey

Trussed Turkey

The tell tale sign of Martha Stewart Turkey 101 - the cheesecloth gown soaked in wine and butter solution

The almost burnt cheesecloth removed after 3 hours

Roasted Juicy Turkey

Turkey, Stuffing, Cranberry Mould, gravy and mash potatoes


  1. Your end-result looks very good - a golden roasted turkey! When I was walking by Cold Storage a few days ago, I couldn't resist looking over the frozen turkey section and now there's a turkey leg in my fridge, waiting for me to decide what to do with it! Now, thinking about fresh persimmons and roasted turkey makes my stomach very noisy and mouth...

  2. Turkey represented Christmas in Malaysia and now Thanksgiving in the US. My family in Malaysia loves Turkey so I used to order 2 roasted Turkey with all the trimmings from Jaya Supermarket each Christmas- one for my family and one for my husband's family. I have to admit, a whole roasted turkey is quite impressive. I prefer the stuffing to the turkey!!