Friday, November 28, 2008

Thanksgiving Post-Mortem

Dante and I always do a post-mortem on the feast the next day. We do have a few notes.

1. Doing a brine rocks! We modified Aton Brown's Roast Turkey brine by using leftover turkey broth we had frozen, but the results were well worth the effort. The turkey was so moist, you could cut it with a fork. Halfway through the cooking time we had to stop and remove some of the broth from the roaster for fear the turkey was boiling, not roasting.

The reserved broth was the perfect stuff to make the gravy, since it had time to sit on the counter and the fat rose to the top to be removed. We didn't need to save it because we had a little sage butter left from when we put some under and in the turkey, so it formed the basis of our roux for the gravy rather than plain old turkey fat.

2. I'm adding a note that next year we make the Roasted Asparagus and Leeks the day before to allow the vinegar and flavors to infuse into the veggies. The huge amount we cooked just could not get done while the turkey rested, and the flavors hadn't really worked their way into the veggies. Today, however, they're delicious.

3. Making some of the recipes ahead worked beautifully. After a small flurry of activity in the morning while we got the turkey out of the brine and put the sage butter "coins" under the skin, we were able to enjoy our guests as they arrived, offer them beverages, show them the munchies, and yak out on the porch. When the timer went off, Dante and I excused ourselves to baste or whatever, but other than that we were relaxed and sociable. That alone is a miracle in our tiny "two butt" kitchen. (Insider joke: The kitchen is so small, two butts rub together and three is real intimacy.)

Other than these minor additions, all the recipes go into the book with no changes. Most are tried and true recipes, so they need no new notes.

No comments:

Welcome to my Blog!

Thanks for popping by! Don't sit on the whipping horse unless you want to find out how it's used. I speak my mind and annoy many people, but all of it is meant in good spirit. Feel free to argue with me. I like it.

Best way to reach me is by email: