Category: Blog

Oven Roasted Turkey

Well you can’t have Thanksgiving Dinner without the Turkey. This is the probably the easiest recipe out of all the dishes that you’ll make. It comes out juicy and delicious without being a hassle on your time.

Thanksgiving Turkey

Thanksgiving Turkey

Ingredients

  • 1 (18 pound) whole turkey, neck and giblets removed
  • 2 cups kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2 large onions, peeled and chopped
  • 4 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 4 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup dry white wine

Directions

  1. Rub the turkey inside and out with the kosher salt. Place the bird in a large stock pot, and cover with cold water. Place in the refrigerator, and allow the turkey to soak in the salt and water mixture 12 hours, or overnight.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Thoroughly rinse the turkey, and discard the brine mixture.
  3. Brush the turkey with 1/2 the melted butter. Place breast side down on a roasting rack in a shallow roasting pan. Stuff the turkey cavity with 1 onion, 1/2 the carrots, 1/2 the celery, 1 sprig of thyme, and the bay leaf. Scatter the remaining vegetables and thyme around the bottom of the roasting pan, and cover with the white wine.
  4. Roast uncovered 3 1/2 to 4 hours in the preheated oven, until the internal temperature of the thigh reaches 180 degrees F (85 degrees C). Carefully turn the turkey breast side up about 2/3 through the roasting time, and brush with the remaining butter. Allow the bird to stand about 30 minutes before carving.

Sweet Potato Casserole

Sweet potatoes make a great side to your Thanksgiving Dinner.  It’s the perfect amount of sweet to treat yourself with between bites of Turkey and Stuffing.

Southern Sweet Potato Casserole

Southern Sweet Potato Casserole

Ingredients

  • 4 cups sweet potato, cubed
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Put sweet potatoes in a medium saucepan with water to cover. Cook over medium high heat until tender; drain and mash.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the sweet potatoes, white sugar, eggs, salt, butter, milk and vanilla extract. Mix until smooth. Transfer to a 9×13 inch baking dish.
  3. In medium bowl, mix the brown sugar and flour. Cut in the butter until the mixture is coarse. Stir in the pecans. Sprinkle the mixture over the sweet potato mixture.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven 30 minutes, or until the topping is lightly brown.

Au Gratin Potatoes

Here’s a nice easy way to make up a potato side diesh without doing the usual mashed potatoes.  It takes all of 5 minutes to get it ready then just throw it in the oven as the turkey is finishing up.

Au Gratin Potatoes

Au Gratin Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 4 russet potatoes, sliced into 1/4 inch slices
  • 1 onion, sliced into rings
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
 Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Butter a 1 quart casserole dish.
  2. Layer 1/2 of the potatoes into bottom of the prepared casserole dish. Top with the onion slices, and add the remaining potatoes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. In a medium-size saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Mix in the flour and salt, and stir constantly with a whisk for one minute. Stir in milk. Cook until mixture has thickened. Stir in cheese all at once, and continue stirring until melted, about 30 to 60 seconds. Pour cheese over the potatoes, and cover the dish with aluminum foil.
  4. Bake 1 1/2 hours in the preheated oven.

Deep Fried Turkey

You can DeepFry your turkey this year to speed up on the cooking time. Even tho it’s fried, the oil doesnt sink in the bird.  It leaves your turkey crisp on the outside and hot and juicy in the middle. It does take a careful hand to lower the turkey in the vat of 400 degree grease, so don’t drink too much before you dip her in there.

Fried Turkey, Right out of the Grease

Fried Turkey, Right out of the Grease

Ingredients

  • 3 gallons peanut oil for frying, or as needed
  • 1 (12 pound) whole turkey, neck and giblets removed
  • 1/4 cup Creole seasoning
  • 1 white onion

 Directions

  1. In a large stockpot or turkey fryer, heat oil to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Be sure to leave room for the turkey, or the oil will spill over. Layer a large platter with food-safe paper bags.
  2. Rinse turkey, and thoroughly pat dry with paper towels. (If the turkey has alot of water in it, it WILL boil the grease over and can cause  a huge fire)… Rub Creole seasoning over turkey inside and out. Make sure the hole at the neck is open at least 2 inches so the oil can flow freely through the bird.
  3. Place the whole onion and turkey in drain basket. The turkey should be placed in basket neck end first. Slowly lower basket into hot oil to completely cover turkey. Maintain the temperature of the oil at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C), and cook turkey for 3 1/2 minutes per pound, about 45 minutes.
  4. Carefully remove basket from oil, and drain turkey. Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh; the internal temperature must be 180 degrees F (80 degrees C). Finish draining turkey on the prepared platter.

Fryer Beware: Safety TipsRemember you’re dealing with gallons of dangerously hot oil, so make sure there are no kids or pets running around. And you want to wear some old shoes that you can slip out of easily and long pants just in case you do spill some oil on you.

Place fryer on level dirt or grassy area. Never fry a turkey indoors, in a garage or in any other structure attached to a building. Avoid frying on wood decks, which could catch fire, and concrete, which can be stained by the oil.

Never leave the hot oil unattended and don’t allow children or pets near the cooking area.

Allow the oil to cool completely before disposing or storing. Immediately wash hands, utensils, equipment and surfaces that have come in contact with raw turkey.

Turkey should be consumed immediately and leftovers stored in the refrigerator within two hours of cooking.

[SOURCE: The National Turkey Federation  (202) 898-0100]

Ingredients

  • 3 gallons peanut oil for frying, or as needed
  • 1 (12 pound) whole turkey, neck and giblets removed
  • 1/4 cup Creole seasoning
  • 1 white onion

Directions

  1. In a large stockpot or turkey fryer, heat oil to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Be sure to leave room for the turkey, or the oil will spill over. Layer a large platter with food-safe paper bags.
  2. Rinse turkey, and thoroughly pat dry with paper towels. Rub Creole seasoning over turkey inside and out. Make sure the hole at the neck is open at least 2 inches so the oil can flow freely through the bird.
  3. Place the whole onion and turkey in drain basket. The turkey should be placed in basket neck end first. Slowly lower basket into hot oil to completely cover turkey. Maintain the temperature of the oil at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C), and cook turkey for 3 1/2 minutes per pound, about 45 minutes.
  4. Carefully remove basket from oil, and drain turkey. Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh; the internal temperature must be 180 degrees F (80 degrees C). Finish draining turkey on the prepared platter.

Cranberry Sauce

So, I’m a huge fan of Cranberry Sauce for Thanksgiving.  Here’s a quick recipe to make your own if the can sauce isn’t up to par for you.  It’s a pretty basic recipe and can be whipped up as your preparing all the other fixin’s for your meal.

Fresh Homemade Cranberry Sauce

Fresh Homemade Cranberry Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (200 g) sugar
  • 1 cup (250 mL) water
  • 4 cups (1 12-oz package) fresh or frozen cranberries
  • Optional Pecans, orange zest, raisins, currants, blueberries, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice.

Method

1 Wash and pick over cranberries. In a saucepan bring to a boil water and sugar, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add cranberries, return to a boil. Reduce heat, simmer for 10 minutes or until cranberries burst.

2 At this point you can add all number of optional ingredients. We typically mix in a half a cup of roughly chopped pecans with or without a few strips of orange zest. You can add a cup of raisins or currants. You can add up to a pint of fresh or frozen blueberries for added sweetness. Spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg or allspice can be added too.

3 Remove from heat. Cool completely at room temperature and then chill in refrigerator. Cranberry sauce will thicken as it cools.

Cranberry sauce base makes 2 1/4 cups.

Taco CheeseCake

So here’s an awesome recipe that I found for a Mexican Style Cheesecake Dip for football games or whenever, it’s amazing whether you serve it hot or cold.

Taco CheeseCake Dip

Taco CheeseCake Dip

Ingredients
1/4 c Melted Butter
1 c Cottage Cheese
1 1/2 c finely crushed Tortilla Chips
24 oz softened Cream Cheese
10 oz shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese
3 small Green Chiles
3 Cloves Garlic, minced
3 Tbsp Tomato Paste
1/2 tsp each – Garlic Powder, Chili Powder, Cayenne Pepper, BaconSalt, Black Pepper, Habanero Powder (I use Ghost Pepper to really heat it up),  and Onion Powder.  You can also just use 1 1/2 Tbsp of Taco seasoning and some Salt and Pepper/Ghost Pepper to taste.
4 Eggs
8 oz Sour Cream
8 oz Cheddar Cheese dip
1 c chopped Tomatoes
1/2 c chopped Green Onions
1/4 c sliced Black Olives
1/2 c chopped Cilantro
Sliced Avocado

Directions
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2) Combine crushed tortilla chips and softened butter, and press into bottom of a lightly greased 9-inch springform pan.

3) Bake at 350° for 12 minutes.  Cool in pan on a wire rack.  Meanwhile, place cottage cheese in food processor and process until smooth.

4) In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the Cheeses, Chilies, Garlic, Tomato Paste, and Spices.  Mix at medium speed until well blended.

5) Add Eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.  Then Fold in the Cilantro.

6) Pour into prepared pan.  Bake for 60 Minutes.

7) Combine Sour Cream and CheeseDip; mix thoroughly.  Spread mixture over hot Cheesecake; return to oven and continue baking for about 8-10 minutes.

8) Cool in oven with door ajar.

9) Run a knife along the side of the cake and pan to help loosen.  Remove outer ring.  Place on platter.

10) Garnish with Green Onions, Tomatoes, Avocado Slices and Black Onions.

11) Crack open Cold Beers and Serve

And there you have it, a filling, fresh tasting dip that serves 4 hungry guys on Gameday. Pop this in at the beginning of the game and it’ll be ready for you by halftime. Try My Buffalo Chicken Dip for a quick snack while your watching the first half and waiting for this to heat up.