Merciful God, You are great in compassion and Your tenderness for us is without measure. We ask You to give us today our daily bread, and also provide for the needs of all of Your hungry children around the world. Through Christ Your Son and Our Lord. Amen.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Thanksgiving Postmortem



I've been up a few hours this morning stressing the next big food event -- our 25/50 party tomorrow, but for a moment I want to talk about Thanksgiving.

I hope that you had an enjoyable one.

I hope that you were able to truly appreciate your family, or friends, whomever you decided to spend your holiday.

I hope you gave thanks to Our Father who makes all things possible.
About the food: I hope your turkey was moist and tasty. Mine most definitely was. It was also done early, God bless him. And because I roasted it breast side down again, it was perfectly cooked, soooo moist and very tasty. I will never roast a bird right side up again. Ever.

Alright then, good gravy. My mom is in charge of gravy, usually because gravy needs attention, and when you're trying to get eight other dishes on the table, you can't babysit gravy. The gravy was yummy (it always is) due to yummy drippings. I place 14 oz of turkey broth and 14 oz of vegetable broth in the bottom of the pan when the turkey goes in the oven, along with a quartered onion. I stuff the cavity with celery and a quartered onion. I baste the turkey with the broth that the giblets and neck cook in (which starts as salted water but after cooking for several hours it's very rich broth). That all adds up to tasty drippings, and that's gravy! We also use whatever broth is left in the giblets pan. This year I purchased one of these

and I must say it made gravy-making infinitely simpler. The only thing bad about this model (Norpro) is it is glass and feels fairly fragile (thin glass). I would probably get a plastic one if (when) this one breaks. It was simple to get the right ratio of broth to melted fat -- you only need a little of the latter for good gravy. And in case you're wondering, it only takes a minute for the fat to separate. We also add the minced giblets and minced neck meat to the gravy, in case you're wondering. Giblets...mmmm.

Stuffing: Grandma Ruth's stuffing made with chorizo was a huge hit. Huge.  I can see that there maybe a circumstance in the future when I would make it the traditional way, but I don't know that my brother will come to Thanksgiving dinner again if I don't make the Thanksgiving stuffing with chorizo. I also made some homemade bread for the stuffing instead of sandwich bread and that probably contributed to the overall yumminess of the dish. I am reposting the recipe below. It went very well with the Jalapeno Bacon Corn, which was zippy but not overly so. Recipe also below. Sorry, no pics.

Everything else I made was the same as in other years, but it was all good and all went very well together. Yum!

Grandma Ruth's Sausage Stuffing (Kicked-up version)

1 med. onion, finely chopped
6 stalks celery, chopped finely
6 T. butter
1/3 pound fresh chorizo (that was two links for me)
10 twigs fresh parsley, chopped fine
dried bread cubes (see note)
¾ T. poultry seasoning
2 t. salt
¼ t. pepper
3 eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups water (or more to make moist stuffing)

Saute onion and celery in butter until slightly cooked but crispy.
Toss parsley, sausage, bread cubes,
poultry seasoning, salt and pepper.
Combine eggs and water.
Lightly toss with bread mixture.
Stuffs a 13 pound turkey.
Or place in a greased casserole dish
and bake at 350 degrees F. for 45 to 60 minutes until completely done
(see thermometer note above).

NOTE: slowly bake 25 bread slices at 300 degrees F.
until dry and lightly browned, turning once. Slice into 1" cubes.

Jalapeno Bacon Corn
6 slices bacon
3 jalapeno peppers, seeded and diced finely
3 (1#) bags frozen corn
3 T. butter
salt and pepper to taste

Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium high heat until crisp.
Remove the bacon from the pan. Add jalapeno peppers and saute until tender.
Add butter to the pan and melt. Add the corn and cook until corn is hot.
Crumble bacon into corn.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.



Linda said...

Barbara, we had a lovely, fun Thanksgiving shared with our older daughter, her husband and our 2 grandsons + our son-in-law's parents, his sister and her husband and their 2 children. Best moment: (besides the turkey, the butternut squash soup, Mike's famous mashed sweet potatoes, and 8...yes, 8 desserts?) It was my daughter's mini-concert on the bass guitar that my husband and I gave her for her 40th birthday with her 2-year-old niece rocking out to the music. Adorable, memorable, we were filled with parental pride. God is Good to this family...always.

I know your party this weekend will be a huge success and blessed in abundance by our Blessed Lord.

scmom (Barbara) said...

I'm so glad you had a fabulous holiday. It sounds wonderful. What a beautiful memory of your daughter playing guitar and your granddaughter dancing!

And thank you for your confidence in my party tomorrow! ;-)

Anonymous said...

Hi Barbara!
Thanksgiving was absolutely wonderful and filled with memories of years gone by which was heavenly. I also want to mention, these gravy separators I have had one for over twenty years now but in ceramic and it is in the gravy boat style dish. Love it. N.E. is always behind except I think in this case, we were far ahead your recipes and thanks for sharing them. Have a great gathering! Blessings! JP

Barb, sfo said...

I'm glad Thanksgiving went so well for you! Praying that today's party is a fabulous time and that YOU are able to enjoy the time with family and friends. Congratulations again!

Anonymous said...

I feel like this is a dumb question... but how DO you use a gravy separator? I've had one for 2 years and it's still not clear to me... I've tried to use it several times and it's STILL not clear to me (didn't come with instructions) Can you enlighten me? Thanks!!! (I LOVE LOVE LOVE your recipes & your blog!)


scmom (Barbara) said...

I have been cooking for 25 years without one but I'm glad I made the purchase!

Thanks, Barb. Still recovering! ;-)

You pour the drippings from the pan into the separator and wait a few minutes -- maybe 3 to 5 -- to wait for the separation to occur. Then pour (you might have a little liquid fat in the spout, but that's o.k.) the broth (it sinks to the bottom where the spout opens into the cup) until the fat gets down to the spout opening. Then stop and discard most of the fat -- a little is necessary for good flavor. If you don't have a lot of fat in your drippings, you may not get much to separate. With a turkey there is all the butter and the melted fat from its body, so it's pretty substantial.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for taking the time to explain that for me! I'm excited to try it next time!!!