Be it your first bicycle, your first day of high school, your first kiss, or your first love, this is my first Thanksgiving
Thank you to everyone who encouraged me to embrace this venture!!! I had some wonderful suggestions and was in awe of
you cooking for your crowds and the many different methods you use! So, I grabbed my “Big Girl Panties” and pulled them on with gusto!! Thank you, thank you!
Now, I felt a bit hood-winked as my DD decided not to have Thanksgiving at her house (friends she invited decided to
visit family out of town, personally, I think they were scared!), so now it all fell on me. The turkey was one thing but I always remember the flurry of activity in the kitchen as the bird comes out of the oven, YIKES! She would be there for support and help.
As I knew I could produce the sides easily, my first order of business was which method for the Bird? So with many suggestions in hand, I researched to decide what I would like
Which one? More research…
Soooo many positive comments on this but I had never seen it done in person and felt a bit uncomfortable.
Figured I’d be up all night checking on it and we’d be having turkey for breakfast!
Start breast down and flip the bird?
Hmmm, what to do.... my mother always yelled at me for “flipping the bird”.
AR has some wonderful Turkey and Brine recipes but
“Ken from CA’s” Cider Brined Turkey with Rich Kettle Gravy
caught my eye! So warm it up, let the flavors meld, cool it off, and refrigerate overnight, then into the cooler goes our lucky Tom swimming in a cider concoction for 36 hours! Stay tuned!
I wanted to be organized (okay, I have some control issues!) so thought I would get a jump start on the big day prepping some of the sides….
TWO DAYS PRIOR
Silky Sweet Potato Puree. I saw this on the Recipe Exchange recently and liked the simplicity of this dish and it was so very sweet without the typical trimmings. I also made
Make Ahead Turkey Gravy “just in case”.
I even ventured to make my very first homemade pie crust, inspired by Mauigirl’s
$2000.00 Pie Crust!!! Blog!! The edges need some work but a pretty good first attempt, don’t cha think?
THE DAY BEFORE
I cooked the sweet sausage and
mirepoix and measured the spices to make for an easy assembly of
Unstuffing Side Dish tomorrow.
I parboiled my sprouts for
Baked Brussel Sprouts and green beans, toasted the nuts I would be using on the veggies. I also cleaned, cubed and stored potatoes in salted water in the frig. I’m sorry I didn’t get pix of my own
Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans with Cranberries & Almond Slivers.
In the evening I baked a deep dish
Perfect Pumpkin Pie. Now it’s beginning to smell like Thanksgiving!!!
THE BIG DAY!!!
Come on, now! Would you expect any less of me!!! By the way, this McClure’s is the best (unique)! It’s made in Brooklyn
and Detroit but I understand Whole Foods carries it. Very unique and best with Peppar Absolute!! NOW, I’m ready to make the bird!! :D
Turkey rescued from the brine, rinsed and patted dry, we are ready to rock & roll! Again, following “Ken fron CA’s”
Cider Brined Turkey with Rich Kettle Gravy, here we go! This is going pretty well so far!
DRUM ROLL PLEASE...
TAAAAA – DAAAA!
ABSOLUTELY MOIST AND DELICIOUS!!!
I am totally sold on brining and this recipe! The flavor is wonderful and so very moist. I just made sandwiches with the leftovers
(the true test of dry breast meat) and barely needed any mayo!! Thanks, Ken!!
I didn’t start breast side down as Ken suggests. The reason is I have hand/wrist issues and envisioned this poor guy sliding
out of my challenged mitts, off the counter onto the floor. No harm, no foul. However, I did make a mistake by not following Ken’s baking instructions (why would I think I knew better?) I thought I would be clever and use the “roast” feature on my oven. Bad
move. The top browned too quickly. I’m glad I checked it. Covered with foil the rest of the time and it didn’t affect the moistness. Sorry, Ken, lesson learned, “follow instructions” next time!
Again, thank you to everyone for your humor and support! This feast would not have been possible without your light and