My grandson, Austin, spatchcocked a turkey on Thanksgiving Day and cooked it to perfection on the smoker oven he’d made recently. “Spatchcocking” is one of those whimsical expressions that makes you giggle in wonderment. Actually, it’s an ancient term for butterflying fowl, meaning “cooking a bird with dispatch.”
I used to watch the BBC show, Two Fat Ladies, and cringed watching them spatchcock game hens with such gusto. When they finished, the birds looked like they’d been run over by a semi or whacked with a rubber mallet. With the back bone removed the bird is easily flattened, making it possible to cook more quickly and brown beautifully.
While Austin was standing watch over the outdoor cooker, Debra and Russ brined and cooked a heritage turkey in the kitchen oven. It took a lot longer, but both birds were juicy and well browned. With 40 people at the farm on Thanksgiving Day, there weren’t a lot of leftovers, so the next day Debra cooked a duck and Russ made a persimmon sauce. He had picked a five-pound sack of the wild fruit and couldn’t stand the thought of wasting them, so he also made persimmon soup. It was new to all of us, but smooth, with a bit of sweetness that comes to persimmons after the first frost. But dislodging the seeds from the pulp takes far too much time and patience to do very often.
Since I’ve been blogging about Thanksgiving for weeks now, I promise this is the wrap up. I’m ready to move onto Christmas and plan to pull out my decorations tonight.
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