Advice for the Turkey Troubled
Ahh. . . the ubiquitous turkey, the bane of cooks nationwide. I’ve cooked the holiday bird every which way—in a paper bag, in a plastic bag, without a bag, barded with bacon, and spatchcocked on the grill. What you’re looking for in a holiday turkey is certainty and juiciness. Robin produced quite a nice outcome last year by dry brining and barding the bird, that is, swaddling it in bacon strips. It was pronounced the best ever.
A Bird in the Oven Is Worth Two in the Freezer
But if you’re uptight about the turkey cooking procedure, take a look at this video from Mary Risley of Tante Marie’s Cooking School. She gives some laidback advice on preparing turkey and gravy, though occasionally using
fowl foul language that’s as raw as the turkey she’s tossing around the kitchen.
Risley dismisses the idea that it’s best to cook the dark and white portions of the bird for different lengths of time. I agree in theory with cooking white meat and dark differently. But this requires dismantling the turkey before cooking, making it ineligible for a Norman Rockwell drawing or even a blog photo.
Norman Rockwell Missed the Action
Keep the Traditions Meaningful
Meaningful family traditions are comforting and connecting. The important thing is to show gratitude for the blessings at hand. A meal of thanksgiving in the Plymouth Colony commemorated survival after more than two months of hardship upon the high seas.
In a celebration two years later, the settlers showed their gratitude for an abundant harvest. Once again it’s time to give thanks for our free and bountiful land, for good times shared and bad times survived. Now—even as then—Thanksgiving begin in the heart.
Note: My Thanksgiving posts from the past 3 years here at GoodFoodSTL can be found by clicking on the cute, little turkey icon tab at the top of the page. Or from the sidebar: Thanksgiving: Plans & Platitudes.