Let's Talk Turkey! My Family's Turkey Day Feast
Bread Machine Dinner RollsUsing a bread machine makes these homemade rolls so easy to make because it does most of the work for you. These rolls are best right out of the oven.
Homemade Fresh Apple PieNothing beats a homemade apple pie! One always makes its appearance on the Fourth of July, in the fall during apple picking season, and, of course, at our Thanksgiving Day feast. For best results, use a variety of firm apples like granny smith, gala, and pink lady.
Roasted TurkeyI spent many hours and even years in the kitchens of some fine restaurants, one of them being the Radisson Plaza Hotel in Minneapolis—the flagship Radisson hotel. One very quiet night before Thanksgiving, the executive chef was taking a break from stuffing turkeys, and I asked him, “Any turkey tips for tomorrow, Chef?” His reply: “Roast the turkey breast side down.” Hmm…an interesting thought. He added that because the dark meat has all the fat, cooking the bird with the breast side down, instead of up (which is what all recipes will say), allows the fat to naturally drain into the white meat of the breast, resulting in moister, juicier white meat. I tried it the next day and have been doing it every year since. I recommend roasting the bird three-fourths of the roasting time breast side down, then (carefully!) turning it over (breast side up) to brown the breast side. I suggest having an extra set of hands to assist—the bird is both heavy and hot to flip over by yourself. Another recommendation: don’t bother buying a small turkey. You end up paying more for bones than for turkey. Buy at least an 18-pound turkey. Fresh or frozen? I always buy fresh—they are a little more expensive, but better quality. And if you can find a free-range turkey, even better yet--the meat is exceptionally good because the turkeys are able to roam free instead of being all cooped up (thus, free-range). Trader Joe's also has excellent fresh turkeys that come pre-brined! They are incredibly moist, tender, and juicy. But be sure to pick one up early as they sell out of them (especially the big ones) early.
Fresh Pumpkin PieSome people in my family call me Martha because I like to make everything myself, including roasting a fresh pumpkin for my Thanksgiving pies. You can use canned pumpkin in this recipe and it is delicious, but the fresh pumpkin makes it light and creamy.
Sweet Potato SouffleI've been serving this at our Thanksgiving meal for over 20 years. It is light and fluffy, and the orange compliments the sweet potatoes nicely. This can easily be made a day ahead and refrigerated until ready to bake.
Flaky Pie CrustMaking a homemade pie crust can be intimidating, but it doesn't have to be. I use a food processor and it comes together in a couple minutes. Many pie crust recipes often call for butter, but solid shortening will create in the flakiest pie crust.
My family typically eats very healthy throughout the year, but Thanksgiving dinner is one of a few holidays where nothing is off limits. In this cookbook, you'll find my favorite key recipes from our Thanksgiving Day feast that I've been making for over 20 years including: my special roasting method for my fresh turkey, homemade bread machine rolls, sweet potato soufflé, and fresh pumpkin pie. Nothing is too difficult to make, but everything is homemade! Hope you enjoy! More of my cookbooks will be ready to purchase in December, so if you find you like my recipes, stop back soon and download more of my family's favorites!
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