Friday, November 23, 2018

Hands On Thanksgiving

Our made-from-scratch turkey day meal went smoothly.  Local foods were a must-turkey, wheat berries, potatoes, cornmeal, eggs, squash, eggplant, onions and apples all grown or raised by our nearby friends.

Turkey with Honey Balsamic Glaze
Mixed Vegetable Bake
Fresh Pineapple & Grapes
Challah Bread
Crock Pot Apple Dessert with Vanilla Ice Cream 

I made the cornbread for the stuffing weeks ago and froze.  The day before the meal, I made the Challah and whipped potatoes. Bob and I spatchcocked the turkey the night before. We cut the drumsticks and wings from the bird and de-boned the thighs to cook along side the breast.  I cut most of the vegetables the day before except the eggplant which would turn colors cutting that far ahead.

The once 12# turkey roasted in only 2 hours cutting it like we did and slicing was a breeze.  I'd never reheated whipped potatoes but that actually worked just fine.  Using a thermometer to test final temperature for all the hot foods was a must, as the small deep baking dishes I used took a little longer to roast. (Turkey must be 165 degrees, stuffing 155 and other hot foods 145) For the mixed vegetable blend, I roasted the harder vegetables like winter squash and carrots 10 minutes before adding the other vegetables.  Mine had a mix of eggplant, patty pan squash, celery, basil, oregano, sweet peppers and olive oil.  To the crock pot apples, I decreased the sugar, adding 1/4 cup brown sugar.

Planning back from the eating time, my Thursday oven times went as follows:
  • 10 am crock pot apples
  • 1030 am turkey
  • 1115 am mashed potatoes and stuffing
  • 1130 am vegetables
  • 1230 pm heat bread 
  • 1240 pm gravy
  • 1 pm "let's eat!" 
Bob and I both worked with our friends, processing and distributing the turkeys on Monday and Tuesday.  Of course the best part of the meal was enjoying it with our family:

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