Turkey is one of the easiest things to cook, the main problem is taking it out on time so that it stays moist and tender. To that end, pay attention to roasting times and pop up thermometers. Get a meat thermometer and make sure you check the temp with that after the pop up – pops to be sure. Follow these suggestions for a wonderful tasting roasted turkey for your Thanksgiving (or even not Thanksgiving) bird.
- Defrost your turkey. You’ll need to keep it in the fridge for a few days in order for it to defrost. It takes longer with the giblet packet inside, so as soon as you can, take it out. If you didn’t leave enough time to defrost it totally, you will need to submerge your sealed Turkey in a big pot or sink full of cold water. Change the water every 1/2 hour. Whatever you do, put your arm all the way through from one end of the turkey to the other and make sure you get every single one of those giblet parts out.
- Turkey Brining – I talked about it here . Martha Stewart has a brining recipe if you want to make it yourself. Rinse turkey well and pat dry.
- Stuff the turkey – I like to cook my stuffing in a baking dish in the oven. If you like it in your turkey, then by all means stuff it. Add some cooking time in for the stuffing.
- Season the turkey – If you don’t have stuffing inside, throw in some garlic and herbs. Rub butter or olive oil over the skin of the turkey and throw some of your favorite herbs on top. Salt, pepper, sage, thyme. I throw onions and a little garlic in the side of the pan too.
- Cooking - My mom roasted the turkey in a Roasting Pan with an aluminum foil tent. My husband’s mom used a roasting bag and then in a pan. I use an electric Roasting Pan. My husband under the familiar protest that you don’t get your wife cooking gear for Christmas bought me one because I asked. I love it because I can keep the oven free for other things. I have tried with success cooking the turkey upside down for some of the time to let the juices travel better to the breast. Put the turkey in and leave it. Every time you open the oven it makes the oven heat up all over again.
- Timetable – From the Good Housekeeping Cookbook that I got as a wedding gift over 21 years ago.
Suggested temp 325 degrees.
8 – 12 lbs 3 1/2 – 4 hours
12 – 16lbs 4 – 4 1/2 hours
16 – 20 lbs 4 1/2 – 5 hours
20 – 24 lbs 5 – 6 hours
Subtract a half hour if it is unstuffed.
- Remove foil or bag for the last half hour of cooking to let the turkey brown.
- Let the turkey rest for a half hour before serving so that the juices settle.
- Make giblet gravy or any other gravy that you prefer.
- Carve and eat.
Another method of cooking a turkey is deep frying. However, any type cooking directions that includes keeping a fire extinguisher nearby makes me shake my head. I’ve heard it’s really good that way though and very moist.
For Big Green Egg lovers, here are directions to cooking a turkey on the BGE.
Of course, if you wait too long and you’re too tired, or you have to work, or you just don’t want to spend all day cooking or working on a turkey.. there’s always the supermarket pre-ordered, pre-cooked ready for pick up.
This is an updated repost from 2008.
Fruit fly season is the worst time of the year. If you have a piece of fruit or vegetable sitting out, those darned flies will find it and you know you don’t want to refrigerate your tomatoes, because they will taste nasty. So, how do you trap the fruit flies and keep them away from your produce? With a fruit fly trap – or a fruit fly vinegar jar.
My daughter saw an idea for a fruit fly trap that used a jar, a paper cone, apple cider vinegar and dish soap. So, I’ve been trying different variations to see what made a difference and worked, and what didn’t.
- Vinegar alone works just fine. Don’t waste your precious dishsoap, plain vinegar – in fact any kind of vinegar works. We used apple cider the most but plain white worked too.
- A wide mouth with a cone works well. The cone gives a wide opening for the fruit fly to find it’s way in, but the narrow opening prevents them from leaving. When I used a small mouthed bottle, the flies never found their way into the bottle. Large bowls are very inviting, but you need to find a way to keep them from escaping.
- Fruit is the enemy when it comes to trapping the fruit flies. If there are any other attractants in the vicinity, the competition will keep the flies away. So, clean up any fruit making sure to remove any that have a slight crack or peel. That will actually solve most of your problem, but you may still have some flies, without fruit around they will find your vinegar jar.
Since I’m into paw paws and it’s the right season, I’ll re-post the recipe for my Paw Paw Pineapple Cocktail.
This is very yummy.Diana
It’s been a few weeks but I’ve got a bunch of good stuff this week – including Master Chef in Columbus, OH. Dig in!
- Masterchef is coming to Columbus, OH and a bunch of other places. Pre-register your profile and sign up for your open casting call. All you need to know is here.
- MamalDiane.Com has a different way to preserve your basil by freezing after blanching.
- Here is what’s new at Heinz Stadium this season – New Food Options at Heinz Field. Have you ever looked up the stadium menu ahead of time?
- Do you know your avocado varieties? Here’s a nice little write up from California Avocado Commission.
- Here’s an interesting one – a Bullseye View has Mac Hacks – suggestions for upping the taste in the mac and cheese cups they sell. I taught my daughter to make her own mac n cheese, but still once in a while a box or a bowl is quick. Here are suggestions for the college dorm kid to Hack their Mac.
- Faith Durand of TheKitchn.com had a nice visit from a Health Inspector in cooperation with Mary T. Nguyen of the Columbus Dispatch. Read Faith’s post and Mary’s article to see what they thought the Health Inspector highlighted the most.
Quite a few contests this week, a free recipe book and some fun stuff to read and watch.
- Wholly Guacamole wants you to OMGuac Lunch. This promotion is to encourage healthy eating using Wholly Guacamole Minis. Take a photo and enter it into a contest on the Wholly Guacamole website. Best looking lunches win a lunchbox full of Wholly Guacamole products and 100.00 gift card. Coupons for Wholly Guacamole Minis can be found on their website, plus you can take a look at previous winners, or watch videos with great suggestions for a great lunch.
- HobbyFarms.com is holding a Pickle That contest – They want you to publish your pickled “stuff” to instagram -
Upload photos of your pickled produce to your account and tag it #hfhpicklethat, and on September 30, 2013, one lucky participant will be chosen to receive a selection of books from the Hobby Farm Home grab bag to support their gardening and preserving endeavors.
- The Sunshine Coast Real Food Festival in the Maleny Showgrounds (Australia) will happen Sept 7-9. Admission cost is 15.00, kids free. Looks like they have a lot of great stuff going on.
- Free right now – Gooseberry Patch Circle of Friends Barbecue Recipe eBook. Choose from the different recipe book types – Nook, Kindle, etc.
- A nice video about the Columbus Coffee Scene by Experience Columbus.
- Prevention put together a slide show with the 25 Worst Diet Tips Ever. I think they’re pretty good.
- Pay attention Buckeyes – the Buckeye Regional and Ohio State Chili Championship is Saturday, August 31 and Sunday, September 1 at CaJohns Fiery Foods in Westerville. 1.000.00 grand prize each day, plus a pass to compete at the 2013 World Chili Championship.
- Folger’s is holding a Spot the Red Bag Sweepstakes – Snap a photo of a red bag Folger’s or otherwise and upload to instagram with hashtag #SpotTheRedBag for a chance to win.
PS. Let us know if you see something you enjoyed so that we can find more of that type for you. Looking for feedback on the Food News.
Today is National Lemonade Day – and to celebrate, we’ve got a nice lemonade recipe to celebrate with. This was sent to me by Dobel Maestro Tequila – who definitely knows what they are talking about when it comes to cocktails. So, as the dog days are waning (or if you are like me, they were skipped), get something cool and refreshing to enjoy – adult style, quick! before summer ends.
- 1.5 oz. Maestro Dobel tequila
- Half the juice of a lemon
- 1 tbsp. agave nectar
Mix all ingredients in a shaker filled with ice.
Pour into a chilled rocks glass.
Garnish with a lemon wedge.
Here’s a few updates for this weeks Food News. Summer has been really busy, and I have a few posts to share that I will get up this week. Enjoy the links here, lots of fun stuff to share this week.
- If you missed the Master Chef cookalong, you can still watch a replay of the Google Hangout. They have the other hangouts linked on their page as well and you can use #masterchef to find it as well on google+.
- G-Free Foodie talks about the new FDA guidelines for gluten-free labeling. What does it mean to you?
- Would you try an Avocado Daiquiri? The California Avocado Commission has a recipe for it. What do you think, are you adventurous?
- Who is going to the Tri-State Food Expo in the Meadowlands? David Burke will make a special appearance Tuesday, October 1 at the Meadowlands Expo Center in Secaucus, New Jersey (11:30am – noon). Anyone else?
- Sesame Street has a new DVD coming out in September called C is for Cooking. Look for it September 10, 2013.
- King Arthur Flour’s Baking Education Class Schedule for the fall is up. Scroll through the calendar to see if any classes that you’d like to take are available. There is also a Baker’s Harvest Conference/Festival September 5 – 7, 2013.
- Alter Eco is sponsoring a Quinoa Recipe Contest – it ends August 11th, 2013 so you only have a couple of days left. Maaeybe you’ll win a trip for two to Napa, CA. Enter the contest on the Facebook Page.
Just a few things on the list for this week. Enjoy!
- Don’t forget we’re giving away Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract.
- Mario Batali has a #howtoTuesday Youtube channel. Follow it for some great tips on cooking and preparing your favorite foods.
- Are you ready for Lyon in 2015? Apply to be part of Pastry Team USA.
Applications are opened until September 5th and the rules are attached below. The theme of the competition will be “Inventions”. Participants will chose either of the two categories: Sugar Centerpiece or Chocolate Centerpiece and everyone will have to present Entremet and Plated dessert for tasting.
- The Rockettes are celebrating Christmas in August at Radio City Music Hall with Santa Claus. They will unveil a Christmas Spectacular ice sculpture and hand out icy treats to fans in NYC from their Christmas Spectacular food truck and a double decker red Gray Line Bus.
The Rockettes have teamed up with popular New York City-based ice pop company, People’s Pops, to create a “Rox Pop,” a special cranberry-apple flavored ice pop inspired by the Rockettes and the Christmas Spectacular. The all-natural ice pops will be distributed for free to fans throughout the city on both a Christmas Spectacular-themed food truck and an iconic, red double decker Gray Line New York bus with the Rockettes at various locations, who will share their Christmas spirit. The Christmas Spectacular food truck will be the center of the New York summer snow storm as it blows snow throughout its journey around the city. Fans will be able to track the truck and the Gray Line New York bus’ times on Facebook at facebook.com/radiocitychristmas.
- King Arthur Flour has a bunch of great recipes for that zucchini you are growing in your garden.
- Sara Lee’s Sizzling Summer Sweepstakes- Enter via their Facebook Page. One winner every week will win a Charcoal Grill, a Visa Gift Card, Hotdogs, and Buns and a Sara Lee beach cooler with built in speakers.
- Spain’s Great Match 2013 takes place September 24th at New York City’s Metropolitan Pavilion. This event celebrates the wines, food and design of Spain.
- Jamaica’s reigning Chef of the Year Brian Lumley walked away with the coveted Caribbean Chef of the Year award at the recently concluded Taste of the Caribbean 2013 Culinary Showcase in Miami, Florida. This prestigious award is reserved only for the best in class in the field of Culinary Arts. Chef Lumley topped a field of ten elite chefs from across the Caribbean region, earning the only Gold medal awarded in the category group for a unique creation using beef.
- What I’m trying: We tried out some cool snacks. Hawaiian Kettle Style Potato Chips- Cracked Pepper and Sea Salt and Erin’s Popcorn- Jalapeno and White Cheddar. Both of these snacks are new to the Tim’s Cascade snack line and are delicious additions.
- The Cracked Pepper and Sea Salt was a little different from other brands I’ve tried. It has the nice Kettle Style crisp chip, but along with the cracked pepper and sea salt you have onion and garlic powders added. My husband who is no longer able to eat regular chips because of the sodium took a small taste and though he loved loved loved cracked pepper and sea salt, this was just okay. He prefers the really harsh cracked pepper flavor without the added extras. On the other hand I can only take so much of the cracked pepper and sea salt because it burns my mouth, and this was delicious. I liked the garlicy flavor as did my daughter and we ate it up.
- The Jalepeno and White Cheddar I expected to burn my mouth because most snacks that start with the words Jalepeno are going to be hot, but these were garlicy again but you got the heat on the end. I had a hard time putting this down, I love white cheddar on popcorn and the heat at the end was good too, not very hot but enough to know it’s there.
Did you miss National Ice Cream Day (July 21) – which happens to fall in National Ice Cream Month(July). We definitely have ice cream on the 21st of July because it goes well with the cake my daughter has for her birthday.
I’ve been working with my new ice cream maker and I haven’t perfected it yet, but I’m getting there. Nielsen-Massey offered me a chance to try out their vanilla in a Coconut Vanilla Ice Cream recipe using Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract. Pure Vanilla is the way to go, that fake stuff is awful but Pure Vanilla is the real thing.
The ice cream came out soft, so I put it in the freezer to harden the last little bit and become more solid. It probably will be a little icy, but it tastes divine. The vanilla and coconut together are really good and make me think of a pina colada – it just needs a little pineapple. The only changeI made to the recipe is to refrigerate the mixture to a cooler temperature before putting it into the ice cream maker so that it freezes better.
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ¾ cup caster sugar* (baker’s sugar)
- 1 tablespoon Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract
- 2 (13.5-ounce) cans unsweetened coconut milk
- ½ cup sweetened flaked coconut, toasted (garnish)
- In a small bowl, whisk cream, sugar and vanilla extract until combined; set aside. Add coconut milk to a large glass measuring cup; add cream-sugar mixture and stir.
- Place in refridgerator for at least one hour.
- Assemble ice cream maker and pour ice cream mixture through filling hole. For the perfect ice-cream follow the manufacturer’s appliance directions.
- While ice cream is churning, toast the coconut. Preheat the oven to 350°F. On a small rimmed baking sheet, evenly spread coconut; place in oven and toast, about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, as coconut will toast quickly.
- Cool and store until ready to use.
*If baker's sugar (caster sugar) is not readily available, add granulated sugar to a mini food processor bowl and pulse until sugar is a superfine, but not a powdery consistency. A coffee grinder also works for making superfine sugar.
Nielsen-Massey is also offering a bottle of Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract to one of Cookerati’s readers. If you’d like to see some of their recipes for their vanillas – take a look at Nielsen-Massey Vanillas Facebook Page.
How to Enter:
This contest will run through Midnight, EST Augus 1, 2013. US residents only.
Take a look at the Nielsen-Massey Vanilla Facebook Page and in the comments tell us what you would make with your Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla if you won either one of their recipes, or one of your own. (One Entry only)
1. Like the Cookerati Facebook Page - leave your facebook name in the comments and let us know.
2. Join our mailing list by submitting the form below and leave another comment below to tell us that you joined. (You will recieve the weekly RSS Feed Email, plus any special emails).
Maximum of three entries total. (One of each type.)
Disclosure: I was given a bottle of Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla to review. My opinions are my own.