And afterwards the Lord sent them such seasonable showers, with interchange of fair warm weather as, through His blessing, caused a fruitful and liberal harvest, to their no small comfort and rejoicing. For which mercy, in time convenient, they also set apart a day of thanksgiving… By this time harvest was come, and instead of famine now God gave them plenty … for which they blessed God. And the effect of their particular planting was well seen, for all had … pretty well … so as any general want or famine had not been amongst them since to this day.– William Bradford, Of Plymouth Plantation
|My Thanksgiving Fairytale Feast
OPTION A: TWO DAY PREP
1 Day Ahead:
1) Prepare the Turkey Roulade.
2) Roast turkey and excess stuffing.
3) Prepare the chocolate pecan tart and bake in over after turkey and stuffing are done.
4) Heat the Potato Turnip Gratin in the Oven.
5) Prepare the Orange Cranberry Sauce.
6) Prepare and bake the Chocolate Pecan Tart.
7) Roast the Parsnips and Carrots.
OPTION B: ONE DAY PREP
1) Prepare the Pumpkin Soup.
2) Prepare the Turkey Roulade Stuffing.
3) Assemble the Turkey Roulade.
4) Roast turkey and excess stuffing.
5) Prepare Potato and Turnip Gratin. Set aside.
6) When Turkey Roulade and Stuffing are finished, bake the Potato and Turnip Gratin.
7) While Turnip Gratin is baking, prepare the Chocolate Pecan Tart.
8) Bake the Chocolate Pecan Tart.
9) Prepare the Cranberry Orange Sauce.
10) Prepare and roast the Parsnips and Carrots.
If you are looking for an easier, less time consuming take on this traditional Thanksgiving staple, try this elegant recipe for a stuffed turkey roulade. The roulade itself is so pretty and elegant to serve, not only on Thanksgiving, but on other holidays or special occasions. I adopted from Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa. You can view her original recipe here.
3/4 cup figs
1 cup cranberries
1/2 cup orange juice
1/4 cup water
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups of chopped sweet cooking onion
1 lb uncased sweet Italian sausage
1 1/2 tablespoons of chopped fresh rosemary
3-4 cups of seasoned stuffing mix
1 1/2 cups of chicken stock
1 large egg
1 large turkey breast (or 2-3 halves of the white meat), deboned and butterflied (about 4-5 lbs)
3 tablespoons of unsalted butter (to pour over turkey)
Fresh rosemary sprigs for garnish
Add the figs, cranberries, orange juice and water to a small sauce pan and bring mixture to a boil. Simmer for two minutes and set aside.
Melt butter in large skillet over medium high heat and add in the onions and celery. Saute until softened. Add the sausauge and crumble into small pieces, sauteeing for about 10 minutes until all the pieces are browned. Add the figs and cranberries (with the liquid) to the sausage vegetable mixture. Add the chopped rosemary and mix well.
Place the stuffing mix in a large bowl. Add the sausage vegetable mixture, chicken stock, egg, and salt and pepper.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Lay the butterflied turkey breast down on a tray or cutting board (if skin, skin side down). Place saran wrap over the turkey and pound together with a mallet until flat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Spread the stuffing over the turkey, creating about a 1/2 inch layer. Be careful not to put in too much stuffing! Now roll the turkey over into a cylinder and tuck in all the stuffing that falls out. Use kitchen twine to secure the turkey roll’s shape.
Place the excess stuffing in a buttered gratin dish and bake for about 40 minutes. Place the turkey on a sheet pan or in a roasting pan. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven until the turkey reads 150 degrees in the center. In a regular oven, this will take about 1 1/2 – 2 hours depending on the size and width of your turkey. Using a convection bake oven, this takes about an 1 hour. Baste the turkey roll with the juice from the pan while it is cooking.
Cover the turkey roulade with foil and let rest for at least 15 minutes before serving. Serve sliced on a platter and garnish with fresh rosemary. Serve the leftover stuffing in the gratin dish.
And remember, if all else fails and your Thanksgiving Fairytale turns into a Thanksgiving nightmare, “It isn’t so much what’s on the table that matters as what’s on the chairs.” ~ W.S. Gilbert.