We created our Thanksgiving meal this year entirely from Food52 Cookbook Club and Baking Club books. Here is a run down of recipes selected from Throwback books…
Dry-Brined Turkey from Food52 Genius Recipes
I can’t believe we didn’t get a photo of the turkey before we carved it, it looked spectacular! Oh well. This recipe is to rub salt all over the turkey several days in advance and keep it covered in the fridge. The day before Thanksgiving you flip it on its breast, then 9 hours before baking you flip it back over and uncover it. You take it out of the fridge the final hour and then you baste it with butter and roast it for 30 minutes in a hot oven on its breast then flip it back over and turn the oven down to continue roasting until it gets to the correct cooked temperature. Then you leave it to rest before carving.
My thoughts: they really should have had a table or graph explaining what to do when so we could have planned it better. We didn’t do the flip onto breast in fridge step until yesterday afternoon and Aaron was going to have to come home from work in the middle of the night to uncover it if we followed the recipe exactly. Also they should have had an explanation about whether or not you could stuff the turkey and how that might affect the timings and temperature of the oven. Also I’m not sure this was the best roast turkey we’ve ever done so I’m not convinced we’d go to this effort again.
Upgraded Green Bean Casserole from The Food Lab
We have been making this for a few years now and that is saying something given I’m not a big green bean fan at all! It’s basically a white sauce that has been flavored with lemon juice, soy sauce, stock and cream and is stirred through green beans, mushrooms and fried shallots (we bought them ready made but you can fry them yourself using the recipe). This gets put in the oven when the turkey comes out for about 20 minutes and then topped with more fried shallots. It makes a generous amount so would be great for the usual Thanksgiving potluck dinner.
Restaurant Mashed Potatoes from Tartine All Day
While I have a generally fail proof method for cooking mashed potatoes, I never know how many to make and what portions of butter and milk to put with it. Normally I use Jamie Oliver’s recipe but I was feeling indulgent (but not as indulgent as Anthony Bourdain’s recipe we tried that time) so thought this looked like a reasonable choice. 2 kilos of potatoes with 3/4 cup milk, 3/4 cup cream and 2 oz butter, salt and pepper. A goodly amount of really creamy mashed potatoes.
Creamed Corn from Small Victories
This book by Julia Turshen was covered by Food52 Cookbook Club in May 2017 and the small victory in this recipe is that it doesn’t have stacks of butter or cream or sugar. The trick is to blitz half the corn kernels with the immersion blender to give it a creamier texture. The sweetness was really good given there was no added sugar and I would definitely make this again with one caveat. I would not buy ears of corn for this but would use frozen corn kernels. It took Aaron ages to cut all the corn off the cobs and to scrape as much corn milk off the bare cobs. I’m not sure it was worth all that extra time.
Parker House Rolls from How to Bake Everything
These were good, but I’ve had better. I was really disappointed they weren’t shaped like traditional Parker House Rolls and they didn’t fill the pan that was recommended. They were lovely and light and buttery though and complemented our meal nicely.
Well that’s it for now, but there is more to come. Three more posts to round out our Thanksgiving meal – recipes from Shaya, Ottolenghi’s Simple and next month’s book, Feast by Nigella Lawson.