So Boo, who technically runs the place but we don’t let on that we know he does, decided that he would like to celebrate Thanksgiving this year.
And I was all
yes master, sure why not.
We waited till there was an extra special 30cents off a litre of petrol thingy at one of the local grocery overlords, and MPS bought a turkey big enough to feed a small nation, or, as it turns out, us and my parents.
I chucked that monstrosity of a bird in the fridge to thaw on SUNDAY and by Friday evening the fucker was still frozen.
THAT IS HOW BIG IT WAS.
So I got MPS to chip off the ice* while he was removing the *gags* feathers still clinging to the carcass and *dry retches* breaks the neck to chop it up for the pan juices. And I set about making the side dishes, stuffing and herbed BACON butter.
Yes, my pretties, the HERBED BACON BUTTER OMG.
For the sides we went all traditional like, well what GOOGLE told me was traditional.
Mashed potatoes with a fucktonne of butter.
Sautéed peas in the herbed BACON butter (defrost some peas, melt some of the pre-prepared butter – see recipe below – in a fry pan and toss it all together till it is hot. *drools*)
Brussels Sprouts and BACON gratin. (I used this recipe and it was AWESOME, even better the next day. I prepared it up to the second baking and then baked it while the turkey was resting)
Fresh bread rolls. Just chucked some of those bake at home rolls in the oven as MPS was carving the turkey.
And stuffing. That tasted like wet bread. I used this recipe from Martha. Fucking bitch wasted my damn time, going back to my own stuffing and never trusting a criminal again. I only made HALF of the damn recipe and still had enough to bake extra that no one ate.
Stuffing is the large pan of grossness, next to the gratin of the Gods. In the background the melted butter with some potatoes mixed in.
For the turkey I cobbled together many recipes online and the directions on the turkey bag and then basically winged it.
Herbed Bacon Butter:
250g of streaky bacon (you will need the bacon fat for the turkey so don’t substitute)
125g of butter, softened
5 large cloves of garlic, minced (if you are not using fresh, probably 2 heaped teaspoons of the jarred stuff but try and use fresh)
2 tsp of salt and a fair cracking of fresh pepper (can you see a theme here? FRESH ALL OF IT FRESH! Or maybe a tsp?)
3-4 tsp of EACH: rosemary, thyme, oregano and sage (don’t use dried. If you can’t source FRESH use another recipe. Trust me)
Cook the bacon and shred when cool. Reserve the bacon fat, you are going to baste the turkey with it.
I KNOW! OMG SO EXCITE!
Mix all ingredients together and cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge.
It is best made a few days ahead for the flavours to develop.
Quantity of herbed bacon butter
4 carrots, 4 sticks of celery, 2 onions
Reserved bacon fat
Defrost your turkey if frozen and prepare it by getting your husband to remove the gizzards and the neck and any feathers while you leave the room. *dry retches*
WASH YOUR HANDS – raw turkey is a breeding ground for DEATH.
Remove the bacon herb butter from the fridge and bring to room temp.
Gently lift the skin from the meat so there is a pocket in between the skin and the breast meat.
Fill the pocket with the herbed butter, reserving some to cook peas in OMG YUM.
WASH YOUR HANDS
Stuff the cavity with stuffing if desired, but not the wet bread I used. Blergh.
WASH YOUR HANDS
Put the turkey on a roasting rack in a large roasting pan.
WASH YOUR HANDS
In the pan (under the roasting rack) chuck in the roughly chopped in quarters onion, celery, carrot and turkey neck and half fill the pan with water.
Brush the entire turkey with bacon fat. I found that the fat from the rendered bacon not enough so I cooked some more.
Mmmmmm bacon sandwiches…
Cover the turkey with foil, loosely. Tenting if possible so it doesn’t touch the breast skin.
WASH YOUR HANDS
Place in the oven and bake at 160C for the length recommended for your size turkey, turning the oven up to 180C when taking off the foil for the last half hour or so.
Baste with pan juices (and any of that liquid bacon gold you have left) every half hour after the first 1 1/2 hours.
Top up water in bottom of pan as required.
Tent the breast with foil again if it gets too brown.
The turkey is ready when a meat thermometer reads 190F/87C at the thickest part of the thigh.
Trust me, you need this.
Remove from oven and tent with foil (if not already) and let rest for at least 20 minutes.
While it is resting, strain the pan juices and try not to vomit while your husband sucks all the marrow out of the turkey neck.
Return the pan juices to the pan or (like I prefer) a pot and bring to the boil with a couple of tablespoons of plain flour, adding more water or chicken stock as needed until the gravy thickens.
Sit at the table and demand to be served.
Try and muster the energy to chew. It will totally be worth it.
Will you be cooking a turkey this Christmas?
*please no one get their panties in a wad thinking I cooked a frozen turkey. It was just inside the neck cavity and it was perfectly fine to cook. Never cook a turkey from frozen and for the love of GAH make sure you wash your hands over and over until they are raw.