Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving dinner; A meal that family and friends look forward to all year long. A feast filled with turkey, stuffing, and all the sides you could wish for. But, if you are ready to stray away from traditional recipes, this blog is for you. In this blog, we will provide you with recipes and ideas your whole family will love. We guarantee to leave you hungry and ready to cook a fantastic meal this Thanksgiving dinner. 

Firstly, let’s deal with the misconception that a turkey must be cooked and served whole. This traditional method of cooking proves to be substantial, but there are many other ways to incorporate turkey (and other proteins) into your Thanksgiving dinner. Are you ready to try something new? Check out this list of ideas that will be sure to impress.

Untraditional Ideas for Thanksgiving Dinner

When we think of chicken, we generally lean towards a chicken breast. Why is that? Well, the white breast meat is leaner than its darker counterparts. Therefore, it is desirable to many. Not to mention, it also cooks quicker and can be portioned easily. The same goes for turkey breast. This cut of meat is versatile and takes on the flavours you choose. For a fast, and simple way to serve turkey at your Thanksgiving dinner, try roasting a whole boneless turkey breast. At the store, we carry bone-in turkey breasts as we believe that the less processing, the better. Thankfully, deboning is an easy task that any home cook can do. Canadian Living provides an excellent video on How to Debone and Butterfly a Turkey Breast should you need assistance. (We will be using both methods in the next recipes)

Stuffed Turkey Breast

If your Thanksgiving dinner is only for a few people, you may want to consider this option. Stuffing a turkey breast creates a window for whatever flavour you choose. Traditional stuffing? No problem. Personal inspiration? You bet. As a matter of fact, you can use whatever you have in your fridge at the time. With this in mind, use your creativity. However, if you are having a hard time, use one of these fantastic recipes:

Stuffed Turkey Breast with Bacon, Cranberry, Breadcrumb Stuffing is the perfect recipe for those looking to create a traditional outcome. 

This Tuscan Roast Turkey Breast takes a different path; using vibrant flavors of fresh herbs, orange zest, and pancetta. Additionally, it provides you with instruction on how to make the best white wine pan sauce to accompany this meal. 

When we think of Thanksgiving dinner, we often think of the fall weather. This last recipe is inspired by fall with vegetables such as kale and squash. Not to mention, this Stuffed Turkey Breast With Butternut Squash, Kale, and Sausage recipe provides lots of great tips and tricks for the home cook. Give it a try!

One key point to remember is that turkey breasts are lean. Therefore, they are low in fat. Do you like gravy? If so, consider using turkey wings in the pan for extra flavor. You can find fresh turkey wings at our store as well!

Turkey Drumsticks

Braising turkey drumsticks is just as easy as roasting a whole turkey. Hey, it may even be easier. More importantly, it creates the time needed to develop decadent turkey legs for this Thanksgiving dinner. So, why should you braise the meat? Braising is an easy cooking method that leaves little room for overcooking. In other words, no more worries about serving dry turkey. That’s right! Braising turkey legs infuses the meat with all the flavours it’s cooked in. Another critical point is that the braising liquid is quickly turned into your sauce. It’s as easy as that. But, the hardest part – is choosing which ingredients to use. With this in mind, here is a list of ingredients you should consider:

  • Red or white wine
  • Apple cider
  • Stock (homemade or store-bought)
  • Aromatic herbs such as rosemary, thyme and sage
  • Fresh garlic
  • Mirepoix (carrot, celery and onion)
  • Citrus 

Looking for more inspiration? Our favorite is Red Wine- Braised Turkey Legs. Not only can you recreate this recipe with ease, but you can also prepare it ahead of time. What are you waiting for? Get cooking! You can visit us today for the freshest turkey legs from local, sustainable farms. 

Roast Duck

Have you ever wondered how to cook a duck? Don’t worry; it’s easier than you think. Additionally, you can choose to roast a whole duck or just the breast. Remind you of anything? Of course, turkey! However, you will have to take a few steps to ensure a delicious finished product. If you choose to visit us at the store to pick up your duck, we can help. Likewise, we have created a surefire list to help you out in this blog. 

First of all, take a peek at Martha Stewart’s Roast Duck 101. She provides an in-depth look at how to properly prepare a whole duck roast. It also gives a quick look at a simple recipe. For something a little different, this Honey Roasted Duck gives off a subtle sweetness. But, what is the secret to getting that crispy duck skin? It is easier to crisp a duck breast, but the process is the same for both:

  1. Dry out the surface of the duck beforehand. You can do this by seasoning with salt and pepper a few hours before. For a whole duck, overnight seasoning may be required. 
  2. Score the skin. This allows for the fat to melt away sufficiently. We suggest using the criss-cross pattern. Although, be careful not to penetrate the flesh. 

After cooking your duck, you will be leftover with an abundance of duck fat. Remember, don’t throw that way. Keep it to use for recipes such as duck fat potatoes. This month, we have supplied you with untraditional Thanksgiving dinner recipes. Of course, we have nothing against the traditional dinner. In fact, we are already taking orders for fresh turkeys! Call us today to order yours. Don’t wait, get the freshest, local meat from Hilltop Acres Poultry Farm for your 2019 Thanksgiving dinner. 

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