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post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

Hi all, I'm looking for some good christmas turkey recipes, especially original stuffing or sauces.


Thanks in advance to all who have any contribution to make. smile.gif

Edited by siloway - 11/22/11 at 11:40am
post #2 of 18

Wrap the turkey in parchment paper, season however you wish,.

bake at recommended time and temp.  if you put dressing inside bird need to cook longer.  I go by how loose turkey leg is getting.  try to wrap parchment to hold juice in package but some will always come out and use what juices you get for gravey.  i boil up the gizzards etc in little water to add juices to gravey, throw little celery and onion in pot.


stuffing is tastier if you use good french bread and lik 1/4 rye bread and season well with chop celery, onion and garlic.  add eggs to help hold dressing together and melted butter, salt and pepper.  can of black olives is also good to add to mix :)

if you dont stuff into the bird or have leftover just put into buttered dish and bake about 35 min @350 degree or until brown on top.

Good white wine that you cook down before making gravy will add good flavorin the gravy.


by cooking the turkey in parchment rather than foil, it will brown the skin.


have a great Thanksgiving.



post #3 of 18

I do a smallish turkey, for four people. Because we like our turkey moist and tender, I start it in a covered roaster until it's very well cooked fact it's actually steamed. (325F or so for oven temp.) When the bird is very well done, (legs practically falling off), I increase the heat until the skin is dark and crisp. (It's always a good idea to check internal temperature, my cavity dressing is often as high as 185-190, or higher.)


I made a dressing similar to the dressing found in this excellent article, (with the addition of some crisp bacon and grated apple):


I do put a small amount of dressing in the turkey, but it's not packed tightly. I also make thin patties of dressing and put them under the breast skin after separating it from the breast meat. It's a bit tricky, but you can sort of smoosh the dressing around after it's in there. I also put dressing in the cavities between the legs and the body. Where the dressing is under the skin the skin will become very thin and crisp, and it protects the breast meat and helps to keep it moist.


The downside to all of this eccentric dressing placement is that the turkey will look slightly will not be a 'normal' looking turkey, in fact it will be decidedly abnormal/lumpy looking. You may get some odd looks....people may gasp. It will, however, be moist and luscious, with lots of savory dressing.


Sorry that I don't have an actual recipe, but hopefully this will help a bit.




"The satisfactions of making a good plate of food are surprisingly varied, and only one, and the least important of them, involves eating what you've made" - Bill Buford, Heat


"The satisfactions of making a good plate of food are surprisingly varied, and only one, and the least important of them, involves eating what you've made" - Bill Buford, Heat

post #4 of 18
Thread Starter 

Over in France my in-laws do a Chestnus stuffed turkey which is really great an has quite a game-y taste I've posted the recipe on my site but here it is for anyone who is interested

  • A 3 kg turkey
  • 300 g of brown to natural chestnuts
  • 300 g of sausage meat
  • 200 g of bread
  • 120 g butter
  • 5 tablespoons milk
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 4 or 5 shallots
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 or 2 bay leaves
  • 5 cl of cognac
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1.5 a 2 kg small potatoes
  • 200g of chopped sauté'd mushrooms (optional)

Stuffing: take the bread and dip it in milk.

Melt the chopped shallots in butter. Add the sausage meat to the shallots and brown for a few minutes.

Squeezed the bread and add the chestnuts, thyme, parsley, cognac, salt and pepper to it. Stuff the turkey and sew up the turkey.

Oil the turkey or cover it with bacon strips. Place the potatoes around the turkey or in an oiled oven dish.

Place turkey in an oven dish, salt and pepper. Add the bay leaf and little bits of butter on top.

Cook the turkey at 200 ° C for 20 minutes per 500 g of meat and add 20 minutes cooking time total.

Baste regularly with cooking juices.

post #5 of 18


It is Chestnut season here in Spain, and thus, this Thanksgiving stuffing recipe came in handy to check on ingredients ...


Please note, that turkey is quite popular in Galicia, the northwestern corner of Spain, however, it is not the favoured Christmas Eve or Christmas Day main course. Here we normally have Segovian Suckling Pig, Milk fed Baby Lamb and / or lots of seafood and shellfish. Other common dishes are Red Partridge, quail, Pheasant and Venison Steaks and " filet mignon of beef " ... Capon is an appellation in Galicia, and much more popular here. A turkey here weighs in at 7 Kilos and is female " pavita Gallega " ...


Since, I am Italian on paternal and Swiss on maternal, we do shellfish and seafood --- I am always asked for Seafood Lasagna and one of the above  ...



post #6 of 18
Thread Starter 

Can I come do Christmas at yours this year Margcata ? can I, can I bounce.gifbounce.gif

post #7 of 18


Certainly ... there is always room for one or two more ... however, we are all meeting at my younger daughter´s in Zürich as she is about to give birth to Anthony, her 3rd boy on 12th December... So, of course, if you like twin boys -- six year old, Christophe and Fillippo and a newborn ... plus my older daughter is coming in from Wellington, NZ where she and her better half reside with her daughter Adyson ( 5 yrs old ) and year old son Daniel Jonah ... More the merrier. 


On the food side of things, if you browse Recipes, my Segovian Suckling Piglet is on


I am planning to put a few other Christmas specialties of the Cintrano legacy ...

post #8 of 18
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the offer rollsmile.gifhad friends in Zurich but they moved to Canada now frown.gif afraid the trip to Zurich would finish off my dwindling finances (from uk). I may well try an apple stuffing something along these lines this year.


Most of my folks and wife's family are in France we're stuck in the UK this year... we'll try and make for lack of family with good food....still, not the same though. cooking's no fun if you don't share it.

Edited by siloway - 11/25/11 at 11:06am
post #9 of 18


Why are u looking for just turkey recipes ?



Are you a native from the U.K. or are you French ?


I am Italian ( Paternal ) and Swiss ( Maternal ) however, I was born in Manhattan however, I had spent school time in Vancouver and summers in NYC and then, university NYU and then off to Brazil and Mexico ... San Fran and Miami Beach ... however, I have been living and working ( Italy and Spain ) since 1996. I live in Madrid Capital ... I am the Food and Wine Editor for an expat embassy publication for North Americans and Canadians ...


This is my 1st blog, so have lots to learn ... it is different than Print Media which is my business ... Been in Publishing since 1978.


Happy Holidays ...


post #10 of 18
Thread Starter 

I'm franco-british, lived between both countries all my life, I run a cooking website for fun ( that I put up mainly to share family recipes with family abroad (I work in IT for my sins and have been putting websites together for a good few years now). I really would like to get out of "pure" IT and or maybe combine it with something else, I'm currently working on some spice recipes to package and sell.

Relating to the turkey question, my wife loves chestnut stuffing but I'm getting a bit bored of it (I'm going to have to make some for her whatever else I do anyway tongue.gif) so I'm looking to get a "christmas" section setup on my site with as many options as possible, starting with turkey (we'll see how it goes these things take time and I'm translating every recipe so it's a bit laborious). Turkey is usually pretty straight forwards to cook but the stuffing is the real star of the show for me. I'm getting some ideas along the lines of apple and pruneaux d'agen which would make quite a sweet and moist stuffing (adding the usual livers, onions, breadcrumbs and spices etc.). I know this works well with porc so I'm thinking why not? the trick I think is not to make it overly sweet. Let me know what yall think.

post #11 of 18

These sorts of dressings are easy.  American style "stuffing aka dressing" is just stale bread of whatever sort you like with enough, stock, wine, and egg to get it good and wet.  The rest is fun bits, aromatics, herbs, and seasoning.  It's really hard to go wrong.


Because I smoke my turkeys, I almost never stuff the cavities with the dressing, but bake it separately in a casserole.  You can stuff the cavities and the craw if you like, and the stuffing will pick up some of the bird's flavor, which is a good thing.  But lots of folks cook some or all of their dressing outside the bird for all sorts of other reasons.  There's no loss if you use good tasting stock and saute your aromatics in plenty of good tasting fat.  Duck, goose fat, lard, and bacon fat are particularly good choices, alone, in some combination, and/or mixed with butter.  


The "fun bits" can be dried fruit, offal, sausage, nuts, or you name it, in any sort of mixture you like.  Again, it's hard to go wrong as long as you remember to use enough bread, and enough aromatics.


You can use straight white bread, corn bread, brioche, old croissants, challah -- anything which doesn't bring too much of its own character to the party.  If you want to use strong flavored breads such as sourdoughs or ryes, it's best to mix them with something blander.   Figure at least 2:1, favoring the bland.



post #12 of 18
Thread Starter 

Thanks for that, some good tips I did do a bird with stuffing cooked separately one year... was nice too... yeah stuffing is pretty easy but I'm really looking for something that packs exceptional flavour, kind of looking to give my christmas dish it's very own personal character... maybe marinating the apples in cognac/calvado and/or working the other ingredients as you said to saute the aromatics and possibly some of the other ingredients to preserve some of their individual flavours will definately give it some lift... getting there rollsmile.gifThanks.

post #13 of 18

You seem to have a pretty good handle on cooking in general.  It seemed as though if you were given enough technique you could pick up the ball and run with it to create something which exactly suited rather than providing a tight, "perfected" recipe without knowing exactly what you do and don't like.  The same for Margcata as well. 


It still seems that way.  I know you've got the chops to cook "jazz."


More along the same lines:


As I said, American style dressings are bready.  The one thing I didn't mention was that the dressing recipe you posted appeared more European "farce" than American "stuffing," because of what I judge to be the relatively small proportion of bread in yours.   But stale bread weights are tricky, and I could be mistaken. 


If you wanted to make a casserole of American stuffing, you would use very close to the volume of the casserole in relatively small pieces of bread; then add the other stuff for flavor, moisture and texture, adding enough to "fill in" the casserole, without filling it up much more.  The moisture will actually compact the bread, so the aromatics and fun bits are necessary to make up the volume. 


The eggs lend structure and create a bread-pudding consistency, which is to be desired. 


I like to make chestnut stuffing with one part sourdough, one part challah or brioche, and one part ordinary pain de mie. 


I use dry Vermouth for almost all types of stuffing if I want an overall herbaceous quality, but go to sherry (say an Amontillado), dry Marsala or Madeira if I want to highlight "mellow" flavors.  With chestnuts, I'd go mellow. 


Port -- not so much, unless you're looking for something sweet.  Stock -- always.  Pork fat -- how can you go wrong?



post #14 of 18


Firstly, I had taken a peek at your website today ... Cool ... The general idea, is very in tune, with the enormous amount of interest people worldwide have been displaying in gastronomy ... wines ... travel ...


You have a keen idea there ... Keep me posted ...

post #15 of 18


Boar D' Laze,


Hope that you had a lovely Thanksgiving ... Good to see you back online ...


Of course, you had never sent me your chestnut stuffing, so I had combined the French English man's with my mom's and well, my guests raved and of course, your Citrus Brine Marinade !  It was quite successful.


Sounds to me as if you are quite a gourmet in the kitch ... My gent enjoys cooking too ...


Well, now it is time to start planning our Christmas season, Chanuka and New Year's Eve and the 1st cartes ... What are u thinking of guys ...


I am going to be in Zurich, Switzi as Nathalia is giving birth on 12th December, so there is no point in my returning as Naia is coming from Wellington, N.Z. South Island. I shall have my hands full with 2 six yr old boys until Naia arrives ... Then the 2 cousins Adyson who is almost 5 and Daniel Jonah, he is only one yr old and a good bambino ... So, with this in mind, I shall be preparing dinner for 24th, lunch for 25th ... Then, I am off to Madrid on 26th ... Home sweet home.


New Years ... a quiet evening home ... What to prepare ... Ideas... welcomed ...




post #16 of 18



Yes, I forgot that last year, I made a Calvados, Granny Smith and Apple Cider Brine for our Galician Turkey weighing 7 kilos ... The fragrance was impeccably amazing ... This year, I used Boar D' Laze's Citrus ... to try something new along with a fusion of your chestnut stuffing and my mom Eva's ... Raving guests. So, thanks ... Margcata.

post #17 of 18
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your comment boar_d_laze very encouraging.

Margcata if I undestand right you made an apple and chestnut stuffing? how did you combine that?

post #18 of 18



Sorry, I had not made an apple with chestnut stuffing ... I more or less used Siloway´s & my Mom´s chestnut stuffing ...


For Thanksgiving 2010, I made a Granny Smith, Apple Cider & Calvados Brine Marinade for the turkey !  Apple fragrances, truly healing.


Apologies, as I thought I had made this clear ... Sorry.


This year, 2011, I used Boar d´ Laze´s Citrus Brine and employed Tangerines too ... They are wonderful in Spain. The aromas were lovely.



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