Welcome to my new and improved blog!! Isn’t it gorgeous!? The wonderful Stephanie Mullins has done it again! Thank you Stephanie for your creativity, patience with my indecisiveness, and for your incredible talent. I have been looking forward to posting for a LONG time, and here we are! What do you guys think??
I decided to do my first blog post back about my Thanksgiving because it was quite an adventure and a bit of an experiment. I decided to cook for myself (and Jade-my new pug) and stay home, because I felt it was the responsible thing to do this year. With me being a healthcare professional and all, I get to be the example for people in my life. Plus, I have a lot on my plate and decided to cook and be productive while my potatoes were in the dishwasher (yes, I am serious). I cooked my first whole turkey, and made stuffing and mashed potatoes from scratch! It all turned out really good, and Jade and I were quite impressed with my cooking :-). Back to that whole potatoes in the dishwasher thing….I found it on Pinterest! I put them on the top shelf and did a light wash without detergent:
This worked out GREAT because it washed them and started the cooking process making cutting a lot easier! Next, I cubed them all up and threw them in the crockpot with water, ghee, and salt:
I cooked them on low for a few hours, and then high for a couple more. Then, I cut a large loaf of sour dough bread into cubes for the stuffing:
Next, I prepped the beautiful bird for the oven! I had never cooked a whole turkey before, and was a little bit nervous for how it was going to turn out. It was actually really easy, though! I used a couple of methods off of Pinterest, which worked great! The key is having a meat thermometer, and ensuring the breast and legs are cooked to 165 degrees F.
I got my turkey free in my first ButcherBox! She was a great quality, 12.5lb bird. I took her out of the freezer Sunday, and she was about 95% thawed by Thursday morning. I only had to put some cold water inside and let the turkey sit in the sink for about 15 minutes. I prepared an onion, a lemon, sage, thyme, parsley, and rosemary to stuff with:
All but a piece of onion and lemon reserved for the neck cavity went in:
Oh! I also placed several pats of butter under the skin of the breasts. This added moisture and flavor. Then, I added the turkey with breasts down to a 400 degree oven for 1 hour, and reduced to 350 degrees for the last 2 hours. After 2 hours in, I flipped her over so breasts were facing up for the last part of the cooking, In the meantime, I prepared the stuffing:
I cooked the celery and onion with the butter on medium for about 10-15 minutes until tender. Then I mixed the broth and added the whisked egg, salt, pepper, and herbs. I added the celery and onion mixture to the bread and folded them together. Then added about half of the broth mixture and folded that in. Next, I added a little bit more broth until appropriately covered without residual broth in the bottom of the bowl. Lastly, I added the mixture to a greased casserole dish to bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes (stirring every 15-20 minutes).
Something else I made but didn’t mention was green bean casserole. I added it to the oven a little bit after the stuffing:
While everything was baking, I strained the potatoes and added them to my KitchenAid mixer with heavy cream, sour cream, ghee, crushed garlic, and salt. Then, I let the mixer do all of the work!
I am going to toot my own horn right now and say these are some of the best mashed potatoes I have ever had (and made)! I did not peel the potatoes, so I am choosing to say the fiber and nutrients outweigh the heavy cream, ghee, and sour cream :-). Seriously, though, the ingredient deck is legit!! It would be great with peeled potatoes, too! The dishwasher technique makes it all SO easy, and I imagine peeling would be much easier as well. If you try it, please let me know your experience! I also made homemade gravy, which turned out ok enough. I wouldn’t write home about it, although, I do give myself an “A” for effort and courage with everything else I made that day! The turkey, though, phenomenal!!!
It turned out juicy, flavorful (I could taste hints of the herbs), and tender. I am so proud of myself! Jade liked it, too:
Ya’ll know me; it’s tradition for my pug to get a little Turkey Day plate every year. It all started with Ali the Pug in 2004, and it never stopped. Jade gets to carry on the tradition. I don’t think she knew what to do with herself!!
“Mom, are you serious??”
So after all was said and done, here was the spread: (also, my first panoramic pic, so please don’t judge)
Thanksgiving for the girls was a success!! Now for the leftovers….
How was your Thanksgiving!? Did you cook? What did you cook? Did you cook anything for the first time? Were there any kitchen disasters that were totally laughable? Leave me a comment below and let me know! Also, if you haven’t subscribed to email notifications, please do! You’ll get a notification whenever I post a new blog! I’d love to have you join the blog fam! Have an awesome weekend!
Stacey and Jade