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Faux Thanksgiving

Faux Thanksgiving is usually on the Saturday before the real T-day, but Bridge nationals is coming to Boston this year so I scheduled it a week earlier. I went back to the Butcherie in Brookline for a beautiful, fresh kosher bird. It was 14 pounds, big enough to feed everyone (11 guests, 3 vegetarians) and enough leftovers for sandwiches.

 

 

I used the Cook’s Illustrated recipe. It was fussy, as most CI recipes are. It involves putting 2 ziploc bags of ice on the v-rack, balancing the bird breast side down and stuffing the cavity with another baggie of ice.  The problem with turkey is that the white meat cooks much faster than the dark meat, so by then time the thighs are cooked through the breast meat is dry and tasteless.  The idea of this recipe is to chill the breast so that it’s 10-15 degrees colder than the rest of the bird, so that it will all come to temp at the same time.

 

It turned out really well. R declared it the moistest breast meat he’s ever had. He did mention that the skin was not as crispy as usual. I think I can fix that by using a blast of heat from the broiler the last few minutes.

 

I also made a sausage stuffing, a pumpkin pie and some butter cookies. All of it turned out well. I really liked my stuffing this year.

 

Here are some final thoughts on etiquette:

 

-         If you are assigned to bring a vegetable side dish to a party, bring a vegetable side dish. Bringing a vegetable soup (when someone else is assigned soup) does not count and it just screws the meal up.

-         If you are running late, call. To show up almost an hour late without a phone call is thoughtless, inconsiderate and rude. Furthermore, expect to apologize and grovel when you arrive. Pretending that nothing happened is inexcusable.

-         If you are a new guest, unless you were raised by wolves, bring a hostess gift. For extra points, write a thank you note.

-       If dessert has not been served yet, do not help yourself and cut in to the beautiful whole pie in the pantry.

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