As mentioned yesterday, I will discuss the sides and how the turducken came out, specifically, the sliced turducken. Above is the full meal except for the pies. They are mentioned below.
Using an out of the box stuffing mix, I substituted shallots for half the onions. I still added the other half of the onions, but the shallots gave it a bit of sweet I wanted. Pecans and craisins were also dumped in to give it more of a complex flavor. The rest was per the recipe.
I started with the William Sonoma recipe for blood orange cranberry sauce. A few years ago, I decided to make a cranberry sauce to go with the turducken I was making at the time. I never made any fresh cranberry sauce before, and I wanted blood orange in it for some reason. I found this one, and it has worked for me since. (They have one with apple I just saw that I might do next year but still use the blood orange.) Because I have to be different, I added a 1/4 tsp. of ground sage. The addition is subtly noticeable.
Mashed potatoes were my original intent, but having had them the week before, I decided to make something different. All while the turducken was cooking, the potatoes were roasted in olive oil with salt, pepper, fresh garlic, and powdered thyme. Point of note, these were Yukon potatoes. Towards the end of the 45 minutes of roasting at 350F, the green beans were sauteed in butter. Mushrooms and whole garlic cloves were added. I seasoned with a small amount of salt and pepper. Once cooked, I combined after removing the lesser cooked garlic. The roasted went into the mix.
Potatoes to me are a starch. Even though mine had green beans in them, I needed more vegetables on the plate. These were also the missing colors to get closer to the rainbow. This was a simple dish also sauteed. Zuccinni, baby carrots, and red onions sauteed in olive oil with salt and pepper.
Out of the package biscuits. I had to be lazy about something.
When I came up with the meal, I decided I was going to make a turducken. I had to have potatoes (yellow) in some form, as well as vegetables (green, orange, and purple). I also needed stuffing that I had to make this time. Because the premade turducken had it in the past, I didn’t need to make any. This year, I did. I also wanted to make gravy but didn’t think I needed it. Honestly, I’m intimidated by making gravy from scratch – sauces and gravy are my weak points at the moment. I made the cranberry (red) sauce successfully in the past, and it is very traditional to have so I had to have it. Something was missing though. I completely forgot dessert.
I bought crescent rolls flats and premade pie crusts. So I thought of something, but not what I was going to do with those. While all of the other cooking was going on, I couldn’t think of something that would work effortlessly and give variety. I had 6″ frozen pie crusts and figured last minute; I could make two pies without much effort. Sans recipe for them, I decided I a time guestimation. I was fine until I got side-tracked with the sides. They came out a bit burnt but still tasted good.
I made a quick apple pie and then topped with apple slices. It may look a bit burnt, but, other than the crust, burnt on one side, it was tasty.
Carmel-Maple Pumpkin Pie
I found a mix as a starter, but it still required cooking. I also had the issue of having smaller pie crusts, so the combination was more than the crust would hold. Since I cooked both pies at the same time, part of this one also burned on the crust on one side. Other than that, it tasted like a pumpkin pie (much better the next day than warm).
I know, this is what everyone wanted to know. What did the inside of the turducken look like? Well, I will put it out there how it came out first. This was moister than last year. It was crisp on the outside and juicy on the inside. Not a single dry part. No need for the gravy. No need for the cranberry sauce to make up for dried meat. The all the components taste like the meat they are when eaten separate, but combined… It is a mouthful of joy — one of the best non-steak meals I ever had.
The herbs did precisely what they should in that they enhanced the fowl but did not overwhelm. Nothing was impossible to cut or chew either. I was concerned that I used whole sage and long rosemary. The skins also seemed to be a concern in thought. As long as I had a sharp knife, which is highly recommended in general, there was no issue cutting. It was like butter with the correct tool.
Will I do this again? Yes. Did it come out perfect? Yes. Was it easy? Yes. Can anyone do this? No. I kid; I just want to feel special. Yes, anyone can do this. It does take patience, but I don’t see why this method could not be a standard. It is so much easier than the many techniques I read for assistance.
Tomorrow: The leftovers.