November 28, 2011

Thanksgiving Diary - Corn Muffins and Turkey

My corn muffins were wonderful. I will definitely make them other times since they're a great side dish for salads and meats. And they are very simple to make! The original recipe is from Giada de Laurentiis. I love her recipes. They are simple and delicious (click here to check out the recipe)

My comments: instead of buttermilk, I used normal milk (fat free) and it worked very well. But if you want to use buttermilk, you can make yours just by adding one tbsp of white vinegar to one cup of milk. Let it rest for 10-15 minutes and you're good to go!
The dried tomatoes and garlic added a special flavor to the muffins. I also think that using the sour cream made a difference because the muffin was moisty.
For those unaware, American corn muffins crumble a little bit and the batter can go from a bit sweet to savory. In this case, it is right in the middle with the batter a bit savory, but the sun dried tomatoes and corn are on the sweet side. I made half recipe and it yielded 6 large muffins.
If you do not find the corn muffin mix - it's much easier! - just search on the internet. There are many recipes that teach you how to make it from scratch.

About the turkey: after leaving it brining for hours, rinse the turkey with cold water and pat dry with paper towel. I placed a cooler rack inside a big sheet so the result would be the same if using a roasting pan (which I don't have). I filled the cavity with rosemary and thyme (be generous. They make a huge difference!), onion and lemon cutted into quarters. Then I tucked the wings underneath the turkey and coated the skin with about 2 tbsp of butter (you can use oil or even cover it with slices of bacon). I covered it with foil and put it in the oven (high temperature / lowest rack)

After 1 1/2  hour in the oven, I checked the meat and it was cooked. Since I have no food thermometer, my sister taught me a trick: insert a knife in the breast of the turkey until gets to the bottom. When taking it out, you should see not too much of a transparent liquid. If the liquid is pink, it's undercooked.
I took out the foil so the turkey could get that beautiful golden brown color.
I turned off the oven and let the turkey rest for about 15 minutes before carving it (so the meat doesn't loose its juices). Do that every time you're cooking/roasting a meat.
I think brining helps a lot the cooking process, because in 2 hours the turkey (10 lbs) was ready, the meat had the right amount of salt and it was very, very, soft!
The Thanksgiving Dairy is coming to an end. Tomorrow, the dessert...

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