Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thanksgiving for Two!

Keeping with tradition, the Mrs. and I put together our 2nd Annual California Walnofer's Thanksgiving feast for two. Classic and traditional will always be the theme around the Walnofer Thanksgiving table and this year was no different. Luckily, I have picked up some "chef's tricks" over the past year that brought the meal up a level.

The art of brining the Turkey is the number one key to success for carving up a juicy, tender bird. But, make sure you have room in your fridge and a non-leaky vessel. Just barely! 
Be sure to start this procedure two days in advance with a thawed bird. One day in brine, and what about the other day?

Allow for one day in the refrigerator to dry the skin out so it will be able to become golden and crispy. The moving air under refrigeration is key to pulling the moisture out of the skin of the bird. Even though it is brined, still season the skin heavily and rub the bird with canola oil infused with chopped rosemary or festive herb of your choice.

Bake on lowest rack in oven at 500˚.  Watch those hotspots if you have a circa-1960's gas oven! There isn't any meat in the neck cavity so don't worry if it gets a little darkened. Check out that golden, crispy skin. Be sure to truss the bird up tight so everything cooks evenly.

Voilla! The entire spread..................for two. Complete with all the sides, Jus de Giblet with Apple, Ocean Spray's finest Cranberry Sauce, and the Mrs. Family Secret Signature "W" Pumpkin Pie. Speaking of sides...............

.............Cinnamon and Cardamon Roasted Sweet Potatoe Puree with Hickory Smoked Bacon.

.............Pugliese Bread Stuffing with Apples, Fried Sage, and Roasted Chestnuts. Wanna know a little product development secret to replicate that fabulous color of StoveTop from Betty Crocker..................add a pinch of Turmeric to capture the color.

Nana's recipe Dinner Rolls. Great for sopping up jus de giblet and apple gravy.

Carved and ready for consumption..................................today, tomorrow, and probably till the real Thanksgiving.

No Thanksgiving meal in Napa Valley is complete without the proper wine pairing. Last year we tried the 2006 Cuvaison Bald Mountain Vineyard Napa Valley Zinfandel and we were converted to Zin with T-Day for life. This year we pulled a 2004 Chateau Montelena "Montelena Estate" Napa Valley Zinfandel out of our cellar. Superb wine with all the elements to accentuate a Thanksgiving feast.  Much thanks to Bo Barret and George Blanckensee for blessing us with this gift to enjoy at our Family Table. It helped make this the tastiest Thanksgiving of all.  Now, what to do with all the leftovers......................there is only two of us eating all this! I've got some ideas.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That looks like an amazing meal. :O