Friday, November 25, 2011


About 3 hours before Thanksgiving guests arrived one of my sons was disappointed to learn we were not going to have stuffing with our Turkey. And there were a couple of reasons for this decision: 1) my husband and I are not fond of stuffing; 2) we were having turkey breast to avoid all the greasy mess of a whole turkey, especially since we are living in this new, tiny little house. So, I quickly found something on the Internet and it had to be quick....
I adapted a recipe I found on Epicurious:

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
2 medium onions, cut into 1/4-inch dice (about 3 cups)
6 stalks celery with leaves, cut into 1/4-inch dice (about 2 1/2 cups)
3 leftover, frozen Kaiser rolls found in freezer, torn into small pieces
1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon celery salt
a pinch of sage
1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/4 cups hot Homemade Turkey Stock or canned chicken broth
2 bratwursts, skin removed

In 12-inch, heavy skillet over moderate heat, heat butter until hot but not smoking. Stir in onion and celery, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, then add bratwurst and break up into tiny pieces so the meat blends in with the vegetables and cook until soft, 15 to 20 minutes. 

Transfer to large bowl and add bread cubes, parsley, celery salt, sage, rosemary, thyme, salt, and pepper. Stir in 1 1/4 cups hot stock or broth. Turn mixture into an oven safe  bowl. Bake in oven for 30 minutes.

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Friday, November 18, 2011

Perfect Gravy

I remember, not long ago, having Thanksgiving dinner at a relative's house.  And I was trying to get noticed at the family party....does that make sense? It does if you've been in the same boat ( not gravy boat). And the hostess asked if anyone knew how to make gravy. This was my opportunity to be noticed! I stepped up and said I could do it! This is not a bad story as my gravy turned out to be the BEST I had ever made. But, I had never made it before!  And I didn't know much about what I was doing. I was just trying to recreate what I had watched my Mom do. Without any measuring, this is what I did:
Gravy drippings had cooled down on their own. I added as much ice to the top of the gravy to make the fat stick to the ice so it could be removed. Once I had the pure drippings without fat, I mixed 1 T water into 1 T of cornstarch.  I heated up with natural drippings and slowly added the water/cornstarch mixture, slowly stirring all the time. I added a little salt, actually more than a little. I didn't add any Kitchen Bouquet ( coloring) and I had made the most delicious, silky gravy, ever!