Turkey in the Hay!

Posted in Main, Sharing the Handmade Love at 4:32 am by carrie

I have never attempted a Thanksgiving meal from start to finish. I somehow decided I was going to give it a try this year. With the help of the Barefoot Contessa, I think I sort of pulled it off :)

Tuesday Evening…

Pumpkin pie cheesecake with a gingersnap crust… cover and put in fridge (This is just the crust… I was in a zombie-like state when I finished it). Also, made cranberry sauce using orange juice and orange zest. I had no idea cranberry sauce was 90% sugar. Wow.

Wednesday Morning…

Inventory potatoes. Boil most of them and whip them up in the kitchenaid a la Martha and Snoop. I added 1 full stick of butter, 1/3 block of cream cheese, 2 whole roasted garlic, not cloves, the whole garlic (what’s the plural of garlic? I looked it up, it’s garlics!), a bit of milk and S+P. Put in fridge.

Chop up these herbs… add olive oil, salt and pepper and put it all over the turkey… below the skin and over the skin. I got a turkey breast with the skin on it. It was bigger than a breast… it could have been an ostrich… the butcher was really nice. I trust too much.

Prepare stuffing with apples, onions, butter, celery, S+P, Bread etc… Don’t add the liquid until tomorrow.

Bake yams… pull of skins. Put in fridge.

Make gravy. Great tip from Ina… keep the drippings from a roasted chicken frozen, make the gravy using that and put it in the fridge… all done the night before. Totally easy.

Thursday Schedule…

Anticipated Eating Time (AET): 6:00 pm

3:15 – Turkey into 325 degree oven for just under 2 hours
3:30 – Make table
4:00 – Take everything out of fridge so you know it is there
4:30 – Prepare yams by mashing, adding butter, sugar, cinnamon, egg & mini-mallows
4:45 – cut up veggies for salad, arrange in a nice plate and back into fridge. Also, dressing into little bowls
5:00 – Wash and prepare asparagus for roasting. Cover with olive oil, S+P. Put in pan or dish that can fit into your toaster oven (I love having this little oven, it’s so handy)
5:15 – Turkey out, check that it’s 165 degrees using button thermometer, cover with foil
5:16 – Turn up oven to 350
5:20 – Yams into oven. They will cook for 40 minutes
5:25 – Add 1 cup of chicken/vegetable stock or 1 egg and possibly some dried cranberries into the stuffing and mix it up.
5:26 – Preheat a toaster oven to 400 degrees
5:28 – Gravy from fridge into small sauce pan, heat up slowly on low. Add some cream to thin it out
5:30 – Mashed Potatoes (covered) and Stuffing (uncovered) into oven with the yams at 350. Both will cook up for 30 minutes. To be safe, take the potatoes out 15 minutes in and stir them.
5:35 – Asparagus into toaster oven
5:45 – Ice into ice bucket, drinks out on the table. Pies out onto servers.
6:00 – everything out of their ovens! Turn the toaster oven onto broil…hopefully the yams will fit in there because for 1-2 minutes they’ll be in there to make the marshmallows toasty. Watch it, they will start smoking! You can also use a creme brulee torch or butane lighter (one of the large ones with a flame that actually makes a noise).

So, this is what it all looked like when it came together….

And, the yam casserole. I made another the next night since we didn’t have leftovers because it was gone immediately. It was SO good. I was never a fan of the yam until moving here to North Carolina. After tasting the sweet fluffy goodness that is a sweet potato casserole… I am hooked. Toasted marshmallows are so pretty.

The asparagus was cooked down to almost nothing, but it was really tasty. The store-bought apple pie was pretty good… the pumpkin cheesecake I made… well… it had a creamy, tasty center then a tough-as-leather crust. I’m not a food engineer, but I don’t think that’s how it’s supposed to work. I’m thinking heat had something to do with it.

Besides eating, how did you celebrate Thanksgiving? What are you thankful for?

I’m thankful for our dog Meg… and that she lets me put bows on her.

I’m also grateful that her armadillo toy hasn’t sprung to life those times I’ve stepped on it in the dark and squealed. Thank you squeaky ‘dillo.


  1. Linda Rosenquist said,

    November 29, 2008 at 8:37 pm

    Well, I can certainly attest to the success of the Thanksgiving dinner! It was all very yummy, and served so beautifully and efficiently. And the company was amazing–a good time was had by all!

  2. Babs said,

    November 30, 2008 at 12:19 pm

    It looks absolutely delicious! Ina should hire you.

  3. Kristina Lynch said,

    November 30, 2008 at 12:24 pm

    Impressive my domesticated friend “) How fun to cook so many lovely things! It all looks delicious…coming to your house next year!
    Megs bows are so precious…what a sweet little girl she is! I love the photo of the casserole you are holding out of the oven and you can see the back of her cute little head with pretty little bows…too cute!!!

  4. Cathie said,

    December 3, 2008 at 7:57 pm

    Oh my gosh – pretty little purple bows. Meg is a sweetypuss!

  5. karla nathan said,

    December 3, 2008 at 9:40 pm

    Its good to have a dog that indulges us!

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