Holiday Turkey

This holiday season there will be at least 3.8 million turkeys roasted to serve up to friends and family in Canada. I’ve done it twice, and I told myself “never again!” Watching the bird for hours and worrying if it will turn out as grand as you’d like, I can’t have that! To simplify and guarantee a good result, why don’t you try a boneless turkey this holiday season!

 

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I know, it sounds complicated, but it’s actually crazy simple! I’d explain how to do it, but Food Wishes does a pretty bang-up job showing how to do it on his video. It’s nothing new, it’s been done for years, I saw an old Martha Stewart video of her doing it on her show, so I ask myself why I haven’t seen this more often!

 

I ended up brining mine for four hours with a simple recipe to add more flavour, and reduce the cook time slightly. Then I filled it with a simple braised barley and spinach stuffing that  gives the turkey more oomph! You can substitute it with any of your favourite stuffing, but I made a stock from the bones and then a soup with the leftover stuffing.

 

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Turkey Stock to eventually turn into Turkey, spinach and barley soup.

 

So here are the recipes you’ll need to reproduce this lovely main;

Turkey brine

Yield 8L

4 L stock of your choice

1 cup of sea salt

1 tbsp dry thyme

1 tbsp dry rosemary

1 tbsp dry sage

4 L of ice water (reserve for cool down after brine ready)

 

Method: In a large pot combine everything and bring stock to boil while stirring to dissolve the salt, remove from heat and add iced water to cool mixture before using with turkey.

 

Braised spinach and barley

Yield 1L

2 tbsp Canola oil

2 diced medium onion

1 tbsp minced garlic

10 oz spinach

1 L hot stock of your choice (keep in mind if using seasoned stock to add less salt)

1 cup barley pearls

salt and pepper to taste

 

Method: In a large hot pot, add oil and onions, sweat until translucent then add garlic and spinach. Once spinach has wilted add the hot stock and barley. Cook until the barley is tender, stock has been soaked up and season to taste. Spread mix onto a plastic wrapped baking sheet to cool and reserve for stuffing.

 

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Boneless turkey cut from the breast, cutting from back will give better result

 

Once you’ve brined your turkey and rinsed it off, pat it dry, lay it on plastic wrap and get ready to roll this bird up!

Before you begin, fix your racks so you’ve got enough top clearance. Start preheating the oven to 375F, now lay out the stuffing generously across the turkey and roll up with the help of the plastic wrap. Once rolled as tightly as desired, start tying the turkey into a log. Lay the log on a cooking sheet with a rack and cook for about 2.5hrs until internal temp of 145F, take the turkey out, glaze it(I use maple syrup, your favourite will do just fine) and throw it back in the over until it gets to 155F remove from heat and gently cover with aluminum paper(do not wrap, just cover not to lose residual heat).

Allow bird to rest for 15 min and check in at least three different spots for an internal temp of 165F, if not there yet, back in the oven for a little more. This should give you a super juicy and flavourful turkey that you can slice once it’s rested.

On the side I recommend this Harvest Stuffing (with added carrots in the vege mix), a simple mash (boil the potatoes with some thyme, garlic and salt) and a gravy made from the drippings.

Seems complicated, but it’s quite simple and worth the extra prep!

 

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Braised barley and spinach stuffed boneless turkey

 

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