New ideas for Turkey Day
This Thursday, Nov. 26, Americans will sit down at their dining room tables and consume what has been the national Thanksgiving meal for over a century: roast turkey, gravy, potatoes and stuffing followed by pumpkin pie for dessert. Yawn.
It’s all become so formulaic that perhaps you’re thinking it’s time to break away from the same-old, same-old and try something different. If you answer to that description, Food Network has a few ideas designed to breathe new life into the traditional holiday feedbag and make your guests sit up and take notice – that is, if you can get them away from the football games and parades on TV.
Giada De Laurentiis has a few suggestions in her Food Network series “Giada’s Holiday Handbook” bright and early on Sunday, Nov. 22, putting an Italian spin on the holiday bird with a turkey braciole, served with bacon stuffing with radicchio and chestnuts, and Brussels sprouts agrodolce. And for dessert, it’s a parmesan apple pie. Molto Italiano!
Ina Garten also has a few outside-the-box ideas that morning on Food’s “Barefoot Contessa” which finds her preparing a Tuscan turkey roulade, chipotle smashed sweet potatoes, roasted potatoes and for dessert, a pumpkin flan with maple caramel. Who can resist?
At midday on “Barefoot Contessa,” Garten returns to tackle Thanksgiving sides, offering up ideas for comestibles such as a mushroom and leek bread pudding with gravy and cranberry fruit conserve, haricots verts with dill and hazelnuts, Brussels sprouts with bacon and a celery root and apple puree. Imaginative fare from an imaginative chef.
Over on the digital side, Giada De Laurentiis is at it again on “Giada’s Holiday Handbook” (www.foodnetwork.com/shows/giadas-holiday-handbook/episodes/giadas-italian-thanksgiving), putting Italian twists on holiday classics with polenta popovers with lemon butter, baked turkey parmesan, sweet and salty mashed potatoes and a dessert of chocolate pumpkin cheesecake souffle. Deliciosa!
“Thanksgiving on the Grill” (www.foodnetwork.com/shows/boy-meets-grill/episodes/thanksgiving-on-the-grill), an episode of Bobby Flay’s “Boy Meets Grill,” finds the New York City native going to “Spaghetti Park” on Corona Heights, Queens, to prepare a feast for the local Italian-American community. On the menu is an apple-sage-glazed grilled whole turkey breast with grilled apples, orange-glazed grilled acorn squash and grilled polenta with morel vinaigrette, all washed down with mulled cider.
And if you want to try your hand at deep-frying a turkey, Alton Brown has a few pointers in a segment from his “Good Eats” series (www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/deep-fried-turkey-recipe-1952235), as he shows how to do it safely, logically and, most importantly, deliciously. Though the prep takes much longer, the actual cooking time for his small bird was about a half hour.