November 29, 2010

We Didn't Have To Order Pizza!

So, we woke up Thursday to SNOW!! I was singing Christmas songs to the boys at 8am - it may have only been a dusting but I LOVE CHRISTMASTIME!! =)

So my turkeys were a HUGE success! One of my girlfriends joked that if I could pull off Thanksgiving for 16 people, I am officially domesticated. WOOOOHOOO, I feel like I can concur the world (or next years Thanksgiving at least,  haha). Anyways, as I mentioned before I had to buy two turkeys because the biggest one I could find here was roughly 13 pounds and that was clearly not going to be enough to feed everyone. My day started bright and early at 7:45am popping in the first turkey. I literally had to make a schedule for myself (that included when I could shower!) otherwise I would have been off the wall. I know you may think I am overreacting and being silly, but cooking Thanksgiving for the first time, for 16 people, in another country that relies heavily on delicious fresh baked and home made meals (ie, RAW materials!, no Stovetop or canned jellied cranberry sauce over here!), along with a language that I am not familiar with, is a lot of work. For example, I couldn't just run to the store and pick up the following spices without hitting up my GoogleTranslate first:


It just creates one more step, you know what I mean?

Unfortunately I wasn't too impressed with my carrot or sweet potato recipes so I am not even going to bother sharing them. Next year I am sticking with buttered carrots and my regular sweet potato with mini marshmallows and lots of sweet brown sugar casserole. YUM! I have a super sweet tooth, which is probably why I loved my cranberry sauce! I am going to share my scribbled recipes for both the sauce and turkey, mainly so I can have them saved somewhere. I have a funny suspicion we will be here in Europe next year (and I need to learn this metric system at some point), so some things are written in the Metric and others in the US System - take note if you plan on trying these out!

Cranberry Sauce
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 cup orange juice
3 jars (1020 grams) cranberries and their juice
Dash cinnamon
Packet of Tortenguss (not necessary, but I threw it in thinking it would help congeal)

Dissolve sugar and orange juice over medium heat
Stir in jars of cranberries and their juice, cover (they pop!) and cook for 10 minutes
Stir in Tortenguss, throw in a dash of cinnamon
Let cool, then transfer into a covered bowl and store in the refrigerator.
Don't forget about it until mid-way through the meal like I did! =)

I made this sauce Thanksgiving-eve. I found that it tasted much better on Thanksgiving, so next year I will be making it two to three days in advance. Maybe it gets better after a few days?

Tom Jr. (not to be confused with TJ) and Tom the turkeys
Salt, pepper, garlic, thyme, rosemary, oregano
Onions, oranges, apples, lemon
Melted butter

Preheat oven to 160°C
Cut onions, oranges, apples and lemon
Put gloves on (unless you don't mind touching cold/slimy/bloody/disgusting things)
Pull inners out

Wash in and out, dry with paper towels
Season inside with salt and pepper
Season under skin with garlic, thyme, rosemary and oregano
Season skin with salt and pepper
Stuff turkey with onion, orange, apple and lemon slices

Brush turkey with melted butter and cover with foil
9 pounder - put in oven for 2 hours
13 pounder - put in oven for 3 hours
Remove foil, baste with butter
Crank oven to 220°C, roast for 1 hour uncovered
Let sit 30 minutes before cutting


  1. I cannot believe you cooked dinner for 16 people! Or fit them into a European apartment! I cooked for seven and while it was a surprisingly smooth process, it still took a lot of time! NICE WORK.

  2. I will make your cranberry Sauce this saturday for our pre Christmas turkey dinner :))

  3. HW - That is what I was most worried about, fitting everyone in here! Our neighbor brought his table and chairs over, and when the other guys offered to bring something I said CHAIRS!!

    Anonymous - I just edited the recipe, I left out what to do what the Tortenguss :)

  4. I'm surprised you fit the turkeys into the freezer and oven also! Our 9 lb-er barely squeezed into the freezer, and fit perfectly into the oven, but much bigger would have been a tight fit :) I'll have to try your turkey recipe next time, I've never heard of putting apples/oranges/onion into it... sounds delicious!

    Also- did yours come with the neck/insides in a baggie inside (like in the U.S.?) Ours definitely weren't and were still attached... YUCK!! It's bad enough pulling the baggie out..

  5. CMD - The turkey tasted and smelled great, definitely try it out! (plus its super quick to throw together, and the fruit is a cheap way to add some flavor)

    Those pictures I have are from our turkeys..I had this plan to take pictures of the whole process start to finish..but that was a flop. In the 13 pound turkey everything was vacuum sealed which was AMAZING! (I thought for sure I was missing something in there, haha). In the 9 pounder everything was in a little baggy except for the neck. Yuck, I'm glad I picked up some heavy duty gloves, that kind of stuff makes me nauseous!


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