Monday, November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving leftovers

Cliff had to go get some filters for his current moneyhole tractor project, and I went along. I needed to buy carrots for our turkey frame soup, among other things. You know I can never resist a bargain.

So when I saw five pounds of carrots for $2.49, I was ecstatic. Do you think eating five pounds of carrots will atone for five pounds of mashed potatoes, gravy, noodles, and pie I've consumed? Please tell me they will!

Back home, I took the big baggie of turkey out of the refrigerator and divided it into manageable amounts. When my children were home, I'd have made a gigantic turkey pot pie with most of that, and we would have devoured it in two meals. Unfortunately, turkey pot pie is as unhealthy as any other food that includes pie crust in the recipe. I didn't freeze all the turkey, by the way; we'll have some for lunch, and Cliff will take a sandwich of it to work tonight. The carcass is boiling merrily away as I type this. Tomorrow, turkey soup!

My mother never actually had me do much cooking when I was growing up, but I did a lot of watching. It amazes me to see how many things I do just like her, since she never actually told me anything about how to cook. I learned mainly from a Better Homes and Gardens cookbook, after I was on my own. Of course after I married Cliff, I asked her advice many times.

Pies, for instance: I make the same thumbprints around the edge, and put the same designs in the top crust, as Mother did. She always cut a pie into six pieces, and I did too, until the last several years. Now I make it eight pieces, and that's plenty. By the way, Lloyd's of London wouldn't insure that pie; Cliff and I can't walk past it without looking at it. I'm fairly sure that Mother covered her turkey snugly when she roasted it, and that's what I've always done. Even though all the cookbooks and online recipes say to leave it uncovered except for putting an aluminum-foil tent over it at some point, I've always been afraid to do it that way. This year, I got brave.
It worked! We almost broke into applause when we drew that twenty-pound bird out of the oven; the legs were a little dry, but that's because I left it in the oven longer than recommended. Oh, the stuffing: that's something else my mom did: she cooked the stuffing in and around the bird, not in a separate pan. Of course, she made her own, from scratch. I use Stove-top Stuffing.

So I'm sixty-five years old, and I finally roasted a turkey like it's supposed to be done. The old dog learned a new trick.


  1. Fantastic...job well done. LOL I just had a piece of turkey pot pie for lunch, a left over from dinner last night. Yeppers it was good and yeppers it had a delicious crust. Oh was a treat! *wink*

  2. Now you've done it. I'm going out for lunch.

  3. Lindie3:35 PM

    And I am cooking a turkey pot pie! Darn it. Now I have to feel bad about it! Your turkey loked beautiful. I had dinner at my daughters and like me, she always covers her turkey except the last hour and a half. But, for several years she has cooked her turkey upside down (breast down) So it isn't pretty but it is amazingly tender and moist and just falls apart. I am convinced and next one I do will be upside down. I can learn at age 64!

  4. That turkey looks beautiful :)

  5. I made stuffing from scratch and baked and served it in my cast iron skillet. I thought it was great.

  6. We're never too old to learn new tricks. This year I didn't cover my turkey at all and it was the best turkey I've ever cooked. I always loved Mom's stuffing made from scratch but we like Stove Top chicken flavor so that's what I use. I'm like you, I cook my turkey longer than the instructions call for, we want our meat cooked well, not raw.

  7. Beautiful!! I learned a lot just from watching my Mom cook, which is good because she never uses a recipe for the best things she cooks. Right before I got married I had her stand right beside me and talk me through some of my favorites. The rest I've learned on my own, from memory, and from calling her up and begging for advice!


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