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I looked through recipes and read the previous years’ menus. so far, I’ve come up with this menu:


Turkey (unstuffed)

Traditional Stuffing

Turkey Gravy

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Roasted Broccoli?


Orange Slices

Cranberry Sauce

Dinner Rolls

Pumpkin Pie

Bourbon Pecan Tart with Chocolate Drizzle


Roasted Turkey

1 fresh whole turkey (18 to 20 pounds), patted dry, neck and giblets removed

Turkey Brine and Aromatics

7 quarts (28 cups) water
1 1/2 cups coarse salt

1 C light brown sugar
6 bay leaves
2 tablespoons whole coriander seeds
2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
1 tablespoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon black or brown mustard seeds

2 medium onions, thinly sliced

1 apple, sliced

Cinnamon stick

1 C water
15 garlic cloves, crushed
1 bunch fresh thyme

1 sprig rosemary

6 leaves sage

Canola oil

Thaw turkey 2 days before placing in brine. Make sure it is kept below 38°F.

Combine the brine, water and ice in a 5-gallon bucket or a cooler. Place the thawed turkey (with innards removed) breast side down in brine. If necessary, weigh down the bird to ensure it is fully immersed, cover, and refrigerate or set in cool area for 8 to 16 hours, turning the bird once half way through brining.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Remove the bird from brine and rinse inside and out with cold water. Discard the brine.

Place the bird on roasting rack inside a half sheet pan and pat dry with paper towels.

Combine the apple, onion, cinnamon stick, and 1 cup of water in a microwave safe dish and microwave on high for 5 minutes. Add steeped aromatics to the turkey’s cavity along with the remaining aromatics. Tuck the wings underneath the bird and coat the skin liberally with canola oil.

Roast the turkey on lowest level of the oven at 500 degrees F for 30 minutes. Insert a probe thermometer into thickest part of the breast and reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Set the thermometer alarm (if available) to 161 degrees F. Let the turkey rest, loosely covered with foil or a large mixing bowl for 15 minutes before carving.

Recipe is adapted from 2 recipes.

Read more at:




Traditional Turkey Stuffing  for 2013

20 C stale, hard bread, cubed into 1″ chunks

3/4 C olive oil

2 T butter

2 medium yellow onions, coarsely chopped

6 stalks of celery, coarsely chopped

10 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed

1 tsp. salt (or to taste)

1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

5 leaves fresh sage, minced

1 T fresh thyme, minced

3 T fresh rosemary, minced

1/4 C chopped freshly parsley

4 C chicken broth, or as needed

1 C white wine, or as needed


In a large skillet, melt butter with oil. Add onions and celery and cook about 5 minutes.

Add mushrooms and garlic and cook until mushrooms and fresh herbs, salt and pepper.

Cook until desired consistency.

Stir in bread pieces. Add wine, stir well.

At this point the stuffing can be saved overnight if doing early.

Add  broth until this bread stuffing recipe reaches your desired level of moistness, at least 2 additional cups. You can add up to 5 additional cups for very moist stuffing.

Pour herb stuffing mixture into a large, buttered casserole dish.

Bake, covered in a preheated 350°F oven 45 minutes, or until hot throughout.

Uncover and bake 15 minutes more, until top is crisp.

Turkey Gravy

Take drippings from the turkey and place them in a bowl.

Cool and remove most of the fat from the broth. Save.

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 t salt

¼ t pepper

1 C mushrooms sliced, optional

In a large, heavy-bottomed pan, over medium heat, toast ¼ C flour in ¼ C oil until off white.

As roux turns from sand color to light brown to caramel color, turn down heat.

Continue cooking and whisking constantly until roux is a dark brown color.

Increase heat to medium and add garlic, salt and pepper to roux.

Add turkey broth.

Stir together well and cook 10 minutes.

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes  

6 lbs (about 14 Cups) new potatoes preferred

1 C Parmesan cheese

½ head of garlic, roasted

1 t salt

2 t Montreal steak seasoning

1/4 C milk (to consistency)

1 C nonfat or lowfat sour cream

Bake or boil potatoes. When cool, take off skins. Mash. Add all other ingredients.

Orange Slices

Cut skin off oranges. Slice oranges into rounds.

Place on platter, sprinkle with cinnamon and drizzle with honey. Top with cut dates.

Bourbon-Pecan Tart with Chocolate Drizzle

Make the tart a day ahead, and store it in the refrigerator. You can use a 9-inch pie plate instead: simply roll the dough to a 13-inch circle, fold the edges under, and flute.


1 cup packed light brown sugar

3/4 cup dark corn syrup

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons bourbon

2 tablespoons molasses

1 tablespoon butter, melted

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1 large egg white

2/3 cup pecan halves

1/2 (15-ounce) package refrigerated pie dough (such as Pillsbury)

Cooking spray

1/2 ounce bittersweet chocolate, chopped


Preheat oven to 350°.

Combine first 10 ingredients, stirring well with a whisk. Stir in pecans. Roll dough into a 13-inch circle; fit into a 9-inch removable-bottom tart pan coated with cooking spray. Trim excess crust using a sharp knife. Spoon sugar mixture into prepared crust. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes or until center is set. Cool completely on a wire rack.

Place chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl; microwave at HIGH 1 minute. Stir until smooth. Drizzle chocolate over tart.

Fyrne’s Pumpkin Pie (Cheryl Corrigan’s mom, Riley’s Grandma)

Makes 2 9” deep dish pies

4 C fresh baked and pureed pumpkin

1 ½+ C sugar

1 t salt

1 t ginger

½ t nutmeg

4 t cinnamon

6 large or 5 extra large eggs

1 can evaporated lowfat milk

¾ C milk

Preheat oven to 450° F.

Combine thoroughly: pumpkin, sugar, salt, and spices

Add eggs, evaporated milk, and milk.

Beat well.

Pour into 2 9” inch pastry lined pie pans using pie shield for crust.

Bake 15 minutes at 450° then turn it to 325° and bake 40 minutes longer or until knife comes out clean.

To make smaller pies take an egg out and some milk and/or pumpkin.  I usually make this large recipe and if I have left over I put it in custard cups without a crust.