Flavorbliss Flavorful, Juicy and Moist Holiday Turkey

Making a flavorful, juicy and moist turkey has always been mine and hubby’s mission when the holiday time comes around. So, this past Thanksgiving, we made it another mission to make the best turkey ever (among our friends and family, of course!).

This Thanksgiving was our 4th try of making turkey, and we have finally did it!!! Previously, each time we tried to make, we always ended up with rare or a dry turkey. I have also tasted many turkey dishes before, and I must say that they are rather… tasteless. Usually, the gravy and cranberry sauce that make the taste of the turkey.

Anyhow, this recipe and technique we have created have given us the result we desired. It’s very simple. It has few steps to follow, but the secret lays in three methods: tenderizing, basting, herb mix, and flavoring. As simple as that, I promise.

This recipe is based on a 10 pound of turkey which will feed about 4-6 people.

People call it brining, but I call it tenderizing since I didn’t use water.

Defrost the turkey 2-3 days before you cook it. As soon as it defrosted and you feel it soft enough, sprinkle them with salt. Just regular table salt will do. I know many people suggest sea salt or kosher, you can do that, but since I didn’t have any of those, I used regular table salt. It worked just fine. Just make sure you cover the whole turkey. Leave it soaked in salt for about 4-5 hours. Then, rinse the turkey with water. Make sure, you rinse it well. Otherwise, it would be really salty. Pat dry.

Herb Mix:
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 teaspoons poultry seasoning
2 tablespoons garlic herb seasoning (I use McCormick brand that I got from Costco)
1 1/2 teaspoons crushed garlic

Leave butter in room temperature until it’s soft. In a medium bowl, beat the butter with spoon. Add the poultry seasoning, crushed garlic, and garlic herb seasoning. Mix well.

Put some of the herb butter mixture all over the turkey, inside out, upside down, and in between the skin and meat. It will be a little messy, but it is worthed at the end. Trust me. When the turkey is all well covered, cover with saran wrap and refrigerate until you are ready to roast it.

You will have a lot of left over herb butter mixture. Save it for basting while roasting.

(Flavor) Basting:
If there is not enough herb butter mixture left, make another one with the recipe above.

1 bag of celery
2 medium onion
1/2 bag of carrots
bunch of cilantro
1 apple
4 springs of sage and rosemary

Cut celery and carrots into 3 inches in length.
Dice onion coarsely.
Slice apple.
Arrange all the ingredients, except for the sage and rosemary in the bottom of the turkey roasting dish. Save some to stuff inside the turkey along with the sage and rosemary springs.

Finally when all are ready:

Preheat oven to 450F. Place the turkey in a baking pan upside down (yes, you read it right, upside down!) So, when it is in the oven, the juice will drip to the thickest parts of the meat, and in result will get you a moist, flavorful, and juicy turkey. Insert the pop-up thermometer at an angle about 3-inches down from the neck cavity and 2-inches from the breast bone, in the thickest part of the breast.

Place turkey in the oven and reduce temperature to 325 degrees F. Roast for 1 hour, then baste with pan juices every 20 minutes until thermometer pops up or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thigh registers 180 degrees F, about 2- 3 hours. Check occasionally.

I know that it looks long and looks rather complicated because it has many steps, but the recipe is very simple. And at the end, promise, it will be all worthed!

Enjoy and good luck!


“Grown Up” Mac and Cheese

Who said that Mac and Cheese is only for kids? Mac and cheese is known for its quick and fulfilling, somewhat nutritious meal for kids, as the TV commercial says. But, I crave mac and cheese every now and then, especially when I’m traveling somewhere. It just does not fail that my taste buds miss their comfort food. So, after our return from an almost 2 weeks of vacation, I craved for mac and cheese. I decided to make a “grown up” version of it. Here is the recipe I have compiled, which I put different kinds of cheese. I love cheese! Go ahead, give it a try and see if you like it. I am open to any suggestions… You can also add veggies and any kind of meat to it. I usually diced ham and mix into it, but this time, I only make it with cheese.

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 (16 ounce) package elbow macaroni
2-3 tbps butter
1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese
1/2 cup and additional 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
1 cup of small curd cottage cheese
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 cup of bread crumbs

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add the oil and the pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain well and return to cooking pot.

In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 3 tablespoons butter; stir into the macaroni.

In a large bowl, combine all the cheeses mix well.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Add the half and half, and eggs to macaroni; mix together and season with salt and pepper.

Transfer to a lightly greased deep 2 1/2 quart casserole dish.

Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese mixture, and bread crumbs.

Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes or until hot and bubbling around the edges; serve.