Thanksgiving in quarantine is no one’s idea of a perfect family food extravaganza, but that doesn’t mean your small family dinner can’t be absolutely amazing.
For the past few years, we have been huge fans of Tyler Florence’s Sage Maple Butter Roasted Turkey. You make homemade sage butter and rub it beneath the skin of the turkey but above the meat. This allows for the butter to absorb into the meat, making a usually dry, tasteless classic literally bursting with flavor. Sides are what make or break the Thanksgiving meal in my opinion.
Mashed potatoes are necessary, and our simple sour cream mashed Yukon golds sprinkled with chives help lift up the turkey and serve as a bed for everything else.
I stand by my sourdough stuffing, which uses two-day-old sourdough mixed with sauteed onions, garlic, celery, herbs, spicy Italian sausage, and chestnuts. Mixed with a sort of bread pudding-like custard and baked, it gets crispy and crunchy on top, and moist and buttery on the inside. This is so much better than soggy, ground stuffing in the middle of the turkey!!
A root vegetable is also a great choice, such as creamed rutabaga, or mashed turnips and roasted beets with a yogurt sauce. Cranberry sauce is an easy dish to make from scratch, because you just boil fresh cranberries, cinnamon sticks, orange juice, brown sugar, and lemon juice for a few hours until it’s sticky and sweet. This recipe comes from our family pediatrician, so you know it’s divine.
To end, an easy tip. Why stress about dessert? A ton of local bakeries and businesses are still open, and it would be a lot easier and better for the community to buy a few pies instead of working hours in the kitchen, when you can focus on the turkey! Happy Thanksgiving!!