sides

Chill Out With Summer Cold Soups

Gazpacho is traditionally known as a cold-style soup. Originating in the southern regions of Spain and Portugal, this fresh tomato-based soup is a summer staple and a refreshing to get your vegetables!

I like to add lots of veggies into my gazpacho like cucumbers and bell peppers, then top it with some Alaska King Crab for a real splurge like my recipe I did with Sunset Tomatoes. Just think you won’t even have to turn on the stove for an elegant meal – that is definitely a plus on a hot summer’s night!

Gazpacho
Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Tomatoes aren’t the only celebrities when it comes to “cold” soups …… there are lots of chilled summer fruit soup recipes too!

Juicy, ripe melons are the star in my Thai Chilled Melon Soup with Shrimp and Fragrant Herbs.

Creamy coconut milk, bold Thai red curry paste, and zesty ginger and lemongrass come together to make this soup d’lish. Top it off with a pouf of sweet bay shrimp and crunchy water chestnuts. Then season it up with a hit lime juice, basil and mint – it’s the meal to cool off with! Yum!

Chilled Bing Cherry Soup is a summertime classic in Scandinavia and Eastern Europe; mostly served as an opener. I’ve dug out the old recipe I used to make every summer at Fullers. Lush ruby cherries are cooked with spices and white wine then chilled, pureed and topped with a swirl of crème fraiche or sour cream. Savory, sweet and lush –mmmmm!

So beat the heat and cool off with a chilled summer soup! –Kathy

Thai Chilled Melon Soup with Shrimp and Fragrant Herbs
Makes about 4 cups (6 starter servings)

Soup
3 cups chopped ripe cantaloupe
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1 tablespoon minced fresh lemongrass
1 teaspoon Thai red curry paste (we used Mae Ploy)
1 can (13 – 14 ounces) coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Topping
1/4 pound bay shrimp or chopped cooked shrimp (about 3/4 cup)
1/4 cup tiny-diced water chestnuts (Fresh ones are great if you can find them!)
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

Garnish: fresh cilantro sprigs and lime wedges

In a food processor or blender, process the cantaloupe, sugar, ginger, lemon grass and curry paste until evenly pureed. Mix in the coconut milk, salt and lime juice.

In a small bowl, mix the topping ingredients together.

Ladle soup into small bowls and spoon a pouf of topping into each serving. Garnish with cilantro sprigs. Pass lime wedges on the side.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Chilled Bing Cherry Soup
I also like this soup topped with a few coarse chopped toasted hazelnuts for a touch of crunch.

Makes 6 – 8 servings as a starter

2 cups crisp white wine, such as Fume Blanc
2 cups water
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon minced lemon zest
1/2 cinnamon stick
1 cardamom pod, crushed
4 black peppercorns, crushed
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 cups pitted Bing cherries (about 3 pounds)
1 cup crème fraîche, or substitute sour cream

Garnishes:
thinned crème fraîche or sour cream for swirling on top of soup
unsprayed, edible flowers, such as violas, pansies, rose petals or nasturtiums

In a medium saucepan, combine the wine, water, sugar lemon zest, spices, peppercorns, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add 5 cups of the cherries (reserve remainder) and bring back to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand till mixture reaches room temperature.

When cooked cherry mixture is cool, remove and discard cardamom pod and cinnamon stick. Place cherry mixture in a food processor or blender, and process until smooth. Then add crème Fraiche, and process until smooth.

Chill soup till very cold, at least 4 hours or, preferably, overnight.

Serve well chilled in cold bowls. Garnish each serving with the reserved, pitted cherries divided evenly among servings. Swirl the top of soup with thinned crème fraîche or sour cream drizzled from a spoon or squirted from a squeeze bottle. Garnish with edible flowers if desired.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Posted by Kathy Casey on July 7th, 2020  |  Comments Off on Chill Out With Summer Cold Soups |  Posted in Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, seafood, sides, soups

Quick Pickles

Who doesn’t love homemade pickles? I certainly do! But sometimes the idea of making them seems intimidating, but I’m here to set the record straight. Pickling your summer garden veggies is fast, easy, and so much fun.

Fresh pickles in the making in a vintage crockpot with fresh fennel seeds and garlic chive blossoms.

Photo Credit: Kathy Casey Food Studios®

All you need is my Refrigerated Quick Pickle recipe! First clean a quart-sized jar, then pack it full with a mixture of vegetables. Think baby cucumbers, carrots, peppers, and cauliflower – garlic, chili pods, and some fresh flowering dill too if you have it. The ideas are endless so have fun with it!

Next boil up a sweet and tart vinegar brine and quickly pour into the veggie-packed jar. Screw on the lid, and cool to room temperature for about an 45 minutes – then pop in the refrigerator! In just two days you’ll have delicious pickled vegetables to bring to a picnic or enjoy at a backyard BBQ.

And pickling isn’t just for veggies – for something a little different, try one of my favorites –pickled peaches! Awesome to serve with your favorite cheeses, charcuterie platter, or grilled meats.

All these tangy delights will keep for a month in the refrigerator, so get picking and start pickling! -Kathy

Refrigerated Quick Pickles
Makes about 4 quarts

The following is a mixture of veggies that I like to use, but feel free to switch it up with what’s fresh from your garden or the market.

Vegetable Mixture:
7 cups (about 2 lb.) 3/4″-sliced pickling cucumbers
2 1/2 cups (3/4 lb.) 1/2″-thick-slant-cut carrots
2 medium jalapeño peppers, cut in half, or 1 large, quartered
1 1/2 cups (6 oz wt.) 1 1/2″ chunks yellow or white onion
1 1/2 cups (6 oz wt.) 1 1/2″ chunks red onion
2 cups (8 oz wt) 1″ chunks red bell peppers (substitute some hot peppers or some of your other favorite summer peppers if desired)
2 cups (3/4 lb.) 1/2″- to 3/4″-sliced yellow zucchini or yellow squash

Pickling Brine:
2 cups white distilled white vinegar
2 cups cider vinegar
1 3/4 cups water
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 Tbsp. pickling spice
3 Tbsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

Place all vegetables in a large bowl and toss together to mix colors. Divide vegetables among four clean, regular mouth 1-quart canning jars, packing vegetables in tight. Set jars on a dish towel in a draft-free place in the kitchen.

Place the pickling brine ingredients in a non-aluminum sauce pan over high heat. Bring to a rolling boil and then immediately ladle pickling brine into filled jars, filling to 1/2″ from the top and being sure to cover the vegetables and distribute spices evenly. Immediately cover jar with lid and tighten. Let cool to room temperature, then refrigerate. Let pickle for at least 2 days before eating. Pickles will last refrigerated up to 1 month.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy on June 30th, 2020  |  Comments Off on Quick Pickles |  Posted in appetizers, Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, Kathy Casey, seasonings, sides, Snacks, spices, vegetables

Maple Syrup

When I think of Maple Syrup, I can’t help but think of warm and fuzzy memories – especially about breakfast.

So where does this d’lish treat come from? The mighty sugar maple tree! Quebec is by far the largest producer of this sticky syrup – producing 70 percent of the world’s supply. Thanks Canada!

There are several grades of syrup – ranging from extra light to extra dark – each with their own flavor profile and characteristics.

But this sugary delight isn’t just for sweet breakfasts or desserts. That’s right – maple syrup is delicious in savory dishes too! Added to a pot of slow-roasting baked beans; in a salad vinaigrette; or even a pork marinade.

Or how about some maple roasted veggies, finished with sea salt and topped over a piping hot bowl of creamy polenta – yum!

So branch out – and discover all that maple syrup has to offer.
-Kathy

Maple Vinaigrette

Makes about 1 cup

6 tablespoons real maple syrup, preferably grade B
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon finely minced shallots
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
pinch of cayenne pepper

In a medium bowl, whisk together the maple syrup, vinegar, mustard and shallots. Combine the two oils and then, while whisking continuously, drizzle the oil into the syrup mixture. The dressing should be well mixed and emulsified. Whisk in the seasonings.

Store covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. Rewhisk before using.

*Chef Note: It’s also great to shake ingredients together in a jar.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Posted by Kathy on May 14th, 2020  |  Comments Off on Maple Syrup |  Posted in appetizers, breakfast, dessert, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, salads, sides

DIY Fried Rice

I love fried rice! Great from your favorite Chinese restaurant but also easy to make at home – a great way to turn leftover steamed rice into a fresh d’lish meal!

But Fried Rice can get fancy too — I’ve had it in NY with lobster and 24K gold on it!!


David Burke & Donatella’s “Millionaire’s Fried Rice”
with caviar, lobster, Kobe beef, and gold!

But let’s get to the basics — important fried rice tips are:
1. Use cold steamed white rice – NEVER INSTANT!
2. Almost anything is fair game: leftover cooked pork, seafood, chicken, veggies, etc. Throw those all in.

Start with a large HOT pan or wok and a little oil then add in the cold rice. Spread it out to get it cooking. Then add in the goodies (meats, veggies) and some minced garlic and ginger too, if you like.

Then make a “well” in the middle. Add in some beaten egg then scramble it up in the middle. Last, fold it all in.

I even love it for breakfast, with some bacon or sausage added!

So instead of take out tonight – STAY IN and try your hand at homemade fried rice! -Kathy

Egg and Shrimp Jasmine Fried Rice
To achieve that great “fried rice” consistency, make the rice the day before. Cook and refrigerate and then let set at room temperature for 30 minutes before frying. This recipe has cooked egg that is sliced thin and added, but you can also whisk the egg and scramble it right into the rice as well.

Makes 8 cups, serves 6 to 10

Rice
Makes 6 cups cooked rice

2 cups jasmine rice
1 tsp salt
3 cups water
1 fresh or frozen kaffir lime leaf (optional)

Fried Rice Goodies
3 eggs
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp water
3 tsp vegetable oil
1 cup (about 8 ounces) uncooked medium shrimp, peeled, deveined, and cut/split in half lengthwise or coarsely chopped
2 tsp minced ginger
1/4 cup small-diced (1/4-inch) carrots
1 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp minced fresh lemongrass (optional)
1/2 cup fresh shelled peas or thinly sliced pea pods
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onion
2 tsp soy sauce

Serve with:
additional soy sauce
sambal oelek or Asian chili condiment
lime wedges
cilantro sprigs

Cook the rice the day before, or at least 2 hours in advance, and chill.

To cook in a rice cooker:
Rinse the rice in a strainer until the water runs clear. DRAIN WELL, then place in the rice cooker with all the remaining rice ingredients. Stir well, cover and steam until tender, per manufacturer’s directions.

After rice is cooked, fluff with a fork, let cool, then refrigerate.

To cook without a rice cooker:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Rinse the rice in a strainer until the water runs clear. Shake rice and DRAIN WELL.

Place rice in a large saucepan with remaining rice ingredients. Place pan over high heat and bring to a boil, stir. Quickly cover pan with a piece of foil AND a tight-fitting lid.

Place in preheated oven and cook for 15 – 20 minutes, or until tender. After rice is cooked, immediately remove the lid and foil. Fluff rice with a fork, let cool, then refrigerate.

When ready to finish the dish, have all remaining ingredients prepared and within reach of the range. Cook the eggs and let them cool while you fry the rice.

To cook the eggs:
In a small bowl, whisk eggs with the salt and water. Heat 1 tsp of the oil in a wok or heavy, large, non-stick skillet until hot. Add the eggs and, with a spatula, lift eggs as they cook, letting uncooked part run underneath until set. Transfer eggs to a cutting board. Let cool, then cut eggs into 1/4-inch strips.

To fry the rice:
Heat the remaining 2 tsp oil in the same wok over medium-high heat. Add shrimp and stir-fry until just turning pink, about 15 seconds. Add the ginger, carrot, garlic, lemongrass, and the cooked rice. Stir-fry 2 minutes. Add the peas, green onions, and the shredded eggs. Stir-fry for 1 minute, until heated through, then drizzle with soy sauce and toss well.

Serve, immediately and pass the soy, chili condiment, lime and cilantro separately for guests to “customize” and season their rice the way they like it.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy Casey on April 2nd, 2020  |  Comments Off on DIY Fried Rice |  Posted in Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, KOMO Radio, Recipes, sides

Sweet Potatoes

Don’t you just love sweet potatoes? I know I love’em! They are one of those magical foods that are delicious, versatile, inexpensive, AND pretty darn good for you. They come in a variety of colors like blue, purple, orange, yellow and white, and the flesh is full of beta-carotene (great for your eyes) and vitamins A and C.

Fun fact: Did you know that potatoes, sweet potatoes and yams are all unrelated? Potatoes are related to tomatoes and peppers (members of the nightshade family), sweet potatoes are in the morning glory family and yams are related to lilies – who knew!

One of my favorite ways to cook sweet potatoes is to cut them in thick slices and toss with chunks of apple, a little olive oil, and salt then roast on a shallow pan in a 375 degree oven till roasty good.

Or just roast them like you would a regular baker then split and top with brown sugar, a little butter. They are also delicious naked with just a little sprinkle of salt and pepper!

Last holiday season I had a brainstorm to try a scalloped-like sweet potato dish. I thought I’d put a little maple syrup in it and a touch of sage and top it with a few bread crumbs. Well, my experiment was a hit! So I’ve retested my concoction and included my recipe for Maple Scalloped Sweet Potatoes with Sage. I love it served with ham or roasted tenderloin. It serves 10 – 12 so is great for a large party. –Kathy

Maple Scalloped Sweet Potatoes with Sage
Serves about 10-12

8 cups peeled and thinly sliced (1/4 inch) sweet potatoes (about 2 1/2 – 3 pounds)

Maple Cream
3 cups cream
1/2 cup real maple syrup
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh sage leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Topping
1/2 cup dry breadcrumbs
3 tablespoons high-quality grated parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh sage leaves

fresh sage leaves for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Spray a 3-quart casserole with pan spray or lightly butter it. Then arrange sliced sweet potatoes in an even layer. In a large bowl whisk together the maple cream ingredients until well combined. Pour the maple cream over sweet potatoes and push them down a bit to be sure they are coated in liquid.

In a small bowl combine topping ingredients and set aside.

Bake casserole for 35 minutes and then sprinkle with topping and bake another 25 – 35 minutes or until topping is browned, potatoes are tender and liquid is thickened.

Garnish with a sprinkle of fresh sage leaves.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Posted by Kathy Casey on March 26th, 2020  |  Comments Off on Sweet Potatoes |  Posted in Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, KOMO Radio, Recipes, sides

Hearty Root Vegetables

The cold weather months make us crave heartier foods… and root vegetables are definitely hearty. They are versatile in flavor, texture and application – as well as budget-friendly and a great source of complex-carbohydrates!

Rutabagas, parsnips, carrots, turnips and beets are all part of this delicious group.


A great crop of root veggies!
(Photo from CookWithWhatYouHave.com
they have a great recipe for Box Grater Unconventional Latkes!)

Roasted Beets are so tasty and star in my recipe with an Orange Cumin Glaze. Just pop whole in a 375 degree oven tented in foil and roast until fork tender – when cool the skins will slip off easy. I love them tossed in a salad with arugula, blue cheese, walnuts and balsamic vinaigrette.

The often overlooked parsnip is also a fave – roast them whole with a chicken alongside a few of those beautiful rainbow carrots we see in the markets these days. It’s featured in my Creamy Roasted Parsnip Soup paired up with chevre and walnut croutons. Pour yourself a glass of Washington wine and you’re all set for a cozy meal.

Speaking of parsnips and carrots – these also partner well simply steamed and mashed with some seasoning, butter, olive oil or sour cream for a tasty side dish alternative to traditional potatoes.

Fill up with some hearty root veggies! –Kathy

Roasted Beets with Orange Cumin Glaze
Makes about 6 servings.

5 large beets (about 2 lb.)
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1 tsp ground cumin
1 Tbsp white wine vinegar
1 1/2 Tbsp honey
1 tsp cornstarch
2 Tbsps butter
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup chopped toasted walnuts
1 Tbsp finely chopped orange zest
2 Tbsps chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Wash the beets and leave root untrimmed. Place beets on a large sheet of foil and seal like a package. Place foil packet on a baking pan and roast in preheated oven until very tender, about 1 hour and 45 minutes. Poke beets to make sure they are tender.

As soon as beets are cool enough to handle, slip the skins off and slice into ¼-inch slices.

In a small bowl mix together the orange juice, cumin, vinegar , honey and corn starch. Stir until cornstarch is well incorporated.

Place liquid mixture in a large, non-stick sauté pan and heat over medium-high heat, whisking – while adding the butter and salt. Bring to a boil and add the sliced beets. Cook, turning beets as necessary, until they are hot and nicely glazed. Place on a serving platter or in large, shallow bowl.

Mix together the walnuts, orange zest and parsley and sprinkle over the beets.

Chef’s Notes:
You can prepare this recipe part way in advance: Just roast, peel and slice the beets ahead of time. This can be done up to 3 days in advance. Then finish the rest of the recipe procedure per instructions.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Creamy Roasted Parsnip Soup with Chevre & Walnut Crostini
Makes 6 servings

4 cups 1/2-inch-sliced peeled parsnips (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsps butter
1/4 cup thinly sliced shallots
1 stalk celery, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
4 cups chicken broth (I used packaged organic broth)
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

Croutons
6 1/4-inch-thick slices baguette or French bread
Olive oil
3 ounces chevre (goat cheese)
3 Tbsps chopped walnuts, lightly toasted

Garnish: thinly sliced fresh chives and/or celery leaves

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

First, toast the bread for the croutons: Lay the bread on a baking sheet, brush slices lightly with oil, and toast in the preheated oven for about 3 – 5 minutes, or until just lightly golden. Remove and let cool. (You can do this the day before and keep croutons in a tightly closed container after they cool.)

Toss parsnips and olive oil together in a bowl to coat evenly. Spread out on a baking sheet (you can reuse the one used for the bread), and roast till golden and totally tender, about 30 minutes.

Heat butter in a large pot over medium-high heat. Sauté shallots and celery until very tender, about 3 minutes; do not brown. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for about 30 seconds more. Add wine and bring to a boil. Add chicken broth, cream and roasted parsnips and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium or low, to maintain a slow simmer. Cook for about 5 minutes and then add salt and cayenne. In small batches, puree mixture in a blender. (Be careful; it’s hot!)

Return soup to pan and adjust seasoning if needed. Cool and refrigerate for up to 3 days before serving.

To serve the soup and finish the crostini:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Spread the cheese on the croutons, then top each one with a half-tablespoon of nuts. Press in slightly and bake for about 4 minutes or until cheese is warmed.
Meanwhile, heat the soup, stirring often, over medium heat till hot, making sure it does not stick on the bottom. Serve the hot soup in warm bowls. Top with chives or celery leaf and serve a warm goat cheese crouton on the side.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy on February 27th, 2020  |  Comments Off on Hearty Root Vegetables |  Posted in Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, Foodie News, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, salads, sides, soups

Potatoes

Potatoes have to be one of the most popular foods in the world. They’re economical AND delicious. Potatoes are great boiled or baked, mashed, smashed, or fried.

And aren’t baked potatoes the best? Served on the side of a juicy steak and smothered with sour cream and chives. Or as a main dish stuffed with every imaginable thing from spicy chili and cheese to grilled veggies with tahini!

Easy to make Sliced Baked Potatoes!

But one of my favorite dishes to make for holiday dinners is Blue Cheese Scalloped Potatoes! This robust dish gets a kick from blue cheese and fresh herbs like thyme and rosemary.

Then there’s mashed potatoes…and there are SO MANY variations to get creative with. Just be sure when mashing OR whipping, that your spuds are piping HOT – you don’t want gluey potatoes. After the whipping has commenced then it’s time to fold in some fun – roasted corn, cheese, chives or fresh herbs, sauteed mushrooms, caramelized onions…the list goes on and on!

So get creative with your spuds! -Kathy

Blue Cheese Scalloped Potatoes
You can also make this recipe in advance, then let cool and store, covered and refrigerated, for up to 2 days. Bring to room temperature and reheat, covered, in a preheated 350°F oven until hot.

Makes 12 servings

Potatoes
5 pounds russet potatoes
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. minced fresh thyme
3/4 cup (3 ounces) crumbled blue cheese
3/4 cup (3 ounces) grated Parmesan cheese

Sauce
1 cup sour cream
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 tsp. salt

Fresh thyme sprigs for garnishing

Preheat an oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

To prepare the potatoes, peel and cut them into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Toss them in a large bowl with the salt, pepper, and thyme. In a small bowl, mix the cheeses.

Layer half the potatoes in the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with half the cheese mixture, then layer with the remaining potatoes.

To make the sauce, whisk the ingredients in a bowl and pour the mixture over the potatoes. Tap the baking dish on the counter to spread the sauce and release any air bubbles. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese.

Bake for about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours, or until browned and completely tender all the way through when poked in the center with a knife.

Garnish with thyme sprigs and serve immediately.

Recipe from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table Cookbook

Posted by Kathy on December 12th, 2019  |  Comments Off on Potatoes |  Posted in Books to Cook, Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, root vegetables, sides

Let’s Talk Turkey!

The holidays are upon us and it’s time to start planning those holiday dinners for friends and family. Everyone has their favorites from old-school marshmallow-topped sweet potatoes to the classic green bean casserole. For me, it’s all about the turkey! Juicy and golden, it graces most of our holiday dinner tables. But, alas! There can be many turkey tragedies, “turkey sins” as I like to call them. From the overcooked and dried out to the not-fully-defrosted-and-then-baked-raw travesty! Zowie!

Ample planning and some good rules of thumb can ensure a low-stress turkey roasting day. Below, I’ll walk you through the 10 turkey sins, and provide tips on how to have a d’lish holiday meal.

I’m also including a recipe for my Cranberry Citrus Cooler, Herb-Lacquered Roasted Turkey, Old Fashioned Turkey Gravy ( a recipe that makes a lot! – see sin #7!), Overnight Wild Rice Stuffing and Egg Nog Panna Cotta for you to cook up some holiday fun!

Turkey Sin #1: Roasting a Half-Frozen Bird, or the “turkey’sicle”

If you’re buying a standard bird at the grocery store, take into consideration most of these babies are frozen or “half” frozen. I love ordering a fresh local Foster Farms bird. If you do too, keep in mind to get your order in at least 2+ weeks ahead at your favorite market or butcher/poultry shop. Remember to get to “know your turkey” – if you’re going for a fresh bird, it will cook a bit quicker (and need more seasoning) than a traditional “plumped” turkey. The rule of thumb is: you should start defrosting your bird in the refrigerator about 5 days in advance—up to 7 if it’s a biggie! Watch me season and stuff fresh herbs in my fully defrosted turkey on Q13!

Turkey Sin #2: Leaving the Bag of Giblets in the Bird

How many of you have seen these left in during baking!? Once your bird is ready for the big day, take it out of the wrapper. Remove the bag of “goodies and giblets” from inside, and also check inside the neck cavity. (NO one wants a turkey “butt” surprise). You can use the neck and giblets to make a little pan of turkey stock for adding to gravy if you like.

Turkey Sin #3: “Steaming,” Rather than Roasting, your Bird

Roasting your turkey in a big old deep roasting pan creates steam from the turkey juices and does not make for a crispy-skinned bird. To avoid this, rinse your turkey inside and out; then pat it dry. Place in a wide shallow pan, up on a roasting rack. Stick some aromatics, such as quartered onions, an orange and a few big sprigs of fresh herbs, such as thyme, sage and rosemary, in the inside cavity.

Turkey Sin #4: Under Seasoning

All the gravy and cranberry sauce in Plymouth Rock can’t hide an under seasoned bird. You can carefully stuff fun things like fresh sage leaves, sprigs of thyme, fresh basil leaves and small tufts of rosemary under the turkey’s skin but watch out for tears in the skin. Herbs will add a nice flavor to the meat. Season your turkey liberally with kosher salt and fresh-ground black pepper – or I love to use my Dish D’Lish French Seasoning Salt! This means really season it well—rub it all over, under the wings, on the back of the bird—massage that baby! For a medium-sized turkey, you want to use at least 1 tablespoon of kosher salt plus about 1 teaspoon of pepper or about 2 Tbsp of my Dish D’Lish French Seasoning Salt.

Turkey Sin #5: An Undercooked or Overcooked Bird

Undercook your bird, and put your guests at risk. Overcook your bird, and you’ll need to offer guests a LOT of wine for washing it down…which could lead to family drama! Cooking your bird just right is tricky. To start with, there are a million different methods. I’m a roasted-turkey gal, but I know there are lots of you turkey-fryers out there. And it does make a good bird (but beware of garage fires!) —but I gotta have my gravy. To keep it simple, get yourself a good instant-read thermometer and be sure to preheat your oven. See my favorite recipe and tips, below, for roasting. To avoid overcooking your bird, plan your day. When are you serving dinner? Work back from there. Unless you are cooking a 40-lb monster turkey or eating dinner at 11 AM, there is no need to get the bird in the oven at 6 AM!! Yes, I have succumbed to eating one of those roasted-for-8-hours birds, and it wasn’t pretty!

Turkey sin #5-B Note

Do not leave the thermometer in the bird when you are roasting it – see picture below.

I prefer an instant read thermometer.

Melted Thermometer

Turkey Sin #6: An Improperly Carved Turkey

After all that hard work put into creating a picture-perfect, delicious-tasting bird, do not let the knife get into inexperienced hands! It may be tradition to let the man of the house perform the ceremonious carve, but not if he’s going to hack it to death (Family Note: Seen at the in-laws frequently.  For God sakes just let me do it)! Give the bird 20 minutes to rest. This will allow you to get the rest of the dinner on the table. To start carving, take off the breast first, and slice thin. Disjoint the legs, thighs, and wings and slice the thighs if desired. My in-laws use an electric knife (it was probably a wedding gift from the 60’s!) and actually, the thing works pretty darn well. I favor my super-sharp Henkel chef’s knife. But hey! Use whatever gets you the nicest slices. (I kind of like those old school electric carving knives too!) You can watch me carve and serve up roasted turkey pieces on Q13 here!

Turkey Sin #7: Not Enough Gravy- This could be the ultimate sin!

Gravy and turkey is like milk and cookies: delightfully harmonious. To be sure you make enough, immediately transfer your roasted bird to a platter to rest, and collect all those yummy juices for making pan gravy. Or, what I like to do is make turkey stock a few days ahead using some purchased turkey legs and then make a big batch of gravy in the bird-cooking pan. There’s nothing worse than not enough gravy! I like my do ahead gravy recipe below – and it makes LOTS! Watch me make lots of turkey gravy on Q13!

Turkey Sin #8: Letting the Cooked Bird Sit Out…. All Day… and Beyond

Once you have the meat off the bird, remember to not let it sit on the counter all evening, increasing the risk of spoilage. I like to take off any extra meat and refrigerate it for soups or sandwiches. Don’t throw away that turkey carcass! Break it up, throw it in a big pot, cover with water and bring to a simmer. Simmer for about 1–2 hours. Strain the stock well, then cool. Now you have yummy turkey broth to make some tasty soup later in the week.

Turkey Sin #9: No Turkey Leftovers for Sandwiches

And this brings us to the sin second only to not making enough gravy: not cooking enough turkey. Turkey sandwiches—I love them piled high with homemade cranberry compote—are absolutely de rigueur for next-day snacking … or midnight refrigerator raids, for those who cannot wait! So if you’re inviting your peeps over for dinner –encourage people to bring some their own Tupperware –  give them some leftovers …. it will make for very happy guests and less to cram in the already packed refrigerator!

Turkey Sin #10: Not Enjoying Yourself

Running around the kitchen like a turkey with its head cut off is no way to enjoy the holiday. Don’t allow the day to consume you. Why not give each person something to bring to the dinner? Maybe even send them a recipe you would like them to make. The holidays are all about gathering over a meal, so get those football-watchers off the couch and into the kitchen. Get your guests involved by setting the table, pouring drinks, warming the rolls, anything to help. You’ll relax more and create lasting memories with your family and friends.

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One of my favorite turkey-roasting methods follows, so whether you are a first-time cooker or an old hand at the turkey game, I hope my tips and recipes will allow you to have a super-successful holiday meal!

Finished Turkey

Kathy’s Herb-Lacquered Roasted Turkey
Chef’s Notes:  Read recipe all the way through a few days before your dinner. A tasty do-ahead turkey gravy that makes LOTS follows.

Allow about 1 1/2 – 2 hours of roasting time for a 12-pound turkey (that is fresh and not stuffed), and add about 5 to 10 minutes for each additional pound. This will be one of the most beautiful turkeys you’ve ever roasted!  If roasting a large turkey 20 – 24 lbs, bake at 350 degrees. A 22-lb turkey should take about 2 1/2 – 3 hours to reach 175–180 degrees internal temperature (insert an instant-read thermometer in the back side of the thigh).

Makes 8 to 16 servings, with leftovers

1 12- to 16-pound turkey
4 or more large, fresh rosemary sprigs
1 large onion, skin on, quartered
1 head of garlic, broken apart
8 large sage leaves
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt + 1/2 – 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
OR 2 + tablespoons Dish D’Lish French Seasoning Salt

Place an oven rack low in the oven, removing extra racks if necessary. Preheat oven to 375°F.

Remove the giblets and neck from turkey cavities, checking that both cavities are empty. Rinse turkey with cold water, inside and out, and pat dry. Keep the legs tied together with the metal clip, or tie with butcher’s twine.

Place half of the rosemary sprigs and all the onion and garlic in the bird’s body cavity.

  • (If you decide to stuff your turkey with traditional stuffing there are some things you must know: When stuffing a turkey, do so just before roasting; do not stuff it the night before. Loosely stuff the turkey so that the stuffing will completely cook through. Do not pack the stuffing. You can stuff both ends of a turkey, the large inside cavity and the smaller nook under the skin flap at the neck – cooking time may need to be increased and be sure your stuffing .)

Pull the leaves off the remaining rosemary sprigs. Carefully loosen the turkey skin over the breast and legs (by running your hands under it), being careful not to tear it. Keeping them as flat as possible, tuck the sage leaves and the rosemary leaves you pulled off under the breast, thigh, and leg skin, arranging the herbs decoratively. Carefully pull the breast skin tightly down over breast bone, then, using metal closure skewers, thread them through both sides of the skin flaps to bridge the turkey body-cavity opening. Thread skewers alternately from left to right then right to left. With a 12-inch piece of butcher’s twine or white cotton string, work back and forth around the skewers to lace up the cavity, shoelace-style.

Spray a roasting rack with nonstick vegetable spray and place the turkey on the rack in an open, shallow roasting pan. Rub the turkey all over with the olive oil, then generously sprinkle the turkey with the salt and pepper or French Seasoning Salt, seasoning it well all over.

Place the turkey on the low oven rack and roast until the inner, thickest part of the thigh registers 175°F. (Insert metal stem, instant-read thermometer in the back side of thigh by the turkey body.)

If you are cooking a larger turkey, you may need to tent the breast loosely with a piece of buttered foil to avoid over-browning of the breast. About 30 to 45 minutes before the end of cooking, remove tent to allow browning.

When the turkey is done, remove from the oven. Before carving the turkey, let it stand for 15 minutes to allow the juices to settle. As the turkey stands, the turkey thigh temperature will reach 180°F. (If stuffing be sure stuffing comes to 165°F) Use the pan drippings to make your gravy – see recipe below.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Old-Fashioned Turkey Mushroom Gravy- THAT MAKES A LOT!
You can make this a few days ahead and then re-heat in your turkey roasting pan for extra turkey flavor goodness! Read through the entire recipe before starting.

Makes 10 cups, or about 20 generous 1/2-cup servings

12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) butter
1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary – or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
8 ounces (4 cups) thinly sliced mushrooms, or chopped wild mushrooms
1 cup flour
10 cups Rich Turkey Stock (recipe follows)
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper

Melt the butter in a large, heavy saucepan. Add the rosemary and mushrooms and sauté over medium-high heat for about 2 minutes. Add the flour and stir vigorously until combined and smooth. Cook for about 1 minute. Add the stock all at once and whisk vigorously so as to eliminate any lumps. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes, until the gravy is nicely thickened. Season with salt and white pepper.

You can make the gravy a couple of days ahead to save yourself some precious holiday time!

Then right before serving- and while your turkey is set aside to rest – ready your turkey roasting pan full of turkey goodness: remove excess fat from your turkey roasting pan. Place the pan over a burner – add a big splash of white wine, champagne, potato cooking water, chicken broth or water. Using a metal spatula – scrape up all the goodies in the bottom of the pan… this is the turkey goodness. Then add your prepared Turkey Mushroom gravy – whisk well and heat till hot. Serve up and enjoy – you’ll have lots of gravy for all!

Rich Turkey Stock
Makes about 10 cups

2 large turkey legs or thighs, about 2 pounds total
1 yellow onion, unpeeled, coarsely chopped
1 large or 2 medium carrots, cut into large chunks
Up to 2 cups mushroom stems, optional
4 stalks celery, cut into chunks
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup white wine
12 cups water

Preheat an oven to 400°F.

Roast the turkey pieces in a baking pan for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the skin is golden brown. Place them in an 8-quart pot and add the vegetables and seasonings. Deglaze the roasting pan with the wine, scraping the pan well to loosen browned bits, and add to the pot. Add the water.

Place the pot over medium-high heat and bring to a rapid simmer. Reduce the heat to low and lightly simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Strain the stock and skim off any fat. Discard the vegetables. (Most of the flavor will have cooked out of the turkey; however, the meat can be removed from the bones and saved for another use.)

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Cuties Overnight Wild-Rice & Sourdough Stuffing
With big flavors and textures, this stuffing is great with game hens, turkey, chicken, holiday ham or pork chops.
Makes about 8 servings

6 cups water
2 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 cup wild rice
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6 Cuties Mandarin Oranges
4 cups 1/2-inch-cubed rustic sourdough bread
1/2 cup toasted, coarsely chopped almonds
6 Tbsp. salted butter
1 cup 1/4-inch-diced onion
1 cup 1/4-inch-diced celery
2 cups sliced cremini mushrooms
1 tsp. kosher salt (or more to taste)
1/4 tsp. fresh-ground black pepper
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 tsp. finely chopped fresh thyme
1 1/2 tsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh sage
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
2 eggs, beaten

In a large pot, bring water and salt to a boil. Stir in wild rice and return to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer rice, stirring occasionally, for about 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until very tender. Drain and cool.

Meanwhile, peel the Cuties, cut in half crosswise, then break into half segments. Place in a large bowl with the bread and almonds, and set aside.

In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, melt butter, add the onion, celery, and mushrooms, and season with salt and pepper. Sauté for about 7–8 minutes, or until tender. Remove from heat and add cranberries, broth and herbs.

Add mushroom mixture and cooled rice to bread mixture. Toss to mix evenly, then add the beaten egg and toss until bread is thoroughly coated. Cover and refrigerate overnight to let flavors develop.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray an 8-inch square baking pan with pan spray.

Re-toss stuffing, transfer to baking pan, and let sit for 30 minutes to come to room temperature while oven preheats. Bake in preheated oven for 35–45 minutes, or until cooked through.

Chef’s Note: When roasting a stuffed chicken or game hen, cook until internal temperature at the center of the stuffing is 165 degrees F.

Recipe Created for Cuties Citrus by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Cranberry Citrus Cooler
Housemade Cranberry Syrup adds a flavorful twist and beautiful color to this tall cooler.
Makes 1 cocktail

1 1/2 oz vodka
3/4 oz Housemade Cranberry Syrup including 3- 4 of the berries (recipe follows)
3/4 oz fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 oz fresh orange juice
2 dashes Angostura bitters
Garnish: long lemon twist

Measure the Moon Mountain Vodka, Cranberry Syrup including a few of the berries, lemon juice and orange juice into a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice and add the bitters. Cap and shake. Pour into a tall glass. Garnish with a long curled lemon twist.

Housemade Cranberry Syrup
Makes 1 1/2 cups

1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
1 cup water
1 cup sugar

Place ingredients into a small sauce pan. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Simmer for 1 minute then turn off heat. Let syrup infuse for one hour. Then refrigerate. Will keep refrigerated for up to 7 days.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen®

Eggnog Panna Cotta With Spiced Cranberry Compote
Makes 4 servings

1/3 cup pecan pieces

Eggnog Panna Cotta
1 cup high-quality eggnog
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon rum extract
1 cup (8 oz wt) mascarpone
1 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons gelatin
2 tablespoons water

Spiced Cranberry Compote
1 1/2 cups frozen or fresh cranberries
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup orange juice
1 1/2 teaspoons orange zest

Place pecans on a baking sheet and toast in a preheated 350-degree oven until just golden, about 5-7 minutes. Let cool.

To make the Panna Cotta: Place the eggnog, sugar, nutmeg, extract, mascarpone and sour cream in a large metal bowl over a pan of simmering water (bain marie). Whisk until smooth and warmed.

In a small bowl sprinkle the gelatin over the water and let bloom for a couple of minutes, then heat in microwave or over hot water until melted. Whisk into the warmed eggnog mixture.

Divide mixture between 4 small custard cups (the small Pyrex glass ones). Place on a baking pan, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 6 hours until set, or overnight.

To make the Spiced Cranberry Compote: In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan place the cranberries, nutmeg, sugar, orange juice and zest. Place over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer then reduce heat to medium. Let cook until cranberries are popped and mixture is a nice compote consistency, about 5 – 6 minutes. Let cool completely before serving.

To serve dessert: One at a time place each ramekin of panna cotta in a shallow bowl of very hot water — to 1/2-inch from the top — for about a count of 10. Remove, run a knife around the outside and unmold onto individual dessert plates. Scatter the cranberry compote over the tops of the custards. Sprinkle with toasted pecans and serve immediately.

Chef’s Note: All the dessert components can be made up to 3 days before serving.

Recipe © Dishing with Kathy Casey

Posted by Kathy on November 21st, 2019  |  Comments Off on Let’s Talk Turkey! |  Posted in dessert, Dish D'Lish, Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, French Seasoning Salt, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, meats, poultry, poultry, Products, Recent Posts, Recipes, seasonings, sides
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