Roasted Boneless Stuffed Turkey
Demonstrated at our Club Meeting on October 7th, 2018.
by Chef Don Dunbar

Serves: 6-10 people. Preparation time: 3 hours. image

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PREPARATION:
With a sharpe knife, start by removing the tip and second section of the wings, then shave down the remaining bone of the wing. Slice down the center of the breast (sternum). Shave the turkey meat away from the rib section, work around the wishbone and the wing joints. Continue around the thigh joint and backbone. Once you have the main part de-boned, remove the wings and thigh bones. Cut 2 extra-long roasting strings for the length and drumsticks. 5 long strings for the width. Place the turkey on top of the strings, fill the cavity with stuffing (see below) and tie up using a slip knot. Five to seven loops are best, trim the excess.

GRAVY:
Roast the bones to make a stock with carrots, celery, onions and bay leaves. Use the stock for gravy. Strain stock, bring to a simmer, add a little bouillon, salt, pepper to taste. Thicken with roux. For monter au beurre (pronounced moh-tay oh-burr), add a few pieces of butter to the hot sauce/gravy and swirl it in.

STUFFING:
Remove the casing from 2 Italian sausage links and cook in skillet. Using a food processor prepare 8 ounces of mushrooms to a minced consistency. Remove sausage from skillet, add 6 cups of fresh spinach in the same pan and cook. Add spinach to sausage. Cook mushrooms in same pan using a little olive oil. When mushrooms are cooked add ¼ cup of white wine (optional); reduce until liquid is evaporated. Let the mixture cool to almost room temperature. Put sausage and spinach mixture in a food processor to get a fine grind. Mix sausage and mushrooms season with salt and pepper to taste and add ¾ cup of grated mozzarella.

PASTA PURSES:
*Purchase pre-made pasta sheets (stuffed and uncooked), or tortellinis (boiled lightly before stuffing) or make your own: 6 oz of bread flour piled in a mound. Make a well in the center of the mound and add 2 eggs, 1 tsp of olive oil, and a small pinch of salt. Working from the center outward, gradually mix the dough. Knead for 15 minutes. Cover and let rest 30 minutes. Prepare green onions by blanching in boiling water 1-2 minutes depending on size and quickly submerge in ice water. Roll out small pieces of dough fill with sausage mix and tie with green onion strands. Make 25-30 purses and stuff them inside the turkey cavity. The purses will cook inside while the turkey is roasting.

COOKING:
After stuffing the turkey with the purses, and tying it up with roasting string, lightly butter the top and place the rosemary sprigs on top. Cover with aluminum foil and roast it in a 350° oven about 2 hours, then uncover to brown and continue roasting until the meat registers 165°F. Basting is recommended while the meat cooks uncovered. Let cool before carving. Spoon the gravy over the dished portions.


"Turkey" - The Turkey is a wild flight-less bird native to the Americas. They can be found from southern Canada, throughout the midwest and eastern US, all the way into Mexico, where the ancient Mayans (circa 800 BC) domesticated them for food. The name may have been started by Europeans thinking they were Guinea Fowl, like those already being imported into Europe by merchants from Turkey via Constantinople, which were nicknamed "Turkey Coqs" and later "Turkey Fowl" and shortened to just "Turkey" in the new world. Their real name is "Meleagris Gallopavo". A baby Turkey is called a "Turklette". About 200 million Turkeys are sold in the US each year. An over production of Turkeys, by Swanson & Sons in 1953, lead to the development of the frozen TV Dinner. The bird is used as a main dish at Thanksgiving and Christmas because of its ability to feed an entire family at one sitting. Turkey meat contains more protein per ounce than Pork or Beef. The theory about eating Turkey causes immediate drowsiness because of high levels of "tryptophan" is somewhat of a myth. Egg whites contain 4 times as much tryptophan as Turkey meat and the mashed potatoes, bread stuffing and sweet desserts, like pumpkin pie, that usually accompany the dinner, certainly cause more insulin spikes and melatonin production that the Turkey itself. The feast-induced drowsiness is called "postprandial somnolence". While a Chicken Egg is worth about 12 cents; a Turkey Egg is worth about $3.50, if you can find one.


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