Salt and Pepper Turkey from Everyday Food Magazine, November 2009

My own drummer, that’s the beat I’m walking to today. After all, who makes a turkey in the middle of summer?

When the streets hold countless puddle mirages, children are running through sprinklers in their yards and even the birds are panting, why would someone heat an appliance for three hours or so?

How about because the inside of the house is air conditioned. Or, because the oven is well insulated and hardly let’s any of its heat seep out.

Or, simply because someone craves a turkey dinner in August.

The Process

This is the perfect recipe for anyone who isn’t confident with turkey roasting to try. The seasoning is simple, there’s no marinade to worry about and the roasting process is easy.

All I did was rub softened butter between the skin and meat, liberally salt and pepper the whole bird, stuff it with the Bread Stuffing with Sage from the same issue, put the turkey in a roasting pan and shove it in the oven

After an hour at 375 degrees, I reduced the temperature a bit and finished the roasting in two hours.

See? Simple.

The Verdict

In addition to the stuffing, I made Martha’s Pan Gravy, mashed potatoes, corn, and served cranberry sauce as well. We had a very Thanksgivingish dinner with very little work and it was excellent. The turkey was moist and tender and the skin was crispy and oh-so-sinfully-crispy. We loved our thanksgiving meal in August.

And now, we’ll be enjoy lots of yummy turkey meals with the leftovers.

What I’d Do Different Next Time

Not a thing.

Salt and Pepper Turkey from Everyday Food Magazine, November 2009
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Serves: 10
Ingredients
  • 1 whole turkey (about 12 pounds), thawed if frozen, rinsed and patted dry (neck and giblets reserved for ; liver discarded)
  • Giblet Stock
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 6 tablespoons butter (3/4 stick), room temperature
  • Bread Stuffing with Sage
Instructions
  1. Make Giblet Stock. Preheat oven to 375 degrees, with rack in lowest position. Tuck wing tips underneath body of turkey. Season inside of turkey with salt and pepper. In a small bowl, mix together butter and 1 teaspoon salt. With your fingers, gently separate breast skin from flesh without tearing skin. Spread butter mixture evenly under breast skin.
  2. Loosely fill large cavity and neck cavity with stuffing; fold neck skin over opening. Tie legs together with kitchen twine. Season turkey generously with salt and pepper. Place turkey in an 11-by-14-inch roasting pan. Roast 1 hour. Reduce heat to 350 degrees; tent turkey with foil. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of thigh registers 165, 1½ to 2 hours.
  3. Transfer turkey to a cutting board, still tented with foil, and let rest 30 minutes. Reserve pan with drippings for Pan Gravy. To serve, carve turkey and scoop out stuffing.

Spicy Chili Potatoes from Everyday Food Magazine, December 2012

Hubby got home from work last night to a house in ruins. Being Dudette’s last day of school before Christmas break, she brought home all her work and crafts and they were strewn all over the kitchen table and family room. Trying to get a six year-old to clean up after herself is a bit like trying to herd cats, although I have my suspicions that herding cats might be easier.

Dudette pulled Hubby to the tallest pile of papers to show him her handdrawn Grinch and other creations, so I headed back into the kitchen to stir the chili mixture that was simmering on the stove. It was right then, at 6:30 in the evening, that he chose to mention that he wasn’t very hungry because he had eaten a ton at his office’s Christmas party earlier in the day.

At some point I will gently teach my man that informing the cook that he’s not hungry minutes before whatever is for dinner will be served is not a good idea. After all, what if I had spent hours slaving over a standing rib roast only to find out right at that moment that he he had gorged on mediocre catered food instead?

Lucky for him, Dudette and I had eaten our fill of hot dogs and cupcakes at the first grade party, so since we weren’t very hungry either. There were three potatoes baking in the oven and a skillet of Martha’s quick chili on the stove.

Lucky, lucky Hubby.

The Process

I wish I could say that this is a great meal when you’re rushed, but since the potatoes take an hour to bake, you do need a little lead time. Yes, you can make them in the microwave, but, well, eww.

One thing to remember is that potatoes release steam as the inside bakes and if that steam doesn’t have holes from which to get out, it’ll make its own, more violent way. This is true for the microwave and the oven baking methods (trust me, I’ve seen it happen).

I like to use a corn cob holder to poke a few holes in potatoes. Since it’s made to pierce the tough cob and has a nice handle, it slides easily into the potato.

The Verdict

There is something missing from this recipe (tomato). As I looked at the photo, I could see red (tomato), yet there wasn’t anything like that in the ingredient list. As I cooked the chili, I wondered why there wasn’t any thickening or cohesion with the beans. It was as though something more was needed (tomato).

In case you haven’t guessed, this was received with lackluster enthusiasm. The ‘potato boat’ idea got everyone excited (they always do), but the chili was kind of gross. Chili powder, black beans and diced green chiles do not a chili make. At all.

What I’d Do Different Next Time

As a potato topper, this idea is great. The chili just needs help. I’d add garlic powder and cumin as spices. I’d also switch out the water for tomato sauce with a tablespoon of tomato paste to help with the thickening. That would give me a chili worth of a perfectly baked potato.

Spicy Chili Potatoes from Everyday Food Magazine, December 2012
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
from Everyday Food Magazine, December 2012
Author:
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: Tex-Mex
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 4-ounce can diced green chiles
  • 1 15.5-ounce can black beans, drained
  • ¾ cup water
  • 4 baked potatoes
  • Shredded Monterey Jack
  • Sour Cream
  • Avocado, diced
  • Cilantro leaves
Instructions
  1. In a skillet, heat the olive oil and chili powder until fragrant, 1 minute. Add the diced green chiles, black beans and ¾ cup water. Cook until slightly thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Top baked potatoes with chili, shredded Monterey Jack, sour cream, diced avocado and fresh cilantro.

 

Peach Crumble Pie from Everyday Food Magazine, July/August 2011

After I’ve gone through a magazine, there are always tabs left; paper reminders of recipes that I didn’t have time to get to. They hang around in the recesses of my mind, whispering ‘hello’ once in a while. It’s because of this that I’ve created Turn Back Time Tuesday. It’s a chance to go pull out an old magazine and make one of those recipes that doesn’t deserve to be forgotten. Care to join me?

My daughter is outside riding her bike in the driveway. When I glance out there, I see the top of her Spiderman helmet bobbing with ponytail swinging beneath it and her skinned, scabbed knees pumping away.

Every once in a while she stops to ‘check’ on her bike. She’ll give the screws a pretend turn, tug on the spokes and perform other kinds of maintenance in her mind that I can only guess about. Then she scratches. A mosquito bite on the arm, another one or two on the calf.

Finally, in the manner that only a child who cares nothing about whether anyone is looking will do, she pulls out her wedgie and climbs back on the bike to ride a bit more.

For a few minutes, I sit back in my chair, leave the computer and adulthood behind and relive being six again through her youthful imagination and lack of self consciousness.

Then I want pie.

The Process

Martha’s crust is and always has been amazing. I love the fact that it’s done in the food processor. I love the fact that, when I cut into it, it flakes apart in such a satisfying way. If I had to choose between this one and null, I’d be hard pressed to do so. They’re both fantastic and easy.

The rest is cake; well, pie. Cut peaches; toss them with flour and sugar. Mix crumble ingredients, leaving large clumps. Of course, that never works for me because the butter melts and I don’t end up with clumps, just delicious ooze. I think that’s more a result of my working the crumble as much as I should so that the butter/flour/sugar/oats create combined lumps. I don’t know.

If you have an answer, please share.

The Verdict

Once again we have a dessert that received hearty thumbs-up from all three family members. Hubby and Dudette like it just as it was, though Dudette was more focused on the crumble, crust and ice cream than the actual fruit.

I thought it was very, very good, but I would have liked a little zing to the filling. I found it to be rather sweet. Still though, sweet isn’t bad and I will take fruit pies over just about any sweet treat that doesn’t have the word cheesecake in it.

What I’d Do Different Next Time

I’d add a half teaspoon or so of lemon to the filling to balance the sweetness of the peaches and sugar and a little salt to the crumble to also give a little break to the sweetness.

Peach Crumble Pie from Everyday Food Magazine, July/August 2011
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 8
Ingredients
For The Crust:
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for rolling
  • ¼ teaspoon fine salt
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
For The Filling:
  • 3 pounds peaches, halved, pitted, and cut into ½-inch slices (8 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons light-brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
For The Crumble:
  • ⅓ cup packed light-brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
  • ⅓ cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
Instructions
  1. Make crust: In a food processor, pulse flour, salt, and granulated sugar until combined. Add butter; pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal, with a few pea-size pieces of butter remaining. Sprinkle with 3 tablespoons ice water. Pulse until dough is crumbly but holds together when squeezed (if necessary, add up to 2 tablespoons ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time); do not overmix. Form dough into a disk, wrap tightly in plastic, and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour (or up to overnight).
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly flour a rolling pin and work surface and roll out dough to a 12-inch round. Place in a 9-inch pie plate, fold overhang under, and crimp edges. Make filling: In a large bowl, toss together peaches, brown sugar, and flour until combined. Make crumble: In a small bowl, combine brown sugar, flour, and oats; using your hands, work in butter until large clumps form.
  3. Transfer peach filling to pie shell, then sprinkle crumble evenly over top. Place pie on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until juices are bubbling and topping is golden, 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack 1½ hours before serving.
Notes
I'd add a half teaspoon or so of lemon to the filling to balance the sweetness of the peaches and sugar and a little salt to the crumble to also give a little break to the sweetness.

 

Subscribe to Everyday Food Magazine.

Buffalo Chicken Thighs from Martha Stewart's Everyday Food Magazine, July 2011

Hubby and I have a standing date that takes place every three to four months. We grab Dudette, pack a few bags and head to Wilmington; the one with beaches like Carolina, Kure and Wrightsville. Our date doesn’t include visiting any of those beaches, swimming in the surf or even catching a glimpse of the ocean. Instead, we drop Dudette off at her grandparents house and head for Buffalo’s for a few mugs Yuengling on draft, a basket of onion rings and several varieties of their incredible wings.

That’s just about the only time we have wings because, well, I do try to avoid deep frying foods at home. My arteries, posterior and general health all thank me (usually). I know that wings can be baked in the oven and grilled outside, but I admit it; I’m a fan of a good, deep-fried wing that’s then been tossed in a fantastic glaze. Plus, there’s the whole Yuengling on tap thing going on.

So, if Martha had offered up a recipe for buffalo chicken wings, I might have tried it, but with no expectations of it being as good as our date wings. Instead, she takes the buffalo idea to the rest of the bird and serves up buffalo taste in the more meaty thigh. Worth a try, thinks I.

The Process

If you have the magazine, you already know that what I’m making is only half of the original recipe. The whole thing is Buffalo Chicken Thighs with Celery and Blue Cheese Salad. Since I’m the only one in the house that likes blue cheese dressing, I decided to forego that salad for the Chopped Green Bean and Celery Salad. If you’re wanting the blue cheese dressing, you’ll need to get the magazine.

Making the chicken is easy. Salt, pepper and a sprinkle of cayenne is all that goes on it before it’s put in a hot oven for a half hour or so. Because we’re dealing with the more fatty thigh and the heat is so high, the skin gets very crispy, which is really important when making any buffalo-style dish.

While the chicken bakes, it’s time to make the glaze, which involves heating butter, cayenne, vinegar, salt and pepper in a small saucepan.

Once the chicken’s done, it gets tossed in a bowl with the butter mixture and that’s it.

The Verdict

Way hot. Way too hot for me. I wouldn’t even let Dudette try it. She had a piece that just had been baked with salt and pepper. Hubby, on the other hand, he loved this. He loved the butter sauce too. He ended up pouring on his potatoes. Remember though, he has a sinus infection and so his taste buds are working at half strength. For all we know, he could have fried the inside of his mouth and we won’t find out until he gets on the right meds.

This is very hot, but it is also very tasty. I admit that I didn’t coat my chicken thigh with the butter sauce. I did sprinkle it with the cayenne, but then I just dipped a piece in the sauce to see what I thought. The flavor is good, but I just haven’t developed that level of heat tolerance.

What I’d Do Different Next Time

Instead of using cayenne pepper, I’d add a good hot sauce with the butter instead. The cayenne never integrated at all and so the coating left places that were incredibly hot, and others that were just very hot. I think a liquid hot sauce would provide a more even coating. Serving this with some kind of “mouth cooler,” like Celery and Blue Cheese Salad that should be with this or the green bean salad I used is a must.

Buffalo Chicken Thighs from Martha Stewart's Everyday Food Magazine, July 2011
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Meat
Cuisine: American
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 1½ pounds total)
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1¼ teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 5 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
  • 3 ounces blue cheese, crumbled (3/4 cup)
  • 3 large celery stalks, cut into ¼-inch pieces
  • 1 head romaine lettuce, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Place chicken, skin side up, on a rimmed baking sheet and season with salt, pepper, and ½ teaspoon cayenne. Cook until skin is golden and crisp and chicken is cooked through, 20 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, 2 tablespoons vinegar, and half the blue cheese. Add celery and romaine, season with salt and pepper, and toss to combine. Sprinkle salad with remaining blue cheese.
  2. In a small pot, melt butter with ¾ teaspoon cayenne over medium-low. Whisk in 3 tablespoons vinegar and remove from heat; season with salt and pepper. In a medium bowl, toss chicken with butter mixture to coat. Divide chicken among four plates, drizzle with any extra butter mixture, and serve with salad.
Notes
Instead of using cayenne pepper, I'd add a good hot sauce with the butter instead. The cayenne never integrated at all and so the coating left places that were incredibly hot, and others that were just very hot. I think a liquid hot sauce would provide a more even coating. Serving this with some kind of "mouth cooler," like Celery and Blue Cheese Salad that should be with this or the green bean salad I used is a must.

 

Chopped Green Bean and Celery Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette from Martha Stewart's Everday Food Magazine, July 2011

You know, I can’t remember the last time I bought vegetables, but I’ve eaten more in the past month than I probably did all winter. Between our shared garden and the generosity of several friends, we have everything from jalapenos to eggplants to green beans and cantaloupes.. The only common summer vegetable that I know isn’t in there is yellow squash.  I am absolutely loving this.

Thankfully, the magazines realize that we’re all overflowing with summer goodness and continue to provide unique and fresh ways to use the food. What also helps is recipes that don’t include firing up the stove or oven. It’s supposed to reach 100 degrees here today. I don’t need to add to the heat in any way if I can avoid it.

Enter Martha Stewart and this green bean salad. Fresh, crisp and uncooked. I’ve not been a huge fan of raw green beans before, but these looked worth the try.

The Process
This doesn’t get much easier. The vinaigrette is a simple combination of white-wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, honey, salt, pepper and olive oil. Whisked all together, it’s done.

The salad takes the longest because a pound of green beans have to be cut into 1/4-inch pieces, as do three stalks of celery. Once that’s done though, it’s just a matter of adding the vegetables to the bowl with the vinaigrette, tossing and serving.

I also chopped up some of the celery leaves and added them as a garnish just because I thought it looked pretty.

The Verdict
Dudette and I both enjoyed this very much. It’s light and refreshing and a great way to use garden-fresh green beans. Hubby found the dish to be rather uninteresting, but he still has a raging sinus infection and unless there’s a half cup of hot sauce in something, he doesn’t taste much of anything right now.

What I’d Do Different Next Time
I think the balance of vinegar to oil was a little off; heavy on the vinegar. I added a bit more Dijon mustard after the first taste and it calmed things down perfectly. The total greenness of this dish is perfect when serving other brightly colored dishes like corn on the cob or stuffed tomatoes or even red peppers. Because of that, I don’t feel the need add anything with color to this dish.

Chopped Green Bean and Celery Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette - print this recipe
from Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food Magazine, July 2011

2 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon honey
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound green beans, trimmed and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
3 stalks celery, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch pieces

Whisk together the vinegar, mustard, honey and salt and pepper to taste in a serving bowl. While whisking, stream in the olive oil until combined.

Add the cut green beans and celery to the vinaigrette; toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

StumbleUpon