Holiday troubleshooting recipes

By From page A20 | November 21, 2012

Basic Brine for Turkey
The ingredients:
1 cup kosher salt
½ cup brown sugar
about 40 sage leaves
4 quarts water

Putting it together:
Mix all ingredients together in a large pot. Bring to a boil and stir until everything is dissolved. Cool. Add 16 cups of cold water. Submerge turkey in brine in a non-reactive (plastic) container in the refrigerator for about an hour per pound. Before cooking, rinse turkey well under running water and pat dry. (Be sure to clean the sink carefully afterwards.)

Vegetarian Gravy
The ingredients:
2 tablespoons minced carrot
2 tablespoons minced celery
2 tablespoons minced onion
4 white mushrooms, minced
1 teaspoon olive oil
4 cups broth
½ teaspoon dried thyme
3 tablespoons cornstarch
salt and pepper to taste

Putting it together:
Sauté minced vegetables in oil until soft; add thyme. Mix cornstarch with ¼ cup cold broth. Add remaining broth to vegetables and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in cornstarch mixture. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly, and cook until thick, about 1 minute. Add salt and pepper to taste. Can be made up to 1 hour ahead of time and kept warm until needed. Stir in more broth if it thickens up too much. Makes 4 cups.

Cranberry-Sage Quinoa
The ingredients:
1 cup sliced almonds
1 tablespoon olive oil or butter
1 cup sliced shallots
2 teaspoon chopped fresh sage
1 cup dried cranberries
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups uncooked quinoa
4 cups vegetable broth

Putting it together:
Rinse quinoa well. Let drain.

Toast the almonds in a dry pan until golden brown. Reserve. In the same pan, cook shallots in olive oil until soft and starting to color, about 5 minutes. Add sage, salt and cranberries.

Add quinoa and broth and bring to a boil. Turn heat down to medium, cover and let cook 15 minutes, until liquid is absorbed and grain is tender. Fluff with a fork, stir in almonds and serve.

The ingredients:
4 tablespoons cold butter
1¾ cup flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
¾–1 cup milk

Putting it together:
Preheat oven to 350. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt together. Cut the butter into the flour until it has the consistency of cornmeal. Add the smaller amount of milk and stir; add more milk if needed to get a wet dough, spoonable.

Drop the dough out by the tablespoon onto a greased cookie sheet, and bake about 12 minutes. Makes about 16.

Julie Cross

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