Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year by far! I don’t care where you are from, nationality or religion, because when it comes to Thanksgiving everyone celebrates, and we all have a lot to be thankful for. It is the time of the year when everyone starts being a little nicer to each other as Christmas and Hanukah are right around the corner.
To me Thanksgiving is about the 5 F’s
You can throw in a sixth F if you get a little frisky later in the evening, but you will have to figure that one out on your own as we are keeping this thing clean here.
Back to the fifth F-frying
We have been deep frying turkey for Thanksgiving for over 10 years, and it’s a great fun tradition that takes you out of the kitchen and into the backyard or garage with your friends and family. If you do deep fry please very careful, and never deep fry a wet or frozen bird. Moisture and hot oil together = disaster! Please make sure you thaw and dry the bird out for quality. If you are going to brine it, please add some flavor, brine it by soaking it in a nice water solution. To the water add some sugar, salt, maybe some soy sauce or honey, and some oranges or lemons. Then soak it overnight and dry it in the refrigerator. Air dry that bird for a couple of days to make sure it is super dry and then it’s ready for the deep fryer.
A nice Capon family tradition that you might want to try, since you already have that big vat of hot oil is to do a pre-fry game party. We invite our friends and neighbors over earlier in the day before they head to their own dinners, and we fry up some chicken wings/lollipops, maybe some tater tots or jalapeño poppers as well. Make sure the oil is nice and hot - 350 to 375 degrees, and when you take the food out drain it on some paper towels before you eat. I also recommend making some cups of chili or maybe a nice sausage, white bean, kale tomato soup.
A couple of more turkey and meal tips. If you aren’t going to deep fry the turkey, we also roast a turkey. Now don’t be afraid to NOT roast a whole turkey. I know everyone thinks you are supposed to bring a whole roasted bird to the table and carve it like you see in the movies. The truth is a turkey doesn’t cook properly that way. It takes 3 plus hours to cook and you never really can tell when it is quite done or overdone. I personally like to debone the turkey. Take off the breasts, the legs and the thighs and take out the bones. Then stuff the parts with some wild mushrooms, sage, caramelized onions and a little mustard. Roll and tie them up and cook them like a roulade for about an hour. When you take them out, they are super easy to slice and it’s an easy way to cook it. I like to slice them into nice quarter or half inch slices not paper thin. Don’t be afraid to NOT roast the whole bird. You don’t want to dry out the bird, as you want it to be moist, juicy and delicious. I also like to make some nice vegetables and good sides like a cornbread sausage stuffing or a caramelized onion roasted garlic potato dish.
Thanksgiving is supposed to be time well spent with your family and friends, so you don’t want to leave all the work to the day of. It’s all about the PREP, so make sure you get this stuff done a couple of days ahead of time. You don’t want to be running around crazy on Thanksgiving, you want to be able to enjoy the holiday with your family and friends and have some fun!