Set out a shallow roasting pan with rack. If turkey is frozen - thaw according to directions on package. Clean turkey, rinse, drain and pat turkey dry with absorbent paper towel. Set aside.
Mix: 3/4 cup melted butter, 2 tsp salt, 1 tsp sage or 1/2 tsp of thyme, 1/2 tsp rosemary and 1/2 tsp marjoram and add 1/4 tsp pepper.
Lightly toss butter mixture with 2 qts. soft bread cubes, 3/4 cup milk, 1/3 cup chopped celery with leaves and 1/3 cup chopped onion.
Spoon stuffing into neck and body of the turkey just before roasting. Extra stuffing may be placed in greased covered baking dish and baked with turkey the last hour of baking time.
To close body cavity, sew or skewer and lace with cord. Fasten neck skin to back with skewer. Tie drumsticks to tail. Bring wing tips onto back. Brush skin thoroughly with olive oil. The olive oil will help seal the skin and give it a golden brown look when cooked.
Roast uncovered at 325°F for 4 to 4 1/2 hours (12 to 12 lb turkey). The turkey is done when the temperature on your meat thermometer shows 190°F. If your turkey starts to get too golden - place an oil moistened piece of cheesecloth over the turkey and keep basting the cloth with the juices on the bottom of the pan. You should baste your turkey several times during the cooking process whether you use the cloth or not.
After the turkey is done - remove from oven and let stand 30 to 40 min. before serving. This allows the turkey to absorb its juices and become easier to carve. This also allows time to prepare gravy and garnishes.
Place your turkey on a platter and garnish with parsley and spicy cranberry sauce.
Wash and break off ends of fresh green beans. Cut lengthwise into fine strips. 1 1/2 lbs. (about 5 cups) green beans.
For Mustard Sauce - scald 3/4 cup cream or undiluted evaporated milk.
Stir 1/4 cup sugar, 2 tbs. dry mustard, 2 tsp. cornstarch and 1/2 tsp salt. Add gradually the scalded milk; stir constantly.
Stirring gently and constantly, bring to a rapid boil over direct heat and cook for 3 min. pour into double boiler top and place over simmering water. Cover and cook 10 to 12 min. stirring occasionally. Remove cover and vigorously stir about 3 tbs. of hot mixture into 1 egg yolk slightly beaten. Immediately blend into mixture in double boiler. Cook over simmering water 3 to 5 min. Stir slowly and keep mixture cooking evenly. Remove from heat. Add gradually, stirring in 1/4 cup cider vinegar. Put beans into hot serving dish. pour sauce over beans and serve immediately. Serves 4 or 5.
Combine in a small saucepan and heat to boiling - 1 cup sugar, 1 cup water, 1 3-in. piece cinnamon stick and 1/2 tsp salt. Boil uncovered for 5 min. Add 2 cups (about 1/2 lb.) cranberries, washed and sorted. Continue to boil uncovered without stirring, about 5 min. or until skins pop open. Cool and remove cinnamon stick. Serve with meat or poultry.
Also see Crazy For Cranberries
Cube and boil potatoes - my rule of thumb is on1 potato for each person and 1 or 2 for the pot depending on many people.
Cook until tender and a fork goes through the potato easily. Drain and put back into your pot. Slice butter into pats and add/mix until you get the desired consistency. For creamier mashed potatoes add a little mayo to taste.
Giblet Gravy -- http://www.fabulousfoods.com/recipes/sauces/gravy/gibletgrav.html
Guilt Free Turkey Gravy -- http://www.fabulousfoods.com/recipes/sauces/gravy/guiltlessgrav.html
Sherry Gravy -- http://www.fabulousfoods.com/recipes/sauces/gravy/sherrygrav.html
Onion Gravy -- http://www.fabulousfoods.com/recipes/sauces/gravy/oniongravy.html
For those who prefer a light-colored, delicately spiced pumpkin pie then you must try these.
You can purchase little pie or tart shells or make your own crust and put into 4-inch pie/tart pans.
Crust - 1 8 or 9 inch pie
1 cup sifted flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup vegetable shortening
2 1/2 tbs. cold water
Mix flour and salt and cut in shortening with pastry blender or two knives until pieces are size of small peas. Sprinkle gradually over mixture a teaspoon at a time the 2 1/2 tbs. cold water. Mix lightly with a fork after each addition. Add only enough water to hold pastry together. Work quickly and do not over handle. Shape into a ball and flatten on a lightly floured surface. Roll from center to edge into a round about 1/8 in. thick and about 1 in. larger than overall size of pan. With knife or spatula, loosen pastry from surface wherever sticking occurs; lift pastry slightly and sprinkle flour underneath.
Loosen one-half from board with spatula and fold over other half. Loosen remaining part and fold in quarters. Gently lay in pan and unfold pastry, fitting it to the pan so that it is not stretched.
Trim edge with scissors or sharp knife to overlap 1/2 in. fold extra pastry under at edge and press edges together with a fork or flute. Thoroughly prick bottom and sides of shell with a fork. Omit pricking if filling is to be baked in shell.
NOTE: Do not bake if you are making the below recipe - just put shells into refrigerator. Bake at 450°F for 10 to 15 min. or until crust is light golden brown. Cool on cooling rack.
Save left over crust or make extra and roll out and cut with a cookie cutter and place on top of your pie for a festive look.
Pumpkin Pie Recipe
Combine 2 cups canned pumpkin, 2/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar and a mixture of the following: 1 tsp mace, 3/4 tsp ginger, 3/4 tsp nutmeg, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp salt. Combine and add to pumpkin mixture, mixing until smooth the following 2 eggs slightly beaten, 1 cup cream and 1 cup milk.
Remove pastry from refrigerator. pour about 1/2 cup filling into each pastry shell. Sprinkle tops with nutmeg and add your cookie cutter cut out shape of crust to top. Bake at 450°F for 10 min. Reduce heat to 350 and bake 20 min. longer or until silver knife comes out clean when inserted halfway between center and edge. Remove pies from oven and cool on cooling rack. Pipe whipped cream around center decoration in pie and sprinkle with autumn leave candy confetti just before serving.
Top your table with Leaf Confetti for a finishing touch!