Category: Thanksgiving

Make Ahead Turkey Gravy… by Substitute Teacher Elise Feiner @ Foodfanataolics!

 

My Italian yankee-now-Floridian culinary girlfriend recently posted her make-ahead turkey gravy recipe that’s genius! Elise is actually one of my “Substitute Teachers” you’ll be hearing from once I can get my e-zine up and rolling… soon I’m hopin! 

So many folks stress over gravy, and it’s not that hard to do.  Since I just don’t have time today to put it all into a printable version, I’m just gonna point you to her post I shared on my Wendy’s Home Economics! faceboook page.  I shared a post from her culinary community, Foodfanataholics! where she did extensive pictures to show you along the way what things should look like…  with step by step instructions in the comment of each picture.  Maybe one of these days, I’ll get it posted here for you to quickly print out, but for now… do come see her gravy post on my FB page!  Just look at this wondermous stuff…

Ring the dinner bell and grab a ladle. It’s gravy time boys and girls!!! 

The start of Make Ahead Gravy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Make Ahead Turkey Gravy on its way…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oh, can’t you just smell this? Layers of flavor…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And there you have it! Make Ahead Turkey Gravy… making your day stress free… and you’ll be crowned Gravy QUEEN!

 

 

 

 

 

Blueberry BBQ Sauce …for that tired turkey!

Serve this easy sauce over pork. And it’s especially tasty over leftover turkey and dressing!

It surely is hard to believe it, but Thanksgiving is on our doorstep!  There always seems to be some of that bird leftover… and many enjoy eating it with leftover dressing, as is, for days on end, while other are looking for ways to reinvent it.  One of my social media clients is a blueberry farm, with all sorts of blueberry goodies (jams, salsa, juice, syrup) and honey too. I’m sharing this recipe that is going out in Creekside Farm’s newsletter this week. You can use fresh or frozen berries, or even mix some blueberry jam with the BBQ sauce instead.
(excused the poor quality pics… these were from long ago!)

So as you prepare your grocery shopping list for the holiday, pick up some blueberries so you can stir together this sauce… really quickly!  It’s soooooo good over turkey and pork too.

Gobble! Gobble!  Get your turkey ON.

 

Blueberry BBQ Sauce

This is a sweet and savory sauce that is great on grilled chicken, pork or fish… or leftover turkey and dressing. It’s simple and quick to make, and can be stored in a jar in the refrigerator for up to about 2 weeks.

Course: Main Course, Sauces
Cuisine: Farmers Market, Grilling, North Carolina Goodies, Southern
Servings: 1 pint
Author: Wendy Perry
Ingredients
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 1 cup favorite thick bbq sauce
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • several sprigs fresh thyme, or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 1/2 cup honey
Instructions
  1. Put the berries, bbq sauce, vinegar and thyme into heavy bottomed sauce pot. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to slow boil, stirring frequently. Cook until the berries have popped and the sauce has cooked down and thickened. Whisk in honey.  

Soup’s on! Blushing Turkey Soup


Well here we are, just like that ~ looking at Thanksgiving 2017 in our rear view mirror. Did your grandmas tell you too, that “the older you get, the faster the days and years go by?”

To be honest, I don’t have any leftover turkey at my house. This year, my little family decided to do pork instead… since we never have been big on turkey. And we aren’t even doing our Thanksgiving meal until tomorrow (Saturday). We even did something outside our box and went OUT to eat for early supper yesterday on Thanksgiving… at an Italian restaurant! And liked it. And decided we might keep up this new tradition henceforth.

They only offered a buffet, but goodness gracious, you cannot believe all the food on the tables! I declare, if folks couldn’t find something there to suit their fancy, they needn’t be eating. The word “bountiful” comes to mind as there were platters and chafing pans filled to the brim with Italian creations… right alongside traditional southern Thanksgiving favorites like dressing and sweet taters.

And there were seafoods, fishes, prime rib, ham and yes, turkey! I suppose they might have some sort of soups on their menu the next few days too, which is a great way to give lurking turkey (and whatever else) a new life!

Earlier this week, my friend Heather Overton at the NC Department of Agriculture asked if I had any last minute ideas for such to feature on their blog, and well, of course I do! Waste not want not around my kitchen, and not often is anything thrown out. I love the challenge of “repurposing” food… bones, scraps and trimmings. I can and will make soup from just about anything… no two pots ever the same. I gift most of the soups I make since I just can’t eat it all! As it turns out, this tasty soup can actually work as a dip as well and a really fast way to throw together a simple meal so you can enjoy more family time this weekend.

So plug in that crock pot and enjoy… feel free to “color outside the lines” of the recipe and add in leftovers you have that will add more layers of flavor to your soup… or adjust the seasonings for your taste. Serve with crunchy pork rinds or cornbread and you’re set to head into the Christmas season… ready or not!

Blushing Turkey Soup

Looking for a way to enjoy your leftover turkey after the Thanksgiving feast is over? Enjoy this recipe featuring leftover turkey, George’s BBQ sauce and pork skins.  If you don't have George's, simply substitute your favorite sauce to "blush" your soup.

Course: Brunch, Main Course, Soup
Author: Wendy Perry
Ingredients
  • 1 15 ounce can white beans (navy, northern, etc.), drained
  • 1 14 ounce can creamed corn
  • 1 11 ounce can Mexican corn
  • 3/4 cup George's Original or Hot Sauce
  • 1/2 cup George's Special Sauce
  • about 3 cups turkey or chicken broth
  • about 4 cups shredded turkey
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • salt to taste
  • 1 8 ounce cream cheese
  • 4 cups grated cheddar cheese
  • freshly chopped cilantro
Instructions
  1. Throw all ingredients through salt into crock pot. Heat on high until nice and hot, or if you’ll be out and about a while, just turn on low. About 20-30 minutes before eating, stir in cheeses and melt. Ladle into mugs or bowls and scatter with cilantro. Serve with skins, cornbread or dressing.


Recipe Notes

NOTE: If you want to serve this as a dip, leave out the broth to make it thicker. Add in small amounts until desired thickness. Scoop with skins or chips.

Fall Food ~ Ma Perry’s Corn Pudding!

Hey y’all!

Thought it was about time for the world’s slowest blogger to drop by.  So much has been happening and sometimes it just gets to be a bit much to keep up here, there and everywhere.

About a month or so ago, my old friend Patrick Johnson asked me to be his “show chef” on his WPTF radio show.  Patrick is there daily, but you can catch me on Thursday’s, around 11:45ish.  Sometimes he replays our chat on Friday too.  We talk about this, that and the other and usually a recipe idea or two that you can “throw” together…. that is seasonal, and features local goodness.  So I’m going to start “throwing” those recipes here, along with whatever else pops up, since I can offer in an easy and quick printable way for you and the radio listeners.

Last week, along with chatting about my appearance with my new Squash Blossom Vintage Travel Trailer at the Fall Southern Ideal Home Show, I shared my recipe for my Ma Perry’s Corn Pudding.  This is GOOD stuff, easy to make, and is a great side dish for just about anything.  I hope you will make some…. I even served this on a Christmas Dessert Buffet last year (and it was a hit!) with some Cinnamon Whipped Cream.  So here it is… for you to make and enjoy too.  Corn pudding is a family tradition with the Perry crowd… maybe it will become one for yours too.

Corn Pudding Image

Ma Perry's Corn Pudding

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: PTabout 45M

What to throw together...

  • 1-15 ounce can corn, drained and reserved (or equivalent fresh or frozen)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup water (I used the drained from above)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • pinch salt
  • pinch white pepper
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 4 tablespoons butter

How to throw together...

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Combine drained corn, egg, half of the water, sugar, salt and pepper.
  3. Pour into small baking dish.
  4. Scatter with flour and stir to mix.
  5. Dot with pats of butter.
  6. Bake about 30 minutes. If pudding is becoming dry, add remaining water and stir to moisten.
  7. Continue baking about 15 minutes until hot, bubbly and lightly browned.

Notes

This is a great side dish for just about any meat dish, especially pork and poultry. I really like it alongside fish and seafood too.

collards + cabbage + frost = “cabbards” time…. with Crispy Cornbread Cookies, Molasses Bacon Butter & Pot Likker

The time has just about come for the annual “cooking of the cabbards” to fill the freezer!  Like a squirrel stowing away acorns for the winter, I too, “get my cook’n on” once our local collards have had a good kissing o’ the frost.  Some think that’s just an old tale, but not this gal, lovingly called THE “Collard Queen” by those lucky enough to have had some bestowed uponst them by said ‘queen’ or have rubbed their full bellies after a sit’n at her table… served up with a side of Crispy Cornbread Cookies, some Molasses Butter, a warm cup of Pot Likker or cold buttermilk.  And don’t forget the farmers’ market treasures… including a menagerie of homemade chow chows destined to crown a heap’n helping of fall’s green ‘gold!’

So I’m in my kitchen a few days ago cooking cornbread cookies for this here post… setting up my photo shot, and about to savor the very last tidbit of my 2010 stash of cabbards I lucked up and found tucked into a back corner of the freezer when…”ding dong”… my doorbell rings.  My kitchen sidekick and 7YO nephew hollers…“Dee Dee, who is THAT?” (seeing as how it is mid-afternoon and we’re still in our loungy clothes  watching movies, blogging and eat’n).  I looked at him and said… “I have NO idea!” But I surely am hoping it’s somebody that won’t mind my receiving them in my ‘old lady house dress,’ (probably something akin to what my grandmas were wearing when they cooked collards) and Wyatt, running around in his ‘underdraws.’  I swing the door open, and there stands my cousin Mark… who I see fairly rarely, but usually when he drops by (less often than the proverbial blue moon), he has some sort of vegetable(s) gleaned from a nearby garden.  He leads me out to the back of his pick up truck (the preferred method of transportation for most of us country folk)… and what do I see…. THESE!  *C.O.L.L.A.R.D.S*

I’m not believing this… as mere seconds ago I’m in my kitchen, cooking up, photographing and in the middle of writing this very blog post about collards… when a big ole’ mess of them land on my front porch…  the weirdness of this timing is CRAYzee! And as delighted as I am about all this, I’m trying to factor in my head…  when in the world can I squeeze cabbard cook’n into this particular week’s schedule... with a TV show taping (see show video at My Carolina Today!) and a ginormous exciting photo shoot for Our State Magazine (where I’m so blessed to be food stylist and recipe developer…so subscribe if you don’t already, and buy holiday gift certificates too).  But never one to let a little thing like ‘limited hours in the day’ get in my way… a cabbard cook’n will commence!  I decided to just throw ’em in my big chest freezer till that can happen…something I have had to do before, and equates to that sweet kiss of frost… a BIG deep freeze kiss!

So without further ado, here is my much requested method for cooking collards (or in my case, “cabbards”).  These are sooo good, and worth every minute of effort it takes to get from the back end of a truck to your supper (and sometimes breakfast) plate.

Wendy’s Locally Famous Cabbards (Cabbage + Collards)

Wendy’s Cabbards

As THE “throw cooker” that I am (come see my Throw Cooking web page and recipes), I’m going to tell YOU how to throw these together… exactness is not important here!  These are the necessary ingredients and process.  I have, on occasion, cooked these in MASS to fill my freezer for the winter, but you can do any amounts that work for you.  A couple of years ago, I cooked 40 lbs. bacon and forget how many birds to have broth and bacon grease for 100 lbs. cabbage and 50 lbs. collards!  It took me quite some time to figure all this out, but because the collards ‘evaporate’ and disappear in the pot, I decided to see what happened if I added in some cabbage… and it makes the collards even better… sweeter… AND, the cabbage doesn’t disappear as much as the collards… so you end up with a whole lot more “cabbards” to store away and nobody but you knows this little secret, till NOW!

  • Chicken(s) or Hen(s)
  • Bacon (lots!)… more that you think… you need a goodly amount of rendered bacon grease
  • Collards… about 1/2 as much collards as cabbage (washed real good)
  • Cabbage… about twice as much cabbage as collards (washed real good)

EQUIPMENT:

  • BIG pot
  • Cast Iron Skillet
  • Tongs
  • Time

Put some water in a big old pot and throw your chicken(s) or hen(s) in there.  Bring to rolling boil, then reduce heat and keep cook’n till you have some tender bird and a big ole’ pot of chicken stock.  Take that bird out and make yourself a mess ‘o chicken salad or freeze for cooking in other stuff, like Chicken Pot Pies or Brunswick Stew.

Get that big old cast iron skillet out and fry up a LOT of bacon.  Sometimes on cabbard cooking day I’m outside doing all that AND cooking up a ginormous amount of my “Almost Famous Brunswick Stew”-will post that soon if you ask!… so I invite folks to drop by and eat bacon sandwiches.  Put this bacon grease into a big can (coffee can works great).

Rough slice the cabbage.  Throw some in the pot of broth, alternating with handfuls of torn collard leaves.  As it wilts, keep adding more to the pot.  Let this cabbard mix boil and boil… the more ‘tenderer’ the better.

On a burner beside this pot, put your big iron skillet on med-hi and add (generously) some bacon grease.  With tongs, grab some of the cabbards and plop into the hot skillet, including some of the wondermous Pot Likker they produced.  Start chopping with long-handled veggie chopper… as they cook down and shrink as you chop, continue grabbing more cabbards with your tongs and continue this process, stirring around to incorporate the bacon grease.  Once these are really tender and chopped real good, dump into big bowl to cool before putting into containers and continue doing this until you’ve cooked all your cabbards.

Cool’n Cabbards

When packing into containers, I try to leave good head space and top off with some of the broth so when heating, that is there to give a little moisture while warming.

Serve with Cornbread Cookies with Molasses Butter and mug of Pot Likker or Cold Buttermilk.

Cornbread Cookies with Molasses Bacon Butter

Wendy’s Crispy Cornbread Cookies

It’s really easy to throw together these crispy crunchy Cornbread Cookies and they are the perfect sidekick for your Cabbards.

  • your favorite hushpuppy mix
  • finely diced onions (any kind…sweet, green, scallion, chive, etc.)
  • sugar
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • lard

Mix hushpuppy mix according to package directions.  Add in onions and sugar to taste (you want these to be lightly sweetened and the sugar helps make them crispy too).  Grind in some pepper.  If your mix is really thick, add a little more water or milk/buttermilk, whatever you are using until thinner and pourable/spoonable.  I like to let my mixture sit about 10 minutes before cooking to adjust this consistency as it will thicken as it sits (but also, the flavors will marry a bit).

Heat thin amount of lard in cast iron skillet on med-high heat.  With a tablespoon, spoon into hot skillet and spread thin with back of spoon.  Fry until golden brown and flip; repeat on the other side.  Drain well on brown paper bag or paper towels.

Serve with Molasses Butter alongside Cabbards with mug of Pot Likker or Buttermillk.

MOLASSES BUTTER

  • Softened Butter
  • Molasses
  • Bacon Grease, optional
  • Cinnamon or Apple Pie Spice, optional

Drizzle some molasses over butter and swirl to blend.

VARIATIONS: To make Molasses Bacon Butter, stir in a bit of bacon grease.  A bit of cinnamon or apple pie spice is also tasty in Molasses Butter, depending on what you will be serving it with (especially great with pancakes, waffles or French Toast too)!

Enjoy y’all… and please throw me your comments below AND ‘share’ with all your friends!