It's coming up on Turkey season, and so I'm saving back whatever I can from the grocery budget to get ready. Turkey is great for Thanksgiving or Christmas, but we eat at our daughter's. A whole turkey is a very good way to get poultry into our diets for very little or for free. Lots of grocery stores will give you a free turkey if you buy a certain amount of groceries. Go for the heaviest turkey you can find, because the proportion of meat to bone is much better. Then thaw the bird out and start cutting.
Breast meat cut about 3/8 inch thick can be pounded between two sheets of wax paper with the flat side of a mallet. Then dip them in milk and flour and gently fry them. Use the pan juices to make gravy. Don't spend hard-earned money on jars of gravy. To the fat and pan juices, stir in 1 tablespoon of flour for each tablespoon of juices and fat. Stir it in well. Add a teaspoon of salt for each tablespoon of flour. Stir like crazy. Pour in three cups of milk and stir and let it bubble for 2-3 minutes. Taste for seasoning. You might like pepper in yours. You could also broil slices of breast. Dip it in a mixture of 6 Tsps. lemon juice, 1 Tsps. paprika and 1 tsp. fine herbs, if you have them. Baste once or twice during broiling.
The thighs are really nice for roasting. One thigh will make a turkey salad for two or more. Chop roasted meat into small pieces. Do the same with a couple of stalks of celery. You can add mustard, pickles of all kinds, or olives. Pineapple tidbits are nice. Then add mayonnaise or half mayo and half plain yogurt to taste. Serve on a lettuce leaf if you have one handy. The salad is good with cooked, cooled pasta too. Bone out some turkey for stir-fries. Use leftover cooked turkey to make jambalaya.
I can usually freeze about 20 packages for later meals. It doesn't have to be stuffed and roasted. It can be all kinds of different foods, especially if you freeze it raw instead of cooked. Use it like chicken. Barbecue it, or mix it into chili in place of beef. It cooks quickly and takes on the taste of whatever you fix it with. Now take the bones and bits of meat clinging to them. Put them in a big pan with enough water to cover, a peeled carrot, two stalks of celery and an onion. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and a tablespoon or two of vinegar. Simmer nice and slow for a few hours. When it's cooked down a bit, start tasting to see if it has the rich flavor you want. when it's right, strain out everything but broth. Cook veggies, turkey bits and some pasta or white beans in it for a wonderful, nourishing soup on a wintry day!
By Coreen from Rupert, ID