At this time of year, assembling multi-course meals for more people than you typically have around the table can be intimidating. And besides the Big Feast, there are dozens of other, smaller dinners that need cooking and parties that need DIY catering, generally under the (albeit festive) duress of the season, and very often for company.
The Turkey Farmers of Canada asked me to come up with a series of beyond-the-usual turkey recipes to share over the season, and so I adapted one of my favourite meals to use turkey, and it worked brilliantly – smothered turkey is great for the typical every day feeding of people, but its sauciness also lends itself well to more celebratory occasions. It’s the sort of one-dish dinner that will hold and reheat well (add a splash of water or stock if the sauce gets too thick), and looks great – all it needs is a bit of parsley. Mashed potatoes are the perfect vehicle, and are one of my all-time favourite foods. (Plus, you can make extra and do croquettes the next day. Leftovers season is the best.)
I was also sent a home sous vide machine to take for a spin, and it worked perfectly with turkey parts, and breasts in particular – I know they’re not quite as common as slow cookers and instant pots, but if you happen to have one (or plans to tuck one into someone’s stocking), the simmer in a bag method keeps all the moisture in, and there’s zero concern about getting the temp right, since you punch it into the unit before you begin, and it won’t go over. Also: you can just use regular heavy duty zip-lock bags… no need to buy special bags for it. When you’re ready to eat, slice your sous vide turkey breast and sauce it up. Otherwise, the oven works just fine – and will give you crispy skin, if that’s what you’re after.