Sallie Mars, Global Director of Creative Talent, shares her recipe for Thanksgiving Orange Turkey and the story of her Lithuanian-born Grandmother buying a turkey platter, which not only celebrated the 1st Thanksgiving but also represented her feelings about life as an immigrant in the U.S.
In the 1950’s, the height of the "American Melting Pot" years, my Jewish grandmother, born in Lithuania in 1906, bought a turkey platter celebrating the 1st Thanksgiving. Selective memory aside, it depicted well-fed Pilgrims and bare chested “Indians” sharing their bounty. This platter was more of a representation of my grandmother’s feelings about the United States than about a glossy depiction of history. She lost her mother at the age of 6 and went to live with a Yiddish-speaking aunt in a tenement on the lower east side where she learned how to cook, clean and care for children. Marrying during the Great Depression, raising children in Brooklyn during WWII, and losing her husband to a heart attack at the age of 43, might have dampened her spirit but she always appreciated the opportunities afforded her in America. My grandmother lived on the upper west side from 1952 to until her death in 2012 at the age of 106.
I adapted this turkey recipe from The Silver Palate Cookbook. I have made this recipe at least 15 times and it always comes out great.
THANKSGIVING ORANGE TURKEY
2 Juice Oranges
1 lb Butter
4 tb Corn oil
20 lb Turkey
Recipe makes 15 servings
1. Make the stuffing for the turkey.
2. Wash the turkey well, inspecting for pinfeathers, and chop off the wing tips, reserving them for later use with giblets in gravy or stock. Dry the turkey inside and out with a kitchen towel.
3. Slice 2 oranges in half. Squeeze the juice all over the outside of the bird and rub into the cavity to freshen. Stuff squeezed oranges into cavity. Salt and pepper the cavity to taste.
4. Rub the outside of the turkey all over with 1 1/2 sticks of softened butter and sprinkle generously with salt, pepper and paprika. Drape the turkey with cheesecloth (or loose tin foil).
5. Place turkey, breast side up, on a rack in a roasting pan.
6. Four to five hours before serving is scheduled, place the turkey in a preheated 325 degree oven.
7. Melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter with 4 tablespoons of corn oil in a saucepan. Lift the cheesecloth from the turkey and baste every 30 minutes, first with the butter and oil mixture and later with the turkeys own juices.
8. Roast for 3 to 4 (20 minutes/pound) hours or until the thigh juices run clear yellow when pricked with a skewer. There should be no traces of pinkness. The drumstick will move easily in the socket when the turkey is done. (You can buy a disposable plastic thermometer that pops up when turkey is done).
9. When the turkey is done, remove to a platter and cover with foil. The turkey should stand 30 minutes before carving.
10. Serve the turkey on a large platter. Be sure you have sharp knives and a good carver among the group. Since that may be rare, buy an electric carving knife. It’s one of the few lifetime purchases you will make.
For a moist bird, frequent basting is essential, so don’t forget! Baste every 30 minutes---breast and legs should be a lovely golden color. Pro Tip: Remove turkey from oven when basting so that the oven temperature does not drop as you baste.
Emily Kapusta, Director Internal Comms, McCann Worldgroup shares her full menu for Turkey day:
- Italian Herb Turkey Breast – ordered from a butcher up the street, seasoned and ready for our small family to pop in the oven
- Roasted veggies – always Brussel Sprouts, Carrots and Parsnips
- Jalapeno Stuffing – a little kick, but yummy
- Pies – always my fave and staple chocolate cream, and pumpkin
We all know side dishes are as important as the turkey. This is a recipe for Bruce Stockler’s (our head of social) favorite dish after the turkey – carrott souffle with pecan crumble topping.
1 stick unsalted butter melted;
plus 6 tablespoons softened; and more for greasing pan
2 pounds carrots, peeled
1 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 cup toasted chopped pecans.
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 7-by-11-inch casserole. In a large pot bring 8 cups water to a boil, add carrots and cook about 20 minutes, until carrots are soft. Drain and place carrots in a food processor with melted butter or margarine, 1/2 cup flour, the sugar, salt and eggs. Purée. Spoon carrot mixture into casserole.
2. To make topping, place softened butter or margarine, brown sugar, remaining 1/2 cup flour and pecans in a small bowl. Mix with your fingers. Sprinkle evenly over carrot mixture. Bake for about 45 minutes or until top is browned.