Tag Archives: Martha Stewart.com

How to Carve a Thanksgiving Turkey: Good Tools and Confidence

Carving a turkey for the first time can be a truly imposing task. In the same way that little Cornish hens or poussins are like miniature versions of familiar roast chicken, a turkey looks like that chicken on steroids. All other considerations aside, most turkey is huge.

But the encouraging fact is, even though your Thanksgiving turkey is significantly bigger than a chicken, the process of taking it apart is largely the same.

Tools

To carve a turkey, you need a few basic tools:

  • A large cutting board, preferably one with drainage grooves or a “well” around the outside to catch drippings
  • A sharp knife — some like a long carving knife, others prefer a chef’s knife
  • A carving fork
  • A warm patter, to put the carved meat on
  • A warm pot of turkey stock nearby, to moisten the meat before it goes out (optional)

From Flickr.com

Tips

First, don’t carve your bird at the table. It’s messy. Present the bird to the dining room table if you must (although before dinner, doesn’t everyone hang around in the kitchen anyway?) and then return to the kitchen to carve.

Second, let the bird rest for around 30 minutes before carving. (Longer is usually fine; just stick the platter in a warm oven when you’re done carving.) Resting time is important because it allows all those good juices to re-infuse the meat. Carve too soon and you’ll have a dry bird (and also a very hot one, which makes it harder to carve).

Step-by-Step

These are just the basics, based on how we carve. Refer to the pros (see video below) for other methods, all of which work. For a photo step-by-step, check out this post on The Huffington Post.

1. Remove the drumsticks. My husband sometimes removes the thigh and leg pieces together, separating them after they’re off the bird. Holding the drumstick vertically, cut the meat off in bite-size pieces.

2. Remove the wings.

3. Separate the breast halves. Cut the breast meat horizontally, creating slices at whatever thickness you like.

4. With the large pieces you have, cut as much good meat off as you can. If you like, save the bones for stock and the drippings for gravy.

From The Huffington Post slide show.

Watch and Learn

Alton Brown at the Food Network presents How to Carve a Turkey

How to Carve a Turkey at Martha Stewart Living‘s “Everything Thanksgiving”

Cook’s Illustrated video: Carving a turkey

The Butcher Carves a Turkey” by Craig Duff, The New York Times

With the right tools and your new knowledge, carving your Thanksgiving turkey should be both straightforward and easy to manage.  All the best for a very happy Thanksgiving!
The gThankYou! Team

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Gift Certificates and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are two of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand (Turkey or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick KileyChief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Join the Conversation @gThankYou 
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

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The Secret to a Perfect Holiday Turkey: Dry Brining

Every November, people wrestle bulky birds into bags of brine, slopping all over the kitchen and making a mess in the name of a more tender turkey.

No more.

Wet brining — making a solution of water, salt, herbs and spices in which the turkey would sit for 12 to 24 hours — is undoubtedly a fine way to infuse flavor into a conventional store-bought turkey (most of which have been bred for size, not taste). But dry brining is so much simpler, and the results are so consistently good, that there’s no shame in taking the easy way out.

A dry-brined turkey, called “The Judy Bird” after Zuni Café owner Judy Rodgers, who pioneered the technique. Photo credit Food52.

One of the first chefs to introduce the idea of a poultry dry brine into home cooks’ regular rotation was Judy Rodgers, owner of Zuni Cafe in San Francisco. In “The Zuni Café Cookbook” (W.W. Norton & Co., 2002), Rodgers wrote that the brine on a small roasting chicken “improves flavor, keeps it moist, and makes it tender.”

Applying salt in advance at first draws moisture out of the bird, but over time it draws it back in again, resulting in much juicier meat. When talking to home cooks who attempted her method, Rodgers reported that “the results are startling and delicious when they prepare a chicken this way in their gas or electric ovens.”

To dry brine your turkey, begin the Sunday night before Thanksgiving. Just before roasting, give it a few hours uncovered in the fridge so it dries out (that will help the skin get golden brown).

Credit: Washington City Paper

Measure one tablespoon of kosher salt for every five pounds of turkey (for a 15-pound turkey, that means 3 tablespoons). Sprinkle the salt all over the outside of the turkey and lightly on the inner cavity. It should look well-seasoned but not over-salted. (With chicken, I sometimes add pepper or other seasonings here — thyme and rosemary are lovely, as are blends like za’atar and an ancho chile combination.)

To store the turkey, you can put it in a sealable plastic bag, or simply cover it with a towel. It should be breast-side up; turn it occasionally.

When you’re ready to cook, give the turkey about an hour to come to room temperature. Then roast as usual — Rodgers recommends a higher heat, about 425°F, rotating midway through to make sure the skin gets evenly browned.

Find other converts to the dry-brine method at the LA Times, Food52 and Martha Stewart Living.

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Gift Certificates and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are two of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand (Turkey or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick KileyChief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Join the Conversation @gThankYou 
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

4th of July – Festive Red, White and Blue Menu Ideas!

It’s almost Independence Day – the celebration of summer and all things American! Something we are all grateful for.

gThankYou! Martha Stewart Flag Cupcake

Martha Stewart
“Flag Cupcake”

So put out your blanket on a grassy hill to reserve a spot for your local fireworks celebration and bring a lawn chair down to Main Street so you have a nice view of the traditional, small-town Fourth of July Parade. You don’t want to miss the marching bands, the 4-H float, representatives from the local VFW, and kids on bicycles decorated with red, white, and blue streamers.  Our forefathers may not have bought sparklers, fired up the barbecue grill, or headed to the beach in honor of our new country, but today there’s no better way to mark the patriotic day.

Like any great holiday, there are fabulous foods associated with the day. Grill up your favorite chicken, ribs, hamburgers or brats, add some corn on the cob, and celebrate with family and friends. Don’t forget to look for recipes that use locally grown produce – available in your neighborhood grocery store –  lots of berries, cherries, herbs, corn, tomatoes, peas, beans, and zucchini are in season right now.

For a menu that includes a little red, white, and blue, try some of these great desserts and side dishes!

Red, White and Blue Menu Ideas for a Festive 4th of July

gThankYou! Bon Apetit 3 Potato Salad

Red, White and Blue Potato Salad by Rick Browne
(Photo credit: Tina Rupp)

gThankYou! Watermelon Sorbet

gThankYou! Martha Stewart Firecracker Ice Pops

“Firecracker Ice Pops”
by Martha Stewart

  • And here’s a great finale to your picnic dinner, sparklers are optional!
gThankYou! Martha Stewart 4th of July Trifle

Red, White & Blue Berry Trifle
Perfect for 4th of July!
by Martha Stewart

Happy 4th of July!  Send your patriotic food photos and we will post them!

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are one of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand whole Turkey or half or whole Ham, at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.  

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo, and ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

Valentine Treats Everyone Will Love

Or Beyond the Box of Chocolates…

gThankYou! Candy HeartsAdmit it. You love Valentine’s Day.
Ever since you got your first box of candy hearts and exchanged superhero Valentines cards with all the kids in your third grade class, it’s been a special day on the calendar. You may have outgrown the Mickey Mouse mini cards, but you still look forward to the sweet treats that accompany this festival of love. This year, ditch the box of chocolate covered cherries and show your Valentine how much you care by making something delicious.

For kitchen novices, use a heart-shaped cookie cutter to make Valentine’s day cut out French toast, or swirl your breakfast batter into heart-shaped pancakes. Decorate plain sugar cookies with red and white frosting, sprinkles, and red hots, or bake pre-made cookie dough into Xs and Os. Bake brownies from a mix and top with red raspberries, strawberries, and vanilla ice cream.

To truly play culinary cupid, try one of these decadent desserts. You and your lucky recipients will be glad you did!

Fond of Fondue. You’ll be tempted to double dip with this warm, fudgy Rachel-Ray fondue treat. Great dippers include sliced bananas, strawberries, pound cake, pretzels, even marshmallows!

gThankYou! - Sprinkles Strawberry Cupcakes

Sprinkles Strawberry Cupcakes

Be My Cupcake?   Who says Valentine’s day is all about chocolate? These pretty pink cupcakes are full of fresh strawberries. This recipe thanks to Oprah, is straight from the world-famous Sprinkles Cupcake bakery and will win your heart.   Complete the decadence with Sprinkes’ fresh strawberry frosting recipe.

gThankYou! Martha Stewart Bittersweet Chocolate Mousse

Martha Stewart's Bittersweet Chocolate Mousse

Make the Most of Mousse.  Like a dozen roses and Casablanca, sometimes the classics are the best.   Here’s a classic bittersweet chocolate mousse from Martha Stewart that chocoholics will thank you for.

Spice it up!  Add some excitement to your Valentine’s treat with these Bon Appétit molten chocolate cakes, infused with an array of exotic spices.

Fill someone’s day with a special treat, you will be glad you did.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

About gThankYou, LLC

gThankYou! Turkey Gift Certificates are one of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand whole Turkey, at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S. 

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo, and ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.