Thursday, November 18, 2010

Tough turkey? An easy Thanksgiving and a tender bird

I remember grinding up turkey breast in a food processor and then bledning it in with a mashed potatoes so it wouldn't look unappetizing. People who have trigeminal neuralgia, glossopharyngeal neuralgia, or jaw joint problems.

There's a way to make Thanksgiving easier for people who have difficulty chewing. To brine a turkey makes it easier to chew and juicier, too. You can find plenty of brine recipes and instructions how to do it on the web. I like a mixture we get from Williams-Sonoma. Brining usually involves an overnight process and bags made especially for this purpose.  However, last Christmas I tried a new method, a dry brine.

This method is much simpler, and it leaves the turkey succulent. It's applied to turkey, chicken, or pork a few hours before time to cook; I leave mine on overnight. No boiling, brining bags, or additional liquids are required. The results are great!

If you need to keep things simple, you can also buy cornbread dressing mix (oh so easy to chew) from Williams-Somoma. I bought the gravy mix, too. Dressing mixes are also available in the store.

Usually I make a broth from the turkey and use some brown rice flour to cut down on the amount of gluten. It makes a light "gravy," allowing the natural flavors to make their statement.

I'll be putting some personal touches on the meal, making cranberry relish from fresh cranberries and making low-fat potatoes with protein. You can find that recipe here. And if you'd like to find other easy or no-chew recipes, just use the Google search bar underneath the title of my blog.

My son-in-law, who is quite the chef, will be bringing some veggies and other goodies. I'll eat more than I should, but my jaw won't be pained by it. It's just one more thing to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving.

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