Saturday, December 06, 2008

Pimping the Thanksgiving Groceries

*Click the images to see them full screen.*

As y'all probably all know, Thanksgiving was ten days ago and I spent that time in the flatlands feeding a bunch of chicks and watching a movie about traveling pants. This was the first time that I have actually laid out a spread for a bunch of folks and it was the first time that I deep-fried a turkey. I probably should have done a little more research on the deep fryer before allowing Bean to run off pell-mell and buy the first thing that she happened across, but lesson learned. The most difficult task that I endured throughout the two days of cooking was keeping the bubbling oil at a constant three hundred fifty degrees Fahrenheit. All of the other stuff was a cakewalk. Preparing the turkey took all of ten minutes after it was shot up like a heroin junkie in the Village. Oh, and that little happy ending with the poultry rub took about another five minutes. Handjobbing a turkey is pretty damn nasty.

The bird was seventeen point eight pounds and took approximately six thousand hours to thaw. That was a little longer (by thirty times) than Butterball advertised on the container, so prepare for that, folks. You cannot deep fry ICE, you know.

We purchased Tony Chachere's Creole Butter Marinade Injector to season the turkey and I shot that bad boy up with the whole damn bottle. It recommended to only use one quarter of the stuff. Okay, I went a little overboard, but it was damn tasty. Especially that burnt up skin on it.

I cooked the thing for about four minutes a pound. I was told to go three and a half minutes a pound, but the damn cooker kept dropping temp, so I ran it a little longer just out of spite. I was right. The meat was really juicy and flavorful. I added a bunch of cayenne to the rub and the turkey was kinda spicy. Spicy is good.

I also cooked a corn souffle because it just seemed right for a big honking deep fried thing as a textural accoutrement. Bean was mad as Hell about the corn thingy, because she thought that meant we couldn't have fried corn and a corn souffle at the same meal. What she fails to realize is that now that she is an adult, she can eat ice cream and Cheerios for every meal if she so chooses. And if she did that, she would be just like me.

The hard part about the corn souffle was putting it in the fridge for a day. I was really jonesing to cook it on Wednesday just to see what it would taste like.

I found a recipe for crockpot dressing on the webblyblargs and thought that would be a good deal because of the lack of cooking area in Bean's kitchen, plus it would require little supervision. This shit was seriously good. Try the RECIPE, it takes about thirty minutes of prep time and four hours of cooking in the crock pot. if you like your dressing a little more solid, back off the liquids a little or add more cornbread, I had to add about a cup of flour about halfway through to get it to thicken up. If you have a crock pot like mine, where the liner lifts out, you can prepare, store, and then cook all in the same container. Remember, this is man cooking, which means as little cleanup as possible.

Also, Bean had to have that damn sweet potato paste shit that everyone serves and she wanted to buy the paste in a damn can. I try not to cook anything like that, so I purchased living sweet potatoes and trimmed them up. That was the most time consuming task of the entire day. Who the Hell knew that sweet potatoes actually had an anus? In the end, (<--git it?) I just cut off both of the damn end corner thingys because I couldn't tell the ass from the mouth on most of those orange things. Sweet potatoes sure as Hell peel better than G_d's white, normal potato though.

Remember when you cook that sweet potato vomit, to cook it first for about thirty minutes before adding the marshmallows or they are going to be like molasses or amber. What in the mortal Hell is a damn marshmallow anydamnway?

This is the compilation photo. Top left shows the freshly peeled sweet potatoes, sans anuses, peeled Savior potatoes, and the cornbread for the dressing. Yes, I kinda nibbled on the cornbread, and it made me happy.

Top right shows the scalloped potatoes that I made for me because I friggin' hate sweet potatoes. They were okay, just kinda diabetic food without much flavor. Bean bitched, but ate them anyway. The last remnants are probably in her belly right now, as a matter of fact.

Bottom left shows the corn souffle gruel that was about to jump into the baking dish for its trip into the refrigerator. That was so easy to make, and tasted so good, that I might make some more of that pretty soon. Dang, that was too damn easy.

Bottom right shows the partial spread about five minutes into kicking its ass. We had four women and me eating at it and everyone had seconds and some had thirds. The fried corn is in the bowl to the right. Fried corn MUST be cooked in a black skillet to add that burnt up looking visual, still it is good. All in all, I would have to rate Thanksgiving 2008 a solid nine on the food scale. Maybe next year, I can do better. NAY! I shall do better.

Please take the time to comment.

A little side note. Every baked thing came from the oven at the exact same time. I keep a piece of paper next to the oven to let Bean know, if I die during the process, how to finish things up. The front-end MATH makes the end result that much better.