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    Recipes

    Brining and Cooking Your Pasture Raised Turkey

    What's the difference between cooking a conventional vs. pasture-raised turkey? Thanks to Mommypotamous for this explanation and recipe!

    "Most store bought turkeys are injected with vegetable oil, water, salt, emulsifiers, sodium phosphate, and artificial flavorings. Pasture raised free range turkey, on the other hand, has not been basted or injected. You may want to consider preparing your turkey in a brine like most chefs. Brine is a saltwater and seasoning solution that allows moisture to penetrate the meat.

    Even a slightly overcooked turkey will be moist and juicy when prepared in brine. Brine also expedites cooking time, since water is a better conductor of heat than meat. Brine can be made from your favorite herbs and seasonings."

    Brining Your Pasture-Raised Turkey

    Ingredients

    • 1 cup sea salt
    • 1 gallon filtered water
    • 1 cup raw sugar or honey (optional)
    • 1 bunch fresh sage (optional)
    • 1 bunch fresh thyme (optional)
    • 3 tablespoons black pepper (optional)

    Directions

    1. Bring all ingredients to a boil; remove from heat and refrigerate.
    2. Place thawed turkey in a deep roasting pan that is large enough to allow most of the turkey to be submerged in the brine, or use a commercially available brining bag (available in Williams-Sonoma or Sur La Table stores or on their websites). We use a 5 gallon food grade plastic bucket. If you use just the pan, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate (or put in an ice chest if your refrigerator is full). Turn the turkey in brine every few hours if it is not fully submerged. Keep turkey in brine for 12-24 hours.

    Cooking Your Pasture-Raised Turkey

    1. When it is time to cook the turkey, lift it out of the brine, rinse with cold water and dry with paper towels.
    2. Slide a small rubber spatula between the skin and the meat to separate them.
    3. Insert half of the herbed butter mixture (recipe below) under the skin and spread evenly. Rub the remaining butter mixture on the outside of the skin.
    4. If you wish, fill the body cavity with stuffing.
    5. Truss the bird loosely with butchers twine, season with salt and pepper, and pace in roasting pan.
    6. Add 1 cup stock and roast until internal temperature of the thickest part of the thigh reaches 165 degrees. The turkey should be loosely covered with foil for part of the cooking time to help retain moisture. The foil should be removed for the last 45 minutes or so of cooking so the skin can be beautifully browned and crisp by the time the turkey is done. Be sure to baste the turkey often with juices from the bottom of the pan.

    Roasting Times at 350 F

    Begin to check for doneness 30 minutes before suggested cooking time.

    • 8-12 lbs: 2.5-3.5 hours
    • 12-16 lbs: 3-4 hours
    • 16-20 lbs: 4-5 hours

    Pastured birds often cook a little faster than conventional turkeys, so monitor closely with a meat thermometer. The thickest part of the thigh should reach 165F.

    Herbed Butter Mixture

    Ingredients

    • 8 tablespoons softened unsalted real butter
    • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
    • 1 teaspoon chopped sage
    • 1 tablespoon chopped thyme
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (optional)
    • 1 tablespoon chopped shallots (optional)
    • 1 tablespoon chopped chives (optional)

       

      Ribeye Steak Pasta Puttanesca

      We found this recipe on Jo Cooks. "This Ribeye Steak Pasta Puttanesca is perfect for the meat eater in your life and simple enough for a fabulous weeknight meal. A classic and simple pasta dish with cherry tomatoes, olives and capers and a perfectly pan fried ribeye steak."

      Prep Time: 5 minutes
      Cook Time: 25 minutes
      Total Time: 30 minutes
      Servings: 4

      Ingredients

      Steak
      • 1 1/2 lb ribeye steak
      • 1/2 tsp salt
      • 1/2 tsp pepper
      • 1 tbsp butter unsalted
      • 1 tbsp olive oil
      Pasta
      • 12 oz pasta (I used rigatoni)
      • 1 tbsp butter unsalted
      • 4 cloves garlic minced
      • 1 pint cherry tomatoes (about 1 lb)
      • 1/2 cup Kalamata olives pitted
      • 2 tbsp capers drained
      • 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
      • 1/4 tsp pepper or to taste
      • 1 cup reserved pasta water
      • 1 cup Parmesan cheese freshly grated
      • 1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped

      Directions

      1. Cook the pasta according to package instructions. Drain in a colander and rinse it under cold water to stop it from cooking any further. Reserve about 1 cup of the pasta water.
      2. Season the steak generously with salt and pepper on both sides.
      3. Heat the skillet on high heat then add the butter and olive oil. Once the butter has melted and the pan is really hot, you should see wisps of smoke, add the steak and cook the first side for 5 minutes, flip over and cook for another 5 minutes. See recipe notes on cooking time.
      4. Transfer the steak to a cutting board or plate and cover with aluminum foil. Do not slice it right away as all the juices will come out and you'll end up with a dry steak. Wait at least 5 to 10 minutes before slicing into it.
      5. Drain the skillet and add another tbsp of butter to it. Once the butter has melted add the garlic and saute for about 30 seconds until the garlic becomes really aromatic.
      6. Add the tomatoes, olives and capers to the skillet then season with salt and pepper. Saute for about 2 minutes until the tomatoes soften and the skins begin to wrinkle a bit.
      7. Add the pasta, reserved pasta water, Parmesan cheese and parsley to the skillet then toss everything together.
      8. Remove the foil from the steak and slice it across the grain using a sharp knife that will cut cleanly through the meat. Slicing across the grain will yield the most tender slices.
      9. Place the steak slices over the pasta and serve warm.

      Baked Mediterranean Halibut

      We found this recipe on The Mediterranean Dish. Make this easy halibut recipe with green beans and cherry tomatoes in 30 minutes or less! It bakes in a flavorful Mediterranean-style sauce with olive oil, lemon juice, dill weed and lots of garlic.

      Prep Time: 10 minutes
      Cook Time: 20 minutes
      Total Time: 30 minutes
      Servings: 4

      Ingredients

      Sauce

      • Zest of 2 lemons
      • Juice of 2 lemons
      • 1 cup olive oil
      • 1 1/2 tbsp freshly minced garlic
      • 2 tsp dill weed
      • 1 tsp seasoned salt, more for later
      • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
      • 1 tsp dried oregano
      • 1/2 to 3/4 tsp ground coriander

      Fish

      • 1 lb fresh French beans
      • 1 lb cherry tomatoes
      • 1 large yellow onion sliced into half moons
      • 1 1/2 lb halibut fillet, slice into 1 1/2-inch strips

      Directions

      1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
      2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the sauce ingredients together. Add the green beans, tomatoes, and onions and toss to coat with the sauce (you can do this in batches if the bowl is too small).
      3. With a large slotted spoon or spatula, transfer the vegetables to a large baking sheet (21 x 15 x 1 inch baking sheet, for example). Keep the vegetables to one side or one half of the baking sheet and make sure they are spread out in one layer.
      4. Now, add the halibut fillet strips to the remaining sauce, toss to coat. Transfer the halibut fillet to the baking sheet next to the vegetables and pour any remaining sauce on top.
      5. Lightly sprinkle the halibut and vegetables with a little seasoned salt.
      6. Bake in the 450 degrees F heated oven for 15 minutes. Then transfer the baking sheet to the top oven rack and broil for another 3-5 minutes, watching carefully. The cherry tomatoes should begin to pop under the broiler.
      7. When ready, remove the baked halibut and vegetables from the oven. Serve immediately.

      Classic Ceviche

      We found this recipe on Simply Recipes. "Classic ceviche (or seviche) recipe. How to make ceviche using the traditional Latin American method to prepare fresh fish - cubes of red snapper are cooked by lime and lemon juice. Serve this delicious ceviche wrapped in corn tortillas or with chips."

      Prep Time: 15 minutes
      Marinating Time: 3 hours
      Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes
      Servings: 4-8

      Ingredients

      • 2 lbs of firm, fresh red snapper fillets (or other firm-fleshed fish), cut into 1/2 inch pieces, completely deboned
      • 1/2 cup of fresh squeezed lime juice
      • 1/2 cup of fresh squeezed lemon juice
      • 1/2 red onion, finely diced
      • 1 cup of chopped fresh seeded tomatoes
      • 1 serrano chili, seeded and finely diced
      • 2 teaspoons of salt
      • Dash of ground oregano
      • Dash of Tabasco or a light pinch of cayenne pepper
      • Cilantro
      • Avocado
      • Tortillas or tortilla chips

      Directions

      1. In a non-reactive casserole dish, either Pyrex or ceramic, place the fish, onion, tomatoes, chili, salt, Tabasco, and oregano. Cover with lime and lemon juice.
      2. Let sit covered in the refrigerator for an hour, then stir, making sure more of the fish gets exposed to the acidic lime and lemon juices.
      3. Let sit for several hours, giving time for the flavors to blend. During the marinating process, the fish will change from pinkish grey and translucent, to whiter in color and opaque.
      4. Serve with chopped cilantro and slices of avocado with heated tortillas for ceviche tacos or with tortilla chips.

      Honey Beef Lettuce Wraps

      We found this recipe on Creme De La Crumb. "Easy, completely delicious Honey Beef Lettuce Wraps with sweet and savory Asian flavors. Whip them up in about 20 minutes for a tasty appetizer or main dish!"

      Prep Time: 5 minutes
      Cook Time: 15 minutes
      Total Time: 20 minutes
      Servings: 3-4 as a main dish, or up to 8 as an appetizer

      Ingredients

      • 3/4-1 pound very thin-cut beef (I used a carne asada cut)
      • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
      • 1/2 cup finely chopped mushrooms
      • 1/3 cup shredded carrots, finely chopped
      • 1/3 cup canned water chestnuts, finely chopped
      • 1/4 cup Kikkoman Less Sodium Soy Sauce
      • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
      • 2 tablespoons honey
      • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
      • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
      • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
      • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes optional
      • head butter lettuce
      • sesame seeds
      • 2 tablespoons finely chopped green onions

      Directions

      1. Finely chop beef into 1/4-inch pieces. Drizzle a large skillet with sesame oil, then combine beef, mushrooms, carrots, and water chestnuts and stir over medium-high heat for 3-4 minutes until meat is mostly browned.
      2. Stir together soy cauce, hoisin sauce, honey, rice vinegar, garlic, ground ginger, and crushed red pepper flakes. Stir sauce into beef and vegetable mixture and saute over medium heat for 3-5 minutes.
      3. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and green onions. Scoop beef mixture into butter lettuce leaves and serve.

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