Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Stuffed Hasselback Turkey Breast – A Little Thanksgiving

Everyone loves a traditional turkey dinner with all the fixings, but because of the time and work involved, we usually only get to enjoy it once a year on Thanksgiving. So, what if we create a second holiday, called “Little Thanksgiving,” and feature this smaller, and much easier, Hasselback turkey? 

By the way, when I say easier, that assumes we’ve figured out how to carve it significantly better than I demonstrated in the video.

A thinner, more flexible knife would have been much better, as well as just slicing off one section at a time. I may try another one, but before stuffing, I'll go around the outside edge of the breast with a knife, cutting in about an inch, where it attaches to the bone. This would still leave most of the meat attached at the center, and probably make slicing simpler.

I guess we could try using a boneless breast, but I really think the ribcage is important for keeping the meat, if you’ll pardon the expression, moist. If you’ve tried this sans bones, please let me know how it came out. Regardless, since these breasts can really vary in size, be sure to use a thermometer to check doneness. So, whether you do this for regular Thanksgiving, or that new “Little Thanksgiving” everyone is talking about, I really do hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 2 large or 4 smaller portions:
one 2 to 3 pound split turkey breast, bone in, skin on
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon melted butter for brushing on before roasting
For the very basic stuffing:
2 cups small dry bread cubes
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning (dried sage, rosemary, and thyme)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper and cayenne to taste
1/2 cup diced onion and 1/2 cup diced celery sautéed in butter until golden
1 cup hot chicken broth, plus more if needed
1 large egg yolk

NOTE: In the video I said to roast at 350 F., to an internal temp of 150 F., but in hindsight, I’m thinking that a 375 F. oven would work better.

For the stuffing, try these recipes, and cook the extra mixture in a pan alongside your Hasselback Turkey Breast.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Rice Crispy Wings – No Breakfast Cereal was Harmed in the Making of this Video

As promised, here is the rice-flour coated chicken wings recipe I teased in the mumbo sauce video. It’s hard to believe that this is the first fried wings video we’ve ever done, but that was the case, which is why I’m so glad these turned out as well as they did. 

Besides being gluten-free, which is probably a big deal to a small, but enthusiastic part of my audience, this rice flour coating ended up being light, crispy, and extremely sauce friendly.

The original buffalo style chicken wings are fried without any type of coating, and while I do enjoy them that way, they aren’t the best at holding on to a sauce. This is why people started adding some kind of starch to the outside, which creates a less slick, rougher surface, that really grabs onto whatever you’re dipping, or tossing them in.

By the way, before your wings get coated with the flour, you’re free to spice these anyway you want. Other than the salt, everything else is up for grabs. I went very simple, as I usually do, but the mind reels at the possibilities. Regardless of how you flavor yours, I really do hope you give them a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for *one pound of rice crispy chicken wings:
1 pound chicken wing sections (flats and drums)
1 teaspoon kosher salt (or 1/2 teaspoon fine salt)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 cup rice flour, preferably "stone-ground" (you can grind you own in a spice mill)

* This can be scaled up to however large a batch you need. I usually allow 1/2 pound of wings per person for a party.

- If you’re doing a larger batch, be sure to give the wings a toss or two during the refrigeration time. By the way, two hours would be a minimum, but if you want, you can leave these overnight with the seasoning.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Mumbo Sauce – Is D.C.’s Secret Sauce the Next Big Thing?

A friend of mine asked me recently if I’d ever heard of mumbo sauce, since she had just returned from Washington D.C., and said it was “everywhere.” I hadn’t, which isn’t a surprise, since unless you’re from the Capital, or select neighborhoods in Chicago, this stuff is virtually unknown.

Apparently, this sweet-and-sour condiment came to Washington D.C. via Chicago, where it somehow became a staple in Chinese take-out restaurants, served as a condiment with fried chicken wings, among other things. That’s as much background as you're getting here, and like many other regional culinary specialties, the history is murky.

All I know is that this was great with fried chicken wings, and I look forward to finding other uses for it, although I’m not sure French fries is going to be one of them. I’m a ketchup guy, and probably too old to change. Having said that, I can see this catching on, and for once, I’ll be ahead of a trend.

They say every takeout place in D.C. has their own secret recipe, but there were quite a few published recipes on the Internet, and so this is sort of a composite, based on the extensive, 20 minutes of research I did. Stay tuned for the chicken wing experiment I mentioned in the video, and in anticipation, I really do hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for about 4 cups of Mumbo Sauce:
1 can (6-oz) tomato paste
2/3 cup ketchup
1 cup pineapple juice
1 cup distilled white vinegar
1 lemon, juiced
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

- Please note: Every one of these ingredients is “to taste.”

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Mumble Sauce

I just got home after some fairly painless oral surgery, and my troublesome wisdom tooth is now gone. That's the good news. The bad news is my mouth is currently stuffed with cotton, and doing a voice-over for the just completed mumbo sauce probably isn't a great idea. Hopefully, I'll be able to rock the mic soon, but in the meantime, thank you for your patience, and please stay tuned! 
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