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Roast Turkey Roulade with steamed green beans--Perfect Holiday Bite!

Roast Turkey Roulade with steamed green beans–Perfect Holiday Bite!

I am waaaayyy behind on my blogging. The past few months of 2012 have been incredibly busy, but I am excited to wrap this year up and start anew in 2013 in just a few days!

This is a great recipe for a Thanksgiving, Christmas, or any special dinner calling for roast turkey. My favorite part of the turkey (with the exception of fried turkey skin) is a slice of juicy turkey breast meat. This year, rather than cooking an entire whole turkey, I opted to buy just the turkey breast. I was only feeding two, so a large bird would just be too much food. However, I didn’t want to compromise the luscious stuffing that accompanies roasting a whole bird. I found a great option from Ina Garten for a turkey roulade that I decided to give a try with a few adaptations to make the perfect bite of turkey breast and stuffing.

Depending on the size of the turkey breast you buy, you can adjust the proportions of stuffing ingredients. As written, you will have extra stuffing to cook in a separate pan for an excellent side dish to the turkey.

A note on the turkey breast prep: If you have access to a butcher who will de-bone the breast while preserving the integrity of the skin on the outside consider your self lucky and go for that option. If you are like me and pick up your meats at the supermarket with no special requests, de-boning the turkey breast will take a bit of work–but the upside is that your really learn the anatomy of a turkey! You want to end up with one, intact turkey breast with the skin still on. The skill keeps the turkey moist and adds to the flavor and color of the roasted roulade. But don’t be intimidated…this was my first attempt at deboning a turkey breast. I just looked up a few YouTube videos before attempting it on my own. The videos make it look easy…it took me a little longer and my cuts were not quite as clean but overall it was totally doable and worth the effort.

Holiday Turkey Roulade

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup each of dried currants, large-diced dried figs (stems removed), dried cranberries, or any other dried fruits you like or have on hand
  • ½  cup Calvados, brandy, or AppleJack whiskey (for a non-alcoholic version use apple cider)
  • 2 Tbsp  unsalted butter
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 diced onions (yellow or white), approx 1 ½ cups
  • 3 celery stalks, diced
  • ½ lb. hot pork sausage, casings removed
  • ½ lb. sweet pork sausage, casings removed
  • 1 ½ Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
  • 3 Tbsp pine nuts or walnuts, toasted (pine nuts are more expensive, walnuts are perfectly acceptable substitute)
  • 3 cups herb-seasoned stuffing mix
  • 1-2 cups chicken stock
  • 1  egg, beaten
  • Salt & pepper
  • 1 whole (2 halves) turkey breast, boned and butterflied –see note above
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

To make:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

For the stuffing:

In a small saucepan combine dried fruits, brandy (or whichever cooking liquid you prefer–see ingredient options above) and ½ cup of water, bringing the mixture to a boil. Lower heat and allow to simmer for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside. Warning, do not pour alcoholic liquids in the saucepan while on the burner–if you have a gas stovetop–you do not want flame ups 🙂

In a  large skillet, melt 2 Tbsp butter with olive oil, add onions and celery. Cook until softened and onions are translucent (approx 5-7 min). Add the sausage and crumble with a fork or spoon as it cooks. Cook through until sausage is no longer pink and has browned. Add dried fruits (with liquid from the saucepan), rosemary, and nuts; cook an additional 2-3 minutes until combined

In a large mixing bowl combine bread stuffing mix, sausage mixture, chicken stock, beaten egg, 1 tsp salt ½ tsp pepper, stir until all stuffing ingredients are mixed well.

Place the stuffing mix in a large bowl. Add the sausage mixture, chicken stock, egg, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and stir well.

To prepare the turkey roulade:

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Trussed, stuffed and ready to roast!

Place prepared turkey breast on a cutting board skin side down. Season turkey with salt and pepper. Spread the stuffing in an approx ½ in layer over the meat. Leave a ½ inch border on all sides so for ease of rolling the turkey. Place remaining stuffing in a lightly greased baking dish to be cooked separately for 45 minutes. Roll the stuffed turkey starting at one of the shorter ends (you will not be rolling from the top/tail part of the breast but rolling so that the turkey rolls back into its original shape). Once rolled, use twine to tie the turkey roulade firmly into a tight cylinder form. Place the turkey seam-side down onto a roasting rack on a baking sheet pan. Brush skin with melted butter, season with salt and pepper. Roast for approximately 2 hours until the internal temperature is 150 degrees—you want to check the temperature in a few places to endure the turkey is cooked fully and you are not testing the temperature of the stuffing rather than the meat. Remove from the oven, cover with aluminum foil and let rest for 15 minutes. Slice and enjoy!

IMG_0986

Roasted, resting Turkey Roulade

IMG_0989

Carved Turkey Roulade with Sausage Stuffing

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