Thanksgiving Turkey Help

November 22, 2012 10:07:55 AM PST
For more than 30 years, the experts at Butterball Turkey have guided home cooks through their last minute preps on Thanksgiving.

With more than 50 experts, 100,000 clueless cooks are helped each holiday season. Butterball Turkey Talk Line experts have provided advice for almost everything - from proper carving techniques to thawing birds in the tub. New this year, get turkey advice on the go with the Butterball Cookbook Plus? App. It includes voice command, 250+ original recipes, shopping lists and more. Sue Smith has been with Butterball has been on the talk-line for 9 years. She shares her advice for a successful Thanksgiving feast.

Turkey with 7-Grain Bread and Squash Stuffing

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours
Makes: 16 servings (6 ounces turkey and 1/2 cup stuffing each)


10 7-grain bread slices (15 ounces), cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 8 cups)
1/3 cup butter
1 large onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
1 cup chopped celery
4 cups moderately packed chopped fresh kale
1 medium butternut squash (about 1-1/2 pounds), peeled, seeded and cubed
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage, or 2 teaspoons rubbed dried
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
1/2 cup smoke-flavored almonds (from 6-ounce can), chopped
1 can (14.5 ounces) chicken broth
1 Butterball® Turkey (16 pounds), thawed if frozen
Fresh sage leaves (optional)
No-stick cooking spray


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread bread cubes onto bottom of large shallow baking pan. Bake 30 minutes, or until lightly browned and dried, stirring occasionally.

2. Melt margarine in large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and celery; cook and stir 5 minutes, or until crisp-tender. Add kale and squash; stir to combine. Cover; cook 6 minutes, or until kale wilts, stirring occasionally. Stir in chopped sage, salt and pepper.

3. Place browned bread cubes in large bowl. Add vegetable mixture, almonds and broth; toss to combine.

4. Remove neck and giblets from body and neck cavities of turkey; refrigerate for another use or discard. Drain juices from turkey; pat dry with paper towels. Fill neck cavity with part of the stuffing. Turn wings back to hold neck skin against back of turkey. Fill body cavity completely with stuffing. If desired, loosen skin from breast by carefully working fingers under skin over breast. Place several whole sage leaves on breast under skin. Secure edge of skin with toothpicks. Place turkey, breast up, on flat roasting rack in shallow roasting pan. Spray turkey with cooking spray.

5. Bake 4 to 4-1/2 hours, or until meat thermometer reaches 165°F when inserted in center of stuffing and reaches 180°F when inserted in deepest part of thigh, covering breast and tops of drumsticks with Reynolds Wrap® Aluminum Foil after 2-1/2 hours to prevent overcooking of breast. Let stand 15 minutes before removing stuffing and carving.

Note: Place any extra stuffing in casserole dish. Cover and refrigerate until ready to bake. Bake, covered, at 325°F 30 minutes, or until meat thermometer reaches 160°F when placed in center of stuffing.

Golden Mashed Potatoes with Chives

Russet potatoes mashed with a Midwest favorite, sharp Cheddar cheese and fresh chives

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 22 minutes
Makes: 8 servings (about 1 cup each)


2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
1 1/2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
2/3 cup half-and-half
1/4 cup butter
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
handful of whole chives, if desired, for garnish


1. Place potatoes in large stockpot and cover with water. Bring to boil on medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 10 to 12 minutes or until tender when pierced with a fork. Drain potatoes, return to pot and heat on low until excess moisture has evaporated, about 1 to 2 minutes.

2. Add cheese, half-and-half and butter to the potatoes. Mash with potato masher until smooth. Stir in chopped chives, salt and pepper.

3. Transfer potatoes to a serving bowl and garnish with whole chives.

Easy No-Bake Pumpkin Pie

Make this creamy no-bake pumpkin pie a new tradition in your house this holiday season

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 20 minutes
Makes: 10 servings (1 slice and 2 tablespoons Reddi-wip each)


1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/3 cup water
1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
1-1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
2 cups whipped cream
1 large graham cracker pie crust (10-inch, 9 ounces)
Whipped cream for garnish, optional


6. Sprinkle gelatin over water in small saucepan; let stand 1 minute. Cook and stir over low heat until gelatin dissolves.

7. Combine pumpkin, milk and pumpkin pie spice in large bowl with wire whisk until well blended. Stir in gelatin mixture. Let cool 10 minutes. Gently stir in 2 cups whipped cream until combined.

8. Pour mixture into crust. Chill at least 3 hours, or until set.

9. Cut pie into 10 slices. If desired, top each slice with a serving of whipped cream just before serving.

Note: A 9-inch pie crust may be substituted if desired. Crust will be very full.

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