But first, I must introduce Turpigen.
We made history today, right here in my kitchen, by creating the very first Thanksgiving Turpigen for the Calgary Eyeopener’s Thanksgiving Turkey Breakfast. It was the result of an impromptu post-show brainstorming session a few weeks ago: ever heard of Turducken? A chicken stuffed inside a duck stuffed inside a turkey and roasted? Our one-upped version involves a ham inside a turkey, along with sausage meat cooked inside the neck cavity. Turpigen. A far easier feat to perform than Turducken.
This is how you do it: Remove the giblets and dry your turkey, just as you would prep it to stuff with your usual stuffing. Instead of stuffing, shove a 1 kg ham – Black Forest or honey – one of those ones that are shaped like footballs with the mesh pattern imprinted into the outside – into the cavity. We had an almost 20 lb bird and a longer, narrower ham rather than a rounder one, and one slid right into the other. Then take a 1 lb. package of sausage meat – you can buy it in chubs or squeeze any kind of raw sausage out of its casing – gather it into a ball and pack it into the neck cavity; fold the flap of skin over to cover.
Rub the bird with canola oil and/or soft butter and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast at 325F according to the size of your bird – ours took about 6 hours, but you can find a turkey roasting chart here.
So because I had to leave at 7, Mike stayed up and put the bird in at 1am, then I got up at 3 for the first basting, he at 4, and then I was up at 5 for the day, finishing it off between 5 and leaving for the studio at 7. Needless to say I was burned out afterward, having not gone to bed until after midnight, and so I was happy to have a dinner plan: putting the soup ingredients into the slow cooker before heading back to do traffic this afternoon took about 4 minutes, and I guarantee had I not bothered we would have picked up something junky on the way home.
As you likely haven’t noticed, my Mom posted a comment yesterday, which was far more exciting than you might expect it would be (I thought she was far too busy to keep reading my blog) and she offered up some loot for Free Stuff Fridays! So I guess it’s a thing, then. (Congrats to the Crock Pot winner, who I was relieved to find actually lived in Calgary, rather than Australia or the UK; this thing is a monster.)
It’s a nce stainless steel digital thermometer, which is timely, because Turpigen needs one – the ham inside the bird makes the juices appear pink (ham-coloured) and so it’s difficult to tell when it’s done without a thermometer. They also come in handy when making candy or jam; it’s the sort of thing that once you have, you’ll wonder how you got by without it. I’m not going to ask what you ate for dinner this time, but to perhaps make a suggestion at my Mom’s request – she needs vegetable ideas that will make her actually want to eat them? (Hint: nothing will make her touch Brussels sprouts or broccoli, so don’t even bother going there.) And yes I’m talking about her, not the kids. How to get your Mom to eat her vegetables – now that’s a new topic!
Hearty Southwest Soup
I love the idea of using refried beans in this soup! I adore bean soups, but never would have thought of refried beans, which give the soup a nice thick base without having to puree anything.
1L chicken stock
the rest of the pork broth from the pulled pork (or about a cup more stock)
2 cups pulled pork mixture
1 can (19 oz/540 mL) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can refried beans
1 cup finely chopped carrots
1 cup finely chopped celery
chopped cilantro, for garnish
Put everything but the cilantro into your slow cooker and cook on high for 4-6 hours or on low for 8. Sprinkle with cilantro before serving.