I have a lot of family. My parents are divorced and both remarried. My dad and Patty, have three children of their own. My mom and Pete don’t have any children together, but Pete does have two daughters from a previous marriage. My in-laws are divorced as well. Anthony’s dad is remarried and she has kids from a previous marriage. Anthony’s mom is enjoying her single life, but she comes from a huge family as well. In addition, Anthony has two half sisters and a half brother. You can imagine how the holidays work out for us! There are at least four places (usually across the state of Illinois) where we should try to make an appearance. We drive and we run from place to place while trying to make everyone happy. I am going to guess that we are not the only ones out there like this, but when a holiday rolls around, it sure feels like we are alone in our quest to visit everyone.
This past November, my sister and I each bought turkey breasts (about nine pounds each). Thanksgiving is Anthony’s favorite holiday and he was originally scheduled to work. We didn’t think he was going to have an opportunity to eat a fresh cooked turkey dinner, so we planned to throw Thanksgiving on the Saturday after for him. Luckily, he didn’t have to work, so he was able to enjoy the day and a fresh meal prepared by his mom. Our turkeys went in the freezer waiting for the time that they would be called into action.
Saturday night, I decided that I would just whip one up this week for dinner. This task made me nervous because I am not home until 5:30pm. Anthony is home by 6:00pm or so. And a turkey would take hours to prepare. Yahoo! A crockpot recipe for my turkey breast! So, I pulled the turkey down on Saturday night and placed it in the fridge to defrost. By last night, we were just about there. I have found that when I prepare a crockpot meal that I need to set it up the night before and just pull it out of the fridge in the morning and start the crockpot.
Here’s what I did… I de-skinned the turkey breast. This is not nearly as difficult as one might think. In a clean sink, I slipped my hand under the skin and worked it off of the meat. This took me less than ten minutes and I had minimal loss of meat. Pleased with myself, I rinsed it with cold water and then dried off the breast with some paper towels before placing it in the crockpot. In a small bowl, I mixed together softened butter and fresh chopped sage and tarragon leaves. I don’t know much about fresh herbs, so I didn’t use the stems. I don’t think you are supposed to eat those. And, I quickly determined that I did not buy nearly enough herbs to coat the entire turkey breast. Oh well, we will make do with what we have. I rubbed my butter mixture all over the bird, tossed the lid on and stuck it in the fridge until this morning.
Today, I cooked that turkey all day on low (about ten hours). Here’s what it looked like when I got home:
I attempted to lift it out onto a platter, but the meat was literally falling off the bones. I moved it in large pieces instead. I used the turkey drippings, about a cup of cold water and the gravy packet that came with the turkey to make a gravy. The herbs that were in the drippings absolutely made that gravy awesome!
Important note: Be careful of the bones. There were a fair number of them that I found loose in the drippings and within the meat. I picked them out before serving, but this was a little time consuming.
Anyhow, after making some homemade mashed potatoes with butter and the end of the cream from yesterday’s cookie recipe, here is our platter of sliced turkey breast:
It was beautiful and delicious! My sister, Catherine, her fiancé, Steve, Anthony, Michael and myself enjoyed a lovely meal together on a Monday evening. We ate at a reasonable time and used up one of those turkey breasts. Dinner was followed by some of last night’s applesauce cookies with caramel frosting. Three of us took leftovers for lunch tomorrow and there is still more of everything. Simple and yummy. I will happily make this winning dinner for my family again.
p.s. I forgot something last night. I also put salt and pepper on the turkey breast before I rubbed the herb butter mix. By the way, it’s even yummy reheated for lunch the next day!