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Continuous Improvement of our Thanksgiving Meal

We were searching around for our turkey recipe and then I remembered I'd blogged about brining and grilling a turkey last year, so I just went online to follow the instructions there (or perhaps I should say "here"). The post reminded me not only of the recipe, but of my pledge to not overcook the turkey "next time" ... and that Chateauneuf-du-Pape is a good accompaniment to the meal (my cousin-in-law, Richard Gagnon, wine manager at Brattleboro Food Co-op, first introduced me to this unusual pairing).



Among the variations this year:

  • My mother and father-in-law stepfather are visiting (last year, Amy's aunt, cousin, cousin-in-law and their daughter were visiting ... and I forgot to take a picture of the people (!)).
  • We bought a heritage turkey (just under 14 pounds) from our local PCC Natural Market.
  • I checked the bird 15 minutes before it is supposed to be done (it was done at exactly the right time - 2 hours, 40 minutes, at 350 degrees - and was not overcooked, I'm glad to say).
  • A newly discovered bacon Parmeson Brussels Sprouts recipe was a big hit with everyone.
  • The mashed sweet potatoes were also tasty.
  • The 1998 Domaine de Villeneuve Chateauneuf-du-Pape "Ville Vignes" (which we enjoyed last year) and the 2000 Domaine de la Janasse Chateauneuf-du-Pape "Chaupin" were outstanding; the Janasse had more fruit, body and depth, and [so] I preferred that one. Both are predominantly based on the Grenache grape, and so I may experiment with some single varietal Grenache next year, and perhaps a bit of Cinsault (Chateau Ste. Michelle offered their first single varietal bottlings of each grape this past year, and both sold out very quickly to Wine Club members).


On a separate but related note, an email exchange earlier in the day with Dan, who had posted a comment on last year's blog entry about his own firey experience with flaming grilling a turkey, assured me that he would be practicing safe[r] cooking this year.

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