Hi Everyone! Happy Holidays!! How are you all doing? It's been a minute, right? *smile*
I hope everyone of you and all of your loved ones are having a blessed holiday season :) I LOVE the holidays - this is truly the BEST time of year. How have you all been preparing for it? This is what I've been doing:
1. Usually, we buy a fried turkey for Thanksgiving, but unfortunately (or fortunately, as it turns out), that fell through at the last minute this year. So I finally (after six years of us being together) got the chance to prove my (substantial) skills with the big bird! My dad gave me this recipe YEARS ago when I was a teenager, and visiting him at his place in the Bronx. It was so flavorful and JUICY! If you want to jazz up your next turkey, OR try it out first on a roast chicken, here's the recipe:
PUERTO RICAN STUFFED TURKEY
1 turkey (we bought a free range bird from Whole Foods for like $20)
Sea Salt (to soak and clean your bird beforehand - sea salt bring out all the impurities really well)
A Food Processor or blender
Sandwich sized freezer bags
2 Turkey sized oven bags
1 large bowl
1 1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup water
4 large green Bell Peppers (chopped in 1 inch sections)
3 large Red Onions (chopped in 1 inch sections)
3 Bunches of Cilantro, chopped
1 lemon, halved and seeds removed
3 large tablespoons of minced garlic
Season Salt (I prefer Lawry's)
Okay, we're going to make 2 things here, the 1st is a marinade/sauce that your bird will soak in, and the other is the vegetable stuffing that will also sit in the bird overnight.
the sauce is called SOFRITO - it's a Puerto Rican sauce that is used in EVERYTHING we cook, from beans to soups to well... Turkey! lol
My Sofrito Recipe
In your food processor, blend 1/2 cup Olive oil, 2 bunches of Cilantro, 3 green bell peppers, 2 red onions, & 2 tablespoons of the minced garlic. Add about 1/2 cup of the water to loosen the consistency if it gets too thick(if you need to, add more). Once it is well blended, squeeze the juice from 1 of the lemon halves into the mixture and blend again (this will preserve the pretty, bright green color, kinda like the color of this text). Voila! You have a lot of sofrito there, so set aside 2 cups of the sofrito, and then portion it off into servings in those sandwich bags for freezing! (try about 1/2 cup per bag)
In a large bowl, mix the remaining peppers, onions, garlic & cilantro with 1/2 cup of olive oil and 1 cup of sofrito, squeeze the juice from the other lemon half over it, and mix again, sprinkle with some sea salt to taste. Set aside.
Okay, here's the best part! Place your bird inside one of the oven bags, Take the other cup of Sofrito that you had set aside, and Rub that bird down! This is going to marinate overnight, so definitely apply the sauce liberally! Get under the skin, inside, everywhere! Then get your bowl of vegetable stuffing, and pack it tightly inside your turkey. These veggies are going to marinate right inside of your turkey, adding to the flavor and juiciness (MAN I'm Getting hungry here!!), so make sure you stuff as much as you can!
Now pour a little more of the olive oil, about 1/4 cup over the turkey, rub it down with the marinade some moe, sprinkle it with some Lawry's (my preference), close up the bag and tie the end closed. Let it sit in the fridge overnight.
The next day, preheat your oven to 350 degrees, get out the unused oven bag, and follow the directions on the box - it will tell you how long to cook your bird based on its size! ENJOY!!!!
I LOVE sharing recipes, so let me know how it turns out when you try it!