Wednesday, November 25, 2015

My Thanksgiving Cooking Time Line

This year I thought I'd plan out my cooking prep and cooking chores instead of just winging it like I usually do.

Frankly I've cooked more Thanksgiving meals in my lifetime than I care to count just now so the whole process is sort of on autopilot at this point.
I know what to do and when.

But this year I am going to "Do Ahead" certain foods/preps so as not to be so frazzled and rushed on Thursday morning.
And to complicate matters further I am not cooking a whole bird but 2 breasts and 2 legs.  I've been thawing 2 frozen turkey breasts(8 lbs. each)and I bought two fresh turkey legs for Hubs as he is a dark meat man while the rest of us prefer breast meat.....and of course everyone loves crispy skin. lolz

And then to but me more outside my box I am deboning both breasts, adding stuffing and then rolling and cooking them that way instead of on the carcass.
Deboning is not such a big deal if you've deboned chicken breasts's just that on a larger scale.
But......this is the a roulade of turkey IS different than cooking a whole bird, or even just a turkey breast.
It only take about 2 hours as opposed to the all morning extravaganza of cooking a 22 lb. bird whole.

So now I have to juggle in my mind when to put the turkey in the oven and that's gonna throw me off my game a big, thus the written down time line deal so I don't forget to do something when it needs doing.

Wednesday-after Lunch

Debone the turkey breasts, dry brine them and place in fridge overnight.
Put carcass with chicken broth, carrots, onions and celery into largest crockpot and cook overnight.
Make 2 pumpkin(or sweet potato)pies-still haven't decided which.
Make the stuffing and refrigerate.
Cook the rutabaga, mash it and refrigerate.
Cook the potatoes for mashed potatoes and rice them but don't add anything else, refrigerate.
(I also need some cooked potatoes to make the rolls so that's done too.)
Put 2 cans of cranberry glop in fridge to chill.

Wednesday Evening

Mix up my potato roll dough and let rise overnight.


9 am-Check roll dough, if risen well punch down and form into rolls to proof until dinner time....if roll dough didn't rise, start new batch of emergency rolls.

Remove turkey carcass and stock from crockpot, wash and put stuffing in to cook.

Prepare Dutch Oven for braising turkey legs.
Put legs in and cook 3-4 hours.

10 am-Put mashed potatoes into crockpot and turn on high.

Assemble GB Casserole.

Prepare Turkey Roulades-put stuffing in and roll and tie, season outsides.
Preheat oven.

Prepare sweet potatoes to roast, wrapping in foil.

Put stuffing into large crockpot, add some more stock and put on High.

11 am-1 hour after starting Turkey Legs, put Turkey Roulades into oven.

12 pm-1 hour after cooking Turkey Roulades, put Green Bean Casserole and wrapped Sweet Potatoes into oven on lowest rack.

Turn Mashed Potatoes to low and add butter, milk, seasonings, etc.

1 pm ish-Remove Turkey Roulades(and GB Casserole and Sweet Potatoes from oven.  Tent Roulades and let rest.  Turn off Turkey Legs and leave in Dutch Oven until ready to plate.
Turn now empty oven to 425F and put in panned rolls as soon as preheated.

Ladle out some stock(made in largest crockpot) to make gravy along with drippings from Turkey Roulades and liquid from Dutch Oven(Turkey Legs).

Put Bowl of Rutabagas into microwave or in small pot and heat up, adding butter and seasonings.

Take out rolls when done cooking.

Make gravy.

Have CB de-can the "glop".

Have Hubs slice 1 Turkey Roulade.

Adjust temperature and put pies into oven to warm.

Put everything onto platters or in bowls and serve.

Unbutton pants.
Eat some more.
Then eat pie.
Push myself away from the table and groan.

Talk someone else into doing the dishes and cleaning up.....yeah, that never happens. lolz

I hope your day before Thanksgiving goes well.  8-)



  1. I am drooling over the thought if the turkey breast. Pictures please-what a feast!

  2. Sounds great but so much work! I don't know how you do it all Sluggy. We are buying a pre-cooked turkey and all the fixins from Publix. Just reheat and serve! Easy peazy, cheaper than eating out and we'll have leftovers.

  3. Wow! You really go all out! Would love to try that turkey!

  4. I cook my potatoees in the mi,dowave whole. After they are done but still not I put them thdough the riced. No peeling!

  5. That turkey sounds awesome! We might have to do that some day.
    Have a good one my dear!

  6. I'm hungry. What time is dinner?

  7. 8 lb. wings?? No wonder we never see them fly! Enjoy your dinner - we had ours back in October!

  8. Sounds great I will be over at about 2.

  9. Sounds super duper yummy!! We tried to talk my mom into doing turkey breast this year, but my dad wants her to do the whole bird. Today I spent the day at my mom's house teaching my sister (who is home from college) how to make pumpkin pie, apple pie and kolacky from scratch for dinner tomorrow. I still need to decorate my niece's b-day cake for tomorrow as well. Hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  10. I had to take a big breath when I finished reading your schedule.


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