Wild Turkey Shoot and Recipe Swap
by McGonaGirl, Hagrid, Dumbledwarf
Menu: Turkey Burgers | Turkey Meatballs in Neapolitan Gravy | Turkey Bolognese Spaghetti Sauce | Turkey Lasagne Bolognese | American Breakfast Maple Turkey Sausage | Turkey Wontons | Turkey Jambalaya-Gumbo-Paella-Risotto | Turkey Cutlets with Hawai'ian Spicy Fruit Relish and CousCous Salad with Fruit | Asian Vibe Sausages for a Veteran | Kiwi's Marinated Turkey Breast, on the Barbie | Turkey Schnitzel | Stuffed Turkey Scaloppini
Turkeys originate from the new world, but they were brought to western Europe, New Zealand and Hawai'i many, many years ago. They are officially "extirpated," but in fact, they learned to hide from the Muggles who hunted them for sport. This means that they do show up once in a while; they aren't endangered at all. Since wizarding folk are hiding from Muggles, too, the two species tend to see each other, more than either run into Muggles.
This irritates Molly Weasley no end; she doesn't understand why wizards have to have the benefit of the turkey's company. Why can't the turkeys eat out a Muggle garden instead of hers?? They were worse than the gnomes!
One day, as she was making up her grocery list, she saw the big birds (they were far too large to be mistaken for anything else) pecking at the fruits in her garden. In a fit of rage, she waved her wand in a spell to send out buckshot at the flock to scare them off. To her horror, when the smoke cleared, there were several turkey corpses among her herbs and vegetables! She hadn't realized she was a good shot.
She had often lectured her children about their carelessness in undertaking things, and not thinking through the consequences of her actions. It was just last week that she asked Fred, George and Ron to get rid of some geese foraging in her garden, and they proudly brought them in, gutted and cleaned! She was just as guilty of it now. In a panic, she gathered up the big birds, intending to bury them.
As she dug the grave, her grocery list came to mind. One of the items was ground meat and cutlets; she had been wondering how to pay for the meat. Suddenly, a thought came to mind -- here was more meat than she needed! Without thinking, she picked up her wand and got to work.
Turkey tends to be quite dry when cooked like much wild meat, since it tends to be very low in fat. Even domesticated turkey is very low in fat, and anyone who has suffered from desert-dry and catgut-stringy meat on Thanksgiving day can attest to that. The problem is solved -- at least for the ground meat -- by including some moisture-retaining additives as well as careful cooking. Molly Weasley had often accepted wild game from hunters in exchange for her superlative pies, and so applied some ideas she'd used before. This turkey burger started out as a stuffing mixture, but one day when they were out of anything to stuff, she made patties of it and fried them up in a skillet. They came out moist and delicious, and her family loved them!
Mix the ingredients together in a bowl and form into patties. Make them similar in shape to the breadrolls (if they are hamburger shaped, make round, flattish patties; if they are submarine shaped, make them look like flattened hot dogs). Place in a heated non-stick skillet and place a lid over the skillet. When the burgers are browned on one side, remove the lid and flip over. Cook for another couple of minutes -- cook them till the pink disappears, but not beyond that. Place on the bottom half of each roll. If you wish, top with condiments or cheese, etc. But it's great on it's own!
Turkey Meatballs in Neapolitan Gravy
Molly Weasley eventually replaced all of the beef in the meatballs in this dish with turkey. She had started with substituting some of the beef, but her family didn't seem to notice when it, so she replaced more. She shouldn't have worried that the beef she bought was generally fattier -- the replacement worked fine. Her sauce came out better since there was much less fat in it, and the meatballs didn't shrink or become as hard. This recipe actually became the preferred one at the Weasley home. She would even serve it to guests, who all commented on the lightness of the balls, and would wonder about her "secret ingredient." Leftovers are excellent sliced in sandwiches the next day. (She got this recipe from an Italian witch who was the Big Mama type -- she threatened to break Molly's bones if she got the recipe wrong! Fortunately, even that witch didn't detect the change in ingredients, though she did tell Molly it seemed tastier somehow!)
Come serving time, serve with about 2 pounds (1 kilogram) cooked spaghetti, and pass freshly grated cheese at the table.
Turkey Bolognese Spaghetti Sauce
Again, this recipe evolved from a ground beef dish. Learning from the meatball recipe, Molly simply made a full substitution for ground turkey instead. She learned that it's rather difficult to get this recipe wrong -- it just looks intimidating with it's long list of ingredients. But really, it's just frying up aromatic vegetables in olive oil, adding the meat, seasoning and liquids. Simple and good! She would often make a double batch, saving the leftover sauce to be made into Lasagne Bolognese, which she could serve without any apology to anyone that it was not made with the traditional ground beef.
Turkey Lasagne Bolognese
Lasagne at it's simplest is layers of pasta and sauce. Leftovers can work fine, but it's so good that there are standard classic recipes for this dish. Many of the witches who came for Molly's cooking class talked about their favorite concoctions, and they discovered that lasagne tended to fall into two categories: simple layered sauce and noodles, or a more complex formula involving two sauces: a red tomato based sauce and a Bechamel-type white sauce. The former one used lots of melting cheese, like mozzarella, instead of the white sauce; being that witches needed to watch their figures too, they opted to learn how to make the latter version.
Cook the butter and flour in a saucepan over low heat till the mixture is bubbly and smooth. Whisk in the milk ½ cup at a time. You'll need to keep stirring and whisking to make sure the flour and milk blend together. Add the mushrooms and keep stirring for a few more minutes. Turn off the heat and season with salt, cloves and nutmeg. Adjust the seasoning to taste.
American Maple Breakfast Turkey Sausage
American witches and wizards would often visit the British Isles. It seems the Americans had learned to hide amongst Muggles and tended to co-exist with them, rather than separating their world completely. Arthur Weasley, who was fascinated by Muggles anyway, would offer to bring them home for dinner. The Ministry had initially been wary of letting honored guests accompany Arthur back to the Burrow -- the Weasley home -- since it was frankly tumbledown and disorganized. But American guests were charmed by the eccentricity and comfortable clutter -- it was perceived by the Americans as the ultimate in "Englishness" -- and so Arthur was allowed to entertain them as he was able. They would often come bearing gifts from North America. Molly especially appreciated jugs of maple syrup, which could be used in certain native spells and potions. But she preferred using it for cooking; her children loved it served American style, drizzled over pancakes. She'd add a dollop of it to ground turkey to make a sort of impromptu breakfast sausage, which the guests really enjoyed.
The leftovers that Molly packed into Arthur's lunchbox to take to the office were the envy of the Ministry staff. Though the Weasleys did this as an economical measure, the others didn't see it that way. Not only did it show the Molly really cared about Arthur, but the smells of the food drove his officemates mad! Like schoolkids, they would trade their lunches or favors for a bit of Arthur's homemade lunch. Then they'd go home and wax lyrical to their wives, who would demand the recipe. It was an ongoing half-joke that Molly needed to write a cookbook! But Molly wasn't much good at explaining how a recipe she made would just turn out well, while others following a similar recipe would have only average results. So she offered to show some of the women.
Word got around, and soon, Molly was setting up cooking classes on an ad hoc schedule. This recipe -- which she got from a Japanese witch -- uses turkey in preference to pork or beef, and was very popular when she used it in her first class. The witch, named Umeko Kyoko, said it balanced better with the shrimp. If you didn't have shrimp, you can use surimi (sometimes called mock crab) or leave it out all together.
Word got around, and soon Molly noticed that witches and wizards not associated with the Ministry started showing up for her cooking classes. The women she knew would often simply apparate, or come by floo, especially if they brought children with them. Others would show up on enchanted transports, like broomsticks, rollerskates, motorcycles, scooters, and motorcars (like the Weasley's Ford Anglia). One pair of very rotund Saxon witches showed up in a pre-war vintage BMW motorcycle with sidecar, while a stylish French witch came in a Vespa! Soon, the cooking classes became recipe swaps, more with workshop-like demonstrations than formal instructions. Molly much preferred this, since she was a bit shy about being in the spotlight. Arthur liked coming home and sniffing at the kettles set outside with delicious brews. This recipe was donated by an old, old witch who spoke a Creole patois that no one really understood. She had lived in the bayous of southern America for hundreds of years, and Arthur tried hard to communicate with her about how she'd lived with the displaced Muggles called the Cajuns. He was only partly successful, but everyone enjoyed this dish, which she called "jambalya" but others thought it was more a "gumbo," and a Spanish witch stated it was very much like the base for a paella, while an Italian wizard claimed it was a variation on a seafood risotto. Whatever it was, they all managed to get this recipe by watching her carefully.
In a very large pot, boil together the turkey thighs and water, then simmer for 30 minutes, or till cooked through. Remove the turkey into a bowl and set aside to cool. Remove the skin and bones and discard; pull or chop the meat to size.
Into the pot of hot water, add the sausage, tomatoes, onion, pepper, bay leaves, rosemary, thyme and red pepper. Simmer for 30 minutes, the stir in the roux a dollop at a time till it's mixed in thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and simmer for another 30 minutes, stirring from time to time. Add the turkey, shrimp and crab to the soup and cook till the shrimp curls up and turns pink. Just before serving, add parsley.
Serve over hot rice in a bowl. If you prefer, you can put the rice in the pot before serving. Stir often, as this stew with thicken a lot and will stick to the bottom of the pot and might burn.
Turkey Cutlets with Spicy Fruit Relish and CousCous Salad with Fruit
Remember turkeys had been introduced to Hawai'i as well as in Europe? The witches from there said it was a nice change from fish, but turkey -- even wild game -- as a meat is so mild that it was actually similar in flavor and texture to some fish. So some famous island recipes could certainly use turkey fillets or cutlets in substitution for fish. They told of a fruit relish -- a sort of salsa -- that is used as a chunky sauce for fish or turkey. A North African witch pointed out that this was similar to a couscous salad with chicken, fruit, vegetable and semolina couscous; why not serve the grain salad alongside the turkey? Or, even just cut everything down to size and toss it all together? "Then we call it CousCous!" she declared, emphasizing the consonants more. Everyone, including Molly, was surprised at how versatile this meat really is!
Put the couscous on a serving platter or on a plate, then top with the turkey cutlet, then top with relish. Pass additional relish and couscous when serving.
Cube the grilled meat (after letting it rest a bit), then toss it all together with the couscous, adding relish to taste. Serve on lettuce leaf cups.
Asian Vibe Sausages for a Veteran
This recipe actually came from a wizard from western Australia. He said it was "excellent tossed on the barbie." When asked about his spicing, he explained that much of Australia was affected by "pan-Pacific Rim" flavors, and he called this sausage "Asian Vibe" because his experience as a war veteran throughout Southeast Asia "made me a chilihead" -- that is, craving the hot, spicy capsicum that flavored the dishes of many cultures in that region. So he wasn't sure if this recipe was influenced by Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Burma, Malaysia, etc. So he just called it "vibe" since he was "riding the wave of flavor that resonated within me." (Like the Muggles who fought in the rice paddies, he chose to remember the good things about the countries over which he battled dark wizards. It seems that Muggle wars are affected by wizard wars -- remember Dumbledore defeated Grindelwald in the same year World War II ended. Coincidence??)
If you are so inclined, and have a sausage stuffing device, you can stuff this into small to medium sized pork casings, too. Another idea -- make a log and pat it around a popsicle stick or skewer, or into meatballs, and grill like a kebab.
Kiwi's Marinated Turkey Breast, on the Barbie
Turkeys were also released in New Zealand, where flightless birds are the normal native population. Alas, since the birds were also not fearful of Muggles or his pets, many of them became extinct. It is rumored that wizards and witches were keeping some as familiars, and they weren't actually extinct at all. Also, New Zealand is famous for UFO sitings; of course, they are simply the flight of disguised wizarding folk, trying to teach the flightless creatures how to fly! In any case, when the experiment fails, there's nothing one can do except have a party -- and this is a quick and easy, low-prep meal for a crowd (since turkey breasts tend to be quite large).
Prepare your barbeque grill according to manufacturer's instructions. When the heat burns to medium meat, remove the turkey out of the bag (discard the marinade) and place in a large piece of foil, and enclose it. Allow a few vent holes, toward the top of the packet so the juices don't run out. Place on the grill and close it and cook till a meat thermometer reads about 150°F/60°C. This takes from 30 to 60 minutes.
Let the roast sit for about 15 minutes away from the heat before serving and slicing.
The Saxon witches brought this recipe with them, replacing the thin pork cutlets with thin turkey cutlets. There were big, hefty women, and made short work of pounding the meat thin by simply smacking each cutlet once with the huge cast iron pan they used to fry the coated meat. The momentum from the combined weight of the pan and the big, happy lady wielding it ensured an evenly thin piece of meat. For more normal folk, it's probably best to slice the breast either crosswise or transversely to make "escalopes" rather than trying to pound the whole breast flat. And if you or the butcher cut it properly, there's little or no pounding to be done. The Saxon witches declared that beating down the breasts was the absolute fun part -- they would do voodoo-type rituals over the meat, naming each for a person they wanted to hex. They didn't clarify if anyone actually ever ended up wounded or dead as a result of their cooking ...
Stuffed Turkey Scaloppini
A Sicilian wizard told of his Grandmama, a formidable woman who -- unlike the "typical" Italian nona -- could NOT cook. Perhaps she felt it was beneath her to cook everyday, or that feeding people was too earthy a task for a lady. Her children grew up skinny like her, and would try to cadge invitations to meals elsewhere. They also moved as far away from her as possible; his father grew up in Liguria, in the north, but kept traveling till he fell off the Italian boot, and made his way to Sicily. But once a year, specifically on his birthday, she apparated in his home and produced this meal. It was a bit Austrian, like the above schnitzel, but made with Parmesan from Bologne, and was a bit French and Swiss with gruyère and prosciutto, that famous Italian bacon, making it a bit like "Turkey Cordon Bleu." As soon as the last bite of the delicious meal was eaten, she would get up, gave him a kiss, and disapparate, leaving the dirty dishes behind! But they never gripe about the dirty kitchen she leaves behind -- this one recipe of hers is a winner!
On one scaloppini, spread a teaspoon of mustard, then place a slice of ham and a slice of cheese. Place another scaloppini over it and press down to make a little sandwich. Dredge the scaloppini "sandwich" through the flour and shake off any excess, then dip into the egg mixture, then coat in the breadcrumbs. Place on a place and repeat with the other scaloppini.
In a skillet over medium to high heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter and a tablespoon of olive oil. Let the butter melt and foam up, then carefully place in the breaded scaloppini sandwich. When it's browned, carefully flip over and cook another couple of minutes. Transfer onto a warm plate and cover with foil to keep it warm while you cook the rest of the meat.
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