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I’m Mari.
On Marivelous Me! you’ll find recipes, food gifts, food I’ve traveled for and food solutions. Poke around, maybe you’ll find inspiration for something you’re working on. Enjoy! 


The Turkey Breast Roast: Cooked and Conquered

apple flavored turkey breast roast thanksgivingFor years I'd see those vacuum-sealed, raw turkey breast roasts in the supermarket and just ignore them. Turkey's just for Thanksgiving, I'd mutter to myself and soldier over to another meat section. If I'm being honest, the main reason for my reluctance to cook this roast had nothing to do with Thanksgiving; I had just never cooked one before - I didn't want to screw it up! However, after my successful Thanksgiving Day turkey last year, I was emboldened to cook one of those suckers and overcome my fear ...

As I previously mentioned, my goal for this year is to face the things that I've been avoiding or resisting the most. I'd say cooking a turkey breast roast falls in this category. What's the worst that can happen? It sucks and we get take out, right? Right, but to hedge my bet, I started with the Thanksgiving Day brine. You know what? It turned out great. Super moist, super flavorful and it didn't take that long to prepare. So I'm feeling good. I'm feeling like I can start playing around with it a little more. Maybe substitute the apple cider with orange juice. Maybe not brine it at all and just give it a butter and herb rub, like I do with a roast chicken! Maybe I'll marinate it in yogurt and herbs! The sky's the limit! Huzzah! Now I can march up to the turkey section in any supermarket, point my finger and say with conviction, "Mr. Turkey Breast Roast, I ain't afraid of you no mo'."

The turkey breast I made for this post was made over the course of two days. The original Thanksgiving Day recipe called for air-drying the turkey in the fridge for 24 hours to achieve crisp skin. The skin didn't really crisp this time, I don't know why. I'm skipping the air-drying step in the recipe since, it seems a bit much for very little reward and some crisping was achieved by placing it under the broiler for a few minutes. This recipe is calculated for a two-pound roast. You'll need about four hours for the entire process but your actual involvement is about 45 minutes. Not bad for moist and flavorful turkey, eh? 

Serves 2 piggy people as main course (the bone weighs a lot!)

2 tablespoons Kosher (coarse) salt
3-1/2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
2-1/4 teaspoons ground Ancho chili powder
1-cup apple cider
5 cloves garlic
1/2 a Granny Smith apple, preferable
2-pound turkey breast roast
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened and divided
2 leeks, trimmed, rinsed and sliced lengthwise
3-4 medium-large carrots, peeled and sliced lengthwise
Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper
1-1/2 cups white wine, divided
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups chicken stock

apple flavored turkey breast roast thanksgiving brineapple flavored turkey breast roast thanksgiving bag brineIn a large zip-top plastic bag, add Kosher salt, brown sugar, Ancho chili powder and apple cider. Grate the garlic and apple directly into the bag. Slosh it around to stir up. Add the turkey breast and slosh it around to coat. Close the bag up, pressing out as much air as possible. Let brine in fridge for two hours (an hour for every pound).

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Remove turkey from brine, place it un-rinsed on a plate and discard brine. Let it come to room temperature for twenty minutes, figuring ten minutes per pound.

apple flavored turkey breast roast thanksgiving leeks carrotsMeanwhile, on your cooktop heat the roasting pan over medium-high heat. Add one tablespoon of butter, let it melt and bubble. Place leeks and carrots cut side down. Season with salt and pepper; cook for ten minutes, allowing the bottoms to brown. Turn off heat.

apple flavored turkey breast roast thanksgiving butteredapple flavored turkey breast roasted thanksgivingPlace V-rack on top of vegetables and place turkey breast, skin side up. Smear remaining butter on skin. Add one-cup of wine to the roasting pan and place in oven for half an hour. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Continue roasting until the thickest part registers 160 degrees on an instant-read thermometer, about 35-45 minutes longer. If the skin doesn't look browned enough, broil it for five minutes or so. Transfer turkey to a carving board and tent with foil to keep it warm for at least 15 minutes - any less time and its precious juices will end up all over your counter. Place roasted vegetables on a platter. 

In a two-cup measuring cup, combine flour and 1/8-cup (two tablespoons) chicken stock. Whisk until smooth. Whisk in remaining chicken stock. Return roasting pan to stovetop. Heat over medium heat. Add remaining one-cup white wine and scrape up the browned bits. Add chicken stock mixture and whisk continuously until mixture boils and thickens; season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour into a small bowl and reserve. 

apple flavored turkey breast roast thanksgiving plateCarve turkey from bone and slice meat on the bias (across the grain on a diagonal). Serve on plates with roasted leeks and carrots accompanied with the gravy. Enjoy!

Special thanks to Met Foods in NoLIta for letting me wander through their supermarket with purpose; Rives for shooting, editing and finding my most perfectly comedic Godfather-esque music piece: Mangeur de Lune by Bratsch; and Ana Maria and Mr. Mari for doubling over and silently laughing in Aisle 3. 

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