Well friends, today is monumental in the history of "Abundant Life." I'm doing something unprecedented and featuring a guest post. That's right, I'm officially taking the day off and handing over the blogging reins to a very worthy author. I've spent more time in the kitchen with her than anyone else and we are constantly talking recipes and cuisine. Not only does she trump me intellectually in the literary department, but she also has cooked a bird which is a feat I cannot say I've undertaken. And to top it all off, she looks ravishing in an apron. So, without further ado, I give you Tasty Tuesdays a la Christina (AKA China), my fousin extraordinaire.
Hello readers! I do apologize to all of you who were waiting with bated breath for this week's installment of Tasty Tuesdays (everyone's favorite day of the week thanks to my dear fousin), but I can be a bit forgetful and it totally slipped my mind that it was my task to provide you with your recipe(s)-o-the-week on this fine December 22. I hope that you will forgive me, and think you will once you sample the culinary treats below :) I want to thank my dear fousin Rachel for being a culinary inspiration to me as well as a soul sister and beautiful reminder of God's love. I love you, fuzz! Ok, cheese-fest complete. On to the food.
My first recipe, a delectable sweet potato souffle, is not a Christina Original by any means, but I have made some adjustments here and there in order to truly call the recipe my own. This is without a doubt my favorite way to prepare sweet potatoes, and in my humble opinion, completely blows the competition out of the water. Once you try it, you won't go back!
• 3 large sweet potatoes cooked and whipped
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 2 eggs beaten
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1 stick butter
• 1/4 cup evaporated milk
• 2 teaspoons vanilla
• 1 bag marshmallows (optional--I never use them)
• 1/2 cup chopped pecans (also optional)
Poke holes in potatoes with a fork and wrap in foil. Back for at least an hour and a half (or until completely tender) at 450 degrees. Peel potatoes and whip. Add sugar, eggs, salt, butter, milk and vanilla. Mix well and put in a greased 1 1/2 quart casserole. Top with crumble and bake in a preheated 325 degree oven for 25 minutes. Place marshmallows and pecans on top and return to oven for about 5 minutes or until brown on top.
(Editors note: You can also make a brown sugar topping by combining a couple tablespoons of butter, brown sugar and flour. Use your hands to combine them into a crumble and sprinkle over the top of the potatoes before baking.)
Recipe #2 for herb-roasted turkey is another rip off, but has some personal touches as well.
• 1 whole bone-in turkey breast, 6 1/2 to 7 pounds
• 1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
• 2 teaspoons dry mustard
• 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
• 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
• 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
• 2 teaspoons salt
• 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
• 2 tablespoons good olive oil
• 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (be sure to keep the lemon when you're done squeezing!)
• 1 cup dry white wine (a cheap Chardonnay works well)
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Place the turkey breast, skin side up, on a rack in a roasting pan.
In a small bowl, combine the garlic, mustard, herbs, salt, pepper, olive oil, and lemon juice to make a paste. Loosen the skin from the meat gently with your fingers and smear half of the paste directly on the meat. Spread the remaining paste evenly on the skin. Stick the lemons into the main cavity of the turkey (this really makes a difference!). Pour the wine into the bottom of the roasting pan. Word to the wise: cover the bottom of the roasting pan with foil before pouring the wine and sticking it in the oven.
Roast the turkey for 1 3/4 to 2 hours, until the skin is golden brown and an instant-read thermometer registers 165 degrees F when inserted into the thickest and meatiest areas of the breast. If the skin is over-browning, cover the breast loosely with aluminum foil. When the turkey is done, cover with foil and allow it to rest at room temperature for 15 minutes. Slice and serve with the pan juices spooned over the turkey.
This recipe produced what was by far the juciest, most delicious turkey breast I have *ever* tasted. Seriously. It was moist, flavorful, and went wonderfully with Rachel's stuffing (featured in a previous Tasty Tuesday). It would be absolutely perfect for Christmas dinner. Buon appetito!
Happy cooking, friends! I hope you have a blessed Christmas and an abundant new year. What a gift it is to know that our God became flesh, walked the earth, died, rose again and continues to dwell among us, fulfilling our humanity. I can't think of a better reason to celebrate!