Pre-Thanksgiving Miscellany

by Kristen on November 21, 2012 · 11 comments

in Miscellany

For a week or two last month, we went almost completely without any homemade sandwich bread. I flat-out did NOT feel like baking bread.

Except, I figured out that I just didn’t feel like baking basic whole wheat bread. I was kinda bored with it, I guess.

Fortunately, my Baking Illustratedcookbook came to the rescue with a recipe for oatmeal sandwich bread, which is a nice change of pace for both the baker and the people eating what the baker makes.

Baking Illustrated also has a cinnamon/raisin variation, which I’m itching to try.

And once I do, I’ll do a post with the recipe.

(In case any of you are getting a case of baking ennui too!)

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Yesterday, I cooked a turkey breast from Aldi. I never buy turkey breasts, but after sampling one on my trip to the Aldi test kitchens, I decided to change my ways. The roasted turkey breast I ate at the test kitchens was really delicious and moist, which is not what I typically expect from turkey breast.

I’m pleased to report that the turkey breast I cooked in my own kitchen was just as good as the one I had at the Aldi test kitchen. All six of us gave it an enthusiastic thumbs-up.

I used this recipe, except I made my own gravy. And I roasted one turkey breast instead of two, but I didn’t halve the seasoning. I actually think that amount of seasoning would be a little skimpy for two turkey breasts…for one, it’s perfect!

If you’re looking for an easy whole turkey alternative or if a whole turkey is just too much food for your household, you should give this a try.

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Feeling all bummed out because you don’t have an Aldi store near you?

Well, then you’ll be pleased to hear that Aldi is opening new stores all the time. Here are some new East Coast stores.

Towson, MD-opening Friday, November 30th, 2012

Langley Park, MD-opened November 17th, 2012

Exton, PA-due to open December 6th

Martinsburg, WV-due to open December 13th, 2012

Chantilly, VA-slated to open December 14th, 2012

West Palm Beach, FL-due to open December 13th, 2012

And check Aldi’s Facebook page to find out about other openings around the country. I saw they recently opened up new stores in Illinois, Ohio, and New Jersey, to name a few.

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If you’re contributing rolls to tomorrow’s Thanksgiving meal, check out this yeast roll roundup I put together. My favorites are probably the basic rolls and the honey-glazed rolls. The honey-glazed rolls are crazy delicious, but not as portable as the other recipes. So, if portability is important for you, I’d go with one of the other recipes.

I’ll be back here tomorrow with my annual thankful list (I list 50 things I’m thankful for, and it’s always a really great exercise for my gratefulness muscles.)

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Joshua’s 365 post: Two photos? What is this madness?

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 PaulJohn November 21, 2012 at 9:04 am

For a few years I was doing those as well, but I live in a more rural area now, and haven’t had luck finding the turkey breasts in recent years. Haven’t done my shopping for tomorrow yet, and I’m *probably* just doing a chicken that I already had on hand, but I will look just for curiosity sake when I go shopping this afternoon.

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2 Molly F. C. November 21, 2012 at 9:07 am

Your gravy looks delicious. Did you make it using the pan drippings from the turkey breast? Happy Thanksgiving!

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3 Kristen November 21, 2012 at 9:18 am

Kind of! I made a modified white sauce, using about half milk and half of the flavorful broth from the bottom of the pan.

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4 Becky November 21, 2012 at 9:09 am

So excited to learn that Aldi is opening up a new store close to me; I’ve heard such good things, I’m looking forward to trying it :-)
Thanks Kristen – and Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

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5 Molly November 21, 2012 at 9:11 am

I think it’s fine to take a break from bread-baking every once in a while. Then, when you get back to it, it’s EXTRA delicious.

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6 Kim C November 21, 2012 at 9:53 am

Kristen, First I’d like to say that I’m quite thankful for you and your blog! You have helped our family save a lot of money with your recipes, ideas and insight. Thank you for all the effort you put into your blog. I really appreciate it.
Second, I’d like to ask you a question about transporting/baking rolls. I’ve asked this before, but for some reason it doesn’t get through my thick skull. LOL Can I make rolls the day before then do the final bake at my Mom’s house the next day? I’m still new to baking with yeast so I’m always afraid this won’t work, but with a ton of other stuff to do tomorrow I’m wondering how to pull it off.

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7 Rebecca November 21, 2012 at 3:08 pm

You can do that, just rise and punch down like usual, then shape the rolls the way you want and cover with plastic wrap and put in the fridge. Then take them out of the fridge to let warm up and rise right before baking. Keep in mind that that last rise may take up to an hour longer, because the dough was in the fridge.

Or you can par bake the rolls, maybe 15 min shy of a full bake, and just finish them off in the oven right before dinner.

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8 Barbara Pfieffer November 21, 2012 at 10:39 am

quick question: were the turkey breasts frozen or thawed? I’ll be having my Thanksgiving on Saturday and going to Aldi’s today.

I also wanted you to know that your oatmeal cinnamon bread has become legendary among my friends and family. That is what they always want me to bring to gatherings. Thanks for such a great and foolproof recipe!

Barbara

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9 Kristen November 21, 2012 at 11:54 am

They’re frozen, but they thaw way quicker than a whole turkey does.

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10 Jen November 21, 2012 at 1:14 pm

Thanks for the turkey breast recipe. We’re going to a large gathering tomorrow but I bought a breast to cook for home so we could have sandwiches–the best part of Thanksgiving dinner, IMHO!

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11 Susie November 22, 2012 at 3:31 pm

I bought the same kind of turkey at Safeway and waiting to see how it turns out :-)

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