I’ve been making stuffed turkey breasts en Croute years. They are great solution for smaller gatherings or for couples who are not hosting large gatherings this year.
My late husband always said that the Thanksgiving meal was really not about the turkey but just a vessel for the the trinity of stuffing, gravy and mashed potatoes.
We teach Zero Waste cooking classes in our sustainable kitchen at Greenporter Hotel in Long Island Wine Country and have recently begun cooking classes on Zoom. This past Monday we featured some tips for Thanksgiving turkey, gravy and stuffing. We also included some other side dishes and accompaniments that you can find in our Thanksgiving 7 day countdown. For the turkey, if you didn’t buy a local bird, plan for next year. On the North Fork we have Miloski’s Farm, Feisty Acres, 8 Hands Farm, Browder’s Birds and Goodale Farms, and others, where you can source your bird of choice. For a vegetarian Thanksgiving, there are plenty of farm stand selections from squashes for pumpkin gnocchi and other hearty entrees to local mushrooms and greens for a delicious and colorful menu
A three-pound turkey breast will feed up to four with everyone having seconds or you can get a smaller one for two people. Just be sure to make enough stuffing, gravy and other sides. If you have a whole turkey, cut out the breasts for this recipe and use the legs and thighs for gravy and a delicious soup, sopa de tortilla or “enchiladas suizas” as (creamy green sauce filled with chicken or turkey and covered in melted cheese) to feed a crowd over the weekend. Stayed tuned for the creamy enchiladas we will make this Saturday!
Ingredients for Turkey Breast en Croute
Turkey breast (3 lb.) Make two of them if you want leftovers
Salt and pepper and a drizzle of EVOO
2 quarts of 12 ingredient stuffing (make day before)
One box of frozen puff pastry (unless you want to engage in further servitude and make your own)
Step 1: Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Turkey breast should cook 15 minutes per pound or until the center reaches 160 degrees.
Step 2: Butterfly the breast and do not remove the skin. Butterflying is slicing it across the breast horizontally. It does not need to be perfect as once it is stuffed and wrapped in pastry, no one will notice.
Step 3: Add salt and pepper to turkey breast and any other condiment or herb you like.
Step 4: Add two tablespoons of olive oil to a large sauté pan at medium heat. Sear turkey breast skin-side down until skin is browned. Then, turn over and slightly brown on other side. Remove from pan and allow to cool. Reserve the pan and the drippings for your gravy.
Step 5: Lay out your sheet of puff pastry, using rolling pin to flatten. Place puff pastry on baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Step 6: Place the breast on the dough and fill the breast with the stuffing. It is ok to overfill since you will just be wrapping it up with the pastry. Place any extra stuffing in a buttered pan or dish and bake separately.
Step 7: Then, start at one side, pulling up the pastry and pinching in a fan-like pattern. Push down so as to seal the pastry and push out any air that could bubble up during baking and ruin the shape of the pastry. If the pastry breaks anywhere in your “package”, use another piece of pastry to “tape” it shut. This method is very forgiving.
Step 8: Use any leftover pastry to decorate your bird. Leaves, cornucopia, stars, etc.
Step 9: Brush with egg wash and place in the oven.
Bake for one hour or as big as the breast calls for and allow to rest at least 15 before slicing*. Present whole at the table on a beautiful platter with fresh herbs, *then slice afterwards. This makes a beautiful sliced serving.
Serve with abundance of sides and gravy. Check out my Thanksgiving wine pairings.