Thursday, 2 February 2012


Birthmas is a mashed up holiday for people like me; people who are not able to be with their families at all holiday. It's a time that you can get together between birthdays and Christmas and relax, enjoy each other, and above all - eat.

I just got back to Victoria after visiting with my own family in Ontario for a week and we celebrated the elusive holiday of Birthmas to the fullest extent. And instead of making holiday dishes that I am familiar with, my mom and I made her holiday dishes that I missed out on during Christmas.

This week I will sharing recipes from Birthmas that I know will have you drooling and wishing you could celebrate the holiday yourself.

Remember though, if today is between Christmas and a birthday - you can!

First, here is my mom (and Chef Gordon Ramsay's) version of a delicious moist turkey. It would be a keeper for my recipe files even if my mom hadn't made it for my first Birthmas.

Birthmas Turkey

1 turkey, fresh or defrosted (about 10-15 pounds)
1/4 cup butter or margarine
3 tablespoons fresh finely minced parsley
Zest from one lemon
1 pinch of salt and pepper

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees and get the butter mixture ready. Combine butter, parsley and lemon zest in a small bowl. Mix well.

2. Gently pull the skin back from the breast of the turkey with your fingers and smooth the butter mixture between the skin and the breast. Go slowly so you don't rip the skin and if you're having trouble, try smoothing the butter mixture from both ends - the neck and the tail ends.

For another quick tip, I like to spoon in the butter and squish it around with my hands from outside the skin. This makes it so my hands get less dirty and butter covered.

3. If you have any butter leftover, smear it on the outside of the bird. Then grind pepper and salt on top.

4. Bake for about 15 minutes a pound or until a thermometer tells you that your turkey has an internal temperature of 175 degrees.

Remember this timing is for unstuffed turkeys. If you choose to stuff yours, you may need to cook your bird a little longer.

My mom covers her turkey for the majority of the cooking time, so feel free to try her way. I like to keep mine uncovered though. But that could be because my roaster doesn't have a lid...

Don't forget to check out my favourite tips for roasting a turkey. I use them every time I make a bird, holiday or not!

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