Thursday, November 24, 2011

Butterflied Cuban Turkey

 Done! I preheated the oven to 350F and placed the turkey in the center rack covered with aluminum foil. It was done in about 3 hours at which time I removed the foil and let it brown for about 30 minutes. Below is post from Monday.

So I've defrosted my turkey. Last year I made two turkeys: one butterflied with herbs, and one whole with Cuban mojo (marinade). Turns out everyone liked the butterflied one but the mojo of the Cuban one. So this year I'm making a butterflied Cuban turkey.

To butterfly a turkey you need to remove the back. This I achieved with great care and a bit of frustration. You need to cut along either side of the thick bony back where the thinner ribs connect. I will post a picture. Don't freak out.... LOL

Then you turn your turkey breast side up and press down with the heal of your hand to break the breast bone. This was not easy. Although I used my "man-hand," I didn't get it as flat as I had wished.

My advice, if you want a butterflied turkey, buy a fresh one and have your butcher do it for you.

Save the backbone along with the neck and gizzards for stock.

Now, for the mojo.  This is a 12 lb turkey. I used:

2 heads of garlic, pressed
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 cup orange juice
1 cup lime juice

Pretty simple.  (Note: you don't need to do this so far in advance, 24 hours is sufficient.)

I'll be roasting this on Thanksgiving. I will preheat the oven to 350. I will cover the turkey with aluminum foil and cook for several hours. The butterflied turkey requires a bit less time

Click here for useful information on oven baking times for roasting a turkey.

Stuffing Balls Wrapped in Bacon

Happy Thanksgiving!

Since my family doesn't reallyl care for stuffing (I end up being the only one who eats it). I decided to try to make it more appealing. I was thinking appetizer... so here it is stuffing balls wrapped in bacon.

Prepare your stuffing according to package directions: basically adding sauteed onions with celery and broth. Let cool. Cut your bacon slices in half. Make a tablespoon size ball with the stuffing, wrap the bacon around and secure with a toothpick. You can make them on the stove top in a skillet or in the oven. I haven't put mine into the oven yet, waiting for the turkey to cook, but I went ahead and made a couple on the stove top to taste them and blog them for you to see.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


This is an easy post because I copied the recipe from the Philadelphia Cream Cheese site. I'm reposting it here.
For the crust
1-1/2 cups HONEY MAID Graham Cracker Crumbs
3 Tbsp. sugar
1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted
For the Cheesecake
4 pkg. (8 oz. each) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
4 eggs


  1. Heat oven to 325°F.
  2. Mix graham crumbs, 3 Tbsp. sugar and butter; press onto bottom of 9-inch springform pan.
  3. Beat cream cheese, 1 cup sugar and vanilla with mixer until well blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing on low speed after each just until blended. Pour over crust.
  4. Bake 55 min. or until center is almost set. Loosen cake from rim of pan; cool before removing rim. Refrigerate 4 hours.
 Turns out this makes enough for 2 pies. I only had one pie pan, so the rest I made as cupcakes. I used a Keebler Ready Crust for the pie, and crushed oreos for the cupcakes.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Glazed Pork Steaks in Wine Sauce

These pork steaks turned very juicy and tender, oh and tasty too!

4 pork steaks
2 cloves garlic, crushed
3/4 cups sherry
1 cup beef stock (or 1 cup water and one beef bullion cube)
1 bay leaf
dash of paprika (optional)
olive oil
salt and pepper

Heata heavy pot/pan coated with olive oil. Add your crushed garlic, let the garlic cook for a minute or so and add your pork steaks. Let them brown a bit and add all other ingredients. Cover and let simmer for an hour or more. Check for tenderness, adjust seasoning. Remove lid and increase heat if necessary until the liquid reduces.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Bistec Empanizado • Breaded Steak

So, I've been absent. VERY absent. It's not that I haven't been cooking.... okay, yes I haven't been cooking, well I haven't been cooking anything new that is. I just can't bring myself to experiment in the kitchen considering how expensive groceries seem to be. Haven't you noticed the prices going up?

Anyway, I realized I haven't posted just plain breaded steak. Now, normally at a Cuban market, I would just ask for Palomilla Steak please, but I don't even know what cut of beef that is to translate it into English. So, when I come across thin cut steaks up here, I buy them and make my daughter's favorite: Bistec Empanizado. We eat it as you see in the picture, but you can also serve it A la Milanesa, topped with a tomato (spaghetti) sauce and melted cheese.

Season your steaks with salt, pepper and garlic powder. You'll need 3 bowls, put bread crumbs (I use seasoned bread crumbs) in the first, a beaten egg (with a little water) in the second and bread crumbs in the third.

Coat your steaks on both sides with the bread crumbs (bowl #1), pass it through the egg (bowl #) making sure to coat it on both sides and then through the bread crumbs again (bowl #3).

Heat oil in a skillet (about 1/4 inch of oil) and fry your steaks til golden brown on both side. Adjust the heat as you go, you don't want your steaks to brown to quickly without cooking fully inside.