It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is only a week away – it feels like I was just blogging about summer produce and canning, and here we are with fall just beginning.
I always love this time of year because with fall comes, not only gorgeous colours, but also great flavours with local root vegetables in season and lots of different spices to add to your home cooked meals.
Thanksgiving, of course, is the greatest of all the family meals. Last year around this time we blogged about how the Thanksgiving meal has evolved and in these modern times, it no longer has to be your traditional turkey, stuffing and pumpkin pie.
This year, we add a local twist to turkey and spice up the cranberry sauce with this maple brined turkey breast and cranberry apple chutney.
Yes, I said turkey breast. There’s no rule that says you have to cook the entire turkey, and I often find that there’s so much leftover that by the time it’s done, I’m glad it’ll be another year before I eat another turkey. But when you cook a turkey breast per person (depending on the size), it’s more manageable both to cook and eat.
Chutney is one of our favourite condiments here at Never Enough Thyme, and what better way to modernize cranberries than by spicing them up with a bit more flavour and topping the turkey with the end product.
Maple Brined Turkey Breast
1 cup kosher salt
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup maple syrup, grade B is fine
3 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. pepper flakes
1 tsp. peppercorns
1/2 tsp. whole cloves
1/4 cup fresh rosemary, chopped
2 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
12 garlic cloves, smashed
8 cup water
2 tbsp. ginger, chopped
7-8 turkey breast medallions, sliced
Place all brine ingredients in a non-reactive pot and bring to a boil, once boiled, allow to steep and cool. The brine can be made ahead of time. Place turkey medallions in the brine and marinate for up to 12 hours, no longer. I prefer approximately 6 hours. Once brined, remove the turkey and place on paper towel to pat dry. Season the turkey with ground pepper, no salt. Lightly oil the turkey and place on preheated pan, cook on medium heat. Serve with cranberry apple chutney (below).
Fresh Cranberry Apple Chutney
1 Honey Crisp apple, diced (I like the skin on but you can remove)
1 Anjou pear, diced (skin on)
3 tbsp. red onion, diced
14 cup of dried cranberries
12 an orange, juiced
1 tsp. ginger, grated
1 tsp. tamarind paste
2 tbsp. Bauman’s cinnamon honey
2 tbsp. olive oil
Season with cracked black pepper to taste
Place all ingredients into a bowl and toss, allow the juices to soften the cranberries and serve with the turkey breast.