Gather around, food enthusiasts! Prepare to embark on a culinary adventure with me as I unveil a recipe that will captivate your taste buds. Get ready to indulge in the divine flavors of Roasted Turkey Breast with Hearty Stuffing.
Roasted Turkey Breast with Hearty Stuffing
- 1 fork
- plastic wrap
- 1 roasting pan or baking rack
- 1 piece of foil
- Butcher’s twine for tying up the rolled breast (if you don’t have any and don’t feel like buying it, I have improvised with toothpicks in the past, but the twine does make things easier)
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
- 4 cups thinly sliced leeks (white and light green parts only, thoroughly rinsed to remove all dirt)
- 3 cups sliced mixed mushrooms (about 8 ounces)
- ¼ cup wheat breadcrumbs
- ¼ cup grated pecorino-romano cheese
- 1½ teaspoons chopped fresh parsley, divided
- 1½ teaspoons chopped fresh sage, divided
- 1½ teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary, divided
- 1½ teaspoons chopped fresh thyme, divided
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter (at room temperature)
- 1 boneless turkey breast (mine is about 2.5 pounds)
- To make the stuffing, melt the butter over medium-high heat, then add the garlic and sauté it for about 30 seconds (make sure not to burn it, or it will become bitter). Add the sliced leeks and sauté until soft (about 5 minutes).
- Add the sliced mushrooms, increase the heat to high, and cook until soft and all liquid has evaporated (about 10 minutes). Remove from the heat and add the breadcrumbs, cheese, one teaspoon each of parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Set aside.
- To make the herb butter, use a fork to combine the tablespoon of softened butter with 1/2 teaspoon each of parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme. Set aside at room temperature.
For the turkey:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butterfly the turkey breast open with a very sharp knife and place it skin side down on a cutting board. Cover it with plastic wrap, then pound it out lightly with a meat mallet to flatten it a bit and make it an even thickness.
- Remove the plastic wrap and sprinkle the turkey breast with salt and pepper. Spread the stuffing onto the side without skin and spread it all over, leaving about 3/4-inch on each edge. Roll the turkey breast up as tightly as possible, finishing with the skin side up (towards you).
- Rub the entire top surface with the herb butter, placing some butter under the skin, if possible. Using butcher’s twine, tie up the turkey breast to keep its shape while roasting. Place the stuffed turkey breast on a roasting pan or on a baking rack that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.
- Roast the breast, uncovered, until the stuffed turkey reaches an internal temperature of 165°F, (about 1 1/2 hours). [Check the turkey about halfway through and cover it with a piece of foil if the top begins to get too brown].
- Once it has finished, remove from the oven and let it sit, covered with foil, for about 15–20 minutes before slicing. Snip off the butcher’s twine, and serve.
To ensure the best results when preparing Roasted Turkey Breast with Hearty Stuffing, here are some helpful tips and tricks to keep in mind. These insights will not only enhance the flavors but also help you avoid common mistakes that can affect the overall outcome of the dish.
- Allow the turkey breast to come to room temperature before cooking. This will ensure more even cooking and prevent the meat from drying out during the roasting process.
- Season the turkey breast generously with salt and pepper, both on the surface and under the skin. This will enhance the flavor of the meat and create a delicious crust.
- Stuff the turkey breast with a hearty and flavorful stuffing. Make sure the stuffing is fully cooked before placing it inside the turkey. Avoid overstuffing, as it can lead to uneven cooking.
- Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. The internal temperature of the turkey breast should reach 165°F (74°C) to ensure it is fully cooked and safe to eat.
- Let the turkey breast rest for 10-15 minutes after removing it from the oven. This allows the juices to redistribute and ensures a moist and tender final result.
Common mistakes to avoid:
- Overcooking the turkey breast can result in dry and tough meat. Be mindful of the cooking time and use a meat thermometer to prevent overcooking.
- Using a stuffing that is too wet can make the turkey breast soggy. Ensure your stuffing has the right balance of moisture and is thoroughly cooked before placing it inside the turkey.
- Cutting into the turkey breast immediately after cooking can cause the juices to escape, resulting in dry meat. Allow it to rest before slicing to retain its juiciness.
Roasted Turkey Breast with Hearty Stuffing is a classic dish that pairs well with a variety of sides, garnishes, and beverages. Here are some recommendations to complement the flavors and elevate your dining experience:
Sides and Garnishes:
- Creamy mashed potatoes: The smooth texture and buttery flavor of mashed potatoes are the perfect accompaniment to the savory turkey and stuffing.
- Roasted vegetables: Roasting vegetables like carrots, Brussels sprouts, and butternut squash adds a delightful sweetness and a touch of char that complements the turkey.
- Cranberry sauce: The tartness of cranberry sauce balances the richness of the turkey and adds a burst of vibrant flavor.
- Gravy: A rich and flavorful gravy made from the pan drippings adds moisture and enhances the overall taste of the dish.
- Green beans with almonds: Blanched green beans tossed with toasted almonds provide a refreshing and crunchy side dish.
Different Ways to Serve:
- Traditional Thanksgiving feast: Serve the roasted turkey breast with stuffing, sides, and garnishes on a large platter, creating a festive and abundant spread.
- Sandwiches: Thinly sliced roasted turkey breast makes delicious sandwiches. Layer it with cranberry sauce, lettuce, and mayonnaise between two slices of crusty bread.
- Salad: Slice the turkey breast and serve it over a bed of mixed greens, along with dried cranberries, toasted nuts, and a tangy vinaigrette for a lighter option.
- Red wine: Pair the roasted turkey breast with a medium-bodied red wine, such as Pinot Noir or Merlot, to complement the flavors of the dish.
- Sparkling cider: If you prefer a non-alcoholic option, sparkling cider provides a festive and refreshing choice that pairs well with the turkey.
- Iced tea: For a lighter and more refreshing drink, serve iced tea with lemon slices alongside the meal.
FAQs about Roasted Turkey Breast with Hearty Stuffing
How long can I store the leftovers of Roasted Turkey Breast with Hearty Stuffing?
Leftover Roasted Turkey Breast with Hearty Stuffing can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Make sure to place it in an airtight container to maintain its freshness.
Can I freeze the Roasted Turkey Breast with Hearty Stuffing?
Yes, you can freeze the Roasted Turkey Breast with Hearty Stuffing. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, or place it in a freezer-safe container. It can be stored in the freezer for up to 2-3 months. Thaw it in the refrigerator before reheating.
How do I reheat the leftover Roasted Turkey Breast with Hearty Stuffing?
To reheat the turkey breast, preheat your oven to 325°F (163°C). Place the sliced turkey in a baking dish, add a little turkey or chicken broth to keep it moist, cover with foil, and heat for about 20-30 minutes or until warmed through. Alternatively, you can also reheat individual slices in the microwave.
Can I use a different type of stuffing?
Certainly! While hearty stuffing is a popular choice, you can get creative and use different types of stuffing. Consider options like cornbread stuffing, wild rice stuffing, or a vegetarian stuffing made with mushrooms and herbs.
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