Turkey Tom Westyum

Main, Poultry, Soup, Survivor, Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains, Survivor: Palau

So I’m going to start by going a little off topic, which is so on brand for me that I really shouldn’t have had to say anything. Anyway I was already hitting peak excitement for Survivor’s return in less than three weeks, particularly given I got to reconnect with my dear friend Tom Westman today … and then I started listening to Josh Wigler’s First One Out, and now I’m surprised I haven’t had an aneurysm in anticipation.

Anyway … if you love Survivor, listen to it. If not, ignore the above par and continue on.

I’ve known Tom for years, meeting not long after 9-11. I was starting to fetishise all first responders following their bravery during the attacks, and was working my way through the ladder companies to find me a mans. While Tom ultimately wasn’t won over by my charm and sexuality, he did grow to love me and guided me like a big brother.

As is oft the case, he failed at turning me into a decent person but for some reason, never gave up on me. I repaid the favour by getting him cast on Palau … which earned him a mill, so technically I was a good investment. Fun fact: if he had made it farther on Heroes vs. Villains, I would have been his loved one visit.

Like me, he is hella excited for the new season and hopes that the cursed Stephenie LaGrossa doesn’t have to spend the entire time on Ghost Island, and can at least enjoy some tropical delights while sucking the life – literally – out of one of the tribes.

Was it a kind of dark way for our conversation to go? Sure. But when it comes with a side of Turkey Tom Westyum, how can you be mad?

 

 

Spicy, fresh and healthy – for the sole reason that turkey is healthy, duh – this tom yum, is the tom yum to beat all tom yums. Sorry Tom Yum Everett Scott, this is a winner.

Have I mentioned, tom yum? Enjoy!

 

 

Turkey Tom Westyum
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
500g turkey mince
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 lime, zested and juiced
1 tsp ground ginger
handful of fresh coriander leaves, roughly chopped
vegetable oil
1 bunch of shallots, trimmed and sliced
1 tbsp tom yum paste
1L chicken stock
4 kaffir lime leaves
2 birdseye chillies, halved
1 tsp muscovado sugar
1 tbsp fish sauce
salt and pepper

Method
Combine the turkey mince in a bowl with a clove of garlic, lime zest, ginger and a tablespoon of chopped coriander. Form into balls and place on a lined baking sheet in the fridge to semi-set.

Heat a lug of oil in a large deep frying pan and cook the shallots and remaining garlic for a minute or so. Add the tom yum paste and cook for a further minute. Stir in the stock, lime leaves and chilli and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low, gently place the balls in and simmer for fifteen minutes.

Stir through the sugar, lime juice, fish sauce, remaining coriander leaves and a good whack of salt and pepper. Serve immediately and devour, piping hot.

 

As you can probably tell, we are very social but the fun isn’t only limited to celebrities! You can follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Tumblr.

Turkey Roulade McLanahan

Main, Poultry, Thankgiving for being a friend

After spending the last couple of days in ‘87 catching up with Bea and Estelle, I wasn’t sure if I should hang around for my date with Rue or go visit her in ‘05 when she was appearing in Wicked. Despite the fact it would likely have lead me to landing a part in the hit musical – and probs my first Tony – I decided to stick with the past.

Mainly to avoid a feud due to me exiting the time period without a word. Though it’s not like it would have lasted long, given how close we were.

I first met Rue on the set of Maude in the ‘70s. I, of course, was there as part of Bea’s entourage but I was fast taken by the delightful Eddi-Rue. We were both thrice divorced by the time we met and it was just such a comfort to have someone to talk to that had been through the same thing.

Rue always felt like the glue that held the girls together, given her warm, loving nature and I am so thankful to be able to experience it firsthand once more.

“My sweet darlin’ Ben, I do say, how I’ve missed you!”

I ran into her arms and held back my tears for her unexpected death in 2010.

“Now my sweet boy. Bea and Stell told me I’m in for a real treat for dinner … like how the men feel when going on a date with that Blanche!”

We laughed long and hard well into the night, talking about all the things we were thankful for – divorce being a big one for us three-timers – before sitting down to a big ol’ orgy of meat in the form of my Turkey Roulade McLanahan.

 

 

Given I was cooking in someone else’s kitchen … in the ‘80s, I couldn’t go around whipping up a big roast. That of course doesn’t take away from the fact this is a show stopper. The crispy pancetta crust keeps the turkey nice and moist. Particularly when you stuff it full of more meat and a good whack of herbs.

Enjoy!

 

 

Turkey Roulade McLanahan
Serves: 6.

Ingredients
1 small bunch of sage, roughly chopped
4 pork sausages, casings removed
1 carrot, grated
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
¼ cup craisins
a small handful of spinach, roughly chopped
freshly grated pepper
800g turkey breast fillets, flatten to 2cm thick with a mallet or rolling pin
200g thinly sliced pancetta

Method
Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Combine the sage, sausage, carrot, garlic, parmesan, craisins and spinach in a bowl with a good whack of pepper.

Arrange the pancetta on a sheet of baking paper, slightly overlapping. Line the flattened breasts along one of the long edges, pressing closely or overlapping to form a clean piece of meat. Form the stuffing into a long sausage and place it along the centre of the meat. Using the baking paper as a guide, tightly roll the turkey over to form a long roll, with the pancetta sealing the turkey meat. Tie with a couple of pieces of kitchen twine to secure, transfer to a lined baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes, or until crisp on the outside and beautifully cooked on the inside.

Allow to stand for five minutes or so before carving, serving and, most importantly, devouring.

 

As you can probably tell, we are very social but the fun isn’t only limited to celebrities! You can follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Tumblr.

Turkeira Knightley Sausage Rolls

Main, Party Food, Snack

While my first two choices were both too busy – being a monarch and a queen, respectively – to catch-up, my old faithful Keira Knightley was free. And it was wonderful to see her again.

I first met Kiz while protesting against her playing Lizzie Bennet in Pride & Prejudice – because no one would ever be able to top the sublime Jennifer Ehle. Oh … and I stole Jamie Dornan away from her. It wasn’t a strong start to friendship, by any stretch of the imagination, but it does highlight how sweet dear Kizza can be.

But I guess I wouldn’t hold a grudge if someone bought you your first Academy Award nomination to apologise.

After working through our rocky start, we became the best of friends and I became the toast of ol’ London town. We laughed, we partied and, after she discovered that she didn’t earn her first nom, vowed to secure her a legit Oscar nom. While it took me nine years, her performance in The Imitation Game was exquisite and I was glad to see her get the recognition she deserved … and to clear my debt.

It was such a treat to see her again and catch-up on what she’s been doing since she was in town for the scandal plagued last Pirates movie. Given how thankful we were to see each other, I was inspired to whip up my  Thanksgiving approved Turkeira Knightley Sausage Rolls.

 

 

Bringing a little bit of festive spirit to the Australian classic, these rolls are near culinary perfection. Flakey pastry, spiced, moist turkey and plump warm cranberries? Delicious and oh so comforting.

Enjoy!

 

 

Turkeira Knightley Sausage Rolls
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
500g turkey mince
1 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
½ cup craisins, roughly chopped
2 tbsp fresh sage, roughly chopped
⅓ cup pistachios, roughly chopped
½ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 sheets of puff pastry
1 eggs, lightly whisked

Method
Preheat the oven to 160°C.

Place the turkey, onion, garlic, craisins, sage, pistachios, nutmeg, allspice and cinnamon in a large bowl and scrunch to combine.

Cut the pastry sheets in half and split the meat mixture into two, shaping into a long sausage to fit the length of the pastry. Place on the pastry, wrap tightly to combine, brushing the seam to help seal the sausage roll.

Slice each into two or three, place on a lined baking sheet and brush with remaining egg. Place in the oven and bake for twenty minutes, or until cooked through and the pastry is golden.

Devour, festively.

 

As you can probably tell, we are very social but the fun isn’t only limited to celebrities! You can follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Tumblr.

Turkey and Brie Larson Pizza

Main, Party Food, Snack

Seriously – is there anyone sweeter than Brie Larson?

Obviously that question is rhetorical since I’m her friend and you’re not, but I swear Brie Larson is a damn saint. I mean, just look through her post-Trumpotus-elect Instagram feed – she is a damn angel that we don’t deserve.

Brie and I have been close friends for more than a decade after meeting on the set of 13 Going on 30. I could tell immediately that she was destined for greatest and made it my life’s work to help her succeed … which I have, so look at me being a success!

Anywho, I contacted my friend Toni and got Brie cast in the hit show United States of Tara, which led to Short Term 12 which, of course, led to Room … and her Oscar. As you can imagine, I haven’t let her forget that I am integral to all her success.

Given the post-Oscar spike – not enjoyed by my friend Halle Berry or frenemy Nicole Kidman – Brie and I haven’t been able to get together to celebrate her victory / discuss my involvement in the Captain Marvel movie (or as a love interest for Chris Pratt in Guardians of the Galaxy – I’m not picky).

It was so wonderful to be able to join together to celebrate our – yes our – wonderful achievements in Room over a rich, festively appropriate Turkey and Brie Larson Pizza.

 

turkey-brie-larson-pizza-1

 

This pizza originally came about due to me needing to work through an over abundance of post-Thanksgiving turkey but after training myself to become a competitive eater, it grew into its own delightful, meatbally delight.

That is a word.

Spicy, tart and a little bit decadent, this is the perfect meal for bridging the gap between holidays and / or eating your feelings.

Enjoy!

 

turkey-brie-larson-pizza-2

 

Turkey and Brie Larson Pizza
Serves: 2-6.

Ingredients
pizza dough (I used the one from Pizsa Zsa Gabor)
passata or tomato paste, with a combination of herbs
500g turkey mince
1 tsp cinnamon
2 cloves garlic, minced
olive oil
½ cup cranberry sauce
a couple of sage leaves, roughly chopped
100g(ish, no judgement if you want more) brie, roughly sliced

Method
Follow the dough recipe on Zsa Zsa’s recipe.

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Combine the mince, cinnamon and garlic in a bowl, and heat a lug of olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Pinch out small chunks of meat and add to the pan, not worrying too much about forming them into perfect balls, and cook until completely browned. Add in the cranberry sauce and cook for a further minute and remove from heat.

Once you’ve rolled out the dough and covered it in your herby passata, sprinkle with sage leaves, top generously with meatballs and top with brie.

Pop it straight into the oven and bake for fifteen minutes, or until the cheese is melted and crisp.

Devour.

 

As you can probably tell, we are very social but the fun isn’t only limited to celebrities! You can follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and Google+.

Brined Littrell Turkey

Backstreet's back give thanks!, Main

While our relationship with his cousin Kevs started off strained, there has never been anything but love between us and Brian. That probably had something to do with the fact we were wooing him to bring Kevs down.

Despite our nefarious plot to use Brian as our pawn, the sweet, delightful guy won us over and helped us heal our issues with Kevin and our broken dreams.

Brian has always had to struggle what with his heart defect and vocal cord dysphonia, yet he has always handled himself with such grace and kindness. Being our polar opposite, we find that intriguing and exciting and have endeavoured to stay close ever since.

Don’t tell him, but we secretly tried to bring down Nick after he bullied him due to his vocal cord issues – no one messes with our sweet, delicate angel. (We made up though obviously, we had to find someone to help us bring Bindi down).

Our friendship with Brian, and I don’t think I am overstating this, has been the most nourishing, fulfilling and generous (non-sexual) relationship in our lives which made our thanksgiving menu planning a breeze.

I mean, what is more nourishing and fulfilling than a Brined Littrell Turkey?

 

Brined Littrell Turkey_1

 

While turkey and the rest of its friends in the poultry family have a nasty habit of going dry, a perfectly brined bird maintains the moistness of the meat and infuses it with a flavour you can’t resist.

Enjoy!

 

Brined Littrell Turkey_2

 

Brined Littrell Turkey
Serves: 12.

Ingredients
4 cups water
¾ cup maldon salt
½ cup honey
4 cups salt-reduced chicken stock
1 tbsp peppercorns
8 sprigs fresh rosemary, to brine
fresh turkey, size 50, neck and giblets removed for the gravy (discard liver)
1 small onion, peeled and quartered
1 fuji apple, quartered
1 bulb garlic, halved
4 sprigs rosemary, for baking
⅓ cup olive oil

Method
The day before you plan to eat, make the brine by bringing the water, salt, honey, stock, peppercorns and rosemary to the boil in a large saucepan, stirring to dissolve salt. Cool to room temperature.

Once cooled, place brine mixture in a large clean bucket or pot and add 4 litres of iced water. Place turkey in the liquid, breast side down to avoid tit-soup, cover and refrigerate overnight, ensuring the turkey is fully submerged. You may need to add more cold water.

To roast the turkey, preheat oven to 160C.

Remove turkey from brine (discard the liquid, definitely don’t drink it) and rinse thoroughly, inside and out, with cool water and dry thoroughly. Season the turkey cavity with salt and pepper and stuff with onion, apple, garlic and rosemary. Place on a roasting rack inside a large roasting pan, tucking the wings back. Rub the turkey with oil and season with salt and pepper. Cover the breast portion with foil and place on the lowest rack in oven (aka the only one that will allow it to fit) and roast for two hours.

Remove the foil and increase the heat up to 220C and roast for a further 45 minutes. Remove the turkey from the oven and insert a thermometer between the breast and thigh (avoiding bones), if it is 75C it is ready.

Remove turkey from the pan, place on a large platter and tent with foil to rest for 20 minutes. Carve, devour, etc.

 

As you can probably tell, we are very social but the fun isn’t only limited to celebrities! You can follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and Google+.