Superstar chef Michael Symon's Thanksgiving menu draws from his Greek-Italian-Eastern European-Midwestern heritage.
Food & Wine
October 17, 2012
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Michael Symon begins Thanksgiving with this tangle of multicolored vegetables—radishes, golden beet and carrots—tossed with a lemon-dill dressing. Because they’re served raw, the vegetables should be sliced very thin, in a food processor or preferably on a mandoline. Symon recommends using a Greek feta for the salad’s cheese garnish, because he likes that Greek feta is saltier than some others.
Lots of people brine their turkeys. Not Symon, who thinks brining makes the bird a little rubbery. He salts his bird well and refrigerates it overnight to season it. Before roasting, he covers the breast and legs with cheesecloth that's been soaked in a cider-infused butter. For his beer-spiked gravy, Symon recommends the German-style Dortmunder Gold, made by Great Lakes Brewing Company, from his home state of Ohio.
A mix of sautéed wild mushrooms adds lots of texture to this stuffing; lemon juice and zest make it tangy. The mushroom stuffing can be made vegetarian-friendly simply by replacing the chicken stock with vegetable stock.
Symon usually doesn’t make dessert for holidays. Still, his version of this classic is great after a big meal because it isn’t too sweet or too heavy. He layers brioche bread crumbs with sliced apples and a cinnamon-citrus sugar, baking everything together so it becomes wonderfully soft.