Thanksgiving Dinner on a Sonoma Farm
Herbed Turkey Two Ways
Bi-Rite owner Sam Mogannam, who always uses a heritage-breed turkey, cooks the white and dark meats separately to prevent the breast from drying out before the tougher leg meat is fully cooked. The method is also successful with conventional birds, plus it cuts the turkey cooking time by two-thirds. Because of this turkey’s large size, salting at least 8 hours before cooking allows the seasoning to fully penetrate.
Carrots in Tahini Dressing
“I like the clean flavors in this dish,” says Sam Mogannam of this incredibly simple side, which is as good with turkey as it is with steamed fish, roast chicken or pork.
Spiced Lamb-and-Rice Dressing with Chickpeas
Instead of the more common bread-based dressing, Sam Mogannam’s mother, Mariette, always serves turkey with this hearty, savory Palestinian stuffing, traditionally used as a filling for grape leaves or halved zucchini.
Beet-and-Blood-Orange Salad with Mint
To give this refreshing salad Palestinian flavor, Sam Mogannam seasons the dressing with ground sumac, a tangy Middle Eastern spice. While the color of golden beets contrasts nicely with dark red blood orange sections, any beet variety—from standard red ones to the white-and-pink striped chioggia—will be delicious.
Free-Form Apple Tart
Sam Mogannam’s wife, Anne Walker, usually makes this dessert with Arkansas Black apples—an heirloom variety—from Mogannam’s parents’ orchard near Sacramento. The dense, tart apples are harvested late in the season, making them a good Thanksgiving choice. Granny Smiths are an easier-to-find alternative.