3 dried cascabel chiles or 2 small dried hot red peppers
2 tablespoons achiote (annatto seed)
1 bunch of fresh marjoram or 1 tablespoon dried
2 cups fresh orange juice (from about 5 juice oranges)
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
1 medium onion, finely diced
1 small carrot, finely diced
1 medium red bell pepper, finely diced
1 pint freshly shucked oysters with their liquor (about 20)
1/3 cup unsalted pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh coriander (cilantro)
1 teaspoon finely chopped orange zest
10- to 12-pound fresh turkey
How to Make It
In a medium saucepan, cover the black beans with cold water and soak overnight. Or bring to a boil, remove from the heat and let stand, covered, for 1 hour. Drain well.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, soak the chipotle peppers in 1 cup of hot water for 1 hour. Remove the stems from the peppers. Place the peppers in a food processor. Add 1/3 cup of the soaking water and puree, adding more soaking water as necessary to make a thick paste. Strain through a coarse sieve and reserve.
In a medium saucepan, combine the black beans with 4 1/2 cups of water, the bay leaf and 1 tablespoon of the chipotle paste. Bring to a simmer over moderately low heat and cook until the beans are tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Drain and let cool; discard the bay leaf.
In a small saucepan, combine the rice with 2 cups of water. Cook, uncovered, over moderate heat until tender, about 12 minutes. Strain in a sieve and let cool.
In a small saucepan, combine the cascabel chiles with the achiote and 1 cup of water. Cook over moderately high heat until the chiles have softened and no liquid remains, 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer the chiles and seeds to a blender and add the marjoram, orange juice and lime juice. Puree for 10 seconds. Strain through a wide-mesh sieve. Season with the salt and black pepper; set the achiote puree aside.
Preheat the oven to 325°. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the shrimp and sauté over high heat, tossing, until just pink, 2 minutes. Transfer the shrimp to a plate to cool. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil to the skillet and reduce the heat to low. Add the onion, carrot and red bell pepper and cook, covered, until the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes.
In a medium skillet, combine the oysters and their liquor with 2 tablespoons of the chipotle paste. Cook over high heat until the edges of the oysters just begin to curl, about 7 minutes. With a slotted spoon, gently transfer the oysters to a plate. Boil the cooking liquid until reduced to 1/4 cup, about 2 minutes; it will be very thick. Stir in any liquid that drains from the oysters.
Place the pumpkin seeds on a cookie sheet and toast in the oven until they begin to pop, about 5 minutes. In a large bowl, combine the toasted pumpkin seeds with the black beans, rice, shrimp, sautéed vegetables, oysters and reduced oyster liquid, fresh coriander and orange zest.
Fill the chest and neck cavities with the stuffing. Sew or skewer closed; truss the bird. Set the turkey in a large roasting pan and pour on the reserved achiote puree. Roast, basting every 20 minutes and adding water to the pan if the drippings start to brown, for 3 1/2 to 4 hours or until the temperature measured in the inner thigh near the bone reads 160° and the juices run clear when the thigh is pierced. Cover the turkey with foil if the skin gets too dark. Let stand, loosely covered with foil, for 15 minutes before carving.
Dried chipotle peppers, dried cascabel chiles and unsalted pumpkin seeds are available at Latin American markets and health food stores.
Any leftover chipotle paste can be refrigerated, covered, and used as a hot seasoning. It will keep for at least three weeks.
The added spice and heat that the chiles give this bird point toward an equally assertive red, but one with some fruitiness for balance. A California Zinfandel would be just the ticket. Alternatively, soften the southwestern bite with a fruity California ros&é.
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