After a little time off, a Warrior Dash, and some baking from Evan I’m getting ready for Thanksgiving!

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Hi Everyone! I took a week off from blogging and now I’m back! I was busy getting some things in order and having some fun as well πŸ™‚ I will share a few snippets of what I’ve been up to and what’s coming up from the ZestyBeanDog!

I’m getting ready for Thanksgiving now and I’m very excited! I’ll be cooking for 8 people this Thursday. I’m doing a nice organic and free-range local turkey. I’m considering brining it, but I have never brined before… any tips or thoughts on brining? Do you brine and why?

Lastly, I will be in a sweet blogger desert contest starting December 4th, stay tuned for details!

Over the last 10 days we:

Made a pizza with green beans on it …

Evan made some awesome strawberry banana nut bread for work

My friend Hannah and I ran in the Warrior Dash, Evan spectated!

It was so much fun! It’s a 5k trail run with obstacles to conquer! We finished in 43 min, we were 194 out of 809 in our age/sex bracket and 2118 of 6052 people. We were just running for fun…but didn’t do too bad πŸ™‚Β 

Before

After

Now back to the grind πŸ™‚

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About zestybeandog

I live in Austin with my wonderful husband, dog Ginger, and cat Skiddy. We are a pretty laid back group (except for Ginger). When I'm not teaching yoga, personal training, or dog walking... I'm in the kitchen. I'm always experimenting with new ingredients and thinking of ways to prepare fresh foods in a unique way. I hope to update the blog 4-5 times a week. I've had several friends, family, and clients inquire about my recipes so here it goes. What to expect: Healthy recipes that are good for you, some classics (that have been spruced up), some not so healthy recipes (still made with quality ingredients that can be enjoyed in moderation), and beer and wine parings/reviews! I hope you enjoy, cheers!

19 responses »

  1. We don’t brine — too much salt: we are not salt addicts. We get a natural turkey and roast it low and slow. 325 degrees for a stuffed bird, tenting with foil in the last hour if the breast browns too much. We roast it on a rack to let the dripping fall into the pan since we make pan gravy. Good luck! Look forward to the dessert news next week.

    • Good to know, I don’t think I will be brining either… I have always done it low and slow and loved it. Just wanted to get some people’s opinions on brine, I guess to see if I was missing out on something amazing… πŸ™‚ hahaha! I get enough salt already in a day! Thanks! πŸ™‚

      • Many people swear by brining because it adds moisture to the meat, but if you don’t overcook it and maybe even baste it a few times, you shouldn’t need to brine it.

  2. Brine brine brine! You can control the amount of salt you add and while brining adds that extgra safe guard from over cooking, depending on your brine, it adds an extra level of flavor and moistness. It’s all about degrees of goodness. cheers!

  3. My sister moved from Sydney to NYC a few years ago and got very involved in Thanksgiving. She wanted to cook a turkey and did it in brine and raved about it. What we think is that if you have a turkey over about 4kgs in size (about 9 pounds) you should brine it as it makes the meat so tender. But anything smaller than that can be treated more like a large roast chicken.

    • Thanks for the info, my turkey is fairly small this year so I think a traditional roasting is in order πŸ™‚ Next year maybe I’ll go larger and try a brine…. oh the options πŸ™‚

  4. Thanks Mandy! I was so glad he didn’t want to run so we could get some pictures and he could hold our belongings πŸ™‚ Next year however he wants to take part in the muddy fun!!! πŸ™‚

  5. Congrats on the Warrior Dash! Looks like hard work and fun!

    I have brined my turkey in the past. I used Alton Brown’s recipe, which included juniper berries. It was a great turkey–but I just don’t have the time/refrigerator space this year. I always buy a fresh bird (just picked mine up today)–and I think that makes a huge difference in flavor. I have an herb rub recipe that I developed 17 or 18 years ago that does the trick. I sometimes threaten to go cajun or latino with the turkey, but I think my family would riot if I did that.

    BTW: When I roast chickens, I almost always buy Kosher. Basically the Kosher process brines the bird for you. But Kosher turkeys are waaaay too expensive!

    Sorry this was so long. I’m sorta a turkey freak.

    • Thanks Caroline! It was a great event!

      I looked at Alton’s recipe as well…I think I’m going to do it how I usually do it and just roast low and slow with lots of love aka basting. I just picked up my fresh bird today as well and I’m very happy with it πŸ™‚ My first free range local organic bird, and it was on the more expensive end I hope its worth it. Anything is better than a Butterball….in my eyes. Cheers!

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