Bethpage, NY (PRWEB) November 22, 2013
Family owned and operated after 83 years, King Kullen knows a thing or two about making Thanksgiving a memorable and successful family holiday. From the all-important turkey to the side dishes and desserts, the experts at King Kullen have some tips and tricks for ensuring the most flavorful and delicious of Thanksgiving dishes.
Al Gerrity, King Kullen’s Director of Meat and Seafood, knows that many are intimidated by preparing a turkey, as it is the centerpiece of the Thanksgiving meal. Here are his top tips for tackling the big bird:
For those wanting something unique this year, King Kullen Grocery Buyer Chris Williams suggests deep frying the turkey. “It tastes better, is easier to prepare, cooks faster and leads to a moister turkey,” he said. Williams shares that the secret to deep frying a turkey is to bypass vegetable oil, and choose canola, corn, or peanut oil, as they have higher burn points and will cook the turkey better. Williams recommends peanut oil, for both its flavor and high smoking point (which meant it’s less likely to smoke or flame up and start a fire). Start with a fully-thawed turkey that is pat down with paper towels, and place in a turkey fryer. The cooking time is three to four minutes per pound. Be sure to deep fry the turkey outdoors, not in a garage, and keep a fire extinguisher (rated for grease fires) nearby. Large oven mitts or fireplace gloves should be worn.
Nothing complements a perfectly cooked turkey better than the traditional side dishes. These dishes don’t have to be difficult either. Joe Tyska, a Deli and Dairy Specialist for the chain, says his family’s trick to make Thanksgiving easier is choosing side dishes that have few ingredients and can be prepared in one dish or pan. Easier to make, and easier to clean up! One very simple recipe Tyska’s family enjoys is “Whipped Sweet Potato Bake.” Combine two large cans of sweet potatoes (drained), ¼ c butter, ¼ c maple syrup, one tsp cinnamon, and ¼ tsp nutmeg. Whip together until fluffy, top with mini marshmallows, and bake in an oven that was pre-heated to 325 degrees, until lightly browned (approximately 15 minutes). This dish will serve 10-12 people.
Tracey Cullen, King Kullen’s Director of Pricing and Social Media, prefers doing as much prep work in advance for any big holiday meal; this helps keep stress out of the day, and frees up stove and oven space for other components of the meal. She recommends make-ahead mashed potatoes. “Many people are surprised, but mashed potatoes can be made up to a day in advance, and then reheated at 350 degrees in a foil-covered casserole dish for about 15 minutes,” Cullen said.
A green bean side dish is another great make-ahead option that Cullen recommends. Cook and cool the green beans up to a day in advance. Just before serving, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add minced garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant (about 30 seconds). Add the green beans and stir. Add minced parsley, chopped tarragon, salt and pepper to tasted, and cook, stirring until heated through, for two to four minutes.
Other make-ahead ideas that can help ease the stress on Thanksgiving and allow the cook to better enjoy the family holiday:
Rich Conger, King Kullen’s Director of Produce and Floral, has some great tips for selecting the best ingredients for dishes too. “Yukon Golds make the very best, creamiest mashed potatoes, and they absorb the dairy well,” he said.
As a huge fan of apple pie, Conger also shared that it’s important to select the right apples for the job. “It can make or break the pie,” he said. Most people select Macintosh apples for pies, which are great as pie filling, but are even better for fresh apple sauce as they become very soft when heated. “Apples you may want to consider for pies are tart Granny Smith or sweet Golden Delicious apples. Both apples hold their shape when baked. They have very different taste profiles, but are particularly good if blended into a pie together. Other apples you may want to consider are Empire, Cortland or Rome apples,” he added.
For the health conscious, King Kullen Nutritionist Michele Tonner has some tips to making the Thanksgiving feast a bit healthier:
Looking for more ideas or specific recipes? Some of King Kullen’s favorites can be found here: http://www.pinterest.com/kingkullen/thanksgiving
About the company:
Headquartered in Bethpage, New York, King Kullen Grocery Co., Inc. is recognized by the Smithsonian Institution as America’s first supermarket. Michael J. Cullen opened the doors of King Kullen in 1930. Today, four generations later, King Kullen is still family owned and operated. It remains a leader in the supermarket industry. From that very first store in 1930, King Kullen today operates 41 supermarkets and four Wild by Nature stores across Long Island. In addition to traditional grocery, King Kullen features a large catering and prepared foods department, freshly-baked breads and sweets, and healthy and organic areas, with pharmacies in many stores as well. For information about King Kullen, please visit their website at: http://www.kingkullen.com.