My husband and I lived abroad for several years and have only recently moved back to New York. Even when we were far from home, we weren’t able to stop celebrating Thanksgiving.

In fact, our time traveling abroad has inspired us to look for creative fusion options for this year’s meal. While I usually rely on family recipes for staples like stuffing, mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce, this year I’ll be cooking my turkey with a twist. I’m looking forward to decorating my table with these adorable place cards and sharing one of these unique recipes with my family!

Tuscan-Roast Turkey Breast

A few years ago, we celebrated Thanksgiving while visiting Italy. We seem to frequently end up staying in lodgings without ovens, but this was a fortuitous Thanksgiving. We stayed in an apartment with a marvelous kitchen. We went back and forth on what to cook until a friend suggested this turkey recipe, flavored with fresh herbs. Whenever we cook it now, we remember preparing it for Thanksgiving together in that cozy kitchen while listening to Christmas music.

 

Ingredients

– 1/4 cup olive oil

– 1/4 cup fresh, chopped parsley

– 4 Tbsp fresh, chopped rosemary + 5 sprigs for roasting

– 2 Tbsp fresh, chopped sage + 5 sprigs for roasting

– 2 Tbsp grated orange zest

– 1 Tbsp chopped fennel seeds

– 1 dried chili, chopped

– 1 garlic clove, chopped

– 1 turkey breast, roughly 7 lb

– 1/2 cup dry white wine

– 2 cups low-sodium chicken stock

 

Mix together 3 Tbsp olive oil, herbs, fennel, chili and garlic. Rub the turkey with this mixture and season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate in a covered, shallow baking pan for at least 4 hours. Preheat the oven to 375ºF and let the turkey stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Place the herb sprigs into the pan and roll up the turkey. Tie with kitchen twine. Drizzle with remaining oil, season with pepper. Roast until the thickest part is 160 degrees, about 1.5 hours. Heat pan juices on the stove and add wine, cooking until reduced by half. Add the stock and reduce the heat, simmering until thickened. Stir in the chopped rosemary and serve the turkey and sauce over mashed potatoes.

 

Pomegranate Coconut Turkey

As a child, I wasn’t too enthusiastic about eating turkey on Thanksgiving. Instead, I indulged in the mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie. But, in hopes of changing that, I decided to liven up my turkey with one of my favorite flavors — pomegranate. Mixing pomegranate juice with coconut milk makes a delicious, tangy sauce for a Thanksgiving turkey that is anything but bland.

Ingredients

– 1 turkey

– 1 lemon

– 1.5 cups salt

– 1 gallon cold water

– 2 cups of dairy-free buttermilk

– 2 cups coconut milk

– 1 cup pomegranate juice

– 2 Tbsp olive oil

– 2 Tbsp thyme

– 2 cloves glared

Let the turkey soak in the water, salt, and lemon juice overnight. The next day, combine the dairy-free buttermilk, coconut milk, and pomegranate juice into a marinade and marinate the turkey in it for at least 4 hours, ensuring that it is covered. Turn the turkey every hour. After refrigeration, preheat the oven to 350ºF. Pat the turkey dry, and rub it with olive oil, thyme and garlic. Roast for 1.5 hours, basting every half hour with juices from the turkey. Increase the temperature to 450ºF and bast every 1/2 hour until the turkey is 160ºF.

Latin Turkey


When you’re trying to make healthy choices like I am, Thanksgiving may seem challenging. However, this turkey recipe uses a healthy stuffing that is 100% made of vegetables. The flavor relies on a marinade of delicious spices. That way, you can save some calories for the pumpkin pie!

Ingredients

– 1 turkey

– 1 cup cilantro

– 20 cloves garlic

– 2 onions

– 1 Tbsp cumin

– 2 Tbsp oregano

– 2 tsp sazón

– 2 tsp salt

– 1 lemon

– 3 celery stalks

– 2 carrots

Prepare the seasoning in a food processor, mixing together the cilantro, garlic, 1 onion, cumin, oregano, sazón, salt, and lemon juice. Rub the inside and outside of the turkey with the seasoning, and then stuff the turkey with the celery, carrots, and the other onion. Bake at 430ºF for 30 minutes. Then, lower the temperature to 350ºF and cover with foil. Bake until the turkey reaches 165ºF.

 

Maple-Glazed Turkey

While living abroad, my husband and I loved hosting big Thanksgiving dinners. We’d invite our American expat friends and enjoy a five-course meal filled with laughter, conversations about gratitude, and copious amounts of happiness. Though those dinners are some of my favorite memories, I found it challenging — and sometimes stressful — to track down all the necessary ingredients. Roasting my own turkey is never particularly simple, but at least this recipe includes a very short ingredient list. The maple syrup gives the turkey an amazing flavor, and the finished result is moist, juicy, and perfect for anyone with a bit of a sweet tooth.

Ingredients

– 1 12-14 lb turkey

– Any store-bought or pre-made herb stuffing

– 1/2 stick margarine

– salt and pepper

– 1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth

– 1 1/2 cups pure maple syrup

Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Stuff the turkey and rub with margarine, salt, and pepper. Pour the broth into a large roasting pan and roast the turkey in it for 30 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 350ºF and roast for 45 more minutes. Brush with pan juices and cover pan with foil. Roast for 45 more minutes and then remove the turkey from the pan and baste it. Meanwhile, boil the maple syrup on a stovetop and then simmer it until it is reduced. Brush the turkey with the glaze, and then roast it uncovered and brush with more glaze. Roast until 160ºF and brush with more maple glaze to finish.

 

Soy Sauce and Honey Glazed Turkey

 

While I absolutely love to travel, Thanksgiving is one of the holidays I prefer to spend at home with family and friends now that we’re living in New York again. To keep my wanderlust at bay, I like to infuse my meal with tastes that come from around the world. This sesame, soy, honey and ginger-glazed Thanksgiving turkey looks like something I might try this November with my family, as we relax at home and take goofy pictures for our family slideshow.

Ingredients

– 2 cups soy sauce

– 1 cup honey

– 1/4 cup toasted sesame oil

– 1/2 cup thinly sliced or minced fresh ginger

– 1 14-16 lb turkey

– 1 Tbsp salt

– 2 tsp freshly ground pepper

– 1 1/2 tsp five-spice powder

– 6 scallions, sliced

– 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth

– 3 Tbsp olive oil

– 3/4 cup all-purpose flour

Whisk the soy sauce, honey, sesame oil, and half the ginger in a large bowl. Place the turkey in the bowl with the breast side down and marinate. After 45 minutes, flip the turkey breast side up and marinate for another 15 minutes. Remove the turkey from the marinade (but save the marinade), and season it inside and out with the salt, pepper and five-spice powder. Stuff it with scallions and the remaining ginger. Heat the oven to 350ºF and cook the turkey in a roasting pan with 2 cups of water. Roast for 4 hours, periodically basting with marinade and adding 3 cups of water. Finally, add the chicken stock to the water and boil. Combine olive oil and flour together and whisk with the pan juices until smooth.

How will you cook your Thanksgiving turkey this year?

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Rachel Sales
Rachel Sales is a freelance writer and editor in New York City. She loves traveling the world, walking with coffee, and enjoying life with her husband and son.

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