As a South Floridian, now living in this very cold New England climate, the traditional Northeast style turkey is good, but as usual, I have to add my flare to it.
So this year, I want to warm things up by adding some Caribbean elements to the dinner table. Dressing the turkey in a citrusy mojo marinade, reminding me of the Mojo rotisserie chickens from Publix. Then adding mofongo as a stuffing using bacon. Yes, bacon! I know that mofongo has chicharron and it’s so delicious that way. The only way my daughter will eat mofongo is if there are crispy smoky bacon pieces speckled throughout.
My side dishes will be plain white rice, a huge pot of black beans, and key lime pie, along with all the traditional items my family loves, namely mashed potatoes and green bean casserole. Wishing you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving!
Mojo Turkey Recipe
- 1 12 to 14-pound turkey, giblets, and neck removed
- 12 cloves of garlic
- 2 tablespoons adobo
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons ground black pepper
- 1 ½ cups sour orange juice
- 2 cups cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- Rinse turkey and pat dry with paper towels.
- Make the marinade, by combining the garlic, cumin, sour orange juice, 1 cup olive oil, dried oregano, salt, & pepper. Add all the ingredients to a blender and blend until the garlic isn’t chunky. Reserve half of the marinade.
- Marinate turkey overnight or for at least 4 hours. Check the turkey every few hours, by basting and “flipping the bird”. This will help the marinade get into every crevice of the turkey.
- Once the turkey is ready for the oven, heat the oven to 425 degrees.. Place the turkey on a roasting pan and discard the marinade. Tuck the wings under and tie the legs together with butcher’s string.
- Stuff the turkey with mofongo filling, until it’s completely filled.
- In a small bowl add adobo, salt, & pepper, and olive oil. Mix well and brush the entire turkey with olive oil mixture.
- Roast for 45 minutes uncovered, then reduce to 325. Tent the turkey and baste it with pan juices and the remaining marinade.
- I highly recommend using a digital thermometer to check for proper cooking. After 2 ½ hours, check the thickest part of the turkey making sure not to touch any bones. If the turkey reads 165 internal temperature, you are ready for dinner,
Mofongo Stuffing Recipe
- 5 green plantains, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces.
- 3 cups of vegetable oil
- Kosher salt & ground black pepper
- 1 stick of unsalted butter
- 1 cup olive oil
- 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1 cup of turkey or chicken stock
- Thick cut bacon, fried and chopped
- Heat oil to 350 degrees. Once the oil is ready, add the plantain pieces. Fry for 5 to 7 minutes until the plantain starts to float to the top and starts to get some color. Make sure to fry in batches.
- As the plantains are frying, using a small skillet, add olive oil and chopped garlic to a cold pan. Heat gently over low heat until garlic starts to perfume. After 4 minutes, set aside and let cool.
- Once plantains are all fried, add to a large bowl, along with the butter, bacon, turkey, garlic oil, chicken stock, and salt and pepper. Mash until plantains have broken down and everything is mixed together.
- This can be used as a stuffing or as a side dish.