“After a good dinner, one can forgive anybody, even one’s own relations.”~ Oscar Wilde, A Woman of No Importance
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This cooking VIDEO article will show you, step by step, how to use one of the most undervalued big workhorses in the kitchen-your tiny toaster over. And, just in time for Thanksgiving Dinner and the Holidays.
I always knew toaster ovens were handy, and often used them to cook pies, but thought I was in the minority of “household chefs” until I saw Wolfgang Puck on a TV infomercial cooking a whole turkey for Thanksgiving in his new toaster over. “Ha!” I thought, “I’ve already been there and done that as one of the Wicked Housewives on Cape Cod™.”
If it is good enough for Wolfgang Puck, it is good enough for us.
Saving time and space during the holidays leaves you more time for celebration and giving thanks. In the hustle and bustle of your hectic life or perhaps in an effort to “keep up with the Jones” have you lost sight of the true meaning of Thanksgiving? Are you tired of slaving in the kitchen during the holidays, only to be left with a table full of dirty dishes, a refrigerator packed to bursting level with leftovers, and a bathroom scale that laughs at you?
Less is more. Embrace it as part of your celebration.
The current trend is to downsize. It may be time to celebrate the downsized life during your holidays, so you can reflect on what is truly important. Have heard the saying, “You can’t see the forest for the trees?” Well, at some holidays you can’t see the turkey for the food overflow.
Thanksgiving is not all about a huge turkey, stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, and pumpkin pie with whipped cream. (I’m exhausted just typing all of that.) The name of the holiday conveys what the day is supposed to really be all about.
Thanksgiving is about sharing with others while giving thanks for what has been given.
It all began one chilly fall day after near starvation. The Separatists, also known as Pilgrims, who traveled to Massachusetts, part of New England in America, were in search of freedom of religion; to privately or publicly worship God as they pleased, when they pleased and how they pleased.
For them finding New England was a gift from God, and therefore worth the sacrifices endured during their long dangerous travel. The founding fathers of America felt nothing was more difficult or challenging than not being permitted to openly practice their religion or to celebrate giving thanks to God. This religious freedom was the foundation on which America was built. No other country in the world could boast of this freedom or openly celebrate it.
Thanksgiving is one of the faithful cornerstones of freedom in American life.
However, our media-centered, overly-schedule, and over-stimulated lives caused many of us to lose sight of our past roots and beliefs. Modern life often makes it difficult to spend time reflecting on the simple pleasures of life like gratitude, love and family time.
For many of us who are downsizing our lives, homes, budgets, and caloric intake, a large stuffed turkey with all the trimmings may be too big a deal for a meal anymore. And, the time it takes to prepare it may not be worth the time it takes away from the family.
So, what is a parent to do for the Holidays? Is there an acceptable modern alternative to the retro big-bird?
Try ‘Stuffed Turkey Sliders’ with all the trimmings. It’s a taste of the huge holiday dinner without the high cost, long cooking hours, endless leftovers, or overwhelming cleanup.
Slaving in the Kitchen Stops Today! Stuffed Turkey Sliders are easy to make and delicious.
Imagine cooking your Thanksgiving Turkey Dinner in a tiny toaster oven. No, this is not a joke. And, you also have choices.
Here are some helpful ideas and tips to get your Thanksgiving holiday off to a good start and end it with gratitude.
You can use preformed small regular ground organic turkey hamburgers known as sliders in the meat department of your grocery store, or form them yourself. You may choose to use all ground white meat, dark meat, or a combination of both.
If you choose to use preformed sliders skip numbers one and two under Directions.
All white meat turkey sliders will cook faster than dark meat burgers but may be a bit less juicy. The juiciest turkey sliders are made of ground dark meat which consists mostly of thigh meat. Dark meat turkey sliders usually take ten minutes longer to cook, depending on the size and thickness of your slider, as sizes may vary.
You can also create a very tasty slider that is a combination of both light and dark meat.
Create the stuffing for the sliders by chopping and mixing together any left-overs from your refrigerator, such as mushrooms, onions, spinach, and cheese. Or, you can stuff them with your family’s favorite traditional recipe.
Directions on how to make the sliders from scratch:
- Place 2 to 3 large tablespoons of ground turkey in the palm of your well-oiled hand and roll it into a meatball.
- Pat the meatball into a patty and hold it in one hand.
- Using the fingers, or knuckles if you have long nails, from your other hand, gently create a concave area in the center of the patty.
- Place the patty on a plate.
- Put one tablespoon of stuffing in the concave part of the patty.
- Repeat steps 1-3 to form a second small patty.
- Cover the first patty with the second one so the stuffing is surrounded by meat.
- Pinch the outside of the two patties together, as you would a pie crust, to create the stuffed slider and contain the stuffing and juices during cooking.
- Place the slider on the broiling dish in the toaster oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until the juices run clear.
Stuffed Sliders are Versatile… Customize them for any Holiday! Rather than buns wrap them in healthy lettuce.
If you or someone in your family has an allergy or sensitivity to wheat turkey sliders are delicious wrapped in large lettuce leaves that are available in the grocery stores. Look for heads of red leaf lettuce. The will hold the turkey burger, and any topping, securely in place.
The trick to a no-drip-lettuce-wrapped-burger is to use the lettuce as though it were a taco and fold over in the sides.
What does the name Sliders have to do with a small hamburger? Slyders, as the White Castle Hamburger Company named them, were very small burgers that were sold at five cents a-piece until the 1940s, and they remained at ten cents for years while growing smaller in size.
A true slider is no larger than the palm of your hand, which most dietitians consider a serving size. They were nicknamed Sliders and later White Castle copyrighted the name Slyders. There is also considerable evidence that “slider” was a term used for a greasy hamburger that “slid down the throat” in the United States Navy, as early as the 1940s or 1950s.
And, a “slider with a lid” was a cheeseburger.
You can put any “lid on it” you wish and make your slider a seasonal holiday meal by changing the type of ground meat used for the meat patty.
However, imagine the versatility of sliders when you use ground lamb for Easter, ground sirloin for Christmas, ground turkey for Thanksgiving and ground seitan for vegetarian and Vegan Lovers during all the holidays.
Make your Thanksgiving Save the Turkey Day?
If you want to try something really different, celebrate a turkey’s life and stuff a vegi-burger for Thanksgiving. Follow the same directions using meatless protein rather than ground turkey.
Imagine a Family Signature Stuffed Slider served on Special Occasions like birthdays, anniversaries, once a year family gatherings.
Thanksgiving turkey sliders can also be stuffed with a child’s favorite macaroni and cheese. By blanketing a slider in mushroom gravy, serving it with cranberry sauce and a holiday vegetable, you have created a gourmet meal fit for a king capable of gracing the cover of any gourmet cooking magazine.
Your children will cherish sliders as much, if not more, than a huge stuffed turkey, and you will love the easy, quick clean-up.
Yes, sliders and children go together like peanut and butter.
So, start your new downsized Thanksgiving holiday meal with something the whole family will love for years to come… the Stuffed Turkey Slider.
And, in keeping with the true essence of the holiday, set an extra place at your table for someone less fortunate than you and trust in the Universe to fill it with someone who may have lost part of their family and needs to be part of your family on Thanksgiving Day. Teach your children the importance of sharing with others, because they are the light of our future.
Trust that the Universe is always watching and will fill that special place of honor at your table with just the right person because that is truly what Thanksgiving is all about. It is about giving thanks for the opportunity to break bread with complete strangers who are our Universal neighbors so they are strangers no more.
Wait for the knock on the door. Or perhaps that last minute phone call.
“Hi, it’s Sally from down the street and I was wondering if you might suggest a place that serves Thanksgiving Dinner because this is my first holiday without my husband and I don’t want to eat alone. I thought a crowd might be a nice distraction.”
Set the intention and the table, and, much like the previous article Love Is Dining with the Dead on All Hallow’s Eve, they will come.
Photo Credit: Picture is used by permission of Wicked Housewives On Cape Cod TV Show
About the author: Kathleen (Kat) O’Keefe-Kanavos is a TV/Radio Producer/Host of Wicked Housewives On Cape Cod™ and award-winning Author/Lecturer of the International bestseller, Surviving Cancerland: Intuitive Aspects of Healing which promotes dream therapy for wellness, patient advocacy, and connecting with inner guidance for success in health, wealth, and relationships. Learn more @ www.KathleenOkeefeKanavos.com