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David Rosengarten ,
Host of Taste, a daily cooking show on Food Network, Author of Taste
(Random House, 1998) and The Dean&DeLuca Cookbook(Random House, 1996) "500 recipes that have been most instrumental in America's cooking revolution."

  1. Solve roast turkey's "dry white meat problem" by cooking the turkey in two stages. You know how it is: because the dark meat of a turkey takes longer to cook than the white meat, in order to get the dark meat done you have to cook the white meat way past the point of juiciness. But if you get the white meat just right, the dark meat'll be undercooked. In The Dean& DeLuca Cookbook (page 411), I've got theperfect solution. You simply roast the whole bird- until the breast meat is just done (that means still juicy), remove the bird from the oven, bring it to the table, and carve off the white meat; these slices constitute the first turkey course. While your family's enjoying that, cook the rest of the turkey (the dark meat) until it's just done- at which point it becomes a delectable, perfectly cooked second turkey course.

2. You'll have more control over your stuffing if you cook it in its own pan, not actually stuffed inside the bird and the turkey will cook faster, too! Turkeys take quite a few hours, but stuffings don't. Therefore, I like to cook my stuffing in a separate casserole dish. Worried that your stuffing won't be turkey perfumed? Simply baste the stuffing with some of the drippings from the turkey roasting pan. For complete instructions and a great selection of stuffings- including pumpkin and pancetta stuffing; sausage pecan and raisin stuffing; cornbread and oyster stuffing with fresh sage- see page 412 of The Dean & DeLuca Cookbook.

3. Since turkey goes well with many wines, the key to finding the right wine for your turkey dinner is matching the wine to the side dishes. Many people like to serve side dishes with turkey that have some sweetness; if that's the case at your house, you'll need to find a lightly sweet wine to balance the sweetness. My new book, Taste, which is filled with my favorite recipes and advice on how to recognize quality in food with wine suggestions for finding the perfect wine for any dish, has a complete chapter on selecting beverages for food, and a good many suggestions for lightly sweet wines that will be perfect with the classic turkey dinner.


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