Thanksgiving: Braised Turkey Thighs

As noted in the previous post, for Stuffed Delicata Squash, I’m Home Alone this Thanksgiving, on crutches.  But, by golly, we’re going to have a Thanksgiving Dinner That Can’t Be Beat, and maybe listen to some Arlo Guthrie on the way.

thanksgiving, turkey thighs, cranberry, parsnip, turnip, recipe, onion, golden beet

Turkey and some fixin’s

This recipe was inspired by Mario Batelli’s recipe, Cranberry Braised Turkey Thighs.  The link provides both text and video.   I made some of my own substitutions:  turnips and parsnips for the rutabaga; boxed low sodium veggie broth for the chicken broth.  I also left off the gremolata topping.  One thing I really really don’t like:  the dry and flavorless part of the turkey known as the breast.

Other Thanksgiving-related recipes I’ve previously posted that you might like (if only to reserve for next year…):

Sweet Potato Latkes

Mashed Potatoes

Potatoes Au Gratin

At any rate, I ended cooking the previous delicata squash dish for lunch, and this current dish for my supper — logistically on crutches and a rolling chair, this simply worked out a lot better for me, and my appetite with this injury is markedly diminished, anyway.  At any rate, there’s still plenty of leftovers of each item for me to enjoy over the weekend!

thanksgiving, recipe, onion, turnip, beets, cranberry, parsnip

A passel of veggies in the skillet

Prep time:  15 minutes
Cook time:  16 minutes browning + 1 hour 45 minutes cooking
Rest time: 10-15 minutes
Serves 4

Cranberry Braised Turkey Thighs

  • 2 skin on, bone-in turkey thighs
  • 1/2 teaspoon olive oil (or whichever healthy one you prefer)
  • 1 large red onion, peeled and eighthed. (ie, double the quartering… )
  • a selection of root veggies:  I used 2 golden beets, 2 medium-sized parsnips, one daikon, which was large parsnip-sized.  (a rutabaga or a couple medium sized turnips would work wonderfully, but I work with what’s in the fridge…).   Peel as desired, and chop everything to 1 – 1.5 inch cubes or thereabouts.
  • 2 really large cloves of garlic, sliced or coarsely chopped.
  • 3/4 cup fresh cranberries (you can make it a full cup with no problems)
  • 3/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup low sodium veggie or chicken broth — home-made is best but I went with the low sodium veggie stock from a box.
  • 1.5 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar.
  • 1 teaspoon honey (my source has you adding 1/8th a cup for 2 thighs — your call, I’m simply so not a sweet-tooth)
  • Ideally, a couple sprigs of fresh thyme, dill, marjoram and sage, tied into a bundle.  I couldn’t dash to the grocery, so I used ground thyme, ground dill, and ground “herbes de provence”, and missed out on the sage.  About 1/3 teaspoon each.
  • Salt and pepper to taste.

If you don’t do wine, I would make up the volume with more stock, and use 2 tablespoons vinegar.

Pre-heat oven to 350F.

Preferably in a heavy-bottomed stock pot, add your oil and heat to medium heat on the range.  (I ended up using a large skillet, and transferring to a pan for the oven, but that was due to “handicap-accessibility” issues.)  When the pot or skillet is hot, add the turkey, skin side down.  Allow to brown eight minutes, then flip, browning the other side eight more minutes.  Remove from pot or skillet and set aside.

To this pot or skillet, add all the veggies except the garlic and cranberries.  (Before doing so, remove and discard any extra oil you won’t need for sauteing these.)  Sautee for about five minutes, then add the garlic.  Sautee another two minutes.  Remove from heat.

If using the same stock pot in the oven:  add the cranberries, the liquids, and the herbs and spices (in short, everything else).  Place the turkey thighs, skin exposed, on top.  Cover.

If using a different pot for the oven:  put all ingredients into that pot, adding the turkey last, skin exposed, on top.  Cover.

Bake for 1 hour and 45 minutes.  Remove cover 20-25 minutes before the dish is done, so that the skin can crispy up some.

thanksgiving, recipe, turkey thighs, cranberries, onion, parsnips, golden beets, turnips

Everything ready for the oven

Pull out, remove the tied bundle of fresh herbs if you used them, let rest 10 or 15 minutes, then enjoy.  You can slice it the way you would slice up a turkey thigh from a whole turkey, and serve, along with a good helping of those wonderful veggies!

thanksgiving, recipe, turkey thighs, golden beets, parsnips, cranberries, turnips, onion

The Not-So-Raw and the Cooked…

Very much yum!!

thanksgiving, recipe, garlic, turkey thighs, cranberry, beets, turnips, parsnips

My favorite Allium


Let’s sit back on Black Friday and join a few online foodie parties:

Fiesta Friday

Tell ‘Em Tuesdays

Real Food Fridays

Savoring Saturdays





About goatsandgreens

The foodie me: Low/no gluten, low sugars, lots of ethnic variety of foods. Seafood, offal, veggies. Farmers' markets. Cooking from scratch, and largely local. The "future" me: I've now moved to my new home in rural western Massachusetts. I am raising chickens (for meat and for eggs) and planning for guinea fowl, Shetland sheep, and probably goats and/or alpaca. Possibly feeder pigs. Raising veggies and going solar.
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9 Responses to Thanksgiving: Braised Turkey Thighs

  1. Sabrina says:

    Love this so much more than regular roasted turkey!

  2. This looks really good! I’ll bet it was nice and moist.

  3. Marla says:

    Love this idea of the turkey thighs roasted with alt the healthy and tasty ingredients. I sure sounds delicious. Thanks for sharing on Real Food Fridays. Pinned & tweeted.

  4. Raia Torn says:

    Sounds delicious! 🙂 Thank you for sharing it at Savoring Saturdays!

  5. Thanks a Miiiilllliiioon!! I will call my: Savoring Fridays!! because today is Friday and a rainy May!! but it feels like winter!! I am so thankful I found you!! good luck raising your own food!! chickens & goats!! how cute is that!! thank you for sharing!!! sincerely: BZB

  6. Pingback: Reviewing: A Couple-Three Home Delivery Food Services | Of Goats and Greens

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