Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Turkey Rolls
I was first introduced to this recipe several years ago by a caterer at an event.  Intrigued, I asked for the recipe and I received it.  There were just three ingredients: deli turkey slices, an instant stuffing mix, and turkey gravy.

The first time I recreated this recipe at home, I used some name brand deli turkey slices, Stove Top Stuffing (tm), and jarred turkey dressing.  It was good, but rather salty for our tastes.

The second time I made it, I sought out lower sodium turkey slices and low-sodium Stove Top Stuffing (tm).  That was much more palatable.

It has been years since I have made this dish.


Because I no longer use processed foods in this house.
No Stove Top Stuffing (tm) with its gazillion ingredients, most of which are unpronounceable.
And no more jarred turkey dressing with its chicken fat ingredients that I cannot have.

So if we are to have this dish, I will be making it the old fashioned way.

But is it any more difficult?

The ingredients for "real" turkey rolls are:

Castle Wood deli turkey slices

1 /2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup diced onion
1 rib diced celery
1/4 teaspoon dried Herbes de Provence
 2 cups dry cornbread stuffing crumbles
1 cup water

1 cup turkey stock
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Saute the onion and celery in the olive oil over medium-high heat until translucent.  Add the Herbes de Provence and the cornbread.

Add the water and stir until combined.  Take off the heat.

Place a bit of the mixture into a turkey slice and roll tightly.  Place into a baking dish.  Continue until all the cornbread mixture is used.

Make the dressing:  Melt the butter and the flour together.  Allow the flour to "cook" so that it loses the raw flavor.  Keep stirring.  Do not walk away!  Add the turkey stock and simmer until it is reduced down to a nice consistency.  Salt to taste*.

*I never salt my stocks when I make them as I never know what I will be using them for later.  This way, I can better control the sodium levels of my foods.

Pour the gravy over the turkey rolls and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 15 to 20 minutes.

Was this more difficult?  Not really.  The "stove top dressing that I made only took about seven minutes to make and only had six ingredients, not counting the ingredients that were in the cornbread.  It only took a couple of minutes to make the gravy, so no big deal there, either.

But here is the big kicker: The original recipe had 1,300 milligrams of sodium per serving.
 I was able to reduce that to 1, 140 milligrams.

However, the homemade version only has 760 milligrams of sodium per serving .

And that is just one small benefit of eating homemade foods, my friends.

And how good was this?

This good.

This very good.

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