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The 'Absolutely Foolproof' Thanksgiving Turkey Guide, According To Chef Ariane Daguin

The 'Absolutely Foolproof' Thanksgiving Turkey Guide, According To Chef Ariane Daguin

Ariane Daguin is the chef and owner of D'Artagnan, a renowned gourmet food purveyor company with particular expertise in organic and humanely-raised meats and poultry. She recently shared with Benzinga some of her top turkey making tips and tricks ahead of Thanksgiving.

Poach The Bird: Daguin said her preferred cooking method for all big birds is to poach it the day before.

Poaching is a very popular and go-to cooking method among French chefs. The process consists of simmering a turkey in a pot filled with stock and aromatics for 40 minutes the day before Thanksgiving.

On Thanksgiving, the home-chef merely roasts the turkey in a very hot oven for 30 minutes followed by cooling it down in the oven for one hour. Entire cooking instructions can be found here.

"It allows a natural brine that makes the cooking absolutely foolproof," Daguin told Benzinga. "Even if you overcook it the day of, it will still be extra moist and flavorful."

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Using D'artagnan's duck and veal demi-glace (a rich and brown sauce) during the poaching process or as a base to create a gravy or sauce will convince guests you "spent all day" in the kitchen.

As a safety precaution, the USDA establishes that a turkey is safe for consumption when cooked to an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Side Dishes And Wine: Squash puree or squash soup is a very easy side dish that is ready in 20 minutes on the stovetop and frees up extra space in the oven, Daguin said. Inexperienced home-chefs can also save time and effort by buying pre-sliced vegetables.

If you're serving wine with the turkey, Daguin recommends the following styles:

  • White Wine: Look for a dry and fruity variety like a Chablis or Pouilly-Fume.
  • Red Wine: Look for a light, fruity, and young to drink variety like a Pinot Noir (Burgundy or Oregon), or even better a light red Beaujolais wine.

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