Sara Moulton Answers Your Thanksgiving Feast Questions

2 cups onion, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon ground sage
1 teaspoon dried thyme
12 cups white bread (or whole wheat bread) (about 1 pound), cut into half inch cubes, toast the bread in your oven for 5-7 minutes at 400 degrees or until slightly golden.
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 cups chicken or turkey broth (homemade or bought)

Cook onion and celery in skillet on medium heat with butter until soft. Transfer to bowl and add all the remaining ingredients and toss well. Either stuff inside turkey cavity or cook in a shallow casserole at 350 degrees, covered for 1/2 an hour. Uncover, and cook for another ten minutes to get crispy. Optional: Sara's Three Variations: Add 1/2 pound cook crumpled bacon, or add 1 pound sliced mushrooms that have been sautéed in 2 tablespoons butter. Add 1 cup chopped toasted walnuts and 2 golden delicious apples that have been peeled, chopped and sautéed in 2 tablespoons butter.

Sara Moulton's Answers Your Thanksgiving Cooking Questions

Show all of us how to make cranberry sauce? Please, Sara! -- Don and Sandy from San Jose, Calif.

Easy Fresh Cranberry Sauce

Makes about 2 1/2 cups

1/2 cup water
1/2 cup fresh orange, tangerine, or clementine juice
3/4 to 1 cup sugar or to taste
12-ounce bag fresh or frozen cranberries (3 cups)
1 teaspoon freshly grated orange rind

Bring water orange juice and sugar to a boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Add cranberries and simmer, stirring occasionally, until berries just pop, 12 to 15 minutes. stir in zest, then cool to room temperature and chill.

Though I have been cooking for 25 years, I have never been sure just where to put the thermometer. -- Beverly Davis from Long Beach, Miss.

The thermometer goes into the thickest part of the thigh and should not touch the bone. Sara's Turkey Carving Tips: For quality, let the turkey stand for 20-30 minutes before carving to allow juices to set. The turkey will carve more easily. Remove all stuffing from the turkey cavities. To help make carving easier, use a straight and sharpened knife.

1. Cut band of skin holding drumsticks. Grasp end of drumstick. Place knife between drumstick/thigh and body of the turkey and cut through skin to joint. Remove entire leg by pulling out and back, using the point of the knife to disjoin it. Separate the thigh and drumstick at the joint.

2. Insert fork in upper wing to steady turkey. Make a long horizontal cut above wing joint through to body frame. Wing may be disjointed from body, if desired.

3. Slice straight down with an even stroke, beginning halfway up the breast. When knife reaches the cut above the wing joint, slice will fall free.

4. Continue to slice breast meat, starting the cut at a higher point each time.

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