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New Twists On Thanksgiving Meal

Chef shoestring David Burke
The award-winning chef David Burke is executive chef and co-owner of New York City's Davidburke & Donatella restaurant, where he puts an inventive spin on modern American cuisine.

Burke divulged to The Early Show some nifty recipes for a Thanksgiving Day dinner.

The menu includes a Butternut squash salad, organic turkey, bacon/sausage kabobs, cornbread and sausage stuffing, wild mushroom barley, and brandy and tea-soaked fruit.

The following are his recipes:


Salad (parfait) of beets, butternut squash, goat cheese and wild rice

2 cups soaked wild rice (soaked overnight and rinsed)
2 T olive oil
2 T red wine vinegar
2 T balsamic vinegar
1 sprig fresh thyme
Red beets
Mustard Dressing
Butternut squash
1 ½ cups goat cheese

Rice: Boil rice in sea water until it's cracked. While hot, season with 2 T of olive oil, 2 T red wine vinegar, 2 T balsamic vinegar, salt/pepper, picked thyme. Line six molds. Fill with rice approximately a quarter fill.

Beets: Roast red beets whole until cooked through. Peel and dice. Season with mustard dressing, salt and pepper. Fill mold one additional quarter full.

Butternut squash: cut into small dice and sautee with butter, shallots, garlic until tender. add sage and chill. Fill mold so that it is ¾ full.
Goat Cheese: 1 ½ cups soft, whipped goat cheese. season with salt/pepper. This completes the parfait. Remove from mold and serve with beet dressing.

Sea-water soaked roast organic turkey

15-pound free-range turkey, well-rinsed and dried
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
5 tablespoons olive oil
Cornbread and Sausage Stuffing (recipe follows)
3 carrots, peeled, trimmed and cut into sticks, blanched
3 stalks celery, washed, trimmed and cut into sticks, blanched
2 cups peeled pearl onions, blanched
1 pint Brussels sprouts, washed, trimmed and blanched
¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter

Sea Water Brine
2 gallons water
1/8 cup sea salt
½ sugar
3/4 rosemary stalk
1/8 bunch thyme
¼ lb seaweed
2T peppercorns
1 bay leave
1 tsp garlic

Method for sea water brine:

Add all ingredients to 2 gallon stainless steel pot bring to a boil, and let stand two hours. Strain through chinois.

Method for turkey:

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Season the turkey, inside and out, with salt and pepper to taste. Using about 3 tablespoons of the oil, generously coat the skin. Stuff the turkey with the Cornbread and Sausage Stuffing and truss it together. Place the stuffed turkey on a wire rack in a roasting pan in the preheated oven and roast for 15 minutes. Lower the heat to 325°F and continue to roast for about 2½ hours or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the stuffing reads 160°F. Remove the turkey from the oven and transfer it to a serving platter. Allow it to rest for 15 minutes before carving. Do not turn off the oven.

While the turkey is resting, prepare the gravy and roast the vegetables.
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisking constantly, add the flour, making sure that no lumps form. Whisking constantly, add the stock in a slow steady stream. Bring to a simmer and simmer for 5 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Pour the liquid into a gravy boat and lightly tent it with aluminum foil to keep warm.

Place the carrots, celery, onions and Brussels sprouts on a baking sheet and toss them with the remaining oil and salt and pepper to taste. Place the vegetables in the preheated oven and roast them for about 10 minutes or just until they begin to take on some color.

Place the vegetables, purée and compote in serving bowls on the table. Place the turkey on the table (and take any offers for the carving). Serve family style with the stuffing taken directly from the turkey and with the gravy on the side.