There are, no doubt, a few dads around Winnipeg who feel that they've already had their Father's Day, what with the return of the NHL and all.
But for those who are not necessarily hockey fans, and for those who are but still insist they are entitled to the day, the opportunity for annual acknowledgment has arrived.
Whether or not a sports jersey is on the gift list, you'll have to plan a celebratory meal (or two). Dialling out for something isn't going to cut it. It smacks of rushing out the kids out the door for a soccer game. Your best game plan is something homemade and delicious.
With that in mind, a little step away from the ordinary might just be the thing. And the thing this year is turkey.
I've chosen three different meal options for your Father's Day menu. If dad is an early riser and likes a hearty breakfast, you can treat him to a turkey frittata. Be sure to serve an elegant glass filled with a mimosa (champagne and orange juice). It's always nice to finish a big breakfast/brunch with a hot cup of coffee (and at our brunch table we never say no to a suitable liqueur to spike that coffee) and a box of chocolates to pass around -- just to make sure the sweet tooth gets fed.
If lunch is dad's meal of choice, the pulled turkey sandwich with coleslaw is the way to go. I started serving different kinds of pulled sandwiches this year and everyone is crazy about them. They are a tasty, tender alternative to burgers or cold meat. And pulled sandwiches are incredibly economical, allowing you to serve more guests from the same cut of meat than you would if you sliced it up. This pulled turkey sandwich comes with a recipe for a slightly sweet apple slaw which will complement any barbecue sauce. Add some dill pickle slices (pickled beets are good, too) and serve it up with a fresh bun. Pulled meats served over mashed potatoes or rice are a delicious "comfort food" variation, as well.
The third recipe is for an evening meal served off the grill. The Korean-style barbecue turkey wings that follow are super simple. They would also go great with the apple slaw or side of sweet baked beans and a fresh, warm baguette. If you are serving a baguette and you want to warm it up, preheat your oven to about 400F, pass the loaf of bread very quickly under cold running water and pop it in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes. It will be as good as if it was just baked. For a beverage, an ice-cold beer is the mug-filler of choice here for the adults. A super-cold ginger ale will also complement the wings.
The recipes that follow are courtesy of Manitoba Turkey Producers. You can find these ones and many more online at www.turkey.mb.ca
15 ml (1 tbsp) olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1/4 red bell pepper, chopped
1/4 green bell pepper, chopped
250 ml (1 cup) cooked sweet potatoes, chopped
125 ml (1/2 cup) halved cherry tomatoes
250 ml (1 cup) leftover cooked chopped turkey
6 eggs, lightly beaten
60 ml (1/4 cup) low-fat milk
salt and pepper
30 ml (2 tbsp) chopped parsley
125 ml (1/2 cup) grated sharp cheddar cheese
Heat oil in a large nonstick, oven-proof frying pan. Add onion, peppers and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in sweet potatoes and cook until golden, then add cherry tomatoes. Add turkey meat and toss together, over medium heat for 3-5 minutes. In a mixing bowl, beat together eggs and milk with salt and pepper. Pour egg mixture into skillet with vegetables and cook for another 4 minutes. Sprinkle with chopped herbs and top with grated cheese. Brown under the broiler for 5-7 minutes until frittata puffs. Serve warm. Serves 6.
Pulled Turkey Sandwiches
1 kg (2.2 lbs) whole skinless, bone-in turkey thighs
5 ml (2 cups) your favourite barbecue sauce
1 cup (250 mL) poultry stock
one half of a 340 g bag (11 oz bag) coleslaw salad
2 Granny Smith apples, finely julienned
1 small red onion, finely sliced
125 ml (1/2 cup) light mayonnaise
5 ml (1 tsp) Dijon mustard
1/2 lemon, juiced
5 ml (1 tsp) poppy seeds
salt and pepper
Place barbecue sauce and stock in an oven-proof casserole dish with a tight-fitting lid. Place turkey thighs on top and cover with mixed sauce. Place lid on top and braise in a 162 C (325 F ) oven for 11/2 hours. Uncover, spoon sauce over meat and continue to cook uncovered for an additional 30 minutes. Remove meat from pot and cool slightly. Using two forks, start to shred the meat into long strands and place the pulled meat back into the pot with the remaining sauce. Gently mix the meat into the sauce and serve on toasted buns with apple slaw.
Apple Slaw: mix all ingredients together and refrigerate until time to serve. Serves 4 to 6.
Korean BBQ Turkey Wings
4 Turkey Wings (1 kg /2 lbs), split, fat trimmed and tips removed
3 litres (12 cups) water
250 ml (1 cup) hoisin sauce
50 ml (4 tbsp) soy sauce
45 ml (3 tbsp) water
45 ml (3 tbsp) honey
60 ml (4 tbsp) grated fresh ginger
3 cloves garlic, minced
Boil wings in water for 30 minutes then remove from heat and set aside. Place all marinade ingredients in a heavy resealable bag. Place cooked turkey wings in the bag and massage until sauce has evenly coated wings. Refrigerate overnight or no less than 4 hours. Heat barbecue to 200C (400F). Spray grill with cooking spray and grill wings until golden and crisp, approximately 20 minutes. Serves 4 to 6.
Your best turkey burger could be a prize-winner
Once Father's Day is over, dad might be champing at the bit to get back at the grill. If he is, or if anyone else in the house has a knack for grilling, there's a hot summer contest to get in on.
Granny's Poultry Farmer's Cooperative and Manitoba Turkey Producers, along with other sponsors, are holding Manitoba's Best Turkey Burger Recipe Challenge.
Your grill goods must use Granny's turkey and the Bothwell cheese you like best. After that, the sky's the limit. And you have all summer to perfect your burger recipe and technique. The contest is open now and registration closes in mid-August.
What's your motivation? Three lucky finalists will be chosen to participate in a cook-off and slider sampling at The Forks, where judges and tasters will decide who will win a deluxe four-burner barbecue, a five-piece outdoor patio set and a Granny's Poultry shopping spree valued at $200, a selection of Bothwell Cheese, plus a Granny's grilling set (silicon oven mitts, digital meat thermometer, apron, etc).
Entries will be received until Monday, Aug. 15 at 5 p.m. This contest is only open to Manitoba residents. Get the rules and entry forms online at www.grannys.ca/best-turkey-burger-recipe-challenge