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A sweet, simple menu of Thanksgiving recipes for two

BC-WELL-TURKEY-THIGHS-RECIPE-ART-NYTSF -- A recipe for turkey thighs with pickled cranberries and onions for two. Food styled by Simon Andrews.
BC-WELL-TURKEY-THIGHS-RECIPE-ART-NYTSF -- A recipe for turkey thighs with pickled cranberries and onions for two. Food styled by Simon Andrews. (Christopher Simpson for The New York Times)

Roasted turkey thighs are quicker, easier and more adaptable than a whole bird, and just as satisfying with their crisp, bronzed skin and tender meat. You can scale this recipe to feed as many as you’re serving, or if you want to make extra for leftovers. Simply double, triple or even quadruple it, spreading out the thighs on your largest sheet pan. Or you can halve it to feed one. The quick-pickled onions and cranberries are a tangy contrast to the richness of the meat, and, with their fuchsia hue, a welcome bit of color on the plate.

Turkey thighs with pickled cranberries and onions for two

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Start to finish: 1 hour, plus at least 2 hours' marinating

Servings: 2

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1 lemon

2 garlic cloves, finely grated, pressed or minced

1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves, preferably lemon thyme

1 1/2 pounds bone-in, skin-on turkey thighs (2 medium thighs)

Kosher salt and black pepper

1 medium red onion, thinly sliced

1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh or frozen cranberries

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

2 teaspoons sugar

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, basil or parsley leaves, for serving

1. Finely grate 1/2 teaspoon zest from the lemon and put it in a small bowl with the garlic and thyme. Halve the lemon and squeeze 1 tablespoon of the juice into the bowl. Mix everything into a paste.

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2. Pat the turkey thighs dry and season with salt and pepper. Smear turkey with the paste and place thighs on a plate. Refrigerate, uncovered, so the skin can dry out, for at least two hours and up to two days.

3. Meanwhile, squeeze the remaining juice from the lemon halves into a medium bowl. Add the onion, cranberries, lime juice, sugar and 1/4 teaspoon salt, tossing well. Let the mixture sit at room temperature, tossing occasionally, until the onions wilt and turn pink, one hour. Cover and refrigerate until serving. (These can be made up to 3 days in advance.)

4. Heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Put turkey thighs on a baking pan and dot with butter. Roast the thighs for 40 to 50 minutes, until the skin is crisp, the meat is cooked through and the juices run clear. (No need to rest here.)

5. Serve turkey with a little of the cranberries and pickles on top, with herbs scattered over everything.

c.2020 The New York Times Company

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