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Quick and Easy Holiday Recipe Tips From Our Chefs

With Thanksgiving rapidly approaching, now is the time to start collecting ideas for creating amazing holiday recipes. Here at Isle of Capri® Boonville, we know how hard it can be to put together the perfect Thanksgiving dish. That’s why our top chefs are giving their top tips to help you create an unforgettable Thanksgiving holiday. Read on for more.

Chef Patrick

Patrick Stamatelos is a veteran chef of not one, but three Isle of Capri properties. He started with humble beginnings as a cook at Waterloo, but quickly grew up the ranks. He ultimately was promoted to sous chef of the buffet. He is now here with us at Boonville, where he continues to thrive.

In your professional opinion, what's the best way to prepare Thanksgiving turkey: braised, deep-fried, grilled, smoked, or roasted?
Although it can be very dangerous if you don't know what you're doing, deep frying will make the best turkey. Locks in all the moisture and you get a golden, crispy skin.

If you could only have one side dish at Thanksgiving dinner, what would it be?
Green bean casserole, but it has to be French-cut green beans, and cornbread dressing.

What's your secret to prepping the perfect turkey?
Season and let it sit in the fridge overnight, then while cooking, baste, baste, baste.

What's the most unique side dish you've ever served with your Thanksgiving Dinner?
I prefer to go traditional with all Thanksgiving sides, but I do like to make a scratch orange cranberry sauce for the turkey.

What do you do with all of the leftovers?
Leftovers? Not on my watch!


Chef Erin

Erin Douglas began her culinary career at a young age. She learned how to cook French cuisine from her grandmother, who was a professional chef in France. Erin has built on that solid foundation, and experienced career success all over the world. Her specialty is cooking wild game.

In your professional opinion, what's the best way to prepare Thanksgiving turkey: braised, deep-fried, grilled, smoked, or roasted?
Slow Roasted, of course, with poultry seasoning! I love a traditional Thanksgiving turkey.

If you could only have one side dish at Thanksgiving dinner, what would it be?
Cornbread stuffing with giblet gravy! Is there anything else?

What's your secret to prepping the perfect turkey?
The secret to a perfect turkey is to make sure after you wash the turkey that you pat it dry, very dry before rubbing butter all over it inside and out. If you do not pat it dry you will not get that beautiful golden brown color packed full of flavor.

What's the most unique side dish you've ever served with your Thanksgiving Dinner?
I wouldn’t say that it’s unique, but we have always made my own cranberry relish. We have always hooked the grinder over the dishwasher and opened the door and ground our own cranberries, so if any of the juice fell it would go in the dishwasher and all we had to do is shut the door and turn it on for quick clean up.

What do you do with all of the leftovers?
We make sandwiches filled with dressing, turkey, and topped with cranberry relish. Yummy!


Chef Naydeen

Naydeen Sienko is the queen of baking. As a child, she grew up baking with her mother in the kitchen. Always seeking to develop her baking skills, Naydeen obtained an A.O.S. degree in Baking and Pastry Arts at Sullivan University. She now makes the most insanely delicious pastries and desserts at Farmer’s Pick Buffet®.

In your professional opinion, what's the best way to prepare Thanksgiving turkey: braised, deep-fried, grilled, smoked, or roasted?
For Thanksgiving I always stick with roasted.

If you could only have one side dish at Thanksgiving dinner, what would it be?
Only one is a hard choice. I would stick with a traditional green bean casserole with fried onions.

What's your secret to prepping the perfect turkey?
I make sure that the turkey is rinsed and dried. Then I cut slits into the skin and put pads of butter under it. After that I take my herbs and spices, mix them with mayonnaise (yes, mayo) and rub that over the turkey. The mayonnaise helps seal in moisture and also creates the perfect browned turkey.

What's the most unique side dish you've ever served with your Thanksgiving Dinner?
The most unique side dish we have ever served would be a recipe my father came up with. He would stuff the turkey with bacon and mushrooms, then roast it. After the Turkey was cooked we would have bacon and mushroom stuffing.

What do you do with all of the leftovers?
I usually just reheat the leftovers and enjoy them as is. If there is an abundance of turkey, I’ll make sandwiches or turkey with egg noodles and gravy.

Thanksgiving is one of our favorite holidays. We hope that you enjoy your time with your loved ones. And if you’re not too stuffed, feel free to stop by and visit on Thanksgiving Day!


Sources:
http://boonville.isleofcapricasinos.com/dining/behind-the-chefs.html

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