A Queenly Thanksgiving Menu….

It’s that time of year.  Here are my favorite benchmark recipes for the Thanksgiving Table in time to do the grocery shopping. 

The Queen’s Thanksgiving Menu

The Queen’s Turkey


  • 1 (12 pound) whole turkey
  • 8 tablespoons butter, softened and divided
  • 2 cups chicken Broth
  • 1 bunch of parsley
  • 2 medium yellow onions quartered
  • 1 sprig of rosemary
  • 1 sprig of fresh thyme
  • 1 sprig of sage
  • 2 tablespoons poultry seasoning


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Rinse and wash turkey. Discard the giblets, or add to pan if they are anyone’s favorites.
  2. Place turkey in a foil lined Dutch oven or roasting pan. Separate the skin over the breast to make little pockets. Pour the chicken broth and 1 tablespoon of the poultry seasoning into the bottom to help keep the turkey moist.
  3. Blend the softened butter with 1 tablespoon of the poultry seasoning. Put 4 tablespoons of the herbed butter on both sides between the skin and breast meat. This makes for very juicy breast meat.
  4. Place the quartered onions in the cavity of the cleaned turkey.
  5. Tie the herbs together with butcher twine and place in the cavity as well.
  6. Cover with foil, and bake in the preheated oven 4 hours, until the internal temperature of the turkey reaches 180 degrees F (80 degrees C). For the last 45 minutes or so, remove the foil so the turkey will brown nicely be sure to baste often during the browning process. Remove the herbs from the cavity before carving. They can be used in pan broth to make the gravy as well.
VARIATION: This is a cooking tip that we moms in the South use. However, it freaks non- mountain folks out. I preheated my oven to 275 degrees and tightly tent the turkey as noted. I cook it all night tented. The house smells wonderful when you wake up in the morning and the slow cook method keeps the turkey moist. When I get up about 7-8 a.m. I pull the tent and up the temperature to 375 degrees F. to brown for 30-40 minutes. Then I can turn it to 275 degrees and re-tent to keep warm and moist until I let it sit about 25-30 minutes before carving. I’ve never had an issue in 40 years cooking it this way and it saves me so much time Thanksgiving morning.
Queens Best Garlic Mash Potatoes
  • 2 Whole Heads Garlic, Top Third Sliced Off And Discarded
  • Olive Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Sea Salt
  • 5 Pounds Yukon Gold Potatoes, Peeled And Cubed
  • 1 Cup Sour Cream
  • 1 (4 Ounce) Package Cream Cheese
  • 1 Cup Unsalted Butter
  • Salt And Ground Black Pepper To Taste
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Place garlic heads in a baking dish and drizzle each with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Bake in the preheated oven until garlic is soft and brown, about 45 minutes.
  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and stir in sea salt. Cook potatoes in the salted water until tender, about 30 minutes. Drain.
  4. Transfer potatoes to a large bowl and add sour cream, cream cheese, butter, salt, and black pepper to the bowl. Cover bowl with a lid or a piece of aluminum foil and let mixture stand for 5 minutes to soften butter and cream cheese, about 5 minutes.
  5. Squeeze roasted garlic from the cloves into the potato mixture; mash potatoes until smooth, creamy, and thoroughly combined.
Green Bean Casserole
  • 3 (14.5 Ounce) Cans Green Beans, Drained
  • 1 (10.75 Ounce) Can Condensed Cream Of Mushroom Soup
  • 1 (6 Ounce) Can French Fried Onions
  • 2 Cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Place green beans and soup in a large bowl mix well. Stir in 1 cup of cheese and mix for another 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer green bean mixture to a casserole dish and sprinkle with French fried onions and remaining cheese.
  • Bake in a preheated 350 degrees F. oven until the cheese melts and the onions just begin to brown.

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