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Tips and recipes to get you through the holiday season!

The fallen leaves are the first indication of the season slowly edging its way from autumn to winter. The cool brisk air and darker evenings are another indication that winter is about to arrive on our doorsteps. With the winter season, we begin to cook casseroles, pies, and slow roasted meats. Our kitchens are abound with the scents of cinnamon, peppermint, and baked goods. It’s time to cook those holiday favorites, here are a few tips and recipes to get you through the holiday season.

#1 Brine your Turkey

Some people like to wet brine (soak the turkey in a mixture of salted water and herbs). The down side of this technique is finding a large enough container to do so in. This year, try a dry brine. Mix ½ cup of salt with 1 tablespoon of brown sugar (adjust measurements accordingly). Set your turkey on the rack inside a roasting pan. Sprinkle and rub the brine all over the inside and outside of the turkey. Place the turkey uncovered in the fridge for up to 2 days. When it’s Thanksgiving, take the turkey out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature. Gently place the turkey breast side up with wings tucked underneath. Spread butter underneath the skin and all over. Cook according to weight of the bird. Either way you choose to brine your turkey is up to you but brining is essential for a moist and juicy turkey. The brining process helps to absorb moisture and the salt breaks down some of the turkey’s muscle proteins which prevents it from toughing up during cooking.

#2 Sweet Potato

Although, sweet potatoes are available year round. It seems to be a staple during the holiday season. Whether you mash them up and top with marshmallows or enjoy them sautéed with butternut squash as a Great Addition with a fresh piece of seafood from Catch 35’s dinner menu, there a few things you might not know about this winter favorite-sweet potato. There are 3 types of sweet potatoes-Orange-Japanese-Purple. The orange one is what most Americans enjoy during their Thanksgiving feast. The Japanese sweet potato is a bit more exotic with reddish-purple skins and chestnut flavor. Lastly, the purple potato is more dense and full of antioxidants-a unique choice if you are in the mood to try a new variation.

When buying sweet potatoes keep in mind that the peak growing season runs from autumn to early winter. It should have a smooth skin and firm pointed ends. Store in a dry cool place and use them within 7 days. Make sure to scrub your tubers if you choose to keep the skin on.

#3 Dessert

Tis the season to indulge and one of the favorites of the winter season is pie.  Bread pudding – Chocolate Lave cake – Cheesecake with creamy fillings and crisp crusts, pies are a great gift to bring if you are attending a holiday event. Available for curbside pickup and delivery – call Catch 35 Naperville at 630-717-3500 to place your order today!