Thanksgiving 'Criollo Style' Menu                                        Homepage


Thanksgiving Criollo Style


Rinse and dry the turkey, inside and out.
Season with Adobo on the inside.
Rub the turkey on the outside with achiote olive oil.
Season well with Adobo.

For Pavochón, a pernil flavored turkey, season with 2 parts mashed fresh garlic (ok to use garlic powder or coarse garlic), 1 part coarse sea salt, 1 part coarse black pepper, and 1 part dried oregano leaf. Determine how much seasoning by the weight of the turkey. 1 tsp salt per pound and then figure it out. If your turkey weighs 10 lbs then 10 tsps salt, 10 tsps black pepper, 10 tsps oregano, and 20 (yes 20) tsps garlic. Or measure by ¼ cups. Mix ingredients with a bit of olive oil and a packet of Sazón with achioto and rub liberaly on turkey.

If you are not going to stuff the turkey put a large onion, cleaned and skinned, sliced in half and a whole head of garlic, peeled (as much as possible) with the top sliced off, in the cavity of the turkey and one banana leaf.

Line the bottom of the pan with 3 or 4 banana leaves. Cover turkey with banana leaves and at the end remove the top leaves to allow turkey to brown nicely (you might need to raise the temperature a bit to brown it.

Serve on a bed of banana leaves.

Your house will smell devine and your turkey will be delicious.


Side Dishes    


Puerto Rican "meat" stuffing
Mofongo stuffing

GARLIC MASHED POTATOES or Mashed Yuca with Garlic and Onions
Mashed potatoes sprinkled with garlic powder or freshly mashed garlic.


In a caldero cook ½ pound of bacon until crispy. Remove the cooked bacon and chop into small pieces. In the bacon fat stir-fry ½ cup of sofrito for a couple of minutes or so. Add the cooked bacon. Add 1(8oz) can tomato sauce, 1(16oz) can pinto beans, 1 (16oz) can measure of raw rice, and 1(16oz) can beef or chicken broth. Stir well. Add enough water to cover rice 1˝ inches above rice line. Let it boil on high until water evaporates. Cover and cook over low heat for about 25 minutes.

Pastelon de Platano Maduro - surprise your friends with this easy to prepare island delight.


Caribbean Pasta and Seafood Salad
(not a traditional Puerto Rican dish, but if you're making pasta salad, make it island flavored.

and or

Puerto Rican style green salad.
Use leaf lettuce, thinly sliced onions and tomatoes, canned corn and peas - drained.
Plate and sprinkle with vinegar and oil dressing.


Rum cake
Cazuela ( a real Puerto Rican dessert made with coconut and pumpkin and easy as 1, 2 ,3 !


Café con leche (Espresso)

Boil fresh whole milk. Add freshly brewed strong coffee, preferably an island brand such as Yaucono, or Bustelo. Add sugar if desired. It will be about half milk and half coffee. This is the traditional Puerto Rican 'café con leche'...

Cuba Libre
Piña Colada

Cooking for crowds or cooking to 'get ahead' - cook several calderos of rice a day or two ahead and put in an oven pan in the fridge, covered with foil - heat in the oven at 350 degrees 2 hrs before party begins (keep covered with foil and stir half way thru heating). Cook beans ahead also and put them in a large crock-pot in the fridge to heat up the day of the party. Serve several prepared ahead dishes like macaroni salad and potato salad - they are easy to prepare and easy to store in a gallon bag in the fridge and just put in the serving dish when you need it. A nice toss salad also makes a great side dish and there is no cooking. You can also make a yellow plantain 'pastelon' a few days ahead and stick in the oven before the party begins - prepare it in a large dish so you have plenty to go around - and you will be a 'star' for adding a delicious pastelon to your criollo style Thanksgiving. Serve large rolls with butter. Make several desserts ahead of time too - like our favorites, rum cake and pecan pie (pecan pie is so easy to make!)