Travel and food writer Karen Burns-Booth of Lavender and Lovage was at Seal River Heritage Lodge for the Polar Bear Photo Safari a few years ago on a Travel Manitoba media trip with six other journalists, writers and bloggers. She fell in love not only with the polar bears, but also with the food, the cooks and their Blueberries & Polar Bears cookbooks!
Karen modified one of the recipes from our Icebergs & Belugas Cookbook (page 154) for the Great British Chefs website and the Christmas season, but it works perfectly for Thanksgiving too! Her recipe for cranberry-glazed roast turkey breast with wild rice stuffing follows below, but you might just want to read her story, Walking with Polar Bears in Arctic Canada, before digging in, just to get a feel for the overall experience. It makes the food taste even better!
“The trip exceeded all my expectations…“ ~ Karen Burns-Booth
CRANBERRY-GLAZED ROAST TURKEY BREAST WITH WILD RICE STUFFING
Roast Turkey Breast
- 1 turkey breast, between 900g-1kg in weight
- 6 tbsp of cranberry jelly, or jam
- 50g of soft brown sugar
- 1 tsp mixed spice
- 100ml of cider vinegar
- 50ml of port, ruby or tawny
- 100g of cranberries, fresh or frozen
Wild Rice Stuffing
- 500g of wild rice
- 650ml of water
- 4 tbsp of butter
- 1 large onion, peeled and finely diced
- 2 celery sticks, trimmed and finely diced
- 150g of mushrooms, wiped clean and diced
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- 1/2 tsp celery salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 2 tbsp of chopped parsley, fresh
- 125g of dried cranberries
- 125g of walnuts, or pecans, chopped
1. To begin, cook the wild rice for the stuffing. Bring 650 mL salted water to a boil in a pan, add the rice and simmer covered for about 45–60 minutes, or until the rice is cooked and tender. Drain and set aside until needed.
2. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4.
3. Liberally rub butter all over the turkey breast and place it in a roasting tray. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Mix the remaining ingredients together, except for the fresh or frozen cranberries, and spoon the mixture over the turkey. Cover loosely with foil and cook for 1 hour.
4. Meanwhile, make the stuffing. Fry the onion and celery in the butter until they are soft and translucent. Add the mushrooms, garlic, celery salt, black pepper and parsley and fry for a further 5–6 minutes.
5. Add the cranberries and nuts to the vegetable mixture, mix well and then tip all of the ingredients into the cooked wild rice. Mix well and spoon into a well-buttered oven dish. Bake alongside the turkey for 30–45 minutes (this stuffing can also be used for stuffing whole roasting birds too).
6. 15 minutes before the end of the turkey cooking time, remove the foil from the tray and add the fresh or frozen cranberries to the turkey, giving a good baste with the cooking juices.
7. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes before carving and serving with the cooking juices, wild rice stuffing, potatoes and seasonal vegetables.