Sauce: Ways to save the turkey

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There is a TV commercial for Swanson chicken broth that shows a woman buying broth with MSG in it. This does not go over well with the turkey in her cart, which jumps out and runs, naked and headless, down the grocery aisle.

It's pretty funny.

You don't have to be bothered this year with naked turkeys, or any turkey at all if you don't care to. There are plenty of sites and products out there to help you out with next Thursday's culinary test, to give your holiday fare a new twist or help with the old favorites. Here's some that have landed on my desk:

Kopali Organic Goldenberries -- a fruit grown in Columbia and Peru and marketed as "the exotic raisin of the Amazon" -- is promoting Kopali Organic Goldenberry Vegan Thanksgiving Stuffing and Wild Rice Stuffing. Among ingredients in the former are scallions, vegetable broth and whole-grain bread; the latter includes wheat-free tamari. For recipes, go to staging.gourmetsleuth.com/Recipes/RecipeDetail.aspx?ID=1484.

• I love holiday breakfasts. They are true comfort-food occasions to linger over. Nielsen-Massey Vanilla suggests blending cream cheese and cranberry sauce to use in stuffed French toast, or mixing its Bourbon Pure Vanilla Bean Paste with honey to spread on toast or bagels. Recipes, including one for Pumpkin-Ginger Pancakes, can be had at nielsenmassey.com. Want something to make quickly? Alternately, I recently had oatmeal pancakes at a friend's house, made from a store mix. They were very good. I also had Irish oatmeal (can you guess I like oatmeal?) at Coco's Cafe in Lawrenceville, served with walnuts, dried cranberries and brown sugar. Ooh la la.

• Turkey haters, unite. Fine Cooking magazine has a blog for you: finecooking.com/item/12520/the-bird-is-not-the-word. There are tips on what else to cook, as well as camaraderie. Kvetch to your giblet's content. Or, if you just plain dislike the idea of dispatching a turkey, find kindred spirits at gentlethanksgiving.org.

• Collegeinn.com promotes uses for turkey leftovers. Recipes at the site include Turkey Black Bean Chili and one I think I'll give a go, Honey Gingered Carrot Soup. Also at the site, a bonus: Enter by Dec. 15 to win an eight-piece set of All-Clad cookware.

• The people behind smokeindaeye.com say they are "an award-winning competition barbecue and grilling team from Garden City, N.Y." If saucy turkey is your thing, check the site for tips and recipes, including Southwestern Turkey Soup.

• Want an organic, free-range or kosher turkey? Try Trader Joe's, which has all-natural turkeys, kosher and otherwise, $1.79 to $2.29 per pound; Giant Eagle Market District will once again have free-range heritage turkeys from the Good Shepherd Heritage Turkey Ranch, Tampa, Kan., $4.99 a pound. Check your local farm or butcher as well. Lots have fresh turkeys, but order, like, today.

• If you have had a death in the family, the holidays are an especially tough time. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention's National Survivors of Suicide Day program has asked celebrities to share recipes and comfort at facebook.com/afspnational. The site has been hosting a celebrity chef challenge; the winner will be announced on the site tomorrow. Survivors of Suicide Day is Saturday.

• Little helpers: Spice Hunter's Turkey Brine Line: 1-888-334-8977, 10:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Next week it'll be open until midnight; Ocean Spray's Consumer Helpline: 1-800-662-3263 is open 24 hours a day; the Butterball Turkey Hotline: 1-800-Butterball.

After all that, I'm stuffed.

Events

From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. tomorrow, farmer Robert Rhea and his family will present a free saurkraut-making demonstration, and give out recipes, at the farmers market at the Rogers (Ohio) Flea Market. You can buy cabbage as well as turnips for making sauerruben. For more, call 1-330-831-0740 or visit Rogersohio.com.

Three Rivers Vegan Society will hold a ThanksVegan Potluck from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Friends Meeting House, 4836 Ellsworth Ave., Shadyside. Bring your favorite vegan dish and your own plate and silverware. 412-371-0384 or palathena@hotmail.com.

South Hills Bible Chapel, 300 Gallery Drive, McMurray, will hold its 40th Men's Thanksgiving Breakfast from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Saturday. Speaker: Judge Dwayne Woodruff of Allegheny County Common Pleas Court, former cornerback for the Steelers. $5 at the door. Call 724-941-8990 or e-mail men@biblechapel.org.

Sample a taste of Point Brugge Cafe, 401 Hastings St., Point Breeze, from 5:30-8:30 p.m. Monday, benefiting Children's Hospital Free Care Fund. Sponsored by Howard Hanna real estate's Squirrel Hill office, the fundraiser is $20 per person or $30 per couple. Beverages extra; prizes. Call 412-421-9120 and ask for Anne Skweres, ext. 228, or Andrea Ehrenreich, ext. 247.

Steve and Gale Loder, authors of the "Quality Venison Cookbook," will sign their book and give venison samplings from 11 a.m to 3 p.m. Saturday at Cabela's, Wheeling, and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 28 at Borders in the Beaver Valley Mall. qualityvenisoncookbooks.com.

A Christmas Victorian Tea will be held Saturday in Harmony, Beaver County, at the Harmony Museum's Stewart Hall. Call for details and reservations, 724-452-5509.


Sauce is for you. Contact Margi Shrum at mshrum@post-gazette.com or 412-263-3027.


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