Grilled Turkey Breast with Roasted Acorn Squash Polenta and Cider Cranberry Reduction

Thanksgiving in one bite. Here its he appetizer version of this recipe.

Thanksgiving in one bite. Here is the appetizer version of this recipe.

Think about getting all the flavors of Thanksgiving in one bite! This is a great way to do that. The creaminess of the polenta with the squash and the fresh herbs on the turkey give it that holiday dinner profile. It’s a great way of building the flavors for a satisfying dish. You can also do this with chicken or game bird.

I first made this as an appetizer for a holiday party by spreading out the polenta  on a cookie sheet and chilled it down. Then I cut them into small circles and toasted the polenta cakes.

1 1/2 to 2 lbs Turkey breast Filet. (This is a raw boneless breast sliced about 1 in thick lengthwise)

3 Tbl Fresh Sage chopped

3 Tbl Fresh Rosemary chopped

3 Tbl Fresh Thyme chopped

2 Tbl Granulated garlic

2 Tbl Onion Powder

2 Tbl Kosher Salt

2 Tbl Ground Pepper

1 Cup Course corn meal

2 Medium acorn squash, 1/2 inch diced (it’s going to get pureed so they don’t have to be perfect)

1 med onion finely diced

2 Cup apple cider

1/2 cup whole cranberries

1/3 cup white balsamic vinegar

1 container Creme Freche

1 tsp Truffle Oil (optional)

Olive oil

  • Mix together herbs, garlic, onion, salt and pepper in small bowl
  • Lay out filets on plate and coat with 1/3 of the herb mixture
  • Let them sit in refrigerator for about an hour
  • On stove, bring cider and cranberries to boil and reduce to simmer.
  • Let simmer until reduces by half and cranberries “pop”
  • Add balsamic vinegar and reduce for an additional 2 minutes. Take off of heat.
  • In separate pot add 2 Tbl oil.
  • When oil is hot, add acorn squash and sauté until sugars start to caramelize. Add salt and pepper and 1/3 of dried herbs
  • Add onions and continue to sauté until squash gets soft.
  • Once soft, put in food processor and pulse until smooth
  • In pot on stove, bring stock to boil and slowly add cornmeal.
  • Continue to cook until all the liquid is absorbed and mixture starts to thicken
  • Once mixture starts to thicken, add squash mixture and incorporate into polenta.
  • Remove from heat for a creamery polenta or continue to cook until mixture thickens again for a more firm polenta (This is how I cooked it to make the mini polenta cakes)
  •  Lightly brush oil on turkey filets
  • Place on hot grill and cook for 3-4 minutes
  • Flip turkey and cook and additional 5 minutes until reaches 165 degrees internal. It is very similar to cooking chicken breast. Let rest for 2-3 minutes then slice about 1/4 in thick across the breast. (Slice smaller pieces for the appetizer)
  • On plate put some of the polenta in the middle and top with Creme Freche
  • Lay 4 -5 slices of turkey over polenta
  • Spoon glaze over top of the turkey and around polenta. Top with a few cranberries for garnish

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