Columns: Braised turkey drumsticks a delicious Christmas delight

In one month from now the presents will have been opened and Santa will have gone back to the North Pole for a little rest.

In one month from now the presents will have been opened and Santa will have gone back to the North Pole for a little rest before he gets busy again.

Perhaps you will still have some turkey along with a carcass left over so you can continue the Christmas food spirit in your home by making a delicious soup, comfort food to help wind down a little from the excitement of the season.

Before you get too close to Dec. 25 make a list of goodies you will need from the grocery store for the Christmas dinner feast.

I suspect a turkey would be the item to go first on the shopping list.  Maybe a nice ham, or a nice beef rib roast of top quality.

How about a pork tenderloin, instead of the gobbler? Not everyone has a turkey for Christmas dinner.

Then a list  would need some vegetables, and don’t forget sweet potatoes. Something for a nice vegetable salad is a ‘for sure’ on the dinner menu.

So many ways to make a nice salad that will compliment your meal and of course you will need some veggies for appetizers with a tasty dip. You may also need some vegetables to add to the main course or  to use in the stuffing of your turkey, if that what is gracing your table for this meal.  Cranberry sauce is also a must on my list, and it is not hard to make from scratch.

Christmas dinner is one of the big meals of the year and  it is  more difficult to complete the meal you desire for family and friends, if you have forgotten something necessary items.

You can always ‘make do’ but it is so much nicer to have everything you need on hand when you start preparing and cooking the Christmas dinner.

I’m jumping the gun a little bit by presenting a turkey recipe right now when we’ll mostly all be eating more of the bird in a couple of weeks. My most favorite part of the turkey is the drumsticks and thighs. Yup, the dark meat is the best according to my taste buds. I first tasted this recipe years ago and recently found it when I was doing a little cleaning of my files.

Braised Turkey Drumsticks

• One tbsp olive oil

• Two turkey drumsticks or thighs

• Two tbsp seasoned flour

• Garlic to taste

• One small onion minced

• One-quarter cup red wine

• One-cup tomato puree

• One-half tsp oregano

• One-half cup chicken broth

• One bay leaf

• One-quarter tsp red pepper flakes

• One tbsp minced Italian parsley

Pasta of your choice…angel hair was  used when I  first tried this gourmet gobbler dish.

Heat oil in large pan.  Dust turkey with flour.  Add turkey to pan and brown on all sides, about 10 minutes.  Add garlic and onions and saute two to three minutes.  Add red wine. Scrape up any browned bits in pan.

Add tomato puree, oregano, chicken broth, bay leaf, olives and red pepper flakes.  Cover pan tightly and cook over low heat 1 1/2 hours.

Sprinkle with parsley and season with pepper.  Remove bay leaf. Remove turkey from pan.  Add pasta and coat with sauce.

Don’t forget to make a Christmas meal list soon.

Bye for now and GOOOD COOKING!

Ken Wilson is a freelance columnist with the Tribune/Weekend Advisor.