Excerpted from New American Table by Marcus Samuelsson. Copyright 2009
Every December, I look forward to getting an invitation to my friends Frans Johansson and Sweet Joy Hachuelaâ€™s Swedish-Filipino Christmas party. Frans and Sweet Joy started the tradition three years ago, gathering about twenty-five people in their apartment in Brooklyn to celebrate the Swedish and Filipino Christmas traditions they each grew up with. "Our families are so far away," Sweet Joy says. "We wanted to bring our friends together to share our foods and traditions with us."
A passionate cook, Sweet Joy goes overboard making pancit (rice noodles with green beans, carrots, garlic, and chicken), lumpia (a Filipino-style egg roll), chicken or pork adobo, and spinach with ginger and coconut. She also lays out an assortment of Filipino condiments, including a spicy banana ketchup unlike anything Iâ€™ve ever tried before.
For his part, Frans makes (or, rather, buys) Swedish herring, meatballs, and salmon, as well as the potato salad that his mom, who is African American, always made. "I grew up at an intersection of foods," Frans says. "Because of my mom, I grew up with a wider assortment of foods than a normal Swede. Our Christmas Eve was very Swedish, but on Christmas, weâ€™d have a very American turkey and stuffing."
This turkey breast, flavored with the traditional rosemary and sage, is also dusted with chili powder and served with a side of collard greens as a nod to Africa. I think it would be a great addition to Sweet Joy and Frans's Christmas table.
- One 6-pound bone-in turkey breast
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 garlic cloves
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- ½ yellow onion
- ½ cup Herb Mix
- Collard Greens
- Preheat the Oven to 400° F.
- Rinse the turkey breast under cold water and pat dry. Season with salt and pepper on all sides and in the neck cavity. Stuff the garlic cloves, cinnamon sticks, and onion into the neck cavity and seal closed with a wooden skewer or toothpick. Generously rub the herb mix over the turkey and under the skin.
- Place the turkey skin side up on a rack in a roasting pan and cover with aluminum foil. Roast, basting occasionally with the pan juices, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast reads 160°F and the juices run clear, about 1½ hours.
- Remove from the oven and let rest for at least 20 minutes. Before carving, remove and discard the seasonings from the neck cavity. Serve with the stuffing and collard greens.
Makes about ⅔ cup.
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 garlic clove minced
- Zest from 1 Lemon
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped rosemary
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped sage
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped thyme
- 1 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
- 2 teaspoons mild chili powder
- Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a small sauté pan over medium heat. Add the garlic, lemon zest, rosemary, sage, thyme, parsley, and chili powder and sauté until the garlic is golden, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and combine with the remaining ¼ cup olive oil.
Can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.
Makes 3½ cups.
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons unsalted, roasted, skinless peanuts, coarsely chopped
- ½ loaf white bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 3 garlic cloves, cut in half
- 3 shallot, coarsely chopped
- 1 medium pumpkin, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes (5 cups; see Tip)
- 2 quinces or pears, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch cubes (4 cups)
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 2 tablespoons Herb Mix
- 1 cup chicken stock
- ½ cup fresh orange juice
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 teaspoons chopped thyme
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup dark raisins
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large sautÃ© pan over medium heat. Add the peanuts and bread cubes and sauté until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large Dutch oven or other large pot over medium heat. Add the garlic and shallots and sauté until golden, about 5 minutes. Add the pumpkin, quince, cinnamon sticks, and herb mix and sauté for another 5 minutes. Stir in the chicken stock, orange juice, and honey. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the pumpkin is tender, about 15 minutes.
- Add the thyme, salt, raisins, and the reserved peanuts and bread cubes. Cook over low heat, stirring frequently, until heated through, about 15 minutes. Remove and discard the cinnamon sticks and stir in the parsley.
If your local store doesnâ€™t sell pumpkin, butternut squash makes a great substitute.
Makes 6-8 servings.
- 6 bacon slices
- ½ cup coconut milk
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon coarse grainy mustard
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 4 garlic cloves cut in half
- 4 cups very thinly sliced collard greens (about 2 bunches)
- 4 cups very thinly sliced bok choy (about 2 heads)
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon and cook until crisp. Transfer to paper towels to drain excess oil. Crumble into small pieces. Set aside.
- Bring the coconut milk and soy sauce to a boil in small saucepan. Remove from the heat and stir in the mustard and crumbled bacon. Set aside.
- Heat the olive oil and butter in a large straight-sided sauté pan over low heat. Add the garlic and slowly toast until pale golden brown, about 10 minutes. (Be careful not to let it burn.) Lift the garlic out of the oil with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- In the same pan, add the collard greens and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the greens start to wilt, about 5 minutes. Stir in the coconut milk mixture and cook for about 20 minutes, or until the greens are tender and the sauce has thickened.
- While the collard greens are cooking, bring 3 cups salted water to a boil in a separate pot. Blanch the bok choy for 30 seconds, and fold into the collard greens during the last minute of cooking. Stir the reserved garlic into the greens and serve.