The Holiday Flavors of Rioja: Spanish Spiced Turkey
Jazz up your holiday dinner with Spanish Spiced Turkey, paired with Rioja wine!
A flavorful turkey dinner is the quintessential holiday meal. The trick to enjoying an absolute delicious turkey is not only all about the way it is cooked, but just as important is the way that it’s seasoned. Oh and the drinks are pretty important too!
Rioja wines pair perfectly with special holiday meals. It’s one of those crowd pleasing wines, that’s easy to drink and goes well with a variety of meals and small bites. It has an elegant smooth taste, but it’s actually very affordable. Choose from juicy rosado wines, crisp blancos, or elegant reds ranging from lighter to robust with spice.
Celebrate the holidays and take your usual turkey recipe and add some beautiful Spanish flair inspired by Cosecha and Crianza Rioja wines. Take your basic turkey and rub it with a blend of warm spices and smoked Spanish paprika. Then, stuff the bird with dried fruits soaked in an orange sauce and use the same sauce to baste the meat as it roasts.
Cosecha wines act as a beautiful starter glass to your dinners. Fresh, fruity, and not too heavy, they pair well with appetizers, white meats, and simple pastas without overweighing the palate with rich flavors. Rioja’s Crianza classification lets you know that each and every wine is at least three years old and has been aged in casks for a year or more.
Lighter Rioja red wines often have hints of smoke, only slight notes of oak aging, and plenty of ripe berry flavors. Dishes, like this turkey recipe, with orange zest and warm baking spices are natural pairings with these Rioja wines.
Check out the video below for holiday inspiration with Rioja wines.
- For the Turkey:
- 1 Bird
- 4 quarts water
- 1 cup salt
- 1 cup sugar
- Carrots & Onions for roasting
- Fresh thyme
- For the Orange Sauce:
- 2 cups orange juice
- 1 small yellow onion
- 4 cloves of garlic
- Salt to taste
- Honey to taste
- 4 cups chicken stock
- orange zest
- For the Stuffing:
- Pine Nuts
- For the Seasoning:
- Fennel seed
- Cumin seed
- Smoked Spanish Paprika
- White Pepper
- Mustard Seeds
- Chili flakes
- Cheese cloth
- Bring to a boil the water, sugar and salt. Cool and then immerse turkey in the brining liquid for about an hour.
- Toast pine nuts until golden on the stovetop.
- In another pan, saute onions & garlic until soft and fragrant.
- Add orange juice and stock and reduce by ⅓, stirring frequently.
- Season with honey and salt according to your preference. Pour over the apricots and prunes and allow fruit to soak.
- Strain fruit, reserving the liquid, and stir in the toasted pine nuts. Using cheesecloth and string, wrap and tie the prunes, apricots and pine nuts into a bundle.
- Combine spices in a bowl.
- Stuff bird, sitting in a roasting pan, with bundle and rub with spices. Arrange onions, carrots, and fresh thyme around the turkey.
- Roast at 375F for about 2 hours, or until done, depending on the size of the bird.
- Baste occasionally with the strained orange sauce while roasting.
- When serving, remove the cheesecloth insert and arrange its contents around the turkey with the carrots and onions. Garnish with fresh thyme.
Recipe provided by Rioja wines.
Not only is my Thanksgiving Salad perfect for Thanksgiving dinner, but it’s also the perfect side for any winter meal you’re cooking up!
Something to think about….
Have you tried Rioja wines?
What’s your favorite holiday dinner food? Have you ever tried cooking your own turkey?