Musical entertainer Fergus O’Byrne was our guest when we prepared this traditional home-cooked meal. Every Newfoundlander enjoys Newfoundland savoury, that common herb that took on a distinct flavour after many years of being grown on the island of Newfoundland. Fergus acquired a taste for it after moving to Canada from Ireland when he was a young man. Most of his life has been spent here in Newfoundland and Labrador. We’re pleased he made his home with us. Fergus and his former bandmates in Ryan’s Fancy have made a tremendous contribution to folk and traditional music in Newfoundland and Labrador.
- Yield: 8 Servings
- 4 tbsp (60 ml) butter
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 celery rib, finely chopped
- 2 cups (500 ml) bread crumbs
- 2 tsp (10 ml) Newfoundland savoury
- ½ cup (125 ml) dried cranberries
- ¼ cup (60 ml) chicken broth, warmed
- salt and pepper
- 2 boneless turkey breasts
- Melt butter in heated frying pan on medium high. Add onion and celery. Cook until onion has softened. Remove from heat and add bread crumbs, savoury, cranberries, chicken broth, salt, and pepper. Mix all ingredients very thoroughly.
- Place turkey breasts skin side down on cutting board and pound lightly with mallet. Set aside. Place sheet of plastic wrap on cutting board and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Lay turkey breast skin side down on plastic wrap. Cut pocket through centre of meat and fill with half the savoury stuffing. Wrap breast as tightly as possible in plastic wrap and wrap again in foil. Repeat this process with second breast. Preheat oven to 350 F (180 C).
- Place breasts on cookie sheet and bake in oven for 1 hour 30 minutes or until internal temperature of meat reaches 160 F (75 C). (Yes, as improbable as it may seem, you can use plastic wrap in a conventional oven as long as it is then wrapped tightly in foil. The layer of plastic wrap helps keep that extra bit of moisture locked into whatever it is that you’re cooking.)
- Remove breasts from oven and let rest 20 minutes. Slice and serve with heated cranberry sauce (or sauce of your choice), roasted potatoes, and a green vegetable.