Here's What Oprah Eats on Thanksgiving
Turkeys with Seriously Smoky Flavor
As the curtain rises on Oprah's Thanksgiving feast, Chef Kenny Gilbert stands outside at the grill, basting turkeys. He's cooking four birds that day—and two of them are being smoked. As Oprah watches, she proudly announces, "All I got to say is, let the games begin!" Smoking a turkey can take somewhere between 8 and 12 hours, but the rich flavor of smoked turkey is well worth the wait.
Sides a Plenty (and Can We Please Move in Next Door?)
Add this to the list of reasons why we'd love to be Oprah's neighbor: one of the four turkeys her team is making for this holiday (marinated in Cajun spices, chicken seasoning and sage) is going to their house. With T-minus 2 hours until turkey time, Oprah bastes one of them (a 22-pounder!). "This is good. Oh man, I think this is good," she says. She also shares a few of the sides that are waiting in the wings: bread stuffing (Art Smith's recipe), almonds for the green beans, marshmallow-topped sweet potatoes, turnips and carrots.
The Potatoes That Make the Meal
Oprah's truffle obsession is well-known, so it goes without saying that they'll appear somewhere on her Thanksgiving table. This time, it's in the au gratin potatoes. As she shaves some Alba white truffles with a Microplane grater over the top of a bubbling potato dish, she says: "Almost showtime. Let's hit it!"
Dinner for 22—girls from her school—is ready. Oprah takes a spin around the buffet table—but not before noting the need to "work the points the best way we can." There's an heirloom pear and apple salad, traditional cornbread stuffing, candied red jeweled sweet potatoes with "marshmallows all crispied up," green beans, sage gravy, those truffle au gratin potatoes, sweet corn casserole and, of course, the turkey.
The Breakfast Spread of Our Dreams
The next morning, Oprah gets ready to dig into a turkey hash made with onions, celery, peppers, potatoes and leftover turkey. And in the spirit of this abundant holiday, there's plenty more, including eggs, bagels, some incredibly fluffy and delicious-looking drop biscuits, and grits—"because you can't take the Southern out of the girl. Ever. Even in California."
The Last of the Turkey Leftovers
Now it's the Saturday after Thanksgiving, and they are "still doing the turkey thing" at Oprah's house. Chef Kenny preps breakfast sandwiches made with a drop biscuit filled with turkey breast, cheese and egg. "That's about, hmmm, 15 points right there," adds Oprah.