Local poultry guru and Great Lakes Culinary Institute instructor, Chef Bob Rodriguez shares some of his favorite preparations for yard bird legs, livers and the perfect Thanksgiving birds.

Chicken Liver Pate

The cream in this recipe cuts right through the iron notes associated with the liver, resulting in a silky smooth, spreadable, and surprisingly palatable pate, while the shallots and sherry add bright notes. Serve this as an appetizer at your next holiday gathering sliced on a plate with toasted baguette and pickled veggies.

The Perfect Roast Turkey

Looking for the perfect roast turkey recipe to wow friends and family this holiday season? Well look no further! Try Chef Rodriguez’s brined and roasted turkey recipe. Your turkey will burst with flavorful juices from the brine and come out of the oven so golden, Betty Crocker would do a double-take. Don’t be surprised if people skip the sides and go straight for turkey seconds!

Duck Confit

Move aside turkey, it’s time for a new bird to step up to the plate. The French got it right when they introduced duck confit into the world—succulent meat, crispy skin and seasonings through and through. If you want to try a new recipe this holiday season, duck confit makes the perfect poultry substitution that even kids and die-hard turkey-fans will fall in love with. Serve with lentils and arugula for a classic preparation, or with whatever strikes your fancy!

These recipes were featured in the October 2012 issue of Traverse, Northern Michigan’s Magazine. Click here to order your copy!

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Photo(s) by Todd Zawistowski