Recipes for a Cultural Experience—Holiday Dinners: Stuffed Rolled Turkey Breast

The Iron Range in Northern Minnesota where I’m from was a real melting pot of nationalities. There were many people with Italian, Scandinavian, Slavic as well as Eastern European and other backgrounds. Many came to work in the mines. Growing up, my father was a grocer and a butcher. We learned a lot from the employees and customers, and their various cultures. We carried many different ethnic foods in the store. Porchetta was a popular Italian recipe. He made Porchetta roasts for his customers but we never ate them as we didn’t eat pork back then. They did look good and my friends loved them so I was curious to try the Turkey version called Turchetta. The Turchetta recipe uses similar spices to a Porchetta roast. This is my version of the recipe. It is similar to the Turchetta recipes with a few changes. This was my first time making it so it was a learning experience. I did make a few changes to the traditional recipe. We are not fans of fennel so I left it out. Since I brought in two large rosemary plants before last week’s frost, I used a lot of rosemary. I also switched out chicken broth for the red wine as we were out. I forgot to buy the fresh garlic as well so I used minced garlic.

After making it, I would recommend using more Parmesan-closer to a cup. Adding cooked spinach instead of the prosciutto would be another option.

I recommend using turkey breast tenderloins or boneless turkey breast. I used a breast on the bone so it was a lot of work to remove it from the bone. (Clearly the butcher skills were not passed to me).

It’s a great alternative to a traditional turkey or turkey breast. It’s full of flavor, very pretty to serve. I served it with a couple of traditional side dishes—green bean casserole, mashed potatoes and cranberries. Since I’m going to my kids for Thanksgiving this year and they like to switch up recipes, I wanted a couple of traditional sides.


Turkey Breast-preferably boneless or deboned. 7-9 lbs boned

Prosciutto 4 oz (optional leave out and add cooked spinach)

Fresh Sage .05 ounce

6 -8 sprigs fresh rosemary

Minced garlic 3 tablespoons or 4-5 cloves of fresh garlic crushed

Salt 1 teaspoon (4 grinds)

Pepper 1/2 teaspoon (3 grinds)

1/2 – 1 cup shredded Parmesan

Twine for tying

16 ounces Chicken stock or 2 cups of red wine

1 tablespoon butter

Olive oil or olive oil spray

Crockpot Instructions:

If using a bone in turkey breast, use a kitchen shears to cut through the center backbone and front center bone. Take a sharp knife and cut the meat close to the bone to remove the meat, keeping the pieces as large you can. I removed the skin as well. (You could leave the skin on it if you choose to).

Lay pieces flat on a cutting board. Cover with wax paper and pound flat with a mallet. Remove wax paper and discard.

Season the breast with the seasonings. Lay the rosemary pieces (remove from the stem) on the spices, follow with the Parmesan. Lay the sage leaves on and then add the prosciutto. Carefully roll the breast tightly. Use the twine to hold it together, tying tightly.

Place the stock and butter into the crockpot. Add 2 whole sprigs with the stem of rosemary to the liquid. Carefully place the breast in the crockpot. Spray it with olive oil spray or sprinkle with olive oil.

Cook on high for 3 – 4 hours or low for 7 – 8 hours until the breast reads 165 on the meat thermometer.

Strain the gravy into a gravy strainer. Thicken the gravy on the stove if desired with a roux (cooked butter and flour) or arrowroot (my preference—Add a little water to the arrowroot and stir before adding). Broil the breast for a couple of minutes if it needs additional browning. Remove the twine before broiling or slicing. Let rest for a few minutes before slicing. Slice it like a pinwheel. Enjoy!

Oven instructions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Follow the instructions above. (You can brown it with a little oil or butter and some stock or wine on the stove first before putting it in the baking pan. )

Bake in a covered pan until the breast temp reads 165 degrees on the meat thermometer. Check it at 30 minutes. Keep checking frequently until it’s 165.

Broil if it needs additional browning. Remove the twine before slicing or broiling. Let rest for a few minutes before slicing. Slice it like a pinwheel. Enjoy!

Published by @cjsthought

Artist, Photographer, Cooking, Movie Buff, always on a Fitness Journey

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: