This year, while having little time and being far from family, we decided to have an impromptu mini(malist)-Thanksgiving feast. Our menu included an 8-lb roasted capon, filled with an almond-bacon stuffing, gravy and garlic mash potatoes, rice pilaf, roasted asparagus with a balsamic soy dressing, and pumpkin pie.
What is a capon you might ask? Well, a capon is a neutered rooster, which we accidentally picked up after it got mixed in to the turkey pile. Yeah bummer at first, but it turns out that capons are rarely available, prized poultry meat! The neutering process renders the meat more tender and less gamey than chicken and turkey. It can be roasted just like a turkey but with less time.
So to cook this bird, fill a large ceramic pan with baby carrots, celery, onions, a tied bunch of parsley stems, 1/2 cup water, and the giblets & neck of the capon. Plop the capon on top, tuck the wing tips in to prevent burning, fill the cavity with stuffing, tie the legs, smear the beast all over with butter, salt and pepper. Let it roast for 45 minutes at 425 degrees F, then lower the temp to 350F for another hour, basting every 10 minutes.
This was my first time trying capon. I loved the texture. It was more moist and tender than chicken and turkey but had a more neutral flavor. Definitely yummy, but I do think it’s mildness requires pairing with a high quality homemade savory sauce or gravy.