Caribbean Plate: A Thanksgiving Recipe From Puerto Rico

By Sarah Greaves-Gabbadon

CJ Travel Editor

Procrastinators rejoice! If you still haven’t decided on your Thanksgiving menu or even bought your bird, we’ve got this last-minute suggestion for you from San Juan, Puerto Rico’s Condado Plaza Hilton. It features turkey tenderloin (so you won’t have to spend hours in front of the oven), and the stuffing incorporates Puerto Rican mallorca bread (available Stateside at ethnic bakeries and supermarkets), which lends a sweetness and authentic island flavor to the traditional holiday feast. Because even the laggards among us deserve a Happy Thanksgiving!

Turkey Tenderloin with Mallorca Stuffing

Ingredients for stuffing

1.5 loaves mallorca bread (approx. 1 pound)
2 tablespoons butter

2 onions, chopped
1 stalk celery, diced
2 ounces chopped walnuts
2 ounces raisins

2 sprigs parsley

Salt and pepper to taste

Ingredients for tenderloin
8 ounces turkey breast tenderloins
2 tablespoons olive oil
Black pepper and salt to taste

Ingredients for breading
8 ounces panko breadcrumbs
¼ cup mayonnaise

Method for stuffing

Break bread into pieces, place in a medium bowl, and set aside. Sautee the celery and onions with butter until the onions are soft. Transfer to the bowl with mallorca bread, and mix by hand until well blended. Let the stuffing rest until it’s cooled.

Method for turkey tenderloin 

Rinse turkey and pat dry. “Butterfly” each tenderloin by cutting a slit lengthwise, making sure not to cut completely through the meat. Fill tenderloin with stuffing, and roll up tightly into a log shape, securing with cooking yarn. Put the mayonnaise and breadcrumbs in a shallow dish. Roll each turkey “log” first through the mayonnaise and then dredge through the breadcrumbs until fully coated. Transfer tenderloins to a baking sheet and cook at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes or until the center reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Allow to cool and then cut into quarter-inch slices.