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French sauces add elegance and ease to holiday turkey

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Heat butter in medium saucepan. Add onion and cook over low heat, stirring often, about 10 minutes or until soft but not brown. Add vinegar, water, thyme, bay leaf, and pinch of salt and simmer until nearly all the liquid evaporates.

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Stir in cream and bring to a boil, stirring. Simmer over low heat 5 minutes, stirring often.

Stir in tomato paste. Continue simmering, stirring often, 5 more minutes or until thickened.

Strain into another saucepan, pressing hard on the onions. Cover and refrigerate until close to serving time; sauce can be made up to 1 day ahead.Trim Brussels sprouts, removing tough bases and any yellow leaves. Add sprouts to large pan of boiling salted water and boil uncovered 15 to 20 minutes or until just tender. Drain thoroughly.

Preheat broiler if necessary. Sprinkle turkey with salt and pepper on both sides. Broil about 3 inches from heat 3 minutes. Turn over and continue broiling about 2 minutes or until just tender when pierced with a sharp knife; do not overcook or meat will be dry.

Meanwhile, reheat sauce over low heat, stirring often. Whisk in mustard. Add a small pinch of cayenne pepper and taste for seasoning.

To serve, put turkey breasts in center of plates or platter and coat with sauce. Arrange Brussels sprouts around turkey. Serve with boiled new potatoes. Makes 4 servings. Turkey Breasts With Lemon Sauce and Cauliflower 11/2 pounds turkey breast slices, 1/4- to 1/2-inch thick Salt and pepper to taste 4 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice 2 tablespoons water Pinch of thyme 6 tablespoons whipping cream 6 tablespoons cold butter 1 large cauliflower, divided into medium flowerets 4 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley 2 tomatoes, cut in thin wedges

Sprinkle turkey slices with salt, pepper, and a few drops lemon juice on both sides, using total of 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice. Rub seasonings into meat and leave to marinate for 30 minutes to 1 hour at room temperature.In medium saucepan, combine remaining lemon juice, 2 tablespoons water, thyme, and pinch of salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Whisk in cream and bring to a boil. Simmer about 4 minutes or until thick enough to coat a spoon.

Cover and refrigerate until close to serving time. Sauce can be prepared up to 1 hour ahead. Cut butter into 6 cubes and refrigerate.

Bring water to a boil in bottom of a steamer. Put enough turkey slices in top of steamer to make one layer. Steam 2 to 3 minutes or until just tender when pierced with a sharp knife. Do not overcook, or meat will be dry.

Transfer to paper towels and keep warm. Repeat with remaining turkey.

Meanwhile, add cauliflower to large pan of boiling salted water and boil uncovered about 7 minutes or until just tender. Drain thoroughly.

Reheat sauce over low heat, stirring often. Add butter cubes one at a time, whisking sauce constantly, so butter is incorporated into the sauce. Remove from heat as soon as last cube is absorbed. Stir in parsley and taste for seasoning.

To serve, put turkey breasts in center of plates and coat with sauce. Arrange cauliflower and tomato wedges around turkey. Serve with a rice pilaf. Makes 4 servings.