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King Turkey Day Board releases cookbook

Kari Lucin/Daily Globe Artist Lori Grafing (left) and King Turkey Day Board President Vida Iten show the "Favorite Recipes from the Turkey Capital of the World Volume II" cookbook at the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce.

WORTHINGTON -- Though Worthington's famous racing turkey is celebrated for his sprinting skills, few people know that Paycheck is also a talented chef.

Seeking to capitalize on Paycheck's title as the Iron Turkey Chef of the Midwest, the King Turkey Day Board has released its second cookbook, "Favorite Recipes from the Turkey Capital of the World, Volume II."

The book contains more than 500 recipes on 226 pages, with sections for appetizers and beverages, main dishes, and yes, a whole section on turkey. But fans of the feathery racing favorite can relax: Paycheck himself is safe from kitchen peril.

"We never cook Paycheck," said Vida Iten, president of the King Turkey Day Board, adding with a grin, "...maybe Ruby Begonia. But not Paycheck."

Actually, neither of the racing turkeys was harmed in the creation of the cookbook, which features 10 pages of delicious ways to prepare and serve turkey, from Alfredo Turkey Vegetable to Turkey-Broccoli Divine Hot Dish.

The new cookbook is volume II of "Favorite Recipes from the Turkey Capital of the World," and is similar in design to volume I, which was published in 1999.

All the recipes for the second cookbook were submitted by people from the Worthington area, with a little bit of help from Worthington's turkeytown rivals in Cuero, Texas.

Work on the cookbook began in March this year, with Lisa Viessman of the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce typing up recipes as they arrived. Diane Remakel of the King Turkey Day Board was responsible for editing the book.

Meanwhile, Worthington artist Lori Grafing created a series of turkey-themed drawings for each section of the text -- a turkey serving burgers, seasoning a hot dish and tasting soup.

"I had some serious artist's block," Grafing said. But eventually, using Volume I as inspiration, Grafing drew a series of cooking turkeys, starting in pencil and then going over the sketches with pen.

When the recipes and illustrations were complete, they were sent off to Morris Press Cookbooks.

The Cooking Depot in Cuero and the Chamber of Commerce in Worthington will offer the books for sale, with all profits helping pay for the King Turkey Day celebration.

King Turkey Day costs nearly $80,000, and is paid for through the festival's beer garden, sponsorships, bowling and golf tournaments and a pancake breakfast -- as well as profits from the new cookbook.

The following recipe -- approved by Paycheck himself -- is from Katy Efner of Worthington.

Turkey Cranberry Salad

In a medium bowl, mix together 1 c. creamy salad dressing (such as Miracle Whip), 1 tsp. paprika, 1 c. dried cranberries, 2 large stalks of chopped celery, 2 chopped green onions and 1 c. sliced or slivered almonds. Add 4 c. cooked, diced turkey meat and mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Chill one hour. Serve on sandwiches, in pitas or on a bed of lettuce.