Wednesday, 14 April 2021

How To Cook a Turkey: The Simplest, Easiest Method


 How To Cook a Turkey: The Simplest, Easiest Method

How To Cook a Turkey: The Simplest, Easiest Method

 how to make the best Thanksgiving turkey. If you've never roasted a turkey before, trust me, it is easier than you think. This recipe is called no-fail,full-proof turkey recipe.

 And the good news is that you don't need to brine the turkey and you don't need to baste it. There's just a few simple steps to make a perfectly golden, juicy, and insanely flavorful turkey. I do have a bunch of tips in today's article, and I'm gonna tell you how to carve it.

 So let's dive right in. The biggest mistake that people make is buying a turkey the day before Thanksgiving. So don't do that. Remember that a big turkey is gonna take a while to defrost in the fridge. It takes about 24 hours per five pounds of turkey to thaw properly.

 So I recommend you buy your turkey at least a week before Thanksgiving, store it in the freezer, then let it thaw in the fridge two to four days before the big feast. In terms of how big of a turkey to buy, the general rule of thumb is one pound of turkey per person, or a pound and a half if you want leftovers.

 And I think we all want leftovers, don't we? It's always better to have a little too much turkey than not enough as well. Today, I've got a turkey that's about 13 1/2 pounds, but the great thing about this recipe is that it's adaptable to most turkey sizes. You may just need a little more or less herb butter. The first thing you're gonna wanna do is remove the packet of gibletsth at you'll most often find in the neck cavity of the turkey.

 Then if there's any excess skin around this area, you can trim that off. At the other end, in the large body cavity, you'll find the neck. So remove that and you can then trim off the tail. It's always best to double-check both cavities of the turkey, just to make sure you got everything out. And you can save the giblets and turkey neck for gravy, or you can discard them, it's up to you. The plastic thing you see is heat resistant and used for trusting the legs together.

 But since we're not trusting the legs for this recipe, you can remove it. When it comes to the equipment you'll need to roast a turkey, it's just three basic kitchen items. A sharp knife, a thermometer,and a roasting tray. You can buy an expensive roasting tray that comes with a rack, amid-range priced roasting tray, or a cheapy, disposable roasting tray.

 They all work perfectly fine. And while a rack is handy, it's definitely not required for today's recipe. In terms of a knife, I'm using an eight-inch carving knife, which I'll link to below, but if you have a chef's knife or really any other sharp knife, that's all you need. And lastly, let's talk thermometers. You can use a probe thermometer that you insert into the turkey and keep track of the temperature without opening the oven.

 Or you can use an instant-read thermometer which I use most often in my kitchen. Or you can use a leave-in meat thermometer, that's the most economical option. As long as you have something to tell the internal temperature of the turkey, you're good to go. All right, let's get top repping and cooking our turkey.

 Once your turkey is thawed, let it rest at room temperature for an hour. While it's resting, you can slice up one onion and one lemon into wedges. Season the inside of the turkey with a generous amount of salt and pepper, then place the onion and lemon wedges inside the cavity. If your turkey is on the smaller side and you can't fit all of the onion, that's fine, as you can always place it on the roasting tray.

  The last thing you'll place inside the turkey is a few sprigs of fresh aromatic herbs, like rosemary, sage, and thyme. The herbs, along with the onion and lemon, give the meat flavor and moisture. You don't wanna cook stuffing in the turkey, as overfilling the cavity of the turkey actually slows down the cook time.

 So always cook stuffing in a casserole dish instead. Now it's time to move on to the herb butter. You'll need one tablespoon of chopped rosemary, and I do recommend trying to make it finely chopped, and add that to 3/4 cup of softened room temperature butter. You'll also finally chop one tablespoon of thyme and add that to the butter and then peel and mince six to seven garlic cloves.

 Now, while I added sage inside the turkey, I prefer not to add it to the herb butter, as it's a strong flavor that can be a little overpowering sometimes. So I prefer to just stick with rosemary and thyme on the outside. And then the last component of the herb butter is a little salt and pepper.

 Once all of those ingredients are in your mixing bowl use a spoon or fork to mash them all up and make sure it's well combined. At this point, your turkey might have little beads of moisture on the outside, going from the fridge to room temperature. So it's really important that you use a few paper towels and dry it off.

 The key to beautifully golden and crispy skin is making sure it's completely dry before adding the herb butter. So to add the herb butter, you'll wanna loosen the skin of the turkey by gently sliding your fingers underneath.

 Just go slow and take your time, and don't try to use any knives or spatulas or any other kitchen tools because you don't wanna tear or puncture the skin. Your hands are some of the best kitchen tools around, so just keep at it until you've loosened the skin all the way up to the top of the breast.

 Take about 1/3 of the herb butter from the bowl and rub it under the skin. This helps to keep the breast meat, which is the naturally drier turkey meat, juicy and moist. And it's also the reason why you don't have to baste the turkey while it's cooking.

 Once got the herb butter under the skin, you can also smooth it out on top of your fingers and then pull the skin so it's nice and flat. And then with the remaining herb butter, you'll rub that all on the outside of the turkey, including the legs, thighs, and wings. 

 Preheat your oven to325 degrees Fahrenheit and we're not gonna start the oven hot and reduce the temperature like some other recipes. We're all about simple and foolproof today, so we'll keep it at 325 the entire time. The reason I said at the beginning that you didn't need a rack inside your roasting pan is because you can simply place your turkey on top of roughly chopped vegetables. This elevates the turkey just a rack would, allowing air to circulate underneath. And it has the added bonus of flavoring your turkey drippings.

 All you have to do is peel and quarter one onion and chop up three carrots and three celery ribs. These are your basic mire poix vegetables, which are often used for flavoring soups, stews, and sauces, or in our case, a turkey gravy. And I do have a separate recipe for a very tasty gluten-freeturkey gravy on my website. No matter which roasting pan you're using, just place the vegetables in the pan and set your turkey on top. If you'd like to use a roasting rack you can still do that, just wiggle it around the vegetables until you can get it pressed flat.

 Then place your turkey on top and make sure your wingtips are tucked under. I do wanna point out that we're not trusting the legs together either. While it looks pretty, the turkey actually cooks more evenly when air can circulate inside. So just leave the legs as they are.

 Place the turkey inside your oven, and if you're using a probe thermometer or meat thermometer, place that into the thickest part of the breast or thigh. If you're using aninstant-read thermometer, you'll start to take the temperature of the turkey when it's about 75% done. Roast the turkey for about15 minutes per pound, which for me is about three hours and 15 minutes or until the internal temperature is 158 to 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Remember that turkey will continue to cook once it's removed from the oven and it will rise in temperature to a perfectly done 165 degrees Fahrenheit after it's rested.

 But if you leave it in the oven until it's 165, that's when you end up with dry meat. If you follow all of those steps which are also available in print form on my website, you'll have a beautiful, perfectly golden, deliciously juicy, and flavorful turkey. At this stage, the most important thing is to let the turkey rest for at least 30 minutes.

 This allows the meat to fully cook and the juices to redistribute within the meat. Now, in full disclosure, I failed at this step today because I was running out of daylight hours while filming and I wanted to tell you how to carve the turkey. So my turkey is far too hot still which is why too much juice ended up on the cutting board. It's definitely not my best carving job today but nonetheless, you'll see it all turns out in the end.

 So just remember that yours doesn't have to be perfect either. The first cut you'll make is through the skin to separate the leg and thigh from the body. And continue slicing through the meat until you reach the joint. Then pull back on the leg, splaying it flat on the cutting board, and push up on the joint from underneath. Once you see the joint, use your knife to cut around it and remove the leg and thigh completely. And repeat this process on the other side.

 To remove the breast, slice down on either side of the breastbone using long strokes. As your knife hits the bottom, use your thumb to gently pull the breast outward. If needed, you can slice horizontally at the bottom of the breast from the outside to help remove it. Then repeat this process on the other side and set both breasts aside.

 To remove the wings, gently pull the wings away from the body and slice through the joint. Then set these aside as well. Now that all of the meat is removed from the turkey, separate the drum stick from the thigh, then remove the bone from the thigh by using your knife to slice around the thighbone preserving as much dark meat as possible.

 Once you've got just the thigh meat, slice it into strips, and add it to your platter. Slice up the breast into thin strips by cutting against the grain. And this is where a sharp knife comes in handy, as it preserves a little bit of skin on each piece. And this is how you keep your guests happy. Once both breasts are sliced up, add them to your serving platter, and you can arrange them any way you like.

 There's really no right way to do it. It depends on the size of your platter and any extra garnishes, like herbs lemons, cranberries,or apples that you may have. So feel free to play around with the arrangement. I just tried to make sure that the most golden pieces like the breasts and drumsticks take center stage.

 For the wings, you can slice through the skin and then bend them backwards to remove the drumette from the wingette. And I usually remove the wingtip as there's really no meat on it, but it's great for stocks and gravies.

 So I'll add those wing pieces to the platter around the thigh meat, and then placed the drumsticks, which are definitely more of a centerpiece item, on top. At this point, I'll fill in any gaps with garnishes, and today I'm just using a few lemon slices and leftover sprigs of rosemary and sage. And see? Even though I was burning my hands with hot turkey and cutting far too fast, it still didn't turn out half bad.

 I hope you will enjoy this delicious turkey recipe. And as Thanksgiving is the day of gratitude, I just wanna say how thankful I am for all of the articles of mine that you watch and all of the recipes that you make. I always love seeing them on social media. But I hope that you have a very delicious, happy, fun-filled Thanksgiving,and a safe Thanksgiving.