Simple Roast Turkey (method 3)

I had a delicious turkey on Thanksgiving day and the recipe follows. It too uses brining but much simpler than the Alton Brown method. From the NY Times:


1 turkey (10 to 12 pounds) see bigger bird link on the NYT recipe page
Coarse kosher salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 lemon, zested and quartered
1 bunch fresh thyme or rosemary
1 bunch fresh sage
12 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
1 bottle hard apple cider (12 ounces)
Dry white wine, as needed
2 onions, peeled and quartered
3 bay leaves
Olive oil or melted butter, as needed


Remove any giblets from the cavity and reserve for stock or gravy. Pat turkey and turkey neck dry with paper towel; rub turkey all over with 1/2 teaspoon salt per pound of turkey, the pepper and the lemon zest, including the neck. Transfer to a 2-gallon (or larger) resealable plastic bag. Tuck herbs and 6 garlic cloves inside bag. Seal and refrigerate on a small rimmed baking sheet (or wrapped in another bag) for at least 1 day and up to 3 days, turning the bird over every day (or after 12 hours if brining for only 1 day). Kathy brined for 2 days.

Remove turkey from bag and pat dry with paper towels. Place turkey, uncovered, back on the baking sheet. Return to the refrigerator for at least 4 hours and up to 12 hours to dry out the skin (this helps crisp it).

When you are ready to cook the turkey, remove it from the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature for one hour.

Heat oven to 450 degrees. In the bottom of a large roasting pan, add the cider and enough wine to fill the pan to a 1/4-inch depth. Add half the onions, the remaining 6 garlic cloves and the bay leaves. Stuff remaining onions and the lemon quarters into the turkey cavity. Brush turkey skin generously with oil or melted butter (try canola oil).

Place turkey, breast side up, on a roasting rack set inside the roasting pan. Transfer pan to oven and roast 30 minutes. Cover breast with aluminum foil. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and continue roasting until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of a thigh reaches 165 degrees, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours more. Transfer turkey to a cutting board to rest for 30 minutes before carving. (try 161 degrees breast temperature)

Deglaze the bottom of the roasting pan over 1-2 burners with 1 cup red wine and 3 cups of reduced chicken broth. Pour liquid into fat separator and separate out the fat. Put fat back into hot pan and stir in 1/3 cup flour. Whisk over heat. Add remaining reserve and whisk. Add thyme, rosemary, oregano, sauteed mushrooms, (1/2) liver and onion.

video Gravy Video

NOVEMBER 25, 2017

10 lb Butterball turkey (frozen)
defrost 2+ days in fridge
16 hours wet brine in Whole Foods brine mix in plastic bag in fridge
pat dry, 1 hour in fridge to dry (supposed to be 4 hours) DO 4 HOURS NEXT TIME
1 hour out at room temperature
olive oil skin, Whole Foods seasoning mix on skin
1/2” water into pan, 1 cup white wine,
1 onion into 1/6ths, 3 in pan water, 3 into cavity, 1 lemon quartered into cavity, 2 long sprigs rosemary into cavity, USE 1 LONG SPRIG NEXT TIME
bird on rack
450 oven 1/2 hour
put tin foil hat over breast
350 oven near-perfect turkey 1 hour TRY 55 MINUTES NEXT TIME
temp of breast (immediately after taking the turkey out of the oven was 166)

This was a good, moist turkey, maybe ever so slightly over done.  Skin was not crisp so more drying time is needed or more time at 450.


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