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The Ultimate Thanksgiving Turkey

Updated: Dec 28, 2020

Thanksfiving Turkey
Thanksgiving Turkey

"This Turkey recipe is nice and simple and will help you achieve brilliant results for your Christmas Turkey"

1. Buy a farm turkey or an organic turkey. They are allowed to roam in the wild and eat a varied diet, making their meat firmer and tastier. The slaughtered animals can be recognized by their organic label or quality label. Preferably buy small turkeys of 4 kg and less. The bigger the turkey, the less flavor the meat has.

2. How do I recognize a good turkey?

A good turkey should be young and short-necked. In young animals, the scales of the legs are shiny and smooth. If the head and legs are dark red, you are dealing with an old turkey.

3. How many people eat one turkey?

Count a 3 kg turkey for 4-5 people, and half a kg for each additional guest.

4. Why is a turkey stuffed so often?

Turkey meat is coarser in texture and drier than chicken. Cutting the meat with fat or bacon or stuffing it with a meat filling helps to prevent it from drying out. Loosely wrapping in aluminum foil during part of the preparation also helps.

5. How do I prevent the breast meat from drying out?

The buttocks always take longer to cook than the breast. To prevent the breast meat from drying out, you can also add some filling between the skin and the breast meat. To do this, cut the skin on the back of the turkey and press the filling down well.

6. How long should a whole turkey roast?

The cooking time depends on the size of the animal.

Roasting Timetable for Turkey at 330°F - 170°C

These times are approximate and should always be used in conjunction with a properly placed thermometer.

8 to 12 pounds - 3,6 to 5,4kg 2 3/4 to 3 hours

12 to 14 pounds - 5,4 to 6,3kg 3 to 3 3/4 hours

14 to 18 pounds - 6,3 to 8,1kg 3 3/4 to 4 1/4 hours

18 to 20 pounds - 8,1 to 9 kg 4 1/4 to 4 1/2 hours

20 to 24 pounds - 9 to 10,8kg 4 1/2 to 5 hours

7. How do I know if my turkey is cooked enough?

Insert a meat thermometer into the breast meat. When the core temperature indicates 161°F - 72 ° C, the meat is cooked.

Ingredients for Turkey:

serves 8:

- 1 18 lb - 8,1kg whole turkey, neck and giblets removed

- ½ lb - 225 gr pancetta

- ½ cup - 115 g butter

- ground pepper and salt

How to make a Turkey

Remove the turkey from the fridge and allow to sit for 30 minutes to 1 hour before cooking.

Preheat oven to 356°F - 210°C

Brush the entire turkey with the melted butter and season well inside and out and cover with pancetta.

Place breast side down on a roasting rack in a shallow roasting pan.

Cover the entire tray with tin foil to keep moist.

Make sure the tin foil is tightly covering the turkey and roasting tray so that the turkey will steam.

Place in the oven and cook for 45 minutes. Then, turn the oven down to 330°F - 170ºC and continue cooking for another 3-3½ hours or until the internal temperature of the thigh reaches 180° F (85°C).

For the last half hour of cooking remove tin foil from the turkey and peel off the bacon

Carefully turn the turkey breast side up about 2/3 through the roasting time, and brush with the remaining butter.

Turn the oven up to 390° - 200ºC and roast until the skin of the turkey is golden brown and crisp. Once roasted remove from the oven and allow to rest for 30 minutes.


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