What’s a thanksgiving if there isn’t a perfectly roasted turkey on the table right? But cooking this big bird is no easy task even for the most experienced of chefs. There’s storage, thawing and tons of other tasks that need to be done right plus cooking time varies depending on the type of meat you’re using.
One of the best advises I was given before my first thanksgiving dinner as a cook was to roast the bird upside down. It’s not exactly the picture perfect turkey you were hoping for but way better than chunk of dry meat.
Why I roast it upside down and so should you
Apart from not drying the meat out which I have often heard plenty of people complain about when it comes to turkey this technique also is quicker and will eliminate the need for basting.
The cooking’s perfect as the turkey isn’t directly in contact with the heat plus the melting fat and juices from the thigh regions helps with the basting while on the heat itself and also results in faster cooking which in turn saves you plenty of time for other important stuff.
The Recipe and technique
There isn’t much change to the recipe. The ingredients needed are similar to a roast recipe but first things first make sure you thaw the bird overnight before you put it on the roast. Get rid of the neck and excess fat and rub the bird with a generous amount of salt.
While roasting you can add in some herbs, onions etc. but remember these have no bearing on the taste and are purely for aroma purposes. Remember to place it breast down on the pan.
A turkey should be roasted to about 160°- 165°F which only can be accurately determined using a digital thermometer. Also, make sure all parts like the breast; thighs etc. are equally well cooked. It usually takes about 2.5-3 hours for a proper roast.
How to brown it
For a picture-perfect Thanksgiving turkey you’ll also need to brown it right. Most recipes will suggest you to continue to flip it over during the last 20-25 minutes of the cook but that’s more likely only going to result in more burns than brown. To get it perfect with a crisp skin use the broiler.
Confused? Check out more tips below
Serve it like a pro
Last but not the least comes the serving which like your cooking needs to be perfect. Let the turkey still for about 20 mins before carving and place it on a chopping board.
Prep the curry or sauce in the meantime and once done begin by first carving out the thighs and then move onto the drumsticks and other parts. In case of left over it can be stored for about 1-2 months if frozen and about 2-3 days if refrigerated using airtight cases.