With the holidays being near, now is a good time to impress your family with one of the juiciest and tastiest Turkey Dinners. While there are other methods of cooking from deep fry, slow cook or grill – roasting a whole turkey is very simple and traditional for the holidays. To make it simpler, faster and safer this recipe will NOT include filling as you can make lip smacking dressing as an alternative.
Before we begin, we need to prepare. If you have a fresh turkey, feel free to skip the first step.
1. With a frozen turkey make sure you have time and space to leave the bird thaw in either a fridge or cooler for about 3 – 4 days before roasting depending on size. If not fully thawed before cooking place the turkey in cold water to finish as you prepare the roaster and cooking area.
2. Prepare your roaster by spraying the pan and rack with cooking spray. For best results, use a portable electric roaster.
3. Pull out any feathers and turkey parts inside the bird then rinse outside and inside the bird.
4. Dry the outside of the bird.
5. Season the turkey with either cooking spray, olive oil or butter to allow salt and pepper to stick to the skin. When finished, make sure the turkey is breast side up in roaster.
6. Pour 1 cup of water into the bottom of roaster to help keep the meat moist and juicy during cooking.
7. Warm oven or roaster to 275 – 300 degrees Fahrenheit or 135 – 149 degrees Celsius.
8. For every one pound (or .454 kilograms) of unstuffed turkey, bake for 20 minutes. This will unfortunately sacrifice the skin but result in juicy tender turkey meat.
9. Once finished, the crispy golden-brown skin should be removed. Save the drippings by pouring into a pan or container for later to make gravy.
10. Bone and carve the turkey while saving any extra dripping from the process if possible.
Shared by Bear’s Den Lodge Executive Chef, Art Barefoot. Photography and article by Joe Barefoot.