Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Most Amazing Thanksgiving Day

I did it. I cooked the most delicious turkey that anyone has ever eaten. Moist, delicious, tender, juicy. You didn't even need the gravy, which by the way if you had any you would have loved that too. Oh yeah.

I used the brine recipe from Food TV dot com. It's from Alton Brown. Basically I soaked birdzilla in flavored ice water overnight. I didn't even have all the ingredients but just used what I had. The bird needed about 2 1/2 hours to cook so I made pumpkin pie in the morning leaving the oven free in the afternoon.

I dried the bird and put it in the roasting pan. I don't use a rack - I just let the bird soak in it's juices. I rubbed canola oil all over (or use another oil with a low smoking point) and then seasoned the skin with rosemary, salt and pepper. I cut up one Gala apple mixed it with rosemary, salt and pepper and stuck it inside the bird. I then take a small jar of orange marmalade and rub it all over the outside of the bird. I some dump of the marmalade in the pan as well, along with 1 cup orange juice and 2 cups vegetable stock. Use canned if you don't have homemade. It'll still taste great.

I set the turkey on the lowest rack in the oven at 500 degrees for one hour to brown the breast and then I flip the bird so that it cooks at 350 degrees for 1 to 1 1/4 hours breast down. I flip the bird again at the end for another 15 minutes breast up just to make sure it is brown all over. I just use my oven mitts to handle the bird. Then I throw them in the wash.

How do you know if it's done? If you wiggle the legs and they move easily and there is no red juice running out then the bird is done. Alton uses a meat thermometer to make sure the internal temperature is high enough for the bird to be fully cooked and free of bacteria. This is certainly

My husband took one bite and said, "are you sure this is supposed to taste like this? I always thought turkey was supposed to be dry and you just covered it with a lot of gravy."

And no basting! Every time you open the oven door you lose 50% of the heat and this just means longer cooking time and dry turkey. The turkey is covered in skin - you don't need to baste.

Try it and tell me what you think!

We weren't sure if we were going to have a Thanksgiving Dinner this year. It felt like it would be hard to celebrate and be thankful while still grieving the loss of my closest friend. But as the day approached I knew it would be the right thing to do.

I am grateful for so many things. For this blog and my readers and your insightful comments.


Wenzday said...

You flipped the bird???????? Who knew a simple gesture could help roast a turkey?

Sounds delicious. Loved Jim's comment!

Unknown said...

Sounds delicious! I wish we had cooked our own- would have been much better.