While Christmas is my favorite holiday, Thanksgiving has, arguably, the best food. The centerpiece of the Thanksgiving table is undoubtedly the turkey. A perfectly roasted bird sets the tone of the whole meal. Some people say they don’t care for turkey, but most of those people have suffered through bland and/or dry Thanksgiving meals.
I feel sorry for those people, a properly prepared turkey is a treat that everyone should be able to build a holiday meal around. While a turkey can be a challenge, given the size of the bird, a properly roasted turkey is a treat. If you are not careful, it can dry out before the inside of the bird can fully cook. However, if you pay attention, you can make sure you have a beautifully browned outside with a moist, delicious inside.
- Small saucepan
- Basting brush
- Rimmed baking sheet
- Roasting pan
- Roasting rack (optional)
- Aluminum foil
- 3 Tbsp butter
- 1 sprig oregano
- 1 tsp saffron
- 2 tsp rubbed sage
- 1 recipe of your favorite stuffing (optional)
- ~1/4 cup flour
- 1 turkey, preferably brined
- Preheat oven to 325° F.
- If using a brined turkey, remove it from the brine and carefully rinse.
- Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium low heat. Add rubbed sage, saffron, and oregano.
- Stir and allow the butter to take on the flavor of the herbs.
- Carefully stuff the cavity with your stuffing. Tie the legs in place using twine.
- Using a basting brush, coat the outside of the turkey with butter. Make sure to get all the nooks and crannies.
- Carefully transfer the turkey to a roasting pan.
- Using a mesh sieve, give the turkey a light dusting of flour. The butter and flour help the turkey brown and give the skin a nice crisp texture.
- Place in oven and cook until the center of the stuffing reaches 165° F. A good rule of thumb is 20 minutes per pound.
- You will want to check the bird every half hour or so. You will probably want to wrap the ends of the wings in aluminum foil once they start to brown to prevent over-browning. If the skin starts to brown too quickly, you can baste with juices or chicken stock and cover with aluminum foil.
- Once center of the stuffing reached 165° F, remove from oven and allow to rest about half an hour. (Do not skip this step or your turkey will be dry)
- Once the turkey has been allowed to rest, transfer to a prepared platter.