Let's Talk Turkey!

We took one for the team here in the Growing Roots kitchen - we roasted a turkey ahead of Thanksgiving so we could share the recipe with you. It's a tough job, but some one had to do it! Someone had to eat all that turkey too - again, we aim to please!

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Don't be intimidated - roasting a turkey is easy. The cooks in the Growing Roots kitchen agree on the best method - a Martha Stewart technique. No luck needed here - start with a great turkey and this method will never fail! No brining or deep fat frying here - this is simple roasting.

Martha's method calls for stuffing the bird - I do not stuff a turkey - it's a food safety issue with me. In place of the stuffing I simply add aromatics to the cavity - carrots, celery, leeks, rosemary and thyme. 

The key to her recipe is the cheesecloth soaked in butter and wine which drapes the breast when roasting. Basting the cheesecloth every half hour results in a beautifully moist turkey. 

My oven has a temperature probe - prefect for monitoring the roasting progress. The bird roasts for the first 2 hours with the cheesecloth in place, basting every 30 minutes. After 2 hours, the cheesecloth is removed to allow for that mahogany browning of the breast. It is perfection every time. 

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The house fills with the smell of roasting turkey, the thigh temperature reaches 165 degrees, and finally the turkey emerges from the oven - ahhhh! Stop - wait at least 30 minutes before carving. Carving - again, don't be intimidated. Start with a good sharp knife, and follow this great instructional video from Alton Brown.  

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Note: it is illegal to discard the carcass before making rich turkey stock - simply illegal! Martha to the rescue again - here's a great turkey stock recipe. And, remember - no stirring the stock! Stirring the stock makes it murky. When making stock keep the heat on low, barely a simmer. Tomorrow - what to do with leftover turkey - oh, the possibilities!