Date Cooked: October 12, 2009
For those that have been following long enough you may recall my turkey from last year. The photo was a disaster. I had already begun disassembling it when I realized it was time for a photo. This year I did not make the same mistake. The turkey looked great but I still don’t think I have a photo that does it justice. Anyway this was my second year being responsible for the turkey portion of our Thanksgiving dinner.
I must start reading recipes better prior to starting them. It was 9 o’clock the night before Thanksgiving dinner and I had just finished putting the turkey into a container to brine overnight. I read through the recipe to see what I would need to do the next morning when I came across this fantastic bit of information. Brine for 4 hours, air dry in the fridge for at least eight hours. Ummm…. I’m not supposed to brine this over night? I check the clock and consider my options… I could throw caution to the wind and let the bird sit in its salty bath all night, risking an overly salty turkey. Or I could stay up late and remove the turkey from the brine before going to bed.
At 1 o’clock in the morning I’m in my kitchen rinsing a turkey in the sink and patting the turkey dry when my son comes downstairs. I can tell he is confused and then he informs me that he would like some toast for breakfast. I finish up with the turkey, place it in the fridge and guide my son back to bed. I think he may have fallen asleep en route to bed. I wasn’t awake much longer.
The next day about three hours before dinner I got the turkey ready for the oven. I put coarsely chopped onions, carrots, celery and thyme in the pan and mixed a third of it with some melted butter and put it inside the turkey. I rub melted butter over the whole turkey and then placed it in the oven to roast. The turkey was roast breast side down for about 30 minutes before it was turned onto one side for 15 minutes and then the other side for an additional 15 minutes before finishing out its roasting breast side up. During each turn the turkey was basted. During the first turn I was lucky enough to suffer a burn to my hand. I grabbed the handle of my pan and when I shifted to get a better grip when lifting, an exposed part of my hand came into contact with the rather hot handle. The only saving grace was I was able to suffer through the burn and not drop the turkey. I was much more careful after that.
When the turkey was complete I removed it from the oven and let it rest on my cutting board for almost 30 minutes before carving it. I don’t want to brag but I am definitely getting better at carving.
Rating: A- The turkey turned out well. I am usually a dark meat eater but I am finding that I avoided white meat simply because it was always so dry. Not so with this turkey! Although I still drowned most of the meal in gravy.
I am a husband to a loving wife that shares my same interest for food and cooking. I am a father to two sons (and a newborn son) that have an aversion to food. I'm also a pretty bad cook... which could be their problem... but I'm working on it.
I'm attempting to cook-through 'The New Best Recipe' for two reasons. I want to educate myself on the culinary arts a little and I want to provide better and hopefully more interesting meal options for my family... oh yeah plus I find food photography real exciting so it gives me a chance to justify why I take pictures of food!