Thanksgiving is just about seven weeks away. If you’ve never prepared a Turkey before, that leaves you a few weekends yet to do a practice run. I strongly suggest cooking at least one turkey before the big feast, so that you are familiar with the process.
Roasting a turkey isn’t difficult. It doesn’t have to be fancy, it just has to taste good.
I start by removing the plastic wrapper from the turkey. And then I pull out the neck and the bag of giblets (heart, liver, etc.). Some people use the giblets for stuffing recipes, but I don’t.
I place the turkey on the rack inside my roaster. I pour water in the bottom of the roaster pan until it’s level with the bottom of the turkey. I chop a small apple and a small onion in quarters and stuff them in the body cavity. Then I drizzle a melted stick of butter over the top of the turkey, and sprinkle dried sage, salt and pepper over the butter. The butter is a sort of self basting trick, and results in a nicely browned turkey.
Before I put the lid on the roaster, I line the lid with aluminum foil, so that no steam escapes. I put the lid on the roaster, and set the temp for 400 degrees Fahrenheit. After half an hour has passed, I turn the temp down to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. My roaster takes about 2 hours total to cook an 18 pound turkey. Other roasters may vary on cooking time.
When the internal temperature of the turkey reaches 165 degrees in the breast meat and 180 degrees in the thigh, the turkey is done. I take the turkey out of the roaster and put it on a serving platter, then let it rest for at least ten minutes.
Turkeys are NOT just for Thanksgiving or Christmas. I cook a turkey once a month from October through April. I buy them when they go on sale in November, and it’s how I stretch our grocery budget. Last year we found turkeys at Target for under 75 cents a pound. One turkey provides our family with at least 5 meals when I use the leftovers for sandwiches, soups and casseroles.If my posts are helpful to you, feel free to add to my pantry budget.