Now, I may not have shared this about myself, but I am a good cooker. That’s what my son calls it. And yes, I love to cook. Not bake. I hate baking. I like cooking. I couldn’t be bothered to knead bread or ice a cupcake. It’s annoying.
I want to share my brilliant fool-proof turkey brilliancy recipe. Because I’m awesome like that.
Now, everyone has had dry turkey, right? It’s disgusting and even dunking it in the waterglass a la Christmas Vacation does not cut it. People have found refuge in brining. Yes, it does work but it’s also a lot of work. And you can’t spill anything. And given I am a butterfingers, I needed a better solution.
You probably already know my odd fascination with magazines. Well, I’ve been collecting Bon Appetit for … 10 years? Granted I haven’t really gone through years 2007-2008 and they are waiting to be read (I know, shut up, shut up) but I found a brilliant recipe to keep your turkey dry.
Now before you run from this post, hear me out. You only salt your turkey for 24 hours and then you rinse it all off. See? Easypeasylemonsqueezy. So here’s the recipe.
Bon Appetit November 2008
1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp coarse kosher salt (do not substitute!)
1 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
1 1/2 tsp dried rubbed sage
1 1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp crushed black peppercorns
3 small bay leaves, coarsely torn
1 tsp finely grated lemon peel.
Rinse your turkey inside and out, do not pat dry. Remove your fat pads from cavity and neck and all your gizzard blech (incidentally, I don’t do this until the day I cook it because hubby is usually not home until cooking part and I cannot and willnot stick my hand inside a turkey or touch its …neck. It makes upchuck). Keep these extra bits in the fridge, wrapped in saran wrap for roasting later.
Place turkey in a roasting bag, sprinkle with salt, close bag, refrigerate 18-24 hours. (my way: place turkey in shallow roasting pan, rub salt everywhere, wrap with saran wrap and shove bag into fridge. (Incidentally, ever wonder why it’s ‘fridge’ with a ‘d’ and refrigerate without a ‘d’? No? Just me?)
See? Easy easy easy!!!
And after you rinse it the next day, cover the sucker in veggie oil (I use olive oil) and some other herbs or you can make a fabulous herb butter to spread between the skin and the meat (serious pain in the butt so worth it if you have time to struggle) and cook it for a few hours at 325F. Don’t cover it! It’s ok if the skin gets all crispy. It’s yummy!
Gravy (my way)
3 cans of FrancoAmerican gravy (best gravy on the planet!)
2 leek and 2 shallots
Drain all the liquid from your cooked turkey and chop off all your icky bits (make husband do that. If husband isn’t there, throw icky bits into garbage and double bag it) and put it into the saucepan.
Add three cans of gravy.
Chop up your leeks (white and light green parts only) throw into waterfilled bowl, let settle 10 minutes. all the dirt will sit at the bottom, scoop out with spoon with holes in it and throw into hot frying pan with olive oil sizzling. add chopped shallots. stir and cook until a bit browny. add to gravy.
cook your turkey bacon (less fat!) until cooked, but not crispy. chop and add to gravy.