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Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Top Ten Turkey Mishaps And How To Avoid Them

1. Forgetting To Defrost  Soak your frozen turkey in a brine solution. Unwrap the packaging, rinse well and place in the sink or large container , breast side down. For a 16 pounder, dissolve 1 1/2 cups of kosher salt in 2 gallons of cold tap water. Change the brine every 30 minutes. This trick should halve your defrosting time to 15 minutes per pound.

2. Dry Turkey Breast  Your turkey is being overcooked. Make sure  you use a meat thermometer and remove the turkey from the oven when the temp reaches 155 F. Once out of the oven, the bird will continue to cook and the temp will rise to 165F. Remove the stuffing from the cavity immediately since a stuffed bird retains more heat.

3.Turkey Breast Is Too Dry  After cooking, soak the breast in pan juices ASAP. Otherwise, douse with gravy or save it for turkey day leftovers.

4. Turkey Skin Is Not Crisp Either rub the skin with softened butter or extra virgin olive oil and then season before roasting, OR salt the skin of a thawed turkey and let it air dry overnight in the frig.

5. Turkey Lacks A Golden Hue You need to baste it more. With  a brush or basting bulb, coat the turkey evenly all over with pan juices every 15 minutes for the last hour of roasting. If the top is browning too much before the bird is cooked, just cover it with a piece of foil.

6. You Forgot To Take Out The Giblet Bag Even if you do, the turkey is safe to eat. In the future, rinse your turkey inside out and you'll find the bag before you cook it.

7. No One Knows How To Carve It First, you need a sharp knife. Then cut off each leg and slice the band of skin connecting it to the body. Then twist the drumstick to pop out the joint and slice through. Next, wiggle the thigh bone to find the joint and slice through. For the breast make a deep horizontal cut above the wing joint,then make  perpendicular slices. Slice behind the wing joint to remove it.

8.Not Enough Breast Meat For Everybody  Just cook an extra turkey breast along side your bird.

9.Safely Cook Stuffing Inside The Bird To make sure your stuffing is safe to eat, insert an instant read thermometer in the stuffing when it comes out of the oven. If should read 160 F. If not ,then make sure you transfer it to an oven safe dish. Don't serve from the bird. That way you can pop it back in the oven  to get up to 160 F. 

10. Attend A Home Coming Game And Cook Your Bird Too Just roast the bird cut into parts. This only takes an hour for a 12 pound turkey.

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