"Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done unto me according to thy will." ~ Luke 1:38

Friday, November 23, 2012

~ Thanksgiving Menu: Roasted Turkey ~

Starting with the defrosting process...a day earlier.
Using a frozen young turkey (14 - 16 lbs...this turkey was just under 17 lbs.)

Getting the brine ingredients together:

~ The Brine ~

Ingredients:  Kosher Salt (1 cup), Light Brown Sugar (1/2 cup), Vegetable Stock (1 gallon), Black Peppercorns (1 tablespoon), Allspice Berries (1 1/2 teaspoons - couldn't find, so I omitted), Candied Ginger, chopped (1 1/2 teaspoons)

In a large stockpot, combine the vegetable stock, salt, brown sugar, peppercorns, allspice berries, and candied ginger.  Bring to boil.

Remove the brine from heat and cool to room temperature.  Refrigerate.

~ The Night Before ~

In a 5 gallon bucket or stockpot, place thawed turkey (innards removed) into the brine; make sure the turkey is fully immersed.

Cover and refrigerate 8 - 16 hours.  If not fully immersed, turn half way through brining.

~ On Thanksgiving ~
Preheat oven to 500 degrees F.  Remove turkey from brine, rinse inside and out with cold water.  Discard the brine. 

Pat dry the turkey with paper towels.  Place on roasting rack.

~ The Aromatics ~

Ingredients:  One Red Apple, Half Onion, sliced, One Cinnamon Stick, One Cup Water, Four Sprigs Rosemary, Six Leaves Sage, Canola Oil.

In a microwave safe dish, combine the apple, onion, cinnamon stick, and 1 cup of water.  (I added all the ingredients - accidentally) Microwave on high for 5 minutes.  Add steeped aromatics to the turkey's cavity along with the rosemary and sage.

Tuck the wings and drumsticks underneath the bird.  Coat the skin liberally with canola oil.

At 500 degrees F, roast the turkey on the lowest setting/rack of the oven for 30 minutes.

Doing the dishes as I go along...makes for a less overwhelming clean up after the meal.

Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.  Cook for about 2 to 2 1/2 hours...but check bird after about 1 1/2 - 2 hours or before the max time depending on size/weight of turkey.  A 14 to 16 pound bird should require a total of 2 to 2 1/2 hours of roasting...my bird (at just under 17 lbs. was perfectly cooked at 2 1/2 hours).

~ Browning Nicely ~

Tip:  I didn't pin down the wings, so they *popped out*.  Remedy:  I covered the tips of the wings with some foil.  Quick easy fix.

Once the turkey is removed from the oven, cover loosely with foil and let sit for half hour (or until you finish up with the other side dishes:

Mashed Potatoes & Stuffing

Roasted Asparagus & Cranberry Sauce

Happy Carving!!!


For the Full Menu and Thanksgiving Feast...go Here.

Thank you to the gracious Stephanie over at Sweet Boutique for sharing her Thanksgiving Menu.

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