Turkey 2011

 

Although I am not hosting the Thanksgiving feast I am still making a turkey for the leftover factor and,  just because I love the smell of turkey in our home.   I have ordered a 16 lb heritage bird from Whole Foods and I can’t wait to taste it!  This year I am doing a dry brine which I read about in the November, 2011 issue of Food Network Magazine.

 

Dry Brine

Combine 1/3 cup kosher salt, 1 tablespoon sugar and 1 teaspoon pepper in a bowl.  Rub all over the turkey and inside the cavity.  Put on a rimmed baking sheet and refrigerate, uncovered, at least 8 hours or overnight.  Rinse well and pat dry.

I will make a classic herb butter

Mix 2 sticks softened butter, 2 tablespoons chopped parsley, 1 tablespoon each dried sage and dried thyme, 1 teaspoon pepper, 1/4 paprika and 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves.

Reserve 4 tablespoons, then rub the rest under the turkey skin on the breasts and legs.  Rub 2 tablespoons of the reserved butter on the skin; chill and save the rest for your gravy.  Let the turkey stand 30 minutes at room temperature before roasting.

Roasting the bird

Put the oven rack in the lowest position; preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Put the turkey, breast-side up on a rack in a large roasting pan , tucking the wing tips under.  Roast until the skin is golden brown and a thermometer inserted into the thigh registers 165 degrees., about 15 minutes per pound.  Baste the bird every hour and cover with foil if the skin starts to burn.  Transfer to a cutting board and let rest 30 minutes before carving.  Whisk the reserved 2 tablespoons flavored butter into your gravy just before serving, if desired.

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