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Old 11-26-2013, 05:48 AM   #1
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Anyone a Thanksgiving turkey expert???

How in the heck do I cook this thing? Talk to me like the clueless vegetarian I am. It's fro*en right now and it's too big for a crockpot. It doesn't have a weight(we got it as part of a Thanksgiving basket gift program from my landlord so they buy in bulk and there's no weights listed) but my bathroom scale suggests 12-ish lbs. It's MASSIVE. I know it'll take a few days to thaw right? So what do I do???? I'm gonna go get one of those aluminum roasting pans from the dollar store because I can't bring myself to put it in my pans that I cook vegetables in. But my kids are SO excited about a real turkey for Thanksgiving and I really want to do a good job with it. I need help.

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Old 11-26-2013, 05:52 AM   #2
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Re: Anyone a Thanksgiving turkey expert???

Put it in the fridge NOW to defrost it in time.

There are TONS of recipes online for you to follow on how to cook it. We are cooking ours using a method we have never used before (cooking it in our Big Green Egg) so I can't recommend what we are doing, however I am sure someone here is cooking it in an oven that can link you to a recipe.
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:39 AM   #3
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I am a vegetarian too but I make a few turkeys a year for my family. I do mine in one of those turkey bags. It makes it so much easier. Just season it up and put it in the bag (following directions on the bag) in the roasting pan. You definitely need to put it in the fridge. Mine has been in the fridge since Saturday and it still isn't all the way thawed!!!
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:41 AM   #4
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Turkey is a very lean meat so it dries out very easily! Don't overcome it. DH smokes ours on a smoker. We make sure to have plenty of liquid in the smoker pan. We use water, a fruity wine, lemons cut in half and squeezed them put peels in also. We put bacon over the top f the turkey. We also baste it with a white sauce, which is mayo, white vinegar and black pepper. We don't like oven cooked turkeys because they dry out too easily.

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Old 11-26-2013, 07:54 AM   #5
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Re: Anyone a Thanksgiving turkey expert???

Okay I at least knew to put it in the fridge right away. That was good. It's like, rock hard though. Would it be bad to leave it out of the fridge in the sink thawing for a while? When I cook chicken in the crockpot I usually do it with a lemon, a bunch of garlic, and some onion. Is this the same way but in the oven in a roaster pan? I'm cooking it for 3 little girls so.....
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:55 AM   #6
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Re: Anyone a Thanksgiving turkey expert???

Not to pat myself on the back too much, but I've been told that I make the best turkey. I'm a bit of a family legend.

About 3-4 days out, you want to start brining your turkey. Take about 1 gallon of water, 1 cup of salt, one cup of brown sugar, and bring to a boil. Cut and squeeze a fresh lemon and put the rest of the lemon in the water. About 1 TBS of liquid smoke, and about 1/4c of Rosemary. Let cool to room temperature. You can add apple juice, too, but dh hates apples, so I don't. Once it's cool, throw your bird in the brine and let it defrost in the fridge in it about 3 or 4 days.

On Thanksgiving, take out 1-2 sticks of butter, and some uncooked bacon, celery, and more rosemary. Mix the softened butter and rosemary together, and then separate the skin of the turkey and spread the butter all over the meat. Put more in the cavity. In the cavity, place your cleaned celery, strips of bacon. Cover the whole thing in fresh cracked pepper, Place the bird breast down, and cover the whole thing in more bacon. Add about an inch of water in the pan, cover with foil, and cook according to the instructions (it's what, 325 until the internal temp not near a bone is 160).

Take it out of the oven and let it rest for 10 mins, then slice.

Yum!
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:57 AM   #7
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Google Alton brown good eats brined turkey. It was the best turkey I've ever had! It was the first time I had ever cooked one alone last year and I brined it and then cooked it in a turkey bag in an aluminum pan.
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:57 AM   #8
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Re: Anyone a Thanksgiving turkey expert???

I forgot, buy low sodium bacon or it will be too salty.
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:59 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3rockstars
Okay I at least knew to put it in the fridge right away. That was good. It's like, rock hard though. Would it be bad to leave it out of the fridge in the sink thawing for a while? When I cook chicken in the crockpot I usually do it with a lemon, a bunch of garlic, and some onion. Is this the same way but in the oven in a roaster pan? I'm cooking it for 3 little girls so.....
You can help it along by defrosting in COLD water in the sink
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:02 AM   #10
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Re: Anyone a Thanksgiving turkey expert???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Minniebees View Post
Not to pat myself on the back too much, but I've been told that I make the best turkey. I'm a bit of a family legend.

About 3-4 days out, you want to start brining your turkey. Take about 1 gallon of water, 1 cup of salt, one cup of brown sugar, and bring to a boil. Cut and squeeze a fresh lemon and put the rest of the lemon in the water. About 1 TBS of liquid smoke, and about 1/4c of Rosemary. Let cool to room temperature. You can add apple juice, too, but dh hates apples, so I don't. Once it's cool, throw your bird in the brine and let it defrost in the fridge in it about 3 or 4 days.

On Thanksgiving, take out 1-2 sticks of butter, and some uncooked bacon, celery, and more rosemary. Mix the softened butter and rosemary together, and then separate the skin of the turkey and spread the butter all over the meat. Put more in the cavity. In the cavity, place your cleaned celery, strips of bacon. Cover the whole thing in fresh cracked pepper, Place the bird breast down, and cover the whole thing in more bacon. Add about an inch of water in the pan, cover with foil, and cook according to the instructions (it's what, 325 until the internal temp not near a bone is 160).

Take it out of the oven and let it rest for 10 mins, then slice.

Yum!
I am going to try this! Question though, we can't eat red meat due to ds2 having an allergy so what would you suggest that I do if I don't use bacon? Or is it not going to be worth it to do without the bacon?
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