Flat Roasted Turkey
Thanksgiving can be a wonderful relaxing time with your family and friends. It can also be a high stress, what was I thinking hosting a dinner for 30 people, kind of crazy. Myself, I always choose the crazy and after reading this you will believe me!
First off we have the Big Kahuna, the turkey. I've heard of ladies climbing out of bed in the middle of the night to start the Thanksgiving turkey so that it would be ready and give all of the other dishes time to cook. Do away with that craziness (hey I need all of the sleep I can get) and cook a flat turkey also called spatchcocking.
I watched a quick video by Mark Bittman to get me started. Basically you remove the
breast bone I mean back bone and press the turkey flat, creating more even cooking throughout the breast and thighs and in less time. Sounds like a good idea, right?
Look at the photo, I removed the breast bone instead of the back bone. Even after watching the video I still had it wrong in my brain. It wasn't scary at all and it was actually really easy using the OXO Poultry Shears. Man those things are SHARP! Plus it's fun to say, "I gotta go spatchcock a turkey." Makes me feel like I'm on Top Chef or something.
Well maybe not considering I did it upside down. I tend to mess up a lot, not just in the kitchen, thank goodness there's nobody standing around tallying my mistakes! Should I put a disclaimer in that says, hey I am a regular person and I make lots of mistakes and I am not an expert? Maybe we just all laugh and move on.
So when I got the breast bone out, I realized, holy cow I think I did it wrong. I watched the video again. Thought it is too late now and went ahead with the method.
No need to cry over spilled milk or spatchcock turkey, right? This is supposed to be fun and if it tastes good then that's what really counts! My theory is to make the best out of it, especially in the kitchen.
Turn the turkey over and mash it down as flat as you can. Place in a roasting pan and proceed as you normally would. I placed a lemon, sage and rosemary under the turkey, drizzled the skin with olive oil, salt and pepper. I tucked a few garlic cloves around and a little fresh thyme around the wings and legs.
I followed the cooking instructions from the video and used the OXO Digital Leave-In Thermometer. Last year the USDA changed the internal temperature of fully cooked turkeys from 180 degrees to 165 degrees. Check your turkey in several places to make sure it is done. Let the turkey rest for about 20 minutes before slicing. (Because I did it backwards, upside down, inside out etc... my turkey took a little longer to cook!)
Now would you like to see a gorgeous post where Matt did it correctly? Click on over to Thyme in Our Kitchen and you can see how it's really done.
Thanksgiving turkey doesn't seem complete without some cranberry sauce, now does it? I don't really like the stuff that comes out of the can but we have it anyway because it's tradition or the kids love it or something. Sometimes I try out a new recipe just to change it up. A few years ago I made a cranberry sauce with horseradish, it was different but not my favorite.
I did some looking through my cookbooks and looked around the internets and settled on this recipe from The Pioneer Woman. It was extremely simple, I had all of the ingredients on hand and it turned out just as good as she promised. I think it's a keeper for me.
I added a few sprigs of fresh thyme to her recipe and I also ran about half of the mixture through my OXO Potato Ricer to change up the consistency a little.
The OXO Potato Ricer is my new favorite kitchen tool! I usually make mashed (whipped) potatoes in the mixer but from now on we will have the fluffiest mashed potatoes thanks to the OXO Potato Ricer!
Don't forget to check out the other great Thanksgiving recipes from Virtual Potluck and look for OXO giveaways too! Featuring a these great products and MORE to make your Thanksgiving dinner a cinch! Hint: OXO giveaway here tomorrow!
Flat Roasted Turkey
- 1 7-10 pound turkey, thawed completely (mine was 10 pound Butterball)
- ¼ cup olive oil (I used Star Garlic Olive Oil)
- 1 tablespoon coarse salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 1 lemon cut in half
- 3 fresh sage leaves
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 4 garlic cloves
Preheat oven to 450°F.
Wash turkey and pat dry. Using a pair of poultry shears or a sharp knife, remove the breast bone and discard (or use it to make stock or the gravy).
Turn turkey over onto a flat surface a press to flatten. Place in a roasting pan, cut side down.
Place lemon, sage, and rosemary under turkey. Pour olive oil over skin, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place garlic cloves and thyme sprigs under wings and around legs, tucking them in.
Place leave in thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh area.
Roast turkey for 20 minutes. Baste turkey with juices and lower oven temperature to 400°F (350° if turkey is browning too fast). Continue to bake until turkey reaches 165-175 degrees in several places, about 40-50 minutes depending on the size of your turkey and how your oven cooks.
Remove from oven and allow to rest 20 minutes before slicing.
Serve with cranberry sauce and all of your favorite fixings!
Disclosure: I was provided OXO products for review, but I was not compensated for this post. All opinions are my own!