Mr. Tweedle's Turkey How to

October 03, 2012

* Wedding Wednesday will be on hold this week as we are busily preparing for Thanksgiving over here! Stay tuned for all my best Turkey Dinner tips coming up in the next 3 days! Today we are talking about turkey, tomorrow will be stuffing and the sides and tips on bringing it all together will be coming on Friday! 

Hello! Mr. Tweedle here for the first time! Since I have yet to make my debut some of you may be wondering what Miss Tweedle keeps me around for! The following is my Turkey recipe, stay tuned for a few more thanksgiving posts in the next few days! Miss Tweedle likes you all to think she's the best cook around here, but I beg to differ! There's plenty more where this came from! Enjoy!

Take the turkey out of the freezer at least a whole 24 hours before you are planning to prepare it. It takes a lot longer than you would think to defrost. Before beginning anything, you need to know how heavy your turkey is and how long it will take in the oven. On average, it takes 20 minutes per pound. A 12-15 pound turkey will take about 4 hours. Give yourself lots of time to make the stuffing and get everything ready for the oven.  
Unwrap the turkey over the sink as it will leak juices all over the place if you don't! When you open it, the legs will be tucked into a skin flap like this. 
Take the drumsticks out of the skin flap.  
Remove the giblets (the white package inside) and the neck. You will have to reach right inside in order to do this. Discard both of these things. 
You are now ready to put the stuffing in the turkey. There are 2 spaces where the stuffing can go. The first one is found by flipping the turkey over, breast side down and stuffing the small pouch where the neck used to be. 

Once you stuff the small pouch, you need something to close it up with. I use an old metal skewer that I have bent in half. It works really well to hook and pull the skin over to cover the stuffing hole. You also have to make sure you tuck the wing tips into the front of the hole where you have stuffed. The skin gets stretched over the hole, including the wing tips so they don't burn. 
Then you can stuff the main cavity. It is really important just to loosely stuff the turkey. It will not cook evenly or properly if it is too full. If you have extra stuffing that doesn't fit, save it for later! You'll need it!
Use the end of the loaf of bread- the crust piece- to cover the stuffing and then tuck the legs back into that same skin flap you removed them from earlier.  
Place the stuffed turkey onto a rack on a roasting pan and pre heat the oven to 325 degrees.  
The finishing touch is what makes the skin beautiful, browned and tasty!- BUTTER! Melt 1/2 cup of butter on the stove with 2 cloves of garlic, minced, 1/4 tsp of dried thyme leaves and 1/4 tsp dried rosemary. 
This is a meat injector and if you are really feeling naughty, you can inject the turkey with the garlic butter! If you don't have one of these, just skip this step. 
Brush the garlic butter over the entire outside of the turkey. Give it a nice thick coat and save the rest of the butter for basting later.  
It's ready for the oven! Pop it in the oven, uncovered at first. 

Cook the turkey uncovered until it looks like this- golden brown. Baste it with the butter about every 1/2 hour and when you run out of butter, use the drippings from the bottom of the pan. 
At this point, you need to cover the turkey by making a tin foil tent for it. You don't want the foil to touch the skin of the turkey because it may stick to the skin and pull off the flavour! Start by laying 2 large pieces of foil on the counter side by side. 
Place one piece on top of the other and fold it over along one edge.  
When you open them up again, the pieces will be sealed together with the fold in the middle and you will have one giant piece of foil.  
Carefully put it over the turkey, sealing it around the edges of the pan, but keeping it from touching the bird itself. 

Place the turkey back in the oven for about another 1 1/2 hours until the internal temperature of the turkey reaches 180 degrees. This one is not quite there! Still at 160.  
In order to take the the temperature, slide your meat thermometer into the space between the breast and the leg. You will not get an accurate reading if it touches the bone at all, so try to make sure you don't do that. 
When the turkey hits 180, it is done! Let it stand covered for at least 20 minutes before removing the stuffing and carving it. You need to let the juices redistribute throughout the meat. 


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