We all want our holiday turkey to turn out juicy and delicious. Back before we had kids, my husband and I would go all out for Thanksgiving, but now that we have little munchkins running around, we try to keep it simple. That way I can have less time in the kitchen and more time with my family! Last year I used my favorite roast chicken recipe (from my book) for my holiday turkey, and it everyone loved it. It’s super easy and simple to do, but turns out perfect every single time. The recipe is down below if you want to try it!
In the meantime, here are some tips for a juicy and delicious holiday turkey:
Ensure the skin is dry as possible and before you roast your turkey, rub it all over with oil or butter. You can even put pats of butter under the skin, this will make the meat even more moist.
Layer your vegetables such as onions and carrots on the bottom of your pan and cook the turkey direction on top of them. This creates a natural roasting rack for your turkey by layering carrots, onions and celery on the bottom of the roasting pan. Having the turkey off the bottom of the pan will help to increase circulation around it, giving you a crispier skin. The vegetables will add flavor to the gravy drippings.
The best way to check if the turkey is cooked properly is to insert a thermometer into the thickest part of it around the thigh. Be sure to avoid the bone. If it is 165°F it is finished cooking! Like all roasts, the turkey will keep cooking as it rests which means the temperature should rise to around 175°F out of the oven.
To lock in all those delicious juices, lightly cover your turkey with foil and let it sit for around 15 to 20 minutes before carving and serving.
excerpt from: Happy Tummies: A Cookbook for New Mamas
preparation time: 10 minutes
cook time: 60 minutes
1 (2 to 3-pound) roasting chicken*
4 tablespoons olive oil
3-4 twigs of fresh poultry herbs
1/2 onion, peeled
1 slice bread
Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Place the chicken on a cutting board and pat dry with a paper towel. Brush the bird with olive oil (about 2 tablespoons), and season generously with salt and pepper. Cut the lemon and onion halves so that they fit into the chicken. Then place the onion, lemon, and herbs inside the chicken. Squish a piece of bread over the hole to cover it.
Add the chicken to the rack and tuck the wings underneath.
Cook for 1 hour, or until up to temperature reaches 165° F and the juices run clear. Take the chicken out of the oven and cover with foil. Let it sit for 15 minutes before carving.
*Choose a 5 to 6 pound chicken or turkey to feed 8 people. Increase the cooking time to 1 1/2 hours.