I’ve roasted a turkey once in my life. I was in college, and it was shortly before Thanksgiving and my roommates and I wanted to celebrate Thanksgiving together.
Surprisingly, it wasn’t a complete disaster. Our 12-pound turkey fit nicely into our economy-sized stove and a couple of hours later, voila: roasted bird. It really was a miracle we were able to cook an entire Thanksgiving Day meal in that tiny little kitchen.
I’m a bit older and wiser now. I’d like to roast a turkey to celebrate my fiance’s new apartment. Though the kitchen isn’t much bigger than my kitchen was in college, it’s better equipped to handle said bird.
I’ve taken some suggestions from our readers and now it’s time to put the turkey to the test.
Thawing: If your turkey is frozen, make sure to thaw it safely. You don’t want to get sick, right? Turkey can stay frozen indefinitely, but as soon as you begin thawing, any bacteria that may have been present before freezing can begin growing again.
Refrigerator: Thaw a frozen turkey in your fridge for 24 hours for every 5 pounds. Make sure to set your turkey in a shallow pan so the drippings don’t get on your other foods.
Cold water thawing: Put the wrapped turkey in cold water. Change the water every 30 minutes or so until the turkey is completely thawed. Allow 30 minutes per pound.
Microwave: Microwaves vary in power so follow the manufacturer’s directions when thawing. Use the turkey immediately after it’s thawed.
Cook an un-stuffed turkey at 325 F for 15 minutes per pound. Roast a stuffed turkey at 325 F for 18 minutes per pound.
I loosely followed a recipe I found at Cooks.com. Cooks.com recommends buttering after applying the spices, I disagree. Butter before the spices. Buttering afterward only brushes away all of that tasty rosemary and thyme.
My turkey was moist and tender, but it was also a little on the salty side. Next time I’ll be using less kosher salt (I admit, the turkey looked crystallized after I salted it).