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The Perfect Turkey

My wife and I have been married for 22 years, we were together for 2 years before that.  In those 24 Thanksgivings plus a few Christmas's and Easters we have had a lot of turkey!  A LOT OF TURKEY.  While my wife does the majority of the cooking at home; she has never cooked a holiday turkey.  That is my job. 

After all those years, I have developed the perfect strategy to make your turkey perfect and is my secret.

  1. Cook the bird for the first 1 hour at 450 degrees...this seals in the juices and starts things going really well.
  2. After the initial high temperature period reduce heat to 325 degrees
  3. Cook the bird breast down until there is approximately 1 hour left on the estimated time.  Then flip the bird and cook uncovered until you reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees. 
  4. Check the temperature often in the last hour do not exceed 165...remember the bird continues to cook for quite a while after being removed from the oven.
  5. Let the bird stand for at least an hour before carving.  This allows the juices to settle and makes the meat firmer and the cooking complete.
  6. When carving, remove the legs and thighs first, then the wishbone!  With the wishbone out, you can easily remove the entire side of the breast and use an electric knife to carve.  Your results with the electric knife will be much better...don't settle for a sharp kitchen knife, it always tears up the meat.

This method is not typical but try it and you will find the perfect Thanksgiving turkey.

Comment balloon 4 commentsArt Marine • November 25 2009 06:37PM


I'm sure many a first time Thanksgiving host will benefit from this post.

thank you

Posted by Ron Brown NMLS #270845 (NMLS ID: 40831) almost 11 years ago

How do we cook the Tofu Turkey for us vegies?

Happy Thanksgiving...

Posted by John Thomas, EcoBroker, MSEE, MBA (E3 Green HOMES) almost 11 years ago

Thanks for the turkey tips Art.  My wife tried your recipe today, and the turkey turned out nice and juicy on the outside, with a wonderful crispy skin.

Posted by Gary Swanson (Century 21 Harris & Taylor) almost 11 years ago

Is there more than legs and thighs on a turkey? (LOL)

Posted by Respect Realty LLC, Brokers - Oregon / SW Washington Real Estate (Respect Realty LLC) almost 11 years ago