ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Food and Cooking»
  • Main Dish & Side Dish Recipes

How to Cook Turkey with Tons of Flavor

Updated on October 17, 2009

Turkey may look pretty on a Thanksgiving platter, but looks are not everything. Turkey, all by itself, just does not have much flavor. And, unfortunately, many cooks destroy that tiny bit of flavor by overcooking and drying out their bird. Maybe that is because many of us are still using the same tired, worn out cooking methods our mothers and grandmothers, and their mothers before them used. Believe it or not, turkeys do not have to be cooked to 180 degrees, nor do they require basting. And, better yet, they can taste really good.

Flavor Your Turkey Photo by amandais via Stock.Xchng
Flavor Your Turkey Photo by amandais via Stock.Xchng

Turkey Brine

A really good turkey begins with brining. A basic brine is water, sugar and salt, but there is no reason not to bring a little more flavor into the mix. The flavors of rosemary, thyme, garlic, peppercorns, sage and parsley will soak deep into the turkey as it brines overnight. Use fresh herbs whenever possible, and only whole peppercorns. There is no need to chop the herbs, just throw in the stems. In a large container with a tight fitting lid, dissolve 1 pound of Kosher Salt and 1 pound of light brown sugar in a little bit of warm water. Stir in the fresh herbs. Add enough cold water to completely cool the brine mixture. Put the turkey, head first, into the brine. Cover with cold water and plenty of ice. You may need to weight the turkey down to keep it completely submerged. Brine overnight. Keep checking the ice levels to make sure the turkey stays cold and at a safe temperature.

After removing the turkey from the brine, you will want to rinse off any herbs that may be stuck to the bird and then dry it off.

Turkey Seasoning Rub

Mix together ½ cup olive oil with 1 tablespoon each: finely chopped rosemary, thyme, sage and parsley. Add 2 cloves minced garlic and the juice of half a lemon. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Whisk together and allow to sit for ten minutes before using. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F.

While the oil rub is developing its flavor, stuff the turkey with 2 lemons cut into wedges, 4 or 5 whole cloves of garlic, and a handful of the same herbs used in the oil rub. Again, there is no need to chop the herbs; they will be discarded after the turkey is roasted.

Using your hands, carefully loosen the breast skin of the turkey and rub a generous amount of the herb and oil mixture onto the breast meat. Work all the way up the breasts and as far down the sides as you can, being carefully not to tear the skin. Then use the remaining oil to rub the entire surface of the turkey.

Roasting Turkey

Place the turkey breast side down on a rack in a roasting pan and cook for 30 minutes at 500 degrees F, then reduce the heat to 350 degrees for the remainder of the roasting time. When the turkey reaches an internal temperature of about 140 degrees, turn the turkey over to allow the breast to brown. Continue roasting the turkey until it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Remove from the oven, tent with foil and allow to rest for 10 to 20 minutes before carving.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)