Meat Grinders Guide: How to Prepare a Turkey
There is nothing better than getting the entire family together on this special day and celebrating with the people that you truly care about. Something that is really special, yet challenging is setting up this extravagant event. The history of Thanksgiving feast is quite interesting as it is. Are you hosting your first Thanksgiving feast and you are a little puzzled on how to prepare this delicious bird? There is no need to worry because this guide is here to help when it comes to the full process of setting the turkey. Here is a simple guide to mastering this American art from pre-prep to the cooking process, then to the plate!
How to Cook a Thanksgiving Turkey
This easy guide will put your stress at ease, with the step by step tutorial on how to prepare a thanksgiving turkey.
Cooking a Thanksgiving Turkey recipe:
- Step 1 – Selecting the Proper Sized Turkey: when making a trip to your local grocery store. Make sure to pick a turkey that is substantial enough. The idea size is around 1 pound per person or maybe a little less.
- Step 2 – Thawing Process: If you purchase your turkey well in advance and decide to freeze your bird. Allow around 3 to 4 hours per pound of thawing time and thaw the turkey in the refrigerator.
- Step 3 – Cleaning Process: Remove the packaging from the turkey and scoop out the neck and giblets that are in the turkey’s body cavity. Wash the turkey with cold water (inside and out) and dry of the bird with a paper towel.
- Step 4 – Seasoning Prep: Before placing the turkey in the oven, rub the bird with olive oil and season with salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder, herbs and paprika.
- Step 5 – Stuffing: If you want to cook the stuffing in the turkey while it is cooking because this will result in a more flavorful and moist stuffing. Make sure to place the stuffing in the turkey’s boy cavity only right before the cooking process to prevent contamination and tie the legs together with the trussing (string).
- Step 6 – Cooking Process: Preheat the oven to 300 degrees and slow cook your turkey (you will receive the best results this way.) Add 20 minutes for every pound, and allow the turkey to sit with the oven door open for a final 20 minutes. Make sure to baste the turkey for every 20 minutes it is cooking. When using a cooking thermometer, the ideal internal heat will be around 160 degrees F for a perfectly cooked turkey. You can also smoke turkey, in this case make sure to check our Best Wood For Smoking Turkey article, and, of course, this recipe on how to smoke turkey breast!
How to Carve a Thanksgiving Turkey:
To carve a thanksgiving turkey properly, you will need four tools: kitchen scissors, spoon, slicing knife and a meat fork. After the turkey has settled for 20 to 30 minutes, it is time to carve!
- The best way to handle the turkey is with your hands and the first step is to cut the trussing with your scissors.
- Cut the drumsticks by placing your knife against the thigh and slice down to create separation, then separate both drumsticks from each side and remove with your hands.
- Slice the neck cavity to remove the stuffing and scoop the stuffing with a spoon.
- Slice thigh meat from the bone and this is the dark meat.
- Slice the bottom end of the turkey’s breast and make horizontal slices towards the rib cage of the turkey and repeat on the other side.
- Finally cut the wings and then serve the turkey with a meat fork to your guests’ plates!
Have a very Happy Thanksgiving and have fun sharing the love with your guests. Keep a look out for our next guide for shedding delicious pulled pork!