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Tips to Making the Best Thanksgiving Turkey

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The Thanksgiving turkey is without a doubt the star of the holiday. It’s a staple in every table and it has been a part of the tradition that has been handed down from one generation to the next. But if you think preparing it is easy, think again. For some, it took them a lot of trials and errors before they can perfect the recipe. In case you have zero clues on how to do it, these turkey cooking tips can save your day and dinner.

Tips to Making the Best Thanksgiving Turkey
Thanksgiving turkey

Choose the right turkey size

First thing first. How big should the turkey be? To answer the question, you have to ask yourself how many guests you are having. Estimate the portion each person would likely to eat. For example, 1 pound of uncooked turkey per person. If you have a dozen guests, you may get a turkey that’s at least 12 pounds. Another is to consider the size of your oven. You don’t want to have a big bird getting stuck in a tiny oven.

Thaw and season

Chances are you’ll be buying a frozen turkey beforehand. You have to allow at least 24 hours for every four pounds of its weight. The key here is to not thaw it at room temperature. Fridge thaw is your best option. Once done, you’re ready to season your turkey. You can give it a delicious flavor by stuffing herbs like rosemary, sage, and thyme. You can also add onion, garlic, and half a lemon or orange. Be sure to stuff all of them into the turkey’s cavity.

Use a roasting rack

Many neglect using this and end up with turkey sticking to the bottom of their pan. Put your turkey on a rack before putting it in the oven or in case you don’t have one, you can also improvise. You can do this by putting slices of onion or creating a bed of carrots and celery stalks to elevate the turkey. You can eat these flavorful vegetables after, too.

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Use a meat thermometer

Not everybody is a pro at roasting turkey and though there are some techniques that include jiggling the leg, keeping a close watch at the plastic popper, or the 15 minutes a pound rule, they’re not 100% reliable. The best thing to do is to use a meat thermometer to take the turkey’s temperature. Insert it into the thickest part of its thigh and once it’s already 165°F, you can turn off the oven and allow your turkey to rest.

Impress your guests by serving a delicious Thanksgiving turkey that’s well cooked and infused with all the right flavors. Just follow the tips above and they’ll be smacking their lips all through dinner.

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