John (the chef behind our turkeys) brought three important items that came in handy: a meat thermometer (he says the plastic pop-up can’t be trusted), a roll of cheesecloth, and an apple.
I know squabble squabble day has passed, but I learned some turkey tips that must be recorded. First, that it is better to cook two smaller turkeys than one humongous one. We had two 13-pounders for eighteen people and it was perfect. The turkeys are easier to handle (and brine) and easier not to mess up.
If you don’t have a roasting rack, you can make an makeshift one out of rings of foil, like John did here.
John basted the turkey with white wine and melted butter (and occasionally the juices).
The turkeys were stuffed loosely with quartered onions and apples.
A turkey is done when the inserted thermometer reads 165 F. Remember it needs to sit for about 1/2 hour before being carved.
And this is the best tip of all: To prevent the turkey breast from overcooking, cover with several layers of cheescloth soaked in the wine and butter basting mixture. Remove 1/2 hour before turkey is done cooking (or when temp reaches about 150 F), so it can brown.
The cheesecloth looks a little like a gross bandage, but it is well worth the temporary eye sore for the pleasing result.
and the pleasing result…