Cooking Methods for Turkey
Cooking Tip of the Day
There are a number of ways to cook your turkey….
• Deep Frying
Roasting is the most popular way to cook the turkey… it utilizes an oven … so no special equipment is needed…. and you can stuff the turkey….but depending on the part of the country you’re in, some of these other methods are popular too.
Grilling sounds great provided you have the Charcoal Grill or Gas Grill to accomadate that size piece of meat…. and you’re not waste deep in snow (ode to Colorado).
Rotisserie is the method of cooking used when you cook and brown your turkey evely as it rotates over the heat source. This method works best with turkeys that are 12 pounds or less. You don’t stuff the turkey… you cook the stuffing separately in a casserole dish in the oven. You also need a rotisserie oven.
Deep frying turkey is very popular here in the south, a lot of people deep fry their turkeys in large deep fryers…. this time of year you see lots of displays in grocery stores with large containers of peanut oil …. (Imma Yankee… and well… we roast our turkeys…. )… this method requires a large deep fryer …either an outdoor propane fryer or an indoor electric fryer. You can’t stuff the turkey with this method… you need to cook it separately in the oven. It is recommended that you fry turkeys that are 14 pounds or less. … turkeys over 15 pounds… you need to separate the legs and thighs and fry them separately.
Brining is taking a raw turkey and soaking it in salted water for a number of hours while refrigerated to help it retain moisture during the cooking process. For this you need a fresh, non-basted turkey. Brining is ineffective on frozen turkeys and may interfere with the flavor of basted or kosher turkeys... it is also important to take the wrapper off and take out the insides (giblets etc) (you'd be surprised how many people forget to do that!).
So when choosing a cooking method… you need to consider:
• Special equipment you may need
• The limitations of the size of the turkey
• Whether or not you want to stuff the turkey
• Personal taste and preference
You can go to the Butterball website to get step by step instructions for cooking turkeys for each of these methods.
Picture from William Sonoma Willie Bird Pre-Brined Fresh Turkey
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