Monday, November 21, 2011

How to: Roast a Turkey


      So I would consider the Potluck a raging success, except for one minor detail. Lotti and I prepared for that turkey so much. We read recipes, we read more recipes, and we searched for tips on how to make him (Yes, it was a him and we named him “Hank” for Hank’s giving (and yes we did steal it from New Girl). That morning, we took him out of the fridge, we defrosted him some more in cold water, we cut up all our stuffing ingredients, we preheated the oven. I basted him every 15 minutes. He was on the table ready to be eaten and we realized we had NO CLUE how to carve a turkey. We forgot that minor detail. Luckily, one guy at the potluck did know, we tried to discreetly get him to carve it so no one would notice but much to our chargin everyone did and it became the joke of the evening. Oh well. In other news, Lotti’s mom came over and tried our turkey, she said it was the BEST turkey she has ever had and was moist! So you know this recipe is going to be good!



12 lb Turkey ( You need to by this THREE days beforehand so it can defrost in your fridge, and even then it might not be enough)

1 Stuffing mix (we like cornbread kind)

1 1/2 cups Celery

1 1/2 cups Carrots

1 bag of small Yellow Onions

1 stick of Butter

1 1/2 cups Vegetable broth

Salt and Pepper

Lemon Pepper seasoning

Poultry Bouquet of Herbs (Rosemary, Marjoram, Sage, Thyme about 5 sprigs of each)

Read the instructions!Me REreading the instructions!


1) Chop all vegetables into pieces, just roughly chopped into large bite size pieces. Set 1 cup of onions aside, place the rest of the onions in the bottom of your roasting pan. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2) Take turkey out of its wrapper seems easy but this is actually kind of an acquired skill, our turkey had his legs in the plastic clamp thingy that took us 10 minutes to undo, so keep that in mind when planning prep time.  You have to remove things from the neck and the bottom cavities. It can be a bit gross.

3) Place your turkey on the onions to let it rest.  In  a large pot on medium heat, place 4 tablespoons of butter and add the vegetables. You just want to soften them for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add stuffing mix and vegetable both. Mix thoroughly.

4) Stuff half of the poultry herbs in the cavity, then place the stuffing in it. Leave room for the stuffing to expand while cooking. Place the rest of the stuffing in an oven safe dish.

5) Use cotton twine and tie the legs together. Then take the remaining butter and rub all over the turkey. ALL OVER. It will be quite intimate but that is okay. It will be worth it. Next lightly salt, and pepper the bird. Then sprinkle the lemon pepper all over the bird.

6) Place the turkey in the oven for ONE HOUR. LEAVE IT ALONE. Do not open the oven, to look at it.  It will be fine.

7) Now for the next 1.5-2 hours, baste it everywhere every 15 minutes. EVERYWHERE. Do not skimp. I set a timer and then made a tick mark every time I basted the turkey. You want to roast it till the inside temperature is 165 degrees. Make sure your meat thermometer is NOT touching the bone. I like to slide it in parallel to the leg in the meaty part.

8) Once it has reached 165, let it rest for 30 minutes before carving the bird. Wish I could help you with carving part but I am still unsure. Maybe next year.







So do you have any funny Thanksgiving stories? How was your first turkey?


  1. The only thing I would add to this is to sprinkle the lemon pepper with a liberal hand.... this household doesn't skimp on spices.
    Great post as always,


  2. I have no critique of your potluck! The turkey was soo delicious, as was all the other food. Thank you so much for hosting!

  3. I just found your blog and I LOVE IT! I have been wondering how to do this, so thank you for talking me into it!

    Would love for you to stop by my little piece of the blogosphere. I am doing a fun giveaway here is the link:

    xoxo Linds

  4. Looks wonderful, I love that you named him after the turkey on The New Girl, hilarious!

  5. Hi Katy, thanks for sharing how to cook a turkey. I'm sure there are still a lot of your women who have never cooked one and don't have a clue. I have recently found your blog and am now following you, and will visit often. Please stop by my blog and perhaps you would like to follow me also. Have a wonderful day. Hugs, Chris


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