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42

If your stock turns to jelly in the fridge, it means you did it right! Simmering the bones breaks down the collagen and turns it into gelatin; that's the very essence of stock-making. The gelatin is exactly what you want from the stock; at low temperatures it has a very jelly-like consistency, but at higher temperatures it melts and provides a very rich ...


16

I suggest using a brine. Lots of brining details can be found in the answers to this question: What are the basics of brining meat? Alton Brown has a really great recipe for brined roasted turkey. You can watch the Good Eats excerpt on YouTube in which he covers brining turkey. I also suggest reading The Basics of Brining (PDF) from Cook's ...


12

The other answers touch on the fact that its the release of water from the turkey that interacts with the oil, causes the oil to overflow, and then ignite the burner. Generally, this happens pretty shortly after you put the turkey in (due do any moisture on the outside of the bird). To do it safely don't bank on the fact that you've removed all the water - ...


11

The meat for turkey bacon comes from the thigh of the turkey and can be cured or uncured, smoked, chopped, and reformed into strips that resemble traditional pork bacon. Source: Wikipedia article


11

My best guess is that your stock is very weak. Two gallons of water to just the bones from one turkey will not be a strong stock. It may well well have gelatin in it, but very thin. I make stock for a single turkey with the wing tips (not the 'drumstick' part), the back, the neck--everything but the breast and leg/thighs in with about 1 gallon of water to ...


11

As @Eric Hu notes, a dark roux is the way to go. It's interesting that he mentions Alton Brown, as it's his turkey gravy recipe I use. His recipe also uses red wine, which further darkens the gravy, richens it, and adds a fantastic flavor. I'd only change one thing: next time I'm going to make the roux and finish the gravy in a separate pan after deglazing. ...


10

Go get a $15 probe thermometer. There is really no point in cooking turkey or any other roast without one. The actual answer is- there is no good way without measuring the internal temperature. Any time-based approach will be a guess at best. The built in thermometer in some turkeys is a spring with some epoxy that melts a specific temperature. They are ...


10

I believe that I have made some of those conflicting comments. It is definitely possible to make an excellent pan gravy with the drippings from a brined turkey. It is also really easy to have the gravy turn out inedibly salty if you aren't careful. Make sure you follow the brining recipe. Don't have too high a concentration of salt and don't brine for too ...


9

It is possible to over brine meat. If you leave it in too long it will get too salty. If you use a more dilute brine it won't get as salty but you will wash out more of the natural flavor into the water as well. You could submerge your turkey in its packaging in ice water in a cooler for a day before brining. You could even thaw the turkey in this manner ...


8

We have been eating turkey burgers for years. The super secret is to not let them dry out while cooling. I take a pound of ground turkey, mixed 2 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 2 shakes garlic powder and 1/2 teaspoon of water. Then mix thoroughly by hand. After patty-ing them to 1/4 inch thick patties, I grill for about 5-6 ...


8

Not all turkeys are the same, and personally, I would not risk letting an entire turkey go rancid in the refrigerator. There is so much you don't know about this turkey: How was it butchered? In particular, how long was it sitting on the block and was it packed immediately afterward or left sitting out for a long time? How quickly was it cooled down to ...


8

I'll try to weigh on in this as much as possible with a non-authoritative answer: First of all, I simply can't state this emphatically enough: kashering is not brining! A kosher bird is not "pre-brined", and professional chefs who claim that it is are either misinforming their audiences or simply misinformed themselves. Kashering (sometimes called ...


8

If you heat some up, and add a little salt, does it taste good? Then its a successful stock. If you want it to be thicker/stronger, simmer it a while to reduce it. As SAJ14SAJ says, that's a fairly large amount of water vs. the amount of bones.


7

I've spatchcocked our turkey the past two years and will never go back to the usual way. It just cooks so much faster. The spatchcocking itself isn't to hard, although you do have to be willing to inflict a little violence on the turkey. I basically follow Mark Bittman's recipe. The video is located here. I do, however cook a larger bird. The time I did it ...


7

The best way to know if your bird is done is by checking the temperature of the thigh with a probe thermometer. You're looking for about 160 F. If you don't have a probe thermometer, and you're cooking a turkey, this might be the time to invest in one.


7

Short answer, if you trust the brining job of the manufacturer, you won't gain much by rebrining. In brining you're looking to get a certain amount of moisture "trapped" by the salt in the turkey, which they have, in essence, done for you already with the brining solution. However, that brining solution is usually injected rather than soaked in, so I ...


7

The purpose- as with any cooked meat- is to let the meat firm up so it doesn't release juices when you cut into it. In the case of a turkey it also helps to let it cool enough to not burn you when you are carving and eating it. Both of these goals will be met in 30 minutes to an hour. I don't know why that chef would recommend 3 hours. At that length of ...


7

If you're following a particular recipe to the letter, and it specifies tying the legs together, then you might want to consider it. Otherwise, I wouldn't bother. Trussing a bird will pull it together into a more compact shape, the reasoning for cooking being that it will cook more evenly if it's closer to a uniform spheroid shape, rather than having leg ...


7

Some ideas: Use a brown chicken/turkey stock. Classic poultry stock uses raw bones, but you can make a rich, brown stock using roasted bones. Be aware that it won't be as gelatinous as it would be with raw bones, so if you can, add some necks, backs, and if you can find them, feet. Add some tawny port, Madeira, or dry Marsala. In terms of technique: ...


7

Brining is a better solution as it gives you juicy meat and extra flavour. Steaming would result in rather a bland taste. Brining is essentially marinading the meat in a saltwater solution (usually with some extra flavourings like peppercorns etc) overnight. You then roast the meat as normal. Super juicy, super tasty results. There are lots of guides ...


7

Steaming generally doesn't make meat juicier -- it is just as easy to dry out a piece of meat with wet heat as it is with dry heat, if not easier. There are two things that you can do to make your turkey juicier. The first is a brine, which Elendil suggests above. The second is to make sure you aren't overcooking. I'd suggest using a probe thermometer and ...


6

I found this article really interesting. It covers a chef's attempts to make a turkey burger taste good. The recommendation is to puree some eggplant with it (to improve the moisture level), and add soy sauce, marmite and anchovies to make it taste good.


6

November 2010's Bon Appetit features a step-by-step for roasting a butterflied turkey. The stuffing is tucked under the skin. They do recommend having the butcher take out the backbone for you.


6

Lay a few pieces of bacon across the turkey while cooking. This essentially makes it self-basting as well. Edit by @SamtheBrand: See here for a recipe. Follow-up edit by Scivitri: Roasting a turkey is a complex, although usually fairly forgiving process. There are many, many recipes online, and all recipes are best followed as a loose guideline. ...


6

I can think of a couple options I would consider. Pre-cook the stuffing in a casserole dish the night before, then heat it in the oven towards the end of the bird's cooking time. Covered, you could probably leave it in the entire time the bird is cooking, but I don't think it would be necessary to reheat for that long. Cook the stuffing most of the way in ...


6

Many aromatic compounds are oil soluble, or need to be heated to really come out and 'open up.' Since brines I use are all water based, I've had some luck with heating, even briefly boiling dried spice components first, then cooling, adding the other ingredients, then using. Especially, don't boil vinegar or alcohol components, as they will lose potency. ...


6

Add a roux, ideally a dark roux, to your gravy. This is a standard French and Cajun (which is French-rooted) technique for giving color and body to sauces. Roux's are essentially butter or oil and flour, heated gently and stirred occasionally to cook the flour so that it darkens in color, but doesn't burn. The darker the roux, the less thickening ...


6

I am firmly in the "stuffing is evil" camp... but lets take that as read :-) If you absolutely must have in the bird stuffing, here is a link to a (I hope legal) excerpt of Alton Brown's Good Eats, showing his technique for doing turkey with stuffing: http://www.aol.com/video/alton-browns-turkey-with-stuffing/444711017/ He uses a food-safe cotton bag, ...


6

If you are saying you cannot get the oil hot enough during pre-heating: You may need a bigger burner than the one you are using. Most resources I've seen suggest over 100k BTU There may be something physically wrong with your setup (i.e., the vessel should be closer to the flame) The ambient temperature at the time of cooking was simply too cold for the ...



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