Slow Roasted Turkey

If you’re like me and you only roast a turkey once or twice a year, it can be hard to remember how to get your bird to turn out perfectly every time. Follow a few helpful hints so your Thanksgiving turkey will be golden brown and gorgeous but most importantly moist and juicy.
Allow plenty of time for the bird to thaw, 2-4 days in the refrigerator or roughly 24 hours for every 5 pounds. You can also thaw it in a tub of cool water changing the water frequently to hasten the process, this will go faster but you will need to allow 12-24 hours for the turkey to thaw completely.
Once thawed, wash the turkey with water and pat him dry.
Rub the turkey down with olive oil and salt the outside generously.
Stuff the turkey cavity with more salt and plenty of vegetables and aromatics, I like to use an onion, celery, carrots, rosemary, thyme, even a cut up orange if you like.
Roast the turkey in a 325 degree oven uncovered until the thickest part of the thigh or breast registers 165 degrees on a reliable meat thermometer. Using a meat thermometer is the BEST way to ensure a juicy turkey because you won’t overcook it.
This is a slow roasting method so there is no need to baste the turkey. When you baste, you deregulate the oven temperature, it can drop as much as 150 degrees while open, creating hot spots and making cooking time longer and less reliable.
A 16-18 pound turkey will take approximately 3 ½-4 ½ hours to roast.
Once done, let the birds sit at room temperature 15-20 minutes before carving to perfection.
Follow this guide and your turkey will definitely be the star of the show!

About Lorie Fangio

I am a lifestyle advisor with a passion for connecting families Around the Table for mealtime. We are becoming a society that doesn’t even speak to each other, texting and internet relationships are the norm and it is impacting our culture. I believe the human connection as we know it, is in danger. Finding time to spend together as a family unit can be difficult especially with dual family careers and children that are often hyper scheduled. My mission is to inspire families, with a no nonsense approach to real food. Gathering Around the Table is key to the foundation of familial relationships. Sitting down to a meal is much more than breaking bread, it is a bonding ritual for families that actually protects our kids from all the dangerous stuff in the world. With tips and techniques we can all get our families Around the Table!
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4 Responses to Slow Roasted Turkey

  1. Gary Abshire says:

    Great advice because in this fast food world full of chicken strips, it’s imaginable that people don’t know how to safely prepare a turkey. Great share of information!

  2. Jane Bennett says:

    Lorie —

    USA Today had an article on preparing your turkey to avoid spreading salmonella – two things you suggested are “no-no’s” in their eyes:

    Do not defrost the turkey in water – 2-3 days in the refridge or cook frozen.

    Do not wash the turkey. They said that comes from the days when there were still feathers and blood when the turkeys arrived from the farmers. These days the turkeys are much better processed and we’re more likely to spread germs from the water that splashes around the counter from the sink…

    Anyway, you’re an authority and people will listen to you – thought you’d want to know what the “experts” are saying. You’ may be able to retrieve the article (I think it was in last week) if you want to see al the details — or just check on one of the turkey hotlines…


    • loriefangio says:

      Hi Jane
      Thanks for sharing that information!
      Absolutely we do have to be concerned with salmonella poisoning so it is imperative that you be very careful and disinfect any surface that comes in contact with the raw meat.
      The BEST way to thaw your turkey is in the refrigerator, however, often folks do not allow enough time.
      I suggest that the tub of water be place far away from any fresh food and be disinfected when done.
      For a delicious turkey, I do not suggest cooking it frozen. Cooking frozen meat makes it practically impossible to cook the meat to desired temperature without overcooking it and drying it out. I would welcome feedback from anyone that has had experience cooking a frozen bird.
      The food and drug administration no longer recommends washing chicken before cooking in an effort to hold down the spread of salmonella. It is perfectly satisfactory to cook a turkey without washing it.
      For a nice golden brown bird, do pat him dry before seasoning.

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