Roasting a Turkey

Step-by-step instructions for prepping a turkey for roasting.

Try this technique with Herb-Roasted Turkey with Mushroom Gravy.

roasting pan, twine, timer, and thermometer
STEP 1: Gather the essentials: large, deep roasting pan with a wire rack; butcher’s twine or any cotton string; timer; and meat thermometer.
loosening skin from turkey
STEP 2: Starting at the neck and working your way back, gently push your fingers under skin to loosen—but not totally detach—it from breast. Once you’ve seasoned the breast under the skin, gently pull skin back in place.
tucking turkey wings under breast
STEP 3: Gently pull wing up and back, and tuck them under the body of the bird. This prevents the wing from burning.
tying turkey legs together
STEP 4: Tie ends of turkey legs together with butcher’s twine. This helps the legs cook evenly.
testing a roasted turkey for doneness
STEP 5: To test for doneness, insert a meat thermometer into thickest portion of thigh. The turkey is done when thermometer registers 165°. Avoid the bone, as it will cause an inaccurate temperature reading.
turkey pan drippings
STEP 6: Pour the pan drippings into a glass measuring cup, and let stand for 10 to 15 minutes. The fat will rise to the top. Use a spoon to skim off most of fat, and use it to make the roux for gravy. Use the remaining drippings as the stock for gravy.

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