Cookbook:Whole, Roasted Turkey with Stuffing
|Whole, Roasted Turkey with Stuffing|
Roast turkey usually forms the centerpiece of Thanksgiving in the United States. There are many recipes and methods for cooking whole turkeys. Below is one of the simplest and therefore one of the most traditional.
Cooking turkey and stuffing involves the risk of salmonella poisoning. To prevent this, cook the turkey to 185 degrees Fahrenheit and the stuffing to 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, avoid cross contamination by keeping raw turkey away from all foods and wash your hands thoroughly after handling it.
The most effective way to measure food temperatures is with a digital meat thermometer.
The roast turkey recipe below requires turkey stock. If you can't find pre-made stock in a store then you'll have to make it. You should know, however, turkey stock requires four hours of simmering. So make your stock the day before you make the turkey and stuffing. If you don't have the time to make turkey stock then use pre-made chicken stock which all supermarkets carry. However, don't use chicken stock cubes. They tend to be high in monosodium glutamate.
Here's a great recipe for turkey stock from the Food Network.
- 4 cups crumbled cornbread
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoon dried/rubbed sage
- 1 cup dried apples, diced
- 3/4 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/4 cup dried cherries, stemmed and finely chopped
- 8 egg yolks, beaten
- 1 stick butter, softened and whipped
- 2 1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken or turkey
- Combine ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
- Place the stuffing in the turkey cavity and cook it along with the turkey.
- Make sure the stuffing reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit before serving. If it doesn't, then scoop it out and bake it alone in the oven until it does.
- 1 (18 pound) whole turkey
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1 1/2 quarts home-made turkey stock or canned chicken stock
- salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the rack in the lowest position of the oven.
- Remove the neck and giblets.
- Rinse the turkey and pat it dry with paper towels.
- Place the turkey, breast side up, on a rack in the roasting pan. Rub the skin with softened butter, and season with salt and pepper.
- Fill the body cavity with stuffing.
- Place a meat thermometer in the thickest part of one thigh.
- Position an aluminum foil tent over the turkey.
- Place the turkey in the oven, and pour two cups of stock into the bottom of the roasting pan.
- Baste the entire turkey every 30 minutes with the juices on the bottom of the pan.
- Add stock to the drippings as they become dry, about one to two cups at a time.
- Remove aluminum foil tent after two and a half hours.
- Roast until the meat reaches 185 degrees Fahrenheit and the stuffing reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. This should take about 4 hours.
- Serve immediately.