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Fresh Turkey, How to cook?
Old 11-13-2016, 08:31 PM   #1
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Fresh Turkey, How to cook?

We will be cooking up a Fresh Turkey this year. We are used to cooking the frozen pre-basted (injected) turkeys.

does anyone have any suggestions?
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Old 11-13-2016, 08:54 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by HadEnuff View Post
We will be cooking up a Fresh Turkey this year. We are used to cooking the frozen pre-basted (injected) turkeys.

does anyone have any suggestions?
I'd be brining that birdie. And I suggest going to see how Alton Brown does it:

Good Eats Roast Turkey Recipe : Alton Brown : Food Network
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Old 11-13-2016, 09:01 PM   #3
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I just coat the bird with butter prior to putting it in the oven... make a foil tent to keep the steam and juices in the bird... and baste regularly with the juices from the bird.

I've read that brining is good... but my birds come out great, so I don't mess with success.
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Old 11-13-2016, 10:25 PM   #4
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Be sure to kill it first otherwise it's really hard to get it in the oven...
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Old 11-14-2016, 05:28 AM   #5
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Be sure to kill it first otherwise it's really hard to get it in the oven...
I don't think it will be quite THAT fresh, but I'll keep that tip in mind.

I'll see if the cooks are up to the brining. Otherwise we will likely go with
Rodi's method.

Thanks!
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Old 11-14-2016, 05:32 AM   #6
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Why does one cook a non-frozen turkey differently than a frozen one, if the frozen one is thawed first?
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Old 11-14-2016, 05:44 AM   #7
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Why does one cook a non-frozen turkey differently than a frozen one, if the frozen one is thawed first?
My only real question revolved around the fact that it's not "pre-basted", i.e. not injected with a bunch of stuff to make it juicier than normal.

I forgot to mention also that it is a "free-range, organic" bird. We are eating at my daughter's and she is into this kind of thing, but my wife will be in charge of the cooking. Since she's always done the frozen "pre-basted" birds, I thought there might be a difference in how to prepare it.
I doubt we'll have time to brine it, though.

We won't be frying it, but I have in the past, fried turkeys. Prior to frying, we always injected it with some sort of flavoring solution. I was wondering if anyone has tried something like this with a fresh bird.
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Old 11-14-2016, 05:50 AM   #8
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Ah, thanks for the explanation. I do some cooking, but never handle a Thanksgiving turkey (my wife's job), so did not realize the difference in "pre-basting".

Hmmm... Can one inject a fresh bird himself? Would that be feasible or desirable?
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Old 11-14-2016, 05:55 AM   #9
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Ah, thanks for the explanation. I do some cooking, but never handle a Thanksgiving turkey (my wife's job), so did not realize the difference in "pre-basting".

Hmmm... Can one inject a fresh bird himself? Would that be feasible or desirable?
Yes, one can inject. I still have the injector from the turkey frying days. IT's just a big gauge syringe. You can buy flavored injecting solutions, or make up something with broth, oil, liquified herbs, etc. I may bounce the idea off of the cook, but I have to tread lightly, lest I become in charge of the operation.
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Old 11-14-2016, 05:55 AM   #10
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I'd inject it myself with some blend of spices, then I'd coat with olive oil/spices. Finally, I highly recommend the turkey oven bags. Keeps the bird moist and no basting required.
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Old 11-14-2016, 06:02 AM   #11
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One thing I have done that works really well is to get some good ground sausage, then lift the skin all around the top of the turkey and stuff it with the sausage. Lots of "juicy" and VERY tasty.....
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Old 11-14-2016, 06:03 AM   #12
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Hmmm... Maybe bacon?
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Old 11-14-2016, 06:53 AM   #13
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I used to get my turkeys at Diestel turkey ranch when I lived close enough to drive there and pick up the turkey. Here is their turkey roasting instructions for fresh turkey.

https://diestelturkey.com/roasting-instructions/
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Old 11-14-2016, 07:39 AM   #14
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Here's the family roast turkey recipe -

Rub stuffed & tied turkey with butter

Put uncovered in hot oven (425 degrees) for approx 1 hour until browned. Baste frequently with basting liquid:

- 1 1/2 Cups Burgundy
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 stick butter

When nicely brown, cover with foil. Crimp foil around edge of pan tightly but try to keep it loose over the top of the bird. Lower temp to 325. Return covered bird to oven and cook approximately 3-3.5 hours for 18-20# turkey.
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Old 11-14-2016, 07:43 AM   #15
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Smoked Buttermilk Brined Turkey for Thanksgiving - Smoking Meat Newsletter

Simply amazing. You don't have to purchase the recipe for the rub mentioned in this link, substitute any rub you enjoy. I use only salt and pepper.
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Old 11-14-2016, 07:52 AM   #16
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I go to foodnetwork.com when I want culinary inspiration. And I see Bon Appetit has some Thanksgiving information including recipes (duh): Thanksgiving Central | Bon Appetit
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Old 11-14-2016, 07:59 AM   #17
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Open YouTube and search for "roast turkey". You will find scores of how-to videos, including many high quality ones from well known chefs.
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Old 11-14-2016, 08:02 AM   #18
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frying a fresh turkey is good too
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