I’ll always remember my first Thanksgiving with Brandon when we were living in our first apartment together at the ripe old age of 20 and I didn’t really know how to cook anything except brownies. The turkey was the thing I most afraid of. I had always thought that cooking a turkey was so complicated and was surprised to find that it…wasn’t. I had much more problems with my stuffing which I completely ruined when instead of using a real actual onion (I think the only vegetables I cooked with back then were potatoes and tomatoes) I put in 1/2 cup (!!) of onion powder. You haven’t tasted onion until you put a 1/2 cup onion powder in something. To this day I really can’t use onion powder in anything, I think I used up my life quota of it.
But anyway, I think anyone can make a turkey. As long as you keep an eye on it and baste it regularly, there isn’t much thought or work involved. And the end product is almost always impressive looking and something that you can feel proud of cooking. Even though I didn’t really start cooking regularly until I started this blog, I always made thanksgiving dinner every year. It’s my favorite meal of the year, and up until recently it was the only time I enjoyed cooking. And I think now that I actually do enjoy cooking, Thanksgiving has become better than ever.
That’s why I decided to participate in this contest this year. I mean, it would be nice to win some extra cash, but I don’t care that much about that. I’ve made the exact same Thanksgiving dishes every year since that first time 8 years ago and I had so much fun this year challenging myself to find new and different things to make. (Plus I get to have two Thanksgivings!)
That’s why I chose this recipe for Turkey. My usual Thanksgiving turkey is just covered with butter and some seasoning, so this glaze was a whole different direction for me. And I have to say, this produced the moistest, tenderest turkey I have ever had. When we made that first cut (please excuse my butchering skills, which are pretty much nill), the juices underneath the skin practically gushed all over the counter. I think the only thing I missed from my previous turkey was the crispy skin, which you can’t really get from using a glaze like this. But the skin is bad for you anyway, right? And the glaze seemed to help seal in moisture and flavor much more than oil or butter can. It’s definitely one of the best turkeys I’ve ever made.
I’ll be back on Monday with dessert, it was a total experiment and it turned out to be my favorite cheesecake ever! If you’re looking for more Thanksgiving goodness, don’t forget to check out my other two posts from this week:
- Thanksgiving Side Dish Mania: Cranberries, Squash and Casseroles
- Springsgiving and Sweet Potatoes Galore: Soup, Rolls and Mash
Honey Roasted Turkey
adapted from Back to the Cutting Board
Dinner | Servings: 8-10
Prep time: 10 min | Cook time: 4 hour 30 min | Total time: 4 hour 50 min
The original recipe I got this from was actually for cornish hens, so if you want to try this on a smaller scale and see how you like it, halve the recipe and use it on 4 cornish hens instead.
- 1 whole turkey (10-12 lbs.)
- 1 cup butter, melted
- 1 cup honey
- 1/2 cup dijon mustard
- 2 tsp. salt
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees (F).
- Rinse turkey, discard the giblets and then place in a roasting pan.
- Mix together butter, honey, mustard and salt.
- Pour over turkey.
- Bake turkey for 1 hour, basting ever 15 minutes with butter-honey mixture. Cover with foil and bake for 2 1/2 – 3 1/2 hours, continuing to baste regularly, or until meat thermometer inserted in the thigh reads 180-185 degrees (F). Let sit at least 10 minutes before carving.