Experts with the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line are standing by to answer any questions you may have about how to prepare the main dish for your Thanksgiving meal. Amy Roska has been dishing out cooking advice for seven years. She says the bird should be baked breast side up.
“If you try to roast it breast side down, it’s very wobbly. It’s going to tip in your pan from one side to the other, and then most of those recipes require you to then flip a hot turkey midway through the cycle. If you’ve ever tried to flip a 24 pound, stuffed, hot turkey – not real easy, not real safe, and it also doesn’t give a real nice appearance to the breast,” Roska said.
One common mistake cooks make is leaving the turkey in the oven for too long and drying it out. Roska says this can be avoided by using a good quality meat thermometer to ensure it’s done.
“You can cook it just to the proper end temperature, which is 165 in the breast, 190 in the thigh. Then after you take it out of the oven and let it stand a few minutes, when you carve into it the juices will be flowing right out of that breast when you cut it.”
Another popular method of turkey prep is deep frying the bird. Roska says it is a quick and easy way to prepare it. However, there are a few things to consider.
“You have to do the gravy a different way, because obviously you aren’t going to have pan drippings. Or if you’re a stuffing fan you’ll have to do the stuffing on the side. But other than that it’s a great way, and it’s neat to try turkey a different way. It’s absolutely delicious.”
Experts are standing by at 1-800-BUTTERBALL or online at www.butterball.com to assist with any cooking questions you may have.