Thanksgiving Turkey doesn't have to be hard. Here are the tips, tricks, and techniques for making sure your bird is moist and flavorful.
Thaw your turkey. For every 5lb of turkey you should allow one day of thawing in the fridge. Thaw in the refrigerator on a pan with sides so any liquid is caught. Next, remove the giblets and neck from the frontal and rear cavities. Drain all liquid and pat the turkey dry. Sprinkle the outside and inside of the turkey with salt and pepper.
Place the rack of the roasting pan in the pan. If using a disposable pan, stack some veggies on the bottom such as celery or onion and place the turkey on top.
Make the herb butter. In a bowl, add the butter, olive oil, lemon juice, herbs (parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme), garlic, salt, and pepper. Mix until well combined.
Carefully separate the skin from the breast and rub 1/4 of the herb butter under the skin as far as you canin the pocket. Rub the remaining butter all over the skin, breast, legs, and wings. Tuck wings under so they don't burn.
Stuff turkey with the onion, lemon, garlic, and leftover herbs.
If time allows, allow your turkey to sit for an hour at room temperature before cooking to ensure even cooking. Preheat the oven to 425° F. and adjust the rack or take out racks so that your turkey can sit in the center of the oven.
Cook for 30 minutes at 425° F to get the skin crispy. You may add more time if you want it browner. Reduce heat to 350° F. Cover with a foil tent. A foil tent is loosely placed on top of the turkey so that it doesn't get too brown. Bake for 13 minutes per pound at 350 degrees F or until the thickest part of the thigh reads 165° F with a thermometer.
Remove the oven and allow turkey to sit, covered loosely with foil for one hour so that the juices can redistribute before slicing.