Author Topic: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?  (Read 14105 times)

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sparksals

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #90 on: November 07, 2013, 12:04:25 PM »
I'm pretty sure toots lives in the city in an apartment.  But I could be wrong


You're right.  Completely forgot about that.

Yep, no garage or backyard. *some* basement area, perhaps, but not sure about that. And steam heat, so the ambient temperature around the cooler won't be as cold as it might be for other people.

But all those tips about garage, flour, etc., may be useful for someone else!
And they could inspire me to think a little bit about how I could incorporate the *spirit* of the suggestion--like, I don't have a garage; but maybe I could use a cooler in the stall shower for a day or two, leaving that bathroom's window open to keep the room cool  and just make everybody shower in the other bathroom....


Best of luck!  I'm sure it will turn out great no matter what you decide to do.


peaches

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #91 on: November 07, 2013, 12:26:37 PM »
Yeah, I've read that too, that they don't brown. But they do. At least, all the turkeys I've cooked in those bags over the past ~30 years have.

I think that there's a lot of good ways to cook a turkey, as opposed to only one good way. I've never tried brining, or high heat or low heat or basting or or or.... etc. I'm sure they are all good methods though.

I have done the bag, plain ol' roasting in the oven with no bag, and grilling with indirect heat. Of those three, I liked the bag the best because it comes out moist, it browns and it produces a ton of drippings.

Grilling with indirect heat is my second favorite -- the bird comes out delicious. But alas, no drippings.

My MIL has always used an oven bag for turkey. And her turkeys do brown. They also are delicious!

As I recall, the oven bag shaves some time off of the cooking, also.

PastryGoddess

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #92 on: November 07, 2013, 04:00:01 PM »
I'm pretty sure toots lives in the city in an apartment.  But I could be wrong


You're right.  Completely forgot about that.

Yep, no garage or backyard. *some* basement area, perhaps, but not sure about that. And steam heat, so the ambient temperature around the cooler won't be as cold as it might be for other people.

But all those tips about garage, flour, etc., may be useful for someone else!
And they could inspire me to think a little bit about how I could incorporate the *spirit* of the suggestion--like, I don't have a garage; but maybe I could use a cooler in the stall shower for a day or two, leaving that bathroom's window open to keep the room cool  and just make everybody shower in the other bathroom....

You can brine overnight in the shower.  It's the drying out part that will take some time.  Wet skin means that your turkey won't brown..or will brown less than usual. 

TootsNYC

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #93 on: November 07, 2013, 04:10:26 PM »
I can fit the turkey into the fridge pretty easily--it was all the extra room you need for the brining solution that would crowd me too much.

and now I feel like I'm back where I started--too many options to consider for how to cook the turkey, which is what got me to pick the wrong one last time.

POF

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #94 on: November 07, 2013, 06:02:25 PM »
Ahhh Toots ! you are over thinking this ! I can tell from your posts that you are a bit fo a perfectionist ( and yes I am too so I see the signs )

1) I never brine my turkey -  Ican't imagine it would be a good thing for me to be attempting that ! (I KNOW I would make a  huge mess )

2) I use a butterball turkey which I think is already enhanced - so no need to brine.

3 )I stuff the cavity with onions, lemons, apple celery salt and pepper.  I butter up the outside, salt ands pepper and stick it in a preheated oven.

4) I let the turkey sit out for a bit to take the fridge chill out.

5 )Use a good roaster pan - not a foil pan ! Use a rack

6 )I cook at the temps on the packaging.  When the skin looks like its brown.   I stick a piece on top.  Note - every year I try to slide the foil in the oven - every year I get a really good burn to show off a dinner. You may want to try to avoid that :)

7) I take its temp and when it is done based on what I read on the web - I take out and let rest.  I carve in the kitchen and once or twice had the thigh undercooked. This is why I have a microwave ! No one knew.

8 )I buy some emergency gravy from the deli.  Its in the refrigerated section.   I use that if I mess up the gravy I make.  How about the time I wanted to sieve it so I could get out a few lumps ... yeah that works ONLY if you put a bowl in the sink.  I sieved my gravy DOWN the DRAIN !

9) Remember the thread - its about the memories and the company and the good times ..... the food will be great !

10) What time should I be there for the  practice session ! LOL




PastryGoddess

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #95 on: November 07, 2013, 07:08:49 PM »
I can fit the turkey into the fridge pretty easily--it was all the extra room you need for the brining solution that would crowd me too much.

and now I feel like I'm back where I started--too many options to consider for how to cook the turkey, which is what got me to pick the wrong one last time.

Tuesday night: Brine in a bucket. 
Wednesday morning: remove the turkey from the brine and put in fridge to dry out. Throw the brine solution away. 
Thursday: cook your turkey

TootsNYC

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #96 on: November 07, 2013, 07:10:58 PM »
Quote
7) I take its temp and when it is done based on what I read on the web - I take out and let rest.  I carve in the kitchen and once or twice had the thigh undercooked. This is why I have a microwave ! No one knew.


This is a good idea!

ShadowLady

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #97 on: November 07, 2013, 07:17:09 PM »

Tuesday night: Brine in a bucket. 
Wednesday morning: remove the turkey from the brine and put in fridge to dry out. Throw the brine solution away. 
Thursday: cook your turkey

This one sounds good.

Dindrane

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #98 on: November 07, 2013, 10:21:23 PM »
I totally swear by brining poultry, but if that sounds like more than you want to get into for this Thanksgiving, I suggest you skip it and cook the turkey in a way you're more familiar with. Do a practice run so you can get your timing down and practice your gravy-making, and then you'll be all set for T-Day.

One thing I will suggest, though, is finding a recipe for brining a whole chicken and trying that out sometime. It's way less commitment, way less space, and will give you an idea if you like the end product or not. If you do, you can try out a brined turkey the next time you make one, and if you don't, you've only had to eat a roast chicken. I'm guessing that your family of four would probably eat most (if not all) of a roast chicken in a single meal.

But seriously, I don't cover, baste, flip, or otherwise touch the bird when I roast a chicken or turkey I've brined. And it always comes out so fantastically juicy that our main topic of conversation while we eat it is how amazing and delicious it is. I get some drippings (although I don't know if it's a lot or a little, since I have no frame of reference), but I often make gravy by doing nothing more complicated than thickening no-salt-added vegetable or chicken stock.


TootsNYC

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #99 on: November 07, 2013, 10:24:25 PM »
I think doing a trial run w/ a chicken is probably a good idea.

(the one thing about "cook the turkey in a way you're more familiar with" is that I've really only cooked a turkey twice before--last year, when I didn't have the oven hot enough, and decades ago)

Dindrane

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #100 on: November 07, 2013, 10:27:53 PM »
Well, cook the turkey in a way that at least doesn't make you think, "Wow, that's complicated" the first time you read through the recipe. :)


TootsNYC

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #101 on: November 07, 2013, 11:04:35 PM »
Well, cook the turkey in a way that at least doesn't make you think, "Wow, that's complicated" the first time you read through the recipe. :)

LOL!

PastryGoddess

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #102 on: November 07, 2013, 11:14:40 PM »
Do you have a probe thermometer?  If not, I would say that's the single most important item when roasting a whole bird.  When roasting I think it's super important to get out of the way of the process and just let the bird cook.  After I put my bird in to cook I open the door twice.  Once to add foil to protect the breast (chicken)/ rotate (turkey) and again to take the bird out.  That's it.

TootsNYC

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #103 on: November 07, 2013, 11:40:43 PM »
I just bought one--it arrived today.


I'm worried about opening the oven door. Bcs the plan when I bought my oven years ago was to get one big enough to put several dishes in at once.

I guess I could add the other dishes when I rotate the bird.

sparksals

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Re: How sensible is it to practice for Thanksgiving?
« Reply #104 on: November 07, 2013, 11:48:12 PM »
I just bought one--it arrived today.


I'm worried about opening the oven door. Bcs the plan when I bought my oven years ago was to get one big enough to put several dishes in at once.

I guess I could add the other dishes when I rotate the bird.

Word of advice.  Don't interfere with the cooking of turkey.   If you have done everything ahead and it needs reheating, take out of fridge in plenty of time so they aren't too cold.  They can sit outside the fridge for a couple hours so they don't take too long to reheat. Once the bird is out, then put all the sides in the oven.   Cover bird tightly with heavy duty foil to let it rest at least 30 to 45 mins.  It will stay hot if you cover enough.   If you add the sides while the turkey is cooking, you will add more time to everything.  The bird will take longer and the sides will too.  Carve after it sits and don't peek while it rests.  The time it takes to carve and rest should be plenty for your sides if you place them properly in the oven. 
« Last Edit: November 07, 2013, 11:50:12 PM by sparksals »