Have you heard the news about the best cooking idea for Thanksgiving 2015?
Wolfgang Puck says to make a delicious and simple gravy do the following:
Roast your turkey on top of sweet potatoes. Wolfgang Puck says he roasts his turkey for 55 minutes, which is the perfect amount of time for roasting sweet potatoes. However, he must be roasting a really small bird because most turkeys weigh over 8 pounds and require a longer roasting time.
To make the gravy, pour the leftover roasting liquid into a blender and add one of the cooked sweet potatoes (without skin and cut into cubes). You can then season the gravy with chopped fresh herbs such as rosemary, thyme, or sage and a splash of wine or sherry. Keep chicken broth on hand in case the gravy needs extra liquid.
Roasting Times for Unstuffed Turkey
Add half hour for stuffed turkey
Weight 325 Degree Roasting Time
8-12 1.5 - 2.5 hours
12-14 2.5 - 3 hours
14-16 3 - 3.75 hours
16-18 3.75 - 4 hours
18-20 4 - 4.5 hours
20-25 4.5 - 5 hours
25-30 4.5 - 6 hours
Note that the USDA timetables for roasting turkey show longer cooking times (about 1/2 hour longer for each weight category). Cooking times vary depending on oven temperature variations and where you live. Above 2,500 feet, the atmosphere becomes much drier. The air has less oxygen and atmospheric pressure, so cooking takes longer. Moisture quickly evaporates from everything.
That's why it's important to use a meat thermometer.
- What size turkey should you buy? 1.5 pounds per person to allow for plenty of leftover turkey sandwiches! (Otherwise, one pound per person)
- I thought my turkey was fresh so why does it feel frozen? Fresh turkeys feel hard on the outside because they are chilled to 28 degrees for safe shipping. Only the outer part is in fact hard, not the entire turkey. However, frozen turkeys are stored at 0 degrees.
- Make sure you have a meat thermometer. There are oven-safe thermometers designed to remain in the bird while it's cooking in the oven. Other types include: oven cord thermometers, instant read thermometers and pop-up timers.
- You'll need water or broth for roasting the turkey. I recommend using a low sodium organic chicken broth.
- You can thaw a turkey in the kitchen sink, submerged in cold water in the original packaging. Change the cold water every 30 minutes. For a fresh turkey that feels hard, thaw between 1 and 4 hours. For a fully frozen turkey, allow 30 minutes per pound. After the bird is thawed, store it in the fridge in the original packaging.
- You can thaw a turkey in the fridge: a) 8-12 pounds requires 2 to 3 days b) 12-16 pounds requires 3 to 4 days c) 16-20 pounds requires 4 to 5 days d) 20-24 pounds requires 5 to 6 days.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees
- Remove neck and giblets from the cavity. Rinse out cavity with cold water
- Rinse bird with cold water and pat dry
- Never stuff a turkey the night before as this can encourage bacterial growth. Stuff just before cooking or better yet, cook stuffing separately.
- Place turkey in pan, breast side up. Add 2 to 4 cups of water or broth into bottom of pan.
- Insert meat thermometer into the thigh making sure the tip is not in contact with the bone.
- Oven temperatures vary, so roasting temperatures are approximate
- Use a thermometer to check doneness: 165 - 170 degrees in thigh
- Begin checking for doneness 1/2 to 1 hour before the end of the recommended roasting time for birds weighing less than 14 pounds. Turkeys weighing more than 14 pounds, check for doneness at 3.5 hours.
- Tent foil loosely over turkey when the skin turns golden brown. Do NOT seal the foil around the pan.
- Allow turkey to rest 30 minutes before carving. This will allow juices to flow into the meat.
Happy Turkey Day! Please remember not to overstuff yourself!!
Enjoy this video courtesy of the American Heart Association: http:/https://youtu.be/xnJliQJ3M_k
For a healthy holiday gift, check out my book: Beyond The Mediterranean Diet: European Secrets Of The Super-Healthy.