Tag Archives: How to Roast a Turkey

Free eBook: The Ultimate Thanksgiving Turkey Guide by gThankYou!

Free eBook- The Ultimate Thanksgiving Turkey Guide by gThankYou

Click Image to Download!

gThankYou! is excited to announce our free eBook, “The Ultimate Thanksgiving Turkey Guide”, the  perfect addition to help make your Thanksgiving Turkey a great success!

In this handy, straightforward guide, you’ll find everything you need to get started choosing, preparing and serving your Thanksgiving turkey.  Whether it’s a Butterball or a heritage bird that’s pre-brined, roasted or destined for the smoker, use this guide to streamline the centerpiece of your holiday feast.

Novice or seasoned pro, you’ll find useful tips and resources in this handy guide to successfully serving your Holiday Turkey.

Here’s a peek at our “Ultimate Thanksgiving Turkey Guide” Table of Contents:

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Part One: Getting Started

  • How Much Turkey Do I Need?
  • Fresh versus Frozen
  • Types of Turkey
  • A Thanksgiving Turkey Timeline
  • Prep Work
  • Two Ways to Brine

Part Two: Cooking the Turkey

  • Ways to Cook a Turkey & Cook Times:
    Roast
    Grill
    Smoke
    Deep Fry
  • A Word about Stuffing
  • Stuffing versus Dressing
  • Where Does the Thermometer Go?
  • What’s the Magic Number?

Part Three:  The Fine Points

  • How to Know When the Turkey is Done
  • How to Carve a Turkey
  • How to Make Gravy
  • A Word About Leftovers
  • Thanksgiving Tools of the Trade

Part Four: Helpful resources

  • Where to go for Help
  • Where to go for Turkey Recipes

Download your free copy now by clicking this link:
The Ultimate Thanksgiving Turkey Guide”

Please share this blog with friends and let us know how you like our new eBook. We hope you enjoy it!
The gThankYou! Team

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Gift Certificates and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are two of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand (Turkey or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Join the Conversation @gThankYou
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

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Thanksgiving Turkey – When is it Done?

The appointed hour has arrived: it’s time for you and dozens of your relatives and friends to gather around the dining room table, stretched out to its full capacity for the most celebrated meal of the year –Thanksgiving. But, like a weary child from the backseat during a cross-country trip, one question nags at you: Are we there yet? Am I sure the turkey’s done?

gThankYou! Turkey in the Oven PhotoFor cooks who are afraid of disappointing all their aunts, uncles and cousins on a national holiday, here is a quick list of tell-tale signs that your Thanksgiving turkey is ready for its grand entrance.

  1. It’s golden brown.
    The skin of the turkey often browns early in the baking process, so this alone won’t tell you it’s done, but it’s a delicious indicator that you’re getting closer.
  2. It has baked for the recommended time, at the recommended temperature.
    This is one case when reading the directions will save all kinds of heartache (and tummy aches!). Your turkey likely came with specific instructions on thawing and cooking the bird. If not, the USDA has a handy website on safely cooking Turkey which you can check out.
  3. It wiggles.
    When you gently pull on the end of the drumstick, the turkey leg will wiggle easily, with almost no resistance. If you have to force the drumstick away from the body of the bird, it’s not quite ready.
  4. The juices run clear.
    You’ve shaken hands with the turkey, now it’s time to give it a poke. Insert a knife at least an inch into the breast. When you remove it, look for lovely turkey juices to come bubbling up. If they are clear, that meat is cooked. If they are cloudy or pink, it’s still got some time in the oven. (Remember to drain off all those wonderful juices after you remove the turkey from the pan – they are a great base for gravy!)
  5. It’s feeling the heat.
    Some turkeys come with built-in “pop-up” thermometers, which should tell you when the internal temperature of the bird has reached 165°. Even if your turkey has its own plastic gauge, it’s a good idea to invest in an instant-read meat thermometer, just to double-check. Insert the tip of the meat thermometer in the thigh muscle just above the lower part of the thighbone (but not touching the bone!). In about 15 seconds you’ll have a definitive answer.

And as anxious as everyone is to dig in, you’ll be even more thankful that you let the turkey rest for at least 20 minutes after you took it out of the oven. Set it on a heat-proof surface and drape it with a tent of aluminum foil, while you get all the accoutrements ready to serve. The turkey will be juicier and also, easier to carve.

So now that you know it’s done. . .the only big question left is, “who’s going to do the dishes?”

About gThankYou, LLC

gThankYou! Turkey Gift Certificates are one of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand whole Turkey, at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S. 

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo, and ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.  Follow the company blog “Celebrating Work” at blog.gthankyou.com.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

9 Great Tips for Roasting Turkey

How to Roast the Best Tasting Turkey for Thanksgiving

Okay, Thanksgiving Day is finally here! The shopping is done, the relatives are on their way, and the table is set. Time to focus on the dinner centerpiece – the turkey. In the past few years, home cooks have tried lots of variations on cooking the Thanksgiving Turkey – barbecuing, smoking, deep frying – but most of us still put it in the oven to bake.

What’s the secret to a well roasted turkey? What are the steps you need to follow for a flavorful, juicy main dish?

gThankYou! Roast Turkey Picture

Well, we’re glad you asked. . .

1.  De-icing dinner.
First, thaw your bird completely. Not mostly. Not part way. All the way. You can thaw it in the fridge for a few days – up to four, depending on the size of your turkey. What if you don’t have four days? Well, you can cover your (still wrapped) turkey with cold tap water in the sink, changing the water every half hour. It will take about 30 minutes per pound to thaw.  As a worst case scenario, you can also thaw your bird in the microwave (be sure it fits!). Check the owner’s manual for what setting you should use, and for how long.

2.  Rinse, remove, and season.
Once the turkey is thawed, rinse it thoroughly with cold water – inside and out. Make sure you remove the bag of giblets from the cavity, but don’t throw them away! In a small saucepan, boil the neck, heart, gizzard, etc. until they are fully cooked. Then strain and use the broth as the base for your gravy! (You can give the meat to your pet or chop them and add them gThankYou! Butter in the Turkey Phototo your gravy for giblet gravy).  Season the turkey with salt and pepper and rub soft butter in the cavity. Then loosen the skin on the breast and push some butter (and herbs if you like!) into the pocket.

3.  To truss or not to truss?
Trussing your turkey is not required, but it can make the turkey look better, cook more evenly, and carve more easily. Most commercial turkeys come with a metal loop that brings the drumsticks together, and that will accomplish most of these objectives. If you want to use kitchen string to be more fancy, check out Food Network.com’s Alton Brown’s tutorial here.

4.  What Temperature?
There are competing opinions on whether to roast at a high temperature for the first half hour to get a nice brown skin, and then lower it (no lower than 325°F) for the remainder of the cooking time, or keep the oven at a nice medium temperature for the duration. In our opinion, 350 – 400°F is probably the best temperature for cooking a whole bird.

5.  How long?
Depending on the size of your bird and whether it’s stuffed, it should take anywhere from 3-6 hours to roast.  (See chart below.)
gThankYou! Turkey with Thermometer
Always use a meat thermometer to ensure that the internal temperature has reached a minimum of 165 °F.  Many like their bird at 180 °F.

Approximate Roasting Times for Stuffed Turkey

Turkey Weight

Hours

6 to 8 pounds 3 to 3-1/2 hours
8 to 12 pounds 3-1/2 to 4-1/2 hours
12 to 16 pounds 4-1/2 to 5-1/2 hours
16 to 20 pounds 5-1/2 to 6 hours
20 to 24 pounds 6 to 6-1/2 hours

Approximate Roasting Times for Unstuffed Turkey

Turkey Weight

Hours

6 to 8 pounds 2-1/2 to 3 hours
8 to 12 pounds 3 to 4 hours
12 to 16 pounds 4 to 5 hours
16 to 20 pounds 5 to 5-1/2 hours
20 to 24 pounds 5-1/2 to 6 hours

6.  Butter the bird!
Baste the bird with butter periodically while cooking to ensure brown crispy skin. (Terrible for you, but fabulous to eat. It’s the holidays after all!) But be sure not to open the oven door too often, so you can maintain an even temperature.

7.  Get stuffed.
It may be tradition, but current thinking is it’s not a good idea. . . Baking stuffing in your turkey can lead to all sorts of holiday misery – namely salmonella – if you don’t cook it until you’ve reached an internal temperature of at least 165°F.  So be careful, be vigilant, and be safe. Or, just cook the stuffing in a separate roasting pan.

8.  Give it a rest.
Let your turkey rest for at least 20 minutes after you take it out of the oven. That will let it cool just enough so all of the juices will settle back into the meat, instead of running all over your cutting board when you carve it.

9.  Deglaze!
Don’t waste the juices and brown bits the bottom of the pan! Pour them all into your gravy separator (or a tall, skinny container). Let the fat rise to the top, skim it off, and use that broth as the base of your gravy. Brown bits stuck to the roasting pan? Pour a little white wine in the pan and stir over medium heat. They will dissolve and add tons of flavor to any sauce!

And finally, as you serve your delectable main course to those who have gathered with you to give thanks, remember this: Thanksgiving comes every year. If things didn’t come out perfectly this time, you will have another shot at it. And another, and another, and another in the years to come. In the meantime, good gravy can cover a multitude of sins. Relax, be thankful and enjoy your turkey with family and friends.

About gThankYou, LLC

gThankYou! Turkey Gift Certificates are one of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand whole Turkey, at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S. 

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo, and ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.  Follow the company blog “Celebrating Work” at blog.gthankyou.com.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.