Updated: Nov 6
Mastering the art of roasting a turkey is one every family in North America grapples with each Thanksgiving. The week before Thanksgiving, online searches sky rocket with queries like "how to not over cook a turkey," "why does my turkey always turn out dry," and "how to not undercook a turkey." With such a big bird and an important meal resting on it turning out perfect, cooking a turkey a high-stakes culinary challenge that can leave even experienced cooks feeling the heat.
Chef Ted recommends breaking down the bird and cooking legs and thighs separate to the breast. Why? Cooking a breast the same as legs and thighs is difficult to cook the entire turkey properly. Something will be overdone, something else can be underdone. So, make it easy for yourself and break down the bird to cook each with the best method in mind.
Roasted Turkey Legs and Thighs Recipe
From Chef Ted's kitchen
2 tbs. butter, room-temperature
2 tbs. olive oil
1 tbs. rosemary, dried
1 tbs. thyme, dried
1 tbs. paprika
1 tsp. fresh garlic, minced
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Dry the legs with paper towels.
Place butter and olive oil in a small bowl.
Add rosemary, thyme, paprika, and garlic and mix until thoroughly combined.
Spread the mixture all over the meat.
Place in oven on the middle rack and cook for 20 minutes. *
After 20 minutes loosely cover the meat with aluminum foil, lower the temperature to 375 degrees and cook for additional 30-45 minutes or until a thermometer reads 165 degrees.
Set aside to rest. At this point you can salt the meat or wait until its removed from the bone to salt it.
*If you have a wire rack place it in the roasting pan first; if not you can bunch up some aluminum foil and place it the pan to mimic a wire rack.
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