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Mahogany Apple Roasted Turkey

To Rinse, Or Not To Rinse......

Everybody thinks that the skin is slimy on every turkey, and that is why they rinse it. If you have slimy skin then I highly suggest you discard it and buy another. Although wet, slippery, rubbery and weird feeling, it is understandable how the word slimy sneaks its way into these adjectives(guess schoolin' does pay off).

There are two main reasons why rinsing is not the best idea. First and foremost is that you are far more likely to spread contamination with water splashing, even if you are very careful. Not that your turkey is contaminated, but the juice that may fly every which way will certainly turn into campylobacter, salmonella or other food-borne illnesses if not cleaned. But first you have to find every droplet.

And secondly, by rinsing, you truly are water-logging the skin, regardless if you pat it dry or not. This severely diminishes the skin from crisping up in a way that we have been enjoying for eons.

As you will notice in the recipe below, we are roasting the turkey for a while before we even think about putting any liquid to it.

This is my all time favorite way to prepare turkey without a marinade. The skin and outer layer of meat is a dark mahogany color without drying it out. And when done, the flavor that gathers in the bottom of the pan adds so much distinction to your gravy, it is beyond description. So I will stop right here and get to cooking.

Ingredients

For 8 people

Recipe

  • 1/4 cup(s) soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup(s) molasses
  • 1/4 cup(s) apple cider or juice
  • 1 (12-14-pound)whole turkey
  • Salt and black pepper as desired
  • 2 (15-ounce)cans chicken or turkey broth

Mahogany Apple Roasted Turkey Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375-degrees F. Combine soy sauce, molasses and apple cider in a bowl; set aside. DO NOT RINSE TURKEY! Remove giblets, heart and neck; set aside. Place turkey, breast side up, on a rack that has been placed in a shallow roasting pan. If you don't have a rack that fits, simply take an all metal, large spoon and place it in the pan, setting the turkey on top in order to lift it up from the bottom of the pan. Season to taste with salt and pepper. See NOTE.
  2. Insert meat thermometer(if using) into the meaty portion of the thigh without touching a bone, closest to where the thigh meats the breast. Bake 45 minutes, uncovered. Begin basting the turkey every 15 minutes with soy mixture.
  3. Meanwhile, place the giblets, heart and neck into a saucepan along with broth. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce to low, cover and simmer for 1 hour. Strain into another saucepan, discarding turkey remnants;set aside.
  4. After 2 additional hours of roasting turkey, or when the thermometer reads 180-degrees F, remove from oven to cool slightly before transferring to a platter, covering tightly with foil to keep warm. Scrape any liquid from the pan through a sieve into the prepared broth. Thicken for your gravy and serve.
  5. NOTE: I avoid using salt on top of turkey because, as you may know, salt has the ability to draw moisture out of any protein and vegetable, drying it out. And besides, don't we use enough salt in our daily diet to begin with?
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