I saw a turkey in the freezer the other day and knew right away that is what I wanted to eat. The only problem was I had to way for it to thaw! Oh boy, it was so worth the wait! Every now and then, I just have to have turkey. It seems I always associate turkey with a holiday.
The smell of turkey throughout the night and into the morning as the day begins. My Darling Daddy would set the clock for midnight, wake up and put the turkey in the oven, having it all set to go in the fridge. It was an amazing turkey but I prefer to cook mine just before I eat it. Sometimes I brine it but today it went straight into the oven with a lemon, lemon basil, thyme, onion and margarine…Can you say YUM?! I hope you enjoy it, we did!
Moist and Flavorful Roasted Turkey
- 1 12 lb. turkey
- 1 stick margarine, very cold and sliced
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more for sprinkling
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper (to your taste), more if desired for sprinkling
- 2 teaspoon dried thyme, more for sprinkling
- 6 to 10 lemon basil leaves
- handful of garlic cloves, peeled and lightly crushed or head of garlic,cut in half
- 1 lemon, halved
- 1 small onion, quartered
- spray or melted margarine to baste, if needed
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Remove neck and giblets from cavities of turkey. Save to make gravy, if you wish.
Rinse turkey and pat dry.
Sprinkle salt, pepper and thyme inside of turkey cavities, body and neck.
Place garlic, lemon and onion pieces inside turkey.Cut cold margarine into thin slices.
Mix salt, thyme and pepper in a small bowl.
Press margarine slices into salt mixture.Fit your hand under skin of turkey and place slices of margarine between skin and meat.Saving a few to rub the skin with.Put lemon basil leaves under skin and on top of meat of turkey.Rub remaining margarine slices on skin, squeeze half a lemon over the turkey.Sprinkle salt, thyme and pepper if desired.
Put in a roaster and cook in preheated 350 degree oven for 45 minutes.Baste with drippings, if any. If not, spray or brush with margarine.Continue to baste every 30 minutes.It should be done in 2 hours 15 to 30 minutes or 20 minutes per pound.
Mine was done in 2 hrs. 20 minutes. Liquid should be clear when pierced in meaty part of thigh and drumstick move easily. Temperature should be 175 to 180 degrees in the thickest part of thigh without touching bone. Let sit for at least 15 minutes before carving. Save juices in pan to serve over turkey as it is or made into gravy.
First day. Very moist and oh so yummy! Second day…just as moist and more flavorful!