Talkin' Turkey

I flew into Austin from Nashville on Tuesday morning and hit the ground running. I went straight from the airport to running errands, lunch with my in-laws and the grocery store.
Let's talk about lunch first, shall we? We stopped at Pieous, which is a small family run restaurant that specializes in Neapolitan style pizza and it is absolutely divine! The crust gets perfectly charred in their wood burning oven and most of the toppings are made in house. This time we tried the Margherita with Pepperoni,  the Smoky Italian Pizza and the Choppy Salad. This is honestly some of the best pizza I have ever had. I realize that is a pretty big claim and I totally mean it. It will make you moan as you eat it with no shame. If you're ever in the middle of Austin and Dripping Springs, you have to check them out! And call me, cause I'll probably come meet you there.
After lunch we headed to the grocery. Having been gone for a few days and confirming with my mother in-law that not much food was ready to go at the house I tried to wing it as best I could at the store. I usually plan my meals around what's on sale at the time and this week, the "meal deal" was buy a ham get a turkey for free so that's what I did. I baked the ham with a dijon, brown sugar and peach jam glaze on it for everyone that night, made a huge pot of red beans and rice with the bone from the ham and put the turkey in the fridge to thaw .
For me, the best thing about a big Turkey dinner is the leftovers! Gumbo, soups, casseroles, sandwiches, the possibilities are endless on what you can turn the rest of your bird into. Most of the time during the holidays we are in New Orleans visiting family or we have visitors staying with us, so we really don't have a "typical" year. It's always just up in the air depending on Louis' work schedule and the kid's school schedule so I was excited to go ahead and make a turkey for us the way I wanted to and not have to share the leftovers!
I had pinned this recipe for Mayonnaise Roasted Turkey last year and was really excited to finally be able to try it out! I know it may sound strange to some people but I couldn't wait to see the finished product!
My bird was about 11 1/2 pounds and I pulled it out of the fridge 1 hour before I started to work with it. I pre-heated the oven to 450 degrees and started to make the rub. In a small food processor I combined :
1 1/2 cup mayonnaise
 the leaves from 3 sprigs of rosemary
the leaves from 3 sprigs of oregano
the leaves from 6 sprigs of thyme
3 cloves of garlic
the zest of 1 lemon
1 Tablespoon Kosher salt
1 Tablespoon black pepper
Blend these until smooth and spread on the outside, inside the cavity and in between the skin and the breast meat of the bird. Slice the lemon you zested in half and stuff it in the cavity along with a quartered onion and a stalk of celery
Place the bird in the oven, uncovered for 30 minutes, then tent the bird with foil, lower the heat to 350 degrees and allow to cook until an internal temp of 160 is reached (for me that happened in 1 hour and 45 minutes) Let the bird rest at least 30 minutes before slicing
 Holy Moly was this delicious! The house smelled amazing while it roasted and the meat was tender, juicy and perfectly seasoned. I didn't have to brine it for three days, I didn't have to stand in the cold by the smoker while it cooked and I had no fear of burning my house down from a huge turkey fryer! I call that success. How do you usually prepare your bird? I'd love to hear your tricks and tips!
 
 


Comments

  1. I've seen the commercials for putting mayo on chicken breasts, why not a turkey?!

    We deep fried a turkey one year, and vowed never again - so much time to wait for the oil to get to temperature, and having someone watch it the whole time it was cooking so as to not light the house on fire.

    I've downsized to doing a turkey breast, and no matter the temperature, will do it on the grill. I change it up every year - sometimes bbq sauce, sometimes a dry rub.

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    1. I think next time I will just do the breast Biz, that's a great idea!

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  2. Looks like you shoved the whole refrigerator in there! I'll have to try your recipe!

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  3. You're making me hungry, and I almost want to drive to TX now just for that pizza! Thanks for sharing the turkey recipe, I love the mayo idea, and those flavors are right up my ally. I have all the herbs and lemon growing in my garden!

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    1. the pizza is worth the drive, I promise!!

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  4. My daughter, abby, 13 yrs, is making her first turkey by herself tonight using this recipe. Her GS troop will easy it tomorrow at their Friendsgiving. Hope it's yummy!

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    1. Awesome!! I hope they love it as much as we did! If you ever need thyme and rosemary I have a ton of it growing so feel free to stop by and get some any time!

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