Difficulty – Medium
Servers – 8 to 10
1 – 13 lb young turkey, thawed
Dr. Scott’s Turkey Schmear
1/3 cup shortening
2 tbsps olive oil
1 tsp onion powder
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp poultry seasoning
¼ tsp kosher salt
¼ tsp black pepper
Remove the wrapping as well as the bag of innards from your turkey. Rinse and pat dry. In a small bowl, mix ingredients for the turkey schmear.
On a large flat service, take two large lengths of wide, heavy-duty foil, about 3 feet long. Lay them on top of each other, and fold the long edge over twice, about ½ an inch each time, to make a seam. Then open the two. You should now have a large square of foil. Take a third piece of foil, and lay it over the seam. Place the turkey in the center of the foil.
To prep the turkey, we fold the wings back, and then proceed to generously rub the exterior of the bird with the turkey schmear. If not stuffing the bird, you can remove the large pieces of fat at the rear and front of the bird. With kitchen twine, we tie the legs together.
Once the turkey is prepped, we carefully pull the foil up around the bird. It will resemble a foil bowl. Take a fourth piece of foil, and place it at the top. We then will carefully crimp the foil together to make a sealed packet, so that the bird can steam in its own juices.
Place the foil encased bird in a heavy bottomed roasting pan. At this point it can be refrigerated, or it is ready for the oven.
Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. A 13-pound bird cooks for right at 2 hours according to our method. After 1 hour and 40 minutes, remove the bird from the oven and remove the top piece of foil and push the sides back to allow the bird to brown. Be careful when opening it initially as a plump of steam will be released. Return the turkey to the oven for another 20 minutes to let it finish cooking and get nicely browned. A digital thermometer is your friend, and you are looking for 165 degrees in the center of the breast.
Once the bird has reached 165 degrees, remove it from the oven, and let it rest for about 20 minutes before carving. The beauty of this method is the minimal cleanup and all the wonderful juices which have collected in the bottom of your foil “bowl”, just waiting to make fabulous gravy!
Cooking Times – 450 degrees
Unstuffed – 8 to 10 minutes per pound
Stuffed – 10-12 minutes per pound