I’ve eaten turkey on Thanksgiving for nearly every Thanksgiving of my life. And on that day, when I eat my Thanksgiving turkey, it has been dry. No amount of brining, juice injection, young turkey, free range turkey, farm-raised organic turkey has helped. It’s just the nature of the bird - it’s meant to be lean, and so, destined to be dry.
But destiny is what you make of it, and I’m choosing to make my turkey moist. A couple years ago, I saw an ad to cook your turkey in a bag and thought it was a brilliant idea. Then I saw a special on turkey fried in duck fat and nearly drooled to death. What if I put the two together?
Equation for moist turkey = turkey + bag + fat
I’m keeping this recipe as easy as I can because it’s not really the rub or the carrots or the smearing of butter on the skin that makes this turkey moist. It’s how you cook it - low and slow, sealed in a bag, and immersed in fat.
I flavored my turkey (13.5 pounds) according to whatever recipe I wanted to follow the day before roasting. I stuck the turkey into the turkey cooking bag as it marinated. On the day of cooking, I opted to use a whole bottle of light olive oil (500 ml) instead of duck fat to keep this on the healthier side. I also added about 2 cups of rich turkey broth for addition flavor. I sealed up the bag, poked a couple wholes up top, cooked the turkey at 350 degrees Fahrenheit at 20 minutes per pound, then turned the oven down to 300 degrees Fahrenheit and left that on for about 2 hours so the bird could break down some more. That’s it! The thing fell off the bone like pulled pork. The turkey breast was easily 500 percent more moist than any turkey breast I had ever had.