Had to work today...got off at about 5:00 this afternoon...we'll have family over tomorrow for a big turkey dinner. Robin's just pulled the turkey out of the oven (after a small fire! No damage, all contained to the oven, but we grabbed a bag of flour to throw on it just in case!)
Robin tried a new method of baking the turkey, from a blog by Noël Piper (nations-be-glad.blogspot.com):
1. Thaw the turkey according to packaging instructions.
2. Optional: Remove as much of the skin as you can.
3. Rinse the turkey well, inside and out.
4. Place the turkey, breast down, in the roasting pan. This is upside down from the traditional drumsticks-pointing-up position, but it lets the moisture from the dark meat cook down into the less-moist white meat.
5. Pour water into the pan, about 1 inch deep.
6. Cover well, with roaster pan lid or foil.
7. Bake according to the temperature and time on your turkey's packaging.
8. It's done when the wings or drumsticks start to hang loose from the body. (Or you can use a meat thermometer).
9. Let the whole thing cool enough to handle.
10. Then take the meat from the bones and put it in a sealable plastic container. You can choose whether to slice it now, or just store it in whatever size chunks you get.
11. Pour over the meat as much of the pan liquid as the container can hold.
12. Refrigerate, if it's only 1-2 days ahead of your meal. Otherwise, freeze it. Also save the rest of the pan liquid to use later for gravy or soup.
13. If frozen, defrost the day before the meal.
14. On Thanksgiving, microwave the meat in the liquid in a covered container. I usually use a slightly lower power setting, maybe 70-80%. If the meat is packed pretty tightly into the plastic container, it will be good to loosen it up, maybe by separating into 2-3 microwavable containers. That way you can heat just what you need, one platters' worth at a time.
This method is supposed to make the meat very moist. Plus, cooking the turkey the day before the dinner allows the oven to be used for all the rest of the food that needs to be cooked.
We'll let you know how it turns out tomorrow!