There are many ways to prepare a turkey, including deep-frying, smoking and of course, roasting. Because turkeys are usually served during very special occasions, it’s worth taking extra steps to ensure that the turkey is as juicy, flavorful and tender as it can possibly be. One of the extra steps that professionals take when preparing a turkey is basting it. Basting a turkey involves coating it with sauces or marinades, in order to keep the meat moist, enhance its juiciness and flavor, and improve its appearance as well.
- Prepare the needed ingredients and materials. You will need turkey stuffing, butter, olive oil, turkey broth (which you can be prepared at grocery stores), a meat thermometer, a basting bulb, basting brush, and a roasting pan.
- Clean the turkey. Do this right after taking the turkey home. Brush a little butter or oil onto the skin of the turkey. Leave it in the fridge overnight.
- Stuff the turkey. You could prepare the stuffing from scratch using ingredients such as bread, chopped vegetables, eggs and seasonings, or buy a packaged stuffing mix. Whichever you choose, you should put together the stuffing right before you stuff the turkey. When stuffing the turkey, fill up the turkey’s cavities using about ½ to ¾ cups for every pound of turkey. Loosely fill the turkey’s main body with the stuffing, and cover the exposed stuffing with aluminum foil. Don’t fill the turkey entirely, and aim for just ¾ of its cavity.
- Prepare the skin. With clean hands, spread more oil or butter throughout the turkey’s skin. You could also use salt. Then, lightly coat the turkey with non-stick cooking spray.
- Roast the turkey. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Place a meat thermometer in between the turkey’s thigh and breast. Later on, you will know that your turkey is ready once the stuffing reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit and the turkey reaches 185 degrees Fahrenheit
- Prepare the turkey glaze. One great recipe for turkey glaze requires three cups of freshly-squeezed orange, one tablespoon ginger root extract and one tablespoon brown sugar. Combine all the ingredients and cook them in a saucepan. Mix three tablespoons orange juice and two tablespoons cornstarch in another bowl, and combine the mixture with the ingredients in the saucepan.
- Take out the turkey every 30 to 45 minutes. Every time you take out the turkey, brush it with butter and pour turkey broth over it. Move very quickly, so that the turkey can go back in the oven once again and its cooking process will not be significantly interrupted. Afterward, place the turkey back into the oven. Stop roasting once the turkey stuffing reaches the appropriate temperature.
- Cover the easily-browned parts with aluminum foil. Every time you take out the turkey, observe which parts are getting darker brown; cover them with aluminum foil.
- Pour the glaze. Do this in the last thirty minutes of roasting.
Preparing a turkey for deep basting may be a little time-consuming and may require more effort, but the flavorful skin and juices that you’ll enjoy will be well worth it. Good luck!