Cajun Roasted Turkey Featured

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Issue Date: November, 2010
Serves: Serves 20
Pairings:
Courtesy of: Chef Tory McPhail, Commander's Palace, New Orleans, LA for Louisiana Cookin

Ingredients:

  • 1 20- to 25-pound turkey, preferably fresh
  • 4 gallons cold water
  • 2 cups powdered Louisiana crab boil salt, as needed
  • 1 ounce vegetable oil
  • 4 tablespoons Creole seasoning

Special Equipment:

  • large bucket to hold the turkey
  • 4 gallons of water
  • food-grade syringe, such as Cajun Injector

Instructions:

Remove the neck and giblets from the turkey and reserve for another use. Remove excess skin and fat from the neck and cavity areas and drain excess liquid from the cavity.

Add the water to the bucket, pour in the crab boil, and stir to dissolve. Fill the syringe with the liquid and evenly inject each breast of the turkey 5 times. Repeat 5 times with each leg. Add enough salt to the water, if necessary, to achieve a flavor that is just short of the salinity of sea water, or to taste. Submerge the turkey in the brine and refrigerate for 2 days.

Remove the turkey from the brine at least 24 hours before cooking. Dry the outside with paper towels and refrigerate to dry further. Remove the turkey from the refrigerator 1 hour prior to roasting. Move the oven rack to the lowest rung and pre-heat oven to 450°F.

Fold the wings back under the turkey and tie the legs together with butcher’s twine. Rub the turkey with the oil and sprinkle evenly with Creole seasoning. Place the turkey in a greased roasting pan and place it in the oven with the cavity facing the back of the oven. Cook until light golden brown, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Decrease oven temperature to 325°F and continue cooking about 4 3/4 to 5 1/4 hours or until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh (near the bone) reads 140°F. The turkey will continue to brown as it cooks. Allow to rest for 1 hour prior to carving.

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