Cooking a turkey to perfection is something even some of the most experienced cooks might fret about, as cooking a bird can come with certain complications. Luckily, for those of you who are concerned about cooking a tender turkey that’s juicy on the inside and crispy on the outside, Taste of Home has developed a one-of-a-kind recipe that will have people thinking you are a seasoned chef!
To spatchcock a turkey, you must first remove the backbone of the entire bird and lay it flat to cook. You can spatchcock almost any bird, from turkey to chickens, Cornish game hens and even pigeons.
While spatchcocking a turkey isn’t a traditional presentation, there are a few reasons as to why it’s more convenient. First, it’s pretty quick to do. Since the bird is flattened, the cooking time is, therefore, cut in half. It also allows the bird to cook evenly. As you probably have experienced when cooking chicken, the breast meat commonly dries before the dark meat is fully cooked. Finally, the skin gets a delicious rich and crispy taste. Because the entire bird is exposed to the same level of heat, every single part of it gets an even coat of brown and develops a tasty crispiness.
Below are eight steps on how to spatchcock a delicious turkey.
Ingredients: 1 turkey (12 to 14 lbs.), 3 tbsp. of kosher salt, 2 tsp. of coarsely ground pepper, 1 tbsp. minced fresh rosemary, 1 tbsp. minced fresh thyme and 1 tbsp., minced fresh sage.
Tools: kitchen shears, cutting board, and a large baking pan.
Step 1: Pat Dry Turkey
Using paper towels, pat dry the turkey to remove all moisture from the skin. Remember: the less moisture, the crispier it will be.
Step 2: Cut Along Backbone
Place the whole turkey on the cutting board, with the breast side down. Then, find the backbone at the center of the bird. Once you find the backbone, using sharp kitchen shears, begin to cut at the tail. Be sure to cut as close as possible to the backbone to avoid cutting other joints.