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We thought we help those of you who are new to cooking a turkey with the following recipe:
Traditional Roasted Turkey
By Linda Larsen, About.com Guide
Never stuff your turkey ahead of time. It should be stuffed only when it's ready to go into the oven. The stuffing should be spooned lightly into the turkey's body cavity and neck cavity. Don't pack it! The internal temperature of the stuffing must reach 165 degrees F, and if the stuffing is too tightly packed the interior won't get hot enough. Stuffing also expands as it absorbs moisture from the bird, so filling the turkey lightly will give you the best results. For the safest stuffing, follow instructions at Stuffing 101.
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•Remove the gizzard packet from inside of the turkey and place the heart, neck, and gizzard in a pan of cold water and set on low heat to bring to a boil. (This will create stock for the gravy). Don't use the liver in this stock.
•Dry the turkey thoroughly with paper towels. Place the turkey in a large roasting pan on top of a cooking rack. Prepare the stuffing and spoon it lightly into the neck cavity. Pull the neck skin over the stuffing and fasten it to the back using a skewer.
•Lightly stuff the body cavity, then tie legs to the tail with cooking string or tuck the leg ends under the tail. Twist the wing tips under the back. Brush turkey with melted butter or olive oil and insert an oven-safe meat thermometer into the center of the thigh muscles, making sure you avoid hitting the bone with the thermometer. Or you can use an instant-read meat thermometer and check the turkey as it gets close to the end of cooking time.
•Now soak a four-layer piece of cheesecloth in the melted butter/shortening mixture and cover the turkey with the cheesecloth.
•Place the turkey in a 325 degree oven. Roast for 3/4 of the cooking time, basting every 30 minutes with the pan juices which will accumulate. Keep an eye on the giblet stock and remove it from the heat when it's simmered for 2 hours.
•Then cut the string (if that's what you used) holding the legs to the tail and uncover the turkey. You can leave it tied and covered if you wish - it just depends on how the turkey is browning. If it isn't browned enough for your taste, remove the cheesecloth. Roast for the remainder of the cooking time until the meat thermometer registers 180 degrees and stuffing registers 165 degrees.
•Remove from oven and remove stuffing to a serving bowl, cover with foil to keep warm. Cover turkey with foil and let rest 15-20 minutes before carving to allow juices to redistribute.