In this post I hope to convince you to make turkey year round! Not just at Thanksgiving! Buy a few extra turkey breasts at Thanksgiving time, store them in your deep freezer, and make them throughout the year. Turkey dinner for any special occasion. And the BEST part is the gravy and the delicious turkey stock you can make with the bones. It’s just so good! I prefer to use turkey breasts because they are easier to carve up and smaller to store in the freezer, but this day we cooked a whole turkey because it was given to us when my husband was out of work. We saved it to celebrate his new job.:)
My mom has made this turkey recipe for years. It is my favorite. I have had a lot of turkey dinners, but I just love this recipe the best. I hope you will enjoy!
1 TBSP flour
4 yellow onions, sliced
4-6 carrots chopped in 1-2 inch pieces
2-3 celery stocks, chopped in 1-2 inch pieces
3-4 baby leaves
1 TBSP black peppercorns
2 turkey breasts 6-8 lbs each OR 1 whole turkey
1/2 C butter, melted
1 tsp sage
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp chives
1 TBSP salt
1 tsp pepper
Preheat oven to 350°. In a large roasting pan, place a Reynolds Oven Bags-make sure it’s the turkey size. Pour in 1 TBSP flour and shake around in bag. Place back into roasting pan. Add onions, carrots, celery, bay leaves, peppercorns. You can also add some fresh parsley if you have it-in this photo I luckily have some from my mother-in-law’s garden.
Rinse and pat turkey/turkey breast dry. Place into bag on top of veggies/seasonings. Carefully pour melted butter over the turkey, rubbing it around the top of the turkey.
In a small bowl, mix the sage, thyme, chives, salt, and pepper. Then rub this over the top of the turkey/turkey breasts.
Doesn’t that look beautiful? Just wait until you are smelling this baking! Your mouth will water!
Then just close up the bag with the enclosed tie. Place in the oven at 350º for 1 hour. Then turn down the temperature to 325º for 2- 2 1/2 hours more. I always cook it a bit longer than when the little temperature thing in the turkey pops out. Or if you are going to be at church for three hours- or more- you have to include gab time, just set it at 325º for the whole time. It still turns out perfect.
Once the turkey is done. Remove from oven and carefully open up a hole in the bag. You want to save all those delicious drippings. This part is tricky with a whole turkey-another reason I like doing two turkey breasts instead. Carefully take out turkey and put on a platter to rest. Cover it with aluminum foil.
Then wearing oven mitts, take the bag by the top where you opened a hole, and place on a sieve over a large pot. Poke a couple holes in the bottom of the bag with a sharp knife being careful to keep the drippings in the pot. This will strain out all the drippings from the veggies. Discard the veggies.
drippings from turkey
1 C water
1/2 C all purpose flour
salt/pepper as desired
To make the gravy, I like to spoon some of the liquid fat off the top of the drippings once their in the pan. I just do a few tablespoons. Then bring the drippings to a boil. While it’s coming to a boil, mix the water and flour together with a whisk in a 2 C glass measuring cup.
Once the drippings are boiling, add the water/flour mix slowly, stirring constantly. Do this until the gravy reaches the thickness you like. Sometimes I turn down the heat once I have added all the water/flour mixture to let it continue to simmer and thicken. If you have added all the flour/water and it’s not thicken enough, make another half batch. I also add salt/pepper to my taste as it’s thickening.
Then serve this delicious gravy with mashed potatoes, my Fresh Bread, and any other Thanksgiving-like sides.
Then after you clean up dinner, throw those good bones in the crock pot and make my Homemade Chicken Stock -but with turkey instead.:) A whole turkey will give you enough bones to do two batches. And if you are cooking two turkey breasts, each one will do a batch.
I hope you will give this recipe a try! I love sharing the goodness of food.
Life is Good. Share the Good.
PS You can also just make one Turkey breast. Just half the butter and seasonings for the top of the turkey, and bake less time. If you over bake with one breast, their is the possibility most of your drippings will cook out. I also like to add extra veggies with one to help avoid that problem. And if you do end up cooking out most of the drippings, that’s when having chicken/turkey stock in the freezer comes in handy. Just thaw a cup, add what drippings you got, and add a little sage and thyme with your salt and pepper. Wa-la! You’ve saved the day!