Roast Wild Turkey
Cornbread dressing is especially good with this entree.
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 canned chipotle chile, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
- 1 (8- to 10-pound) wild turkey, fresh or frozen
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted turkey or chicken
- Salt and freshly-ground black pepper
- Begin preparing the turkey the night before you plan to bake it. Combine
butter with the garlic and other seasonings with an electric mixer until the
mixture is smooth. Loosen the turkey's skin with your fingers, being careful
not to tear it. Rub the turkey inside and out with the butter, especially under
the breast skin. Place the turkey in a large plastic bag and refrigerate it
- Remove the turkey from the refrigerator about 1 hour before you plan to
begin baking it.
- Heat the oven to 450 degrees F. Grease the rack of a roasting pan.
- Transfer the turkey breast-side down to the roasting pan. Roast it in this
position for 1 hour, reducing the oven temperature to 325 degrees F after the
first 20 minutes.
- Turn the turkey breast-side up, avoiding tearing the skin or piercing the
flesh. Baste the bird with some of the stock and accumulated pan juices. Allow
a total roasting time of about 13 to 15 minutes per pound, until the internal
temperature reaches 155 degrees F to 160 degrees F. Continue basting every 20
to 30 minutes during the remaining roasting time. Cover the breast with a foil
tent toward the end if it appears to be browning too quickly, but keep basting.
- Remove the turkey from the oven, tent it with foil, and let it sit for about
20 minutes before carving it.
- Add any remaining stock to the drippings, scrape up any browned bits from
the bottom of the roasting pan, and pour the liquid into a small saucepan. Degrease
the liquid. Bring it to a boil, and reduce it as needed to make a thin sauce
that can be spooned over the bird like gravy. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Slice the turkey thin, and serve it on a platter with the sauce.