I basically followed this recipe from Serious Eats to a T, including the gravy, which was amazing.
Yes, cutting out the backbone of the turkey was a pain in the behind. Yes, my first pair of kitchen shears broke. But between the second pair of shears and a few good whacks with my chef's knife, everything else went smoothly.
The best part? By opening up the turkey and exposing the legs and thighs to more heat, the whole bird was cooked perfectly. Juicy breast meat, perfectly cooked dark meat, and lots of crispy, crunchy skin.
|Ready for the oven...|
I served the turkey alongside some easy side dishes (it was a practice Thanksgiving, after all!). Cornbread stuffing (yes, using prepackaged corn bread cubes!), homemade ginger-cardamom cranberry sauce, and roasted delicata squash made for a perfect Autumn meal.
|Out of the oven, nice and crispy on top!|
|Cranberry sauce with ginger, cardamom, coriander, and cinnamon|
|Juicy meat, crispy skin, and savory gravy...oh my!|
All in all my practice Thanksgiving was a success! Later, we had some persimmon pie that was also delicious (though no match for the salted chocolate pecan pie I plan on making next week!)
If you are toying with the idea of trying a different turkey-cooking method, I can't recommend spatchcocking/butterflying enough.