Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Cook your Turkey BREAST SIDE DOWN

Cooking the bird "upside down" ... it's not as pretty a presentation - but it makes for much tastier white meat!

This is a post I first did last year for chicken. Today it's about turkey! (so pretend that is a picture of a turkey, and not chicken in a dutch oven).

Actually, turkey is where it began. My mom always cooked the turkey upside down. Upside down, and in a brown paper bag. This is the way I always do it too, because I know it always turns out perfect. The only thing I've added to the overall preparation is that now I'll brine the birds as well. Triple threat!

Does the chicken in this pot look odd at all? It's because it's upside down. Breast side down instead of the way we're used to seeing it - breast side up. My mom always did this with the holiday turkeys, so why not do it with chicken.

1 Whole chicken - drop it into an oven safe dish that you have a lid for. Add a generous amount of salt and pepper. You could stop there and add only a bit of olive oil, but I also like to add a good sprinkling of onion powder & garlic powder, a little paprika, and a little dried oregano. Drizzle a good amount of olive oil over it, then rub it all in real good.

I cook it uncovered at 375 for about 30 minutes, then turn it down to 325, cover it and slow cook it for another 2 hours. It really renders the juices, and creates a very rich, dark carmel-like sauce. Add desired vegetables, a little water (1 cup) and white wine (1 cup) in the last 45 min. When done, the liquid will be reduced down to a thick goo and you'll have a yummy sauce for drizzling over the chicken.

OK, so here is what happens. The breast meat is sitting at the bottom of the pot, drenched in all the juices and fat and it just drinks it up. Like I said, not as pretty - but so much tastier.

Taken right out of the pot - juicy and moist. If you cut this piece of breast meat in half, you'll see the gorgeous caramel colored juice in-between each and every fiber. Go ahead, click on the picture to supersize it... you know you want to.