Top turkey tips


Each year the turkey seems to prove a hefty Christmas challenge and rightly so – we are all used to cooking a chicken on a Sunday but the turkey is a bigger beast completely and with all the scare-mongering bandied about we need a bit of a helping hand through the cooking process.

  • Following a few easy steps from the people at will leave you high and dry on Christmas day – and ready to enjoy a well-deserved glass (or bottle...) of champagne.
  • If you plan your cooking times and write everything down, the whole experience will prove much more straightforward.
  • Weigh your turkey (and hence judge the cooking times) after you’ve stuffed the bird.
  • Cover the breast with foil while leaving the legs uncovered to prevent drying out. Uncover the breast for the last bit of cooking to allow browning.
  • Test the turkey – a guide might give you an exact time based on an exact temperature, but check your bird as ovens vary hugely! You can do this by sticking a skewer or small knife into the turkey. Pierce the thickest part - this is usually the leg of a whole turkey. If any liquid comes out and it is clear then the turkey is done. If the liquid is pink or red in colour then the turkey needs to be cooked for longer.
  • Fan assisted ovens are usually set approximately 25°C / 50°F lower than normal ovens and cooking time needs to be reduced by 10 minutes for every hour of cooking time. Rest the bird – a turkey will sit happily on your sideboard for up to an hour and will benefit from this resting. Remember – you will be pouring hot gravy over it anyway to give it a zap of warmth when you need to serve it.

Click on the links for some Turkey essentials recipes

Sage and onion stuffing
Bread sauce
Cranberry sauce
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