For really real you can have a beyond yummy Thanksgiving Day Turkey cooked and ready to serve in two hours! And, I’m not talking small turkey, I’m talking big enough to feed the family turkey (22lb’s the first year I did this method)!
I’ll be totally up-front that the origins of this recipe are unknown, and I am in no way taking credit for this recipe, or claiming it as my own. That’s not stopping me from sharing it though because frankly it’s brilliant! I’ve lost count of how many turkeys I’ve cooked at this point, but no matter the size (from 22lb down to 12lb) it always turns out perfect.
Just know, if you offer to cook the turkey using this method, that will become your “thing” every Thanksgiving forevermore!
Here’s what I love most about this process…it leaves me free to do whatever I want Thanksgiving morning…which mostly means watching the parade, in pj’s, with a mimosa! Not gonna lie it does feel a bit “wrong” to be relaxing all morning while everyone is posting on FB about being up early and the turkey’s in the oven, and I haven’t even started thinking about it. But, on the flip side it feels really great to sleep in and enjoy the morning!
The best part…since it only takes two hours there is no reason not to cook turkey any time of year. No need to wait for a special reason or holiday. If you like turkey this makes it way more accessible any time of year, time wise anyway.
Two Hour Turkey
Serves: a lot 🙂 Prep Time: 10 -15 minutes Cook Time: 2 Hours (maybe a bit less depending on size of turkey) plus 10 minutes of resting time Heat: 400
8-20 pound turkey, completely thawed
Oil (I use Olive Oil)
Cut the “crop skin” at the neck of the neck of the bird off, and cut wings off at second joint. Also, cut off the tail.
Salt and Pepper the turkey inside and out. Sprinkle a generous amount of paprika on the turkey (I sprinkle inside as well) and massage into the bird using 1 cup of oil, coating the entire bird.
Arrange the turkey on its side in a roasting pan, on the roasting rack. Roast bird at 400 for up to 2 hours, a little more or less may be needed depending on size of turkey. 3/4 of the way through cooking remove turkey from oven and turn on to its other side. Be careful not to pierce the skin as you do not want the juices running out. (I use two kitchen towels…make sure they are not nice ones as the paprika will stain them).
As the skin darkens and becomes crispy, the meat should be checked to see if it’s done. The skin should look like a new football. Make a small cut in the thigh joint and if juices run clear the turkey is done, you can also insert a meat thermometer and when it reads 165 the turkey is done.
Let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before carving.
Serve with good company, yummy sides (for real the turkey is so easy you can get fancy with sides if you want to), and good wine!
Enjoy, and Happy Thanksgiving!