Everyone has their way of roasting turkey.  I’ve been using the guide from The Fannie Farmer Cookbook for more turkeys than I care to remember.

Cook 15 minutes per pound if the turkey weighs less than 16 pounds; 12 minutes per pound if it is heavier.  Turn breast up after one hour if the turkey weighs less than 12 pounds;  after 1 1/2 hours if it weighs more.  When the meat thermometer registers 170F   in the breast meat, and 185F in the thigh meat, remove the turkey to a warm platter and cover loosely with foil.  Let rest 15 minutes before carving.

Here’s the thing.  The turkey is NEVER going to be warm.  So don’t worry about it.  Just make sure your lovely gravy is very, very hot.  Pour a little gravy over the cut turkey on the platter, then pass the biggest gravy boat you can find.

Now here’s the answer to “is this turkey is done?”.  Your instant-read thermometer.

A few days before Thanksgiving, calibrate your instant-read thermometer.  To make certain the reading is accurate, bring a pan of water to a boil.  The thermometer should read 212F when the stem is inserted halfway into the boiling water.  To adjust the reading, rotate the nut just under the face of the thermometer (at the top of the stem) or take the difference into account when you use the thermometer.

Happy gobble gobble.   My clever Brother is cooking the turkey again this year.


2 thoughts on “THE MOST ASKED QUESTION ON THANKSGIVING …. Is this turkey done??

  1. timely post!!! really great info. Thank you.

    Here’s my family protocol from 1979 from a Globe and Mail food writer, whose name I can’t recall.

    We get a nest ready for the bird: Outside layer blanket, middle layer newspapers, inside layer tin foil. Put bird on platter into the nest. First wrap with tin foil with some air vents, then cover with newspapers, and finally wrap the blanket around. We put him on a cozy chair in the family room and head back to the kitchen to finish the veggies and gravy. The juices settle, it’s still warm and it seems to be the great finishing touch every year. Carves beautifully.

    Thanksgiving wishes to you both.

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