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Old 11-21-2006, 12:15 AM   #1
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Do you use a covered turkey roaster?

I've used a domed (covered) turkey roaster for the past 12 years. The recipe is the same: Stuff my 17 lb turkey, place on a rack in the roaster, cover and roast in the oven @400*F for 3.5 hours.
The bird comes out brown and juicy.

Recently however, I've noticed, many cooking shows are roasting turkey in uncovered rather shallow pans. They claim that in a domed roaster, turkey braises instead, or steams.

I always considered a covered roaster to be an oven within the oven, acting as a buffer maintaining even temperature between oven cycles.

What do you guys think?

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Old 11-21-2006, 12:26 AM   #2
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I've always used the covered also. However, this year I'm using a roasting pan like the cooks on foodnetwork use that has just the rack inside.
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Old 11-21-2006, 01:18 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SizzlininIN
I've always used the covered also. However, this year I'm using a roasting pan like the cooks on foodnetwork use that has just the rack inside.
What size bird do you roast and do you stuff?
Were you unhappy with your previous results? What is prompting you to change?
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Old 11-21-2006, 05:13 AM   #4
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Never never never!!! Covered gives a basically steamed bird. Uncovered gives you that Bon Appetit cover picture of a Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving Day turkey.
When I married and moved to near DH's family, we started with T'giving at their beautiful gracious home with DMIL's absolutely legendary cooking. She covered her turkey--and when bags came available, put it in the bag. Good, but "pasty" looking, even after a final "brown" in the oven.
They began coming to our house for T'giving and I did my turkeys as my dad did (with chestnut stuffing). DMIL ALWAYS raved about the beauty and luciousness of the turkey. She was a grand lady.
We always fix a 20+ # turkey--this year a 24#er. Good bread stuffing inside--cornbread dressing outside. No brining.

Please try it without a cover!!! I don't even use a rack--just stick it in the pan.
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Old 11-21-2006, 06:50 AM   #5
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I grew up with my mom always using a covered roasting pan and I inherited the pan when she passed away. She always removed the lid in the end to let the bird brown really nicely. I loved her turkey.....it was always so tender and juicy. I've decided to try the open roaster for a change. Its just something I've seen used so often I wanted to see the difference for myself. Yes I will stuff the cavity with stuffing but also make extra stuffing on the side and bake seperately. I'm fixing a 15# bird this year.
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Old 11-21-2006, 09:14 AM   #6
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I use an open pan. Part way through, I cover the breast with foil.
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Old 11-21-2006, 09:27 AM   #7
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Always uncovered here. However, I drape the whole exposed part of the turkey with several layers of butter/white wine soaked cheesecloth and baste through that. At the end I remove the cheesecloth and soak it in my giblet broth to extract all the flavor and yummies it has gotten while the turkey roasted. I then use the broth when I make my gravy.
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Old 11-21-2006, 11:18 AM   #8
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I have a calphalon covered roaster...used mainly as a braising box ...great for pot roasts etc. For turkey, I only use the cover for the middle third of the cook time...in place of the foil tent. works great.
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Old 11-21-2006, 11:43 AM   #9
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Thanks everyone.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gretchen
Never never never!!! Covered gives a basically steamed bird. Uncovered gives you that Bon Appetit cover picture of a Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving Day turkey.
When I married and moved to near DH's family, we started with T'giving at their beautiful gracious home with DMIL's absolutely legendary cooking. She covered her turkey--and when bags came available, put it in the bag. Good, but "pasty" looking, even after a final "brown" in the oven.
They began coming to our house for T'giving and I did my turkeys as my dad did (with chestnut stuffing). DMIL ALWAYS raved about the beauty and luciousness of the turkey. She was a grand lady.
We always fix a 20+ # turkey--this year a 24#er. Good bread stuffing inside--cornbread dressing outside. No brining.

Please try it without a cover!!! I don't even use a rack--just stick it in the pan.
Gretchen, I have an 18lb bird this year. How hot an oven and how long do you suggest cooking it uncovered? How shallow of a pan do you recommend? The turkey will be stuffed.
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Old 11-21-2006, 02:40 PM   #10
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I've cooked the turkey both ways and I like it both ways. I stuff the inside of the bird with onion, celery, lemon, sage, and apple. Then I make the dressing with the drippings. I usually make a seasoned butter rub to go under the turkey skin with sage, thyme, marjoram and a little salt and pepper. I start mine at 400 and then reduce the heat to 325.
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